Even if you’ve lived in Montreal for less than a month, you’ve probably heard about the Tam-Tams. Taking over Parc Mont Royal every Sunday in the summer, this glorious hippie spectacle is a guaranteed fun time for everyone involved. Whether you just want to take in the sights and sounds on a picnic blanket next to the action, or insert yourself right into the centre of the drum circle, Tam-Tams will not disappoint. That being said, getting used to the Tam-Tams vibe can be a bit of an adjustment, especially for newcomers.
Check out 7 thoughts you have going to Tam-Tams for the first time:
Wow, there are a lot of people here
To this day every time we get to the famous Tam-Tams Monument, we are always shocked to see how packed Parc Mont Royal is. Spilling all the way down to Avenue des Pins and up to Avenue Mont-Royal, as well as across the street at Parc Jeanne-Mance, there are Montrealers as far as the eye can see.
Am I hipster enough for this?
Upon first glance, Tam-Tams definitely seems a little hipster (or at the very least, hippie). After all, Tam-Tams are all about the drum circle and laid back vibes. Upon closer examination, however, you’ll find that there is no one type of person that goes to Tam-Tams. You’ll see Montrealers of all ages, students, families, tourists, and plenty of people that by no means fall under the “hipster category”. Tam-Tams is really just an excuse to have a picnic on Sunday, and having a picnic is not hipster.
Does the picnic law also apply to weed because pretty much everyone is smoking here…
Montreal is a pretty liberal city so generally speaking you’ve probably noticed a lot of people smoking some *ahem* illegal substances no matter where you go. But yes it is true that many people do smoke weed at Tam-Tams, and the cops really don’t seem to care all that much (or at all, really).
What’s space cake?
In line with thought #3, some Montrealers like to relax and immerse themselves in the hippie vibe with a little bit of help from space cake. In fact, if someone doesn’t try to sell you a space cake, we’ll be very surprised.
Should I join the drum circle?
Ah yes, the age-old question. Am I really getting the true Tam-Tams experience if I’m not actively participating in the drum circle? That’s up to you to decide, but just know the drum circle is super friendly. So if you’re interested in joining, just bring any form of drum or noisemaker you own and take it all in!
Maybe I’ll just go back and sit with my friends…
There’s no shame in walking over to the drum circle, checking it out, and then deciding to re-join going your friends and their picnic blanket. The main point of Tam-Tams is just to relax in the sun, enjoy some food and drink, and meet fellow Montrealers.
I totally get what the fuss is about – I’ll be back next Sunday
In the end, you’ll realize Tam-Tams is one of the best parts of the summer in Montreal. It gives you an excuse to enjoy Montreal’s beautiful parks, allows you to meet new people, and is always guaranteed to be a good time. There are popsicle and water vendors by the monument, hilarious attractions like bubble soccer, and across the street you’ll find beach volleyball and various sports happening throughout the day. Be sure to enjoy Tam-Tams while you can! We all know that summer in Montreal is just too damn short.