Enjoy the Historic Charm of Quebec City
Considered the foundation of French civilization in North America, Quebec City offers unique architecture and historical charms. The Old Quarter, or Old Quebec, is the only walled city in North America and was named a UNESCO World Heritage treasure in 1985.
What I think is the best feature of Old Quebec, though, is that all of the main attractions are in walking distance from one another! And while some of the attractions in Quebec City are a bit more spread out, you can easily explore the offerings in just a few days or in a few weeks. Be sure to check out my favorites:
- Lower Town’s Place Royale Square and Petit-Champlain District: Walk across cobblestones to see the square’s centuries-old buildings. Browse shops and art galleries along Rue du Petit Champlain, declared the Best Street in Canada in 2014.
- Upper Town: A wooden boardwalk connects the Plains of Abraham to the Dufferin Terrace. The view of the St. Lawrence River from the terrace is stunning.
- Old Port Marketplace: At the city’s largest farmers’ market, you’ll find a variety of gourmet pleasures ranging from maple butter to ice cider.
- Musée de la Civilisation: Explore Canadian and world culture in the city’s most popular museum. This family-friendly institution offers interactive, educational and fun activities.
- Quebec-Lévis Ferry: Hop on the commuter ferry round trip from Quebec City to Lévis; make sure to capture some memorable shots! Crossing time is about 15 minutes.
- Plaines of Abraham Battlefield Park: Still filled with history, this 108-hectare urban park is the perfect place to stroll, run, or ride your bike. This iconic green space is Quebec City’s Central Park or Hyde Park.
- Citadelle of Quebec: Shaped like a star, the Citadelle is a historic (and still active) military fortress. Be sure to explore the museum, the changing of the guards, and views of the St. Lawrence River.
- The Montmorency Falls: Just minutes from Quebec City, the falls are a beautiful place to walk, hike, bike, or explore by cable car or zip-line.
Hungry? A few of my favorite gourmet hotspots include:
- Aux Anciens Canadiens – located in Quebec City’s oldest home, serving meat and maple syrup pies.
- Le Saint-Amour – serves authentic French cuisine and has one of the best wine lists in Canada.
- Le Cochon Dingue – serves 100% Québécois with a French-bistro flair.
- Le Chic Shack – serves gourmet burgers, poutines and milkshakes.
- La Pizzaio – a small restaurant that serves unique pizzas.
- Proper Dress: Regardless of season, comfortable shoes are a must! A light sweater or coat may come in handy on cool summer evenings. This is particularly true for those attending the Festival d’été de Québec (July 7-17, 2016) or the New-France Festival (August 3 – 7, 2016). For those visiting during winter months, like those attending the famous Winter Carnival in February, warm clothes, gloves, and warm boots are necessary.
- Stairs vs. Funicular: Several sets of stairs link the Upper Town to the Lower Town. Skip the stairs with the funicular that links the top of the hill Dufferin Terrace to Rue Petit Champlain on the lower level. Note that the “Breakneck Stairs” were named by local residents for its’ steep grade.
- Accommodations: Hilton Quebec is the perfect base for exploring. Located across the street from the Old City, the Hilton Quebec offers breathtaking views and is walking distance to all major attractions and festivals.
- Language: French is the official language of Quebec, but English is widely spoken.
Need more suggestions for your trip to Quebec City? Tweet us at @HiltonSuggests! This vibrant city awaits you.