Perched atop the St Lawrence River, stepping foot in Quebec City feels like taking a step back in time. The only fortified city across the USA and Canada, the capital of Quebec attracts more than 4.6 million visitors annually, with its swirling cobblestoned streets, fairytale castles and European architecture.
While the centuries-old churches and buildings offer endless charm, the small city also harnesses a culture of modernity and peacefulness. If you enjoy culture, history, food and the outdoors, Quebec City is the perfect destination. Unsure of where to start? We’ve got you covered; here’s our list of the top sites you need to see in Quebec City.
Fairmont Chateau Frontenac
It’s impossible to miss Quebec City’s most well-known landmark when visiting the city. The Chateau Frontenac opened in 1893, as William Van Horne who was the president of the Canadian Pacific Railway wanted to build a hotel that encouraged luxury train travel. Nowadays, the hotel is a popular accommodation destination for many and is believed to be the most photographed hotel in the world.
There are many ways you can see the hotel; both inside and out! Visitors are welcome to admire the newly renovated lobby, which is decorated with historical artefacts that date back 400 years. Alternatively, there are plenty of optimal viewpoints for taking photos of the Chateau, including the Old Port, Citadelle de Québec, Observatoire de la Capitale and from the terrace in Levis.
Explore the city on a horse-drawn buggy ride
Experience the charm, elegance and authenticity of exploring the city on a horse-drawn carriage ride. Available all seasons, seeing the city this way is nothing short of romantic and unique.
Enjoy a meal at a Sugar Shack
Just as Canadian as poutine and Celine Dion; Quebec’s sugar shacks are a must-see when in the area. As implied by the name, sugar shacks are small cabins where sap is collected from sugar maple trees and boiled into maple syrup.
Not one’s to steer too far from tradition, Quebecers flock to sugar shacks with family and friends to feast on traditional Canadian foods like Cretons, Ham, Omelettes and of course, sugary maple treats.
Experience the rich history, culture and architecture of Quebec City, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Be sure not to miss the beautiful government and religious architecture, as well as the Quartier Petit-Champlain neighbourhood.
Quebec City at Christmas
While the city really springs to life in the summer, the winter months are nothing short of magical. If you’re travelling through the city in the lead up to, or during Christmas, experience the Quebecois’ Christmas traditions that were introduced by New France’s first settlers, visit the German Christmas Markets and discover a magical European wonderland nestled right in the heart of Quebec City. Pass by brightly coloured decorated wooden kiosks and enjoy a hot chocolate while listening to the local traditions and see where they come alive.
Ready to explore beautiful Eastern Canada and Quebec City? Have a look at our Globus Eastern Canada tours here!