I love having parks in the middle of cities, all the best cities have them: New York (central park), Edinburgh (Arthur's Seat) and also Montreal (Parc Mont-Royal). Each of the parks mentioned have their own slight charms; I loved Central Park because it was an oasis of calm and due to the still visible skyline, it offered such a fantastic contrast. Arthur's Seat is a big volcanic rock sticking up in the middle of the city. This provides great views of the surrounding area as well as being a haven for walkers, climbers, joggers, cyclists.
Parc Mont-Royal is another type; it is able to completely enevelop you and make you entirely forget you're in a city of over 2 million people. This is due to the inordinate amount of trails that lead through the trails, which always have a sort of calming effect on me. At any given point you can dive back out onto a main track and be surrounded by people, but just as quickly return to your one-on-one with the trees.
I hadn't really explored the Parc until yesterday when I decided to go on a pilgrimage towards the Cross. As I was looking for it, I came across a very strange piece of art. At least I think it was - on a little short cut, there was a circular, stone plaque on the ground into which were carved various French phrases. It was very random, but I thought it was pretty cool that I'd found it. Has anyone else seen it?