A Travel Guide to Quebec City

For a Canadian destination that feels like a European getaway, look no further than Quebec City. Its historic walls, cobbled streets lined with boutique shops, and scenic spaces are full of rustic charm.

The best time to visit is late spring when everything begins to bloom, or fall for comfortable temperatures and vibrant colors.

Old Quebec

Founded in 1608 this is the most intact fortified town north of Mexico. Cobbled streets and stunning architecture make for an enchanting visit. It is a living history book where you can read the past at every turn. At Place Royale, you can see the oldest church in North America – Notre Dame-des Victoires.

The quaint Pape Georges V tavern has atmospheric vaulted ceilings and you can try their Black velvet drink which is half cider and stout beer. You can also go to the Citadelle which is the largest British fortress in North America. You can also tour the museum of the Royal 22e Regiment and learn about the history of Quebec city.

Visiting this UNESCO world heritage treasure is a must-do. Many visitors say that spending time here makes them feel like they are in Europe with its picturesque buildings. It is a perfect place for history buffs as well as foodies and shopaholics.

Fortification Wall

The Quebec Fortifications are the only surviving city walls north of Mexico and make this UNESCO World Heritage Site a highlight of any visit to Canada’s oldest province. The tour of the ramparts takes in a range of historic highlights including canons, loopholes and gates. Along the way you discover storied names in Canadian history such as Cartier, Champlain and Montcalm.

It’s worth visiting even if you don’t go all the way around, but to get the best views and experience a real taste of the old town take the lift 221 metres up on the Observatoire de la Capitale. From here you get an amazing vista of Quebec City and the star-shaped Citadelle.

Getting around Quebec City is easy and most of the attractions can be reached on foot. Download the RTC Nomade app to check routes and timetables on the go. Buses are also fairly reliable. The main boroughs are compact and can be explored easily in two-three days.

Morrin Center

Located in Quebec City, this fascinating building has worn many hats over the years. A prison in the 18th century, it later became Morrin College – the first English-language institute of higher education open until 1902. It’s now a heritage site and home to the renowned Victorian Library with some truly exquisite literary treasures. The guided tour lets you experience the sinister jail cells and decipher the original graffiti on the walls while also learning about how the library has grown to become a cultural centre.

You could easily spend a couple of days just exploring Old Quebec, but it’s worth venturing outside the walls to explore other parts of the city. St-Roch, for example, is a lively district with trendy bars and artsy galleries. Also worth visiting is the picturesque Petit-Champlain, a district along the St Lawrence River with little shops and restaurants to keep you busy. A great way to get around is by bus – use the RTC Nomade app to check routes and schedules.

Fall

Fall is a magical time to visit Quebec City. The parks and enchanting riverscapes are ablaze with vibrant autumnal hues, and the brisk air provides a perfect setting to explore the city’s French quartiers.

The cuisine of this region is truly delicious, and a food tour is an excellent way to taste some of the best local dishes. You can learn about the city’s history while tasting gourmet delights like a classic home-made pea soup, flambée lobster bisque, and beef bourguignon.

You can also take a tour of the imposing Citadelle, the largest British fortress in North America. Afterwards, head out to the surrounding countryside to see stunning natural scenery like golden birch trees and sugar maples creating dazzling colors. You’ll also find a variety of outdoor activities like hiking and paddling. So, pack your bags for a memorable vacation in Quebec!

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