Québec City

quebec city  002New France.  A 400 year old city with a complex history that includes changing hands several times between the French and the British.  Québec CIty (aka Québec), once the capital of the Dominion of Canada is now the capital of the province of Québec. quebec city  003 quebec city  085Québec, the 11th largest city in Canada, is also the only fortified city north of Mexico.  The walls of the city were made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985.quebec city  004 We stayed in Lévis, a town across the St. Lawrence River which is fairly narrow at this point.  This location was close to a 15-minute ferry ride over to Québec.  A great option, as driving and parking in the city can be challenging. There were more weather changes while here, including a couple of rainy days.  And now the weather was starting to get a bit chilly.  Fall was in the air. quebec city  046quebec city  005Crossing over on the ferry with the locals was really fun, after a few days it became our “commute”.  We spent most of our time in the old city, la vielle ville, our favorite section.  It’s reminiscent of a European city with cobblestone streets, stone buildings, old churches, parks and gardens and of course, the walls surrounding the city.  And VERY French.quebec city  041quebec city  051quebec city  006quebec city  025quebec city  027quebec city  026quebec city  048 quebec city  043The city also has many cafes, shops and, of course, the Chateau Frontenac, the most photographed hotel in the world.  It’s a beautiful structure and an outstanding landmark.quebec city  009 quebec city  010The first day we arrived, we just happened upon the Grand Prix Cycliste de Québec, an elite cycling event that’s part of an effort to bring international sports events to the city.  We saw the lead racers go by as they made one of the final turns of the race.  Then the peloton and the team cars came zooming by.  SO cool.

quebec city  015On Saturday, we spent the entire morning at the Marché du Vieux-Port de Québec, the farmers market, a permanent structure that’s open daily, and has additional vendors on Saturdays.  This was one of our “top” farmers markets in Canada.quebec city  021

Lots of produce, cheeses, sausage, meats, fresh seafood, jellies, beautiful pies and other baked goods, fresh pasta, sauces and much more.  They also offer breakfast and lunch options.  And we discovered one more new local dish – meat pie – delicious.


quebec city  055We also visited the Citadel, a very impressive structure, to see the changing of the guard only to find that they’d stopped it a week earlier (contrary to what the tourist office told us) – the guard changes only during the peak tourist season.  They did offer a tour, and I opted out since I’ve seen so many forts lately and wasn’t up for another full blown fort tour just yet.  So instead we walked around the beautiful park on the Plains of Abraham right outside the Citadel, which also happens to be where the British defeated the French in 1758.quebec city  054

We made it a point to go see the Joan of Arc statue, donated by an anonymous American.  Then, as we walked in one of the parks we happened upon a mommy’s exercise group. With the trainer holding one of the babies.  Cute.quebec city  057

Canadian Sugar Maple

Canadian Sugar Maple

quebec city  059quebec city  060quebec city  056The Quebec Parliament building was pretty impressive.  With some very animated statuary!

quebec city  039Visiting the shops was also fun.  There are really nice ones, offering beautiful clothes, accessories, leather goods and various forms of art.  And there are also the requisite tourist schlock shops. quebec city  032 quebec city  038Another fun activity for us was people watching.   There were musicians playing in the street, people sitting out in the cafes, tourists from different countries and people just going about their day.quebec city  069quebec city  031
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hmmm ...

hmmm …

quebec city  008quebec city  007quebec city  078quebec city  052quebec city  089quebec city  086And of course we just had to visit the Chateau Frontenac, so we went to the bar one evening and had a couple of drinks.  Great martinis!  Followed by a lovely evening stroll.

Samuel de Champlain .

Samuel de Champlain .

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quebec city  049quebec city  050Last, but not least, there was the food.  The French of course can do food.  And the Québécois are no different.quebec city  072 quebec city  073quebec city  098At times, we felt like we were back in France.  Although the locals here were more able and willing to speak English than other places we visited in Québec, the French ambiance still remained.  In fact Hector more than once started a sentence with “here in France” before catching himself. quebec city  042quebec city  083quebec city  080quebec city  040quebec city  044quebec city  071 quebec city  081quebec city  099

Ketchup flavored Lays Chips - available only in Canada!

Ketchup Lays Potato Chips – available only in Canada!

Québec offers something for everyone; history, romance, interesting architecture, great food, beautiful art, music, elegant shopping, boating on the St. Lawrence, bicycling, parks, trails and of course, everything French. quebec city  045j-aime-le-love-quebec-131319510685A perfect ending to our Canadian adventure.  Next we are headed back to the USA for leaf season in Vermont (derived from the French for “green mountains”). ~ Brenda

14 thoughts on “Québec City

  1. Beautiful photos, beautiful story, and such a beautiful couple! You two look more relaxed and happy every day! I love Quebec City, too. I was there while living in the Adirondacks and loved it! Enjoy Vermont and the Adirondacks! You timed leaf peeping perfectly! I’m with you in Spirit!!

    • Thanks, Rebecca. We ARE more relaxed and happy every day. We already got to see a little of the Adirondacks – beautiful! We’re behind on posts but our Vermont/New York/New Hampshire adventures are coming soon. Gorgeous over here.

  2. As a french speaking Québécois of course, I appreciated everything you said about Québec. Indeed it’s a wonderful city… I’m from Montréal and I always have a great time coming to Québec once more.

    We love to share it with Americans for sure.


    • Thank you, we enjoyed other areas of Quebec province as well, there are so many beautiful places there. Unfortunately, we didn’t make it to Montreal this time.

  3. Read your comments on Québec and I loved it. Your comments are accurate, Québec is in a sense like Boston, an historical city with memories. Living in Vaudreuil near Montréal I love to drive to Québec City and feel the atmosphere. It’s different!

    • Welcome to our blog! It’s quite a unique and beautiful city, we loved it, as well as the other areas of Quebec we visited.

  4. Wonderful blog post! My fiancee and I are heading to Quebec City for our honeymoon next week and are really excited to explore the city. In your travels there did you find that most people spoke French-Canadian over English? Between planning the wedding and everyday work, it’s been tough to study up on French 🙂


    • Welcome to our blog and congratulations. Quebec City is a wonderful place for a honeymoon. Everyone we met there spoke English, so I don’t think you have to worry. It’s only in the rural areas of the province where you might find folks that don’t speak any English.
      Safe travels and have a wonderful honeymoon,

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