The people of Québec City have a certain “joie de vivre” (lust for life) that goes hand-in-hand with their state’s motto, “je me souviens” (I remember). The historic port city in the eastern Canadian province of Québec is home to more than half a million people who celebrate their French heritage and long history. Enjoy great museums, an exciting restaurant scene, cliff-top parks and old squares.
Québec City is one of the oldest cities in North America. Founded by French explorer Samuel de Champlain in 1608 as a fur-trading outpost, today it lies along the banks of the St. Lawrence River. An influx of recent immigrants to the city has brought different cultures, languages and cuisines, but French is still the official language and Gallic traditions remain strong.
Explore the relatively compact city centre by bicycle or on foot. Many attractions lie within Old Québec (Vieux Québec) or within easy reach of the Old Port Québec. The charming Old Québec is divided into an Upper and a Lower town.
Start in the picturesque Petit-Champlain in the Lower Town. The oldest commercial district in North America, it has boutique shops and markets selling fresh produce. Stop by the Place-Royale to admire the 17th-century Church Notre-Dame-des-Victoires.
From Rue de Petit-Champlain, it’s a short trip on the cable railway to the Upper Town. Walk along the cliff-top Dufferin Terrace to look out across the river and then stroll through nearby Battlefields Park. Here you can jog in summer and cross-country ski in winter.
See a more modern side of Québec City in the fashionable Saint-Roch neighbourhood. The artistic hub has fun bars and interesting galleries.
It’s a short trip out of town to Montmorency Falls, a spectacular sight at any time of the year. Come in winter when the water freezes over.
Canada is revered for its stunning wilderness and the area surrounding Québec City is no exception. Fly into the Aéroport International Jean-Lesage for convenient access to the historic city on one side and some of Canada’s most incredible scenery on the other.