Fun things to do in Quebec

  • The fall with a suspension bridge over the fall
    The fall with a suspension bridge over...
    by tuff
  • One of the narrow streets
    One of the narrow streets
    by Tom_Fields
  • Quartier du Petit Champlain by night
    Quartier du Petit Champlain by night
    by Tom_Fields

Most Viewed Things to Do in Quebec

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    St. Anne's Falls

    by apbeaches Updated Aug 25, 2015

    Canyon Sainte-Anne is a spectacular, steep-sided gorge, carved by the Sainte-Anne-du-Nord River, 6 km east of Beaupré, Quebec, Canada. The river drops over a (243 ft waterfall within the canyon. Three suspension foot bridges cross the canyon, including 197 ft meters above the river. Many scenic overlooks allow families to discover giant potholes and other cascades. Rock-climbing, via ferrata and rappelling the canyon walls are permitted with supervision.

    Accessible to the public since 1973, the canyon was familiar to natives, painted by Kreighoff and described by American philosopher and environmentalist Henry David Thoreau. It was used during the filming of Battlefield Earth in 2000.

    Admission is $13 per adult from 9:00 until 5:00 and parking is free. We spent about two hours climbing bridges and exploring the grounds. There was a playground, gift shop and restrooms available.

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    Old Quebec

    by apbeaches Updated Aug 25, 2015

    "Historic District of Old Quebec

    Often called a bit of Old Europe on American soil, Quebec is the only walled city north of Mexico. The legendary French explorer Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec early in the 17th century, and the ramparts, gates, and other fortifications that subsequently surrounded the city serve as a rock-solid reminder of its role in the colonial wars for control of the Americas. The city was the capital of New France until 1760, after which time it centered the new British colony before becoming part of an independent Canada.

    Quebec’s Upper Town (Haute-Ville) is perched on cliffs overlooking the St. Lawrence River and providing views of the countryside for many miles beyond.

    The iconic structure of Upper Town, indeed of all Quebec City, is the castle-like Château Frontenac. The grand hotel was built by the Canadian Pacific railroad at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries and has dominated the city’s skyline ever since. But Château Frontenac remains a relative newcomer in an architecturally rich ville where many museums, churches, homes, and scenic lanes date back to the 1600s.

    The star-shaped Citadel, which dominates the city and the St. Lawrence, was constructed after Americans attacked British Quebec in 1775-76. Suspended below the fortress, on the cliff face, lies the Promenade des Gouverneurs. This boardwalk and the adjoining Terrasse Dufferin offer a unique opportunity for strolls that showcase the commanding clifftop views prevalent on the edge of the Upper Town.

    Accessible by steep stairs or via funicular car, Old Quebec’s Lower Town has its own historic charms. The Basse-Ville sprang up around the city’s harbor and was in fact the original neighborhood of the city. Homes, shops, and ancient streets sprawled here at the base of the cliffs center around Place Royale—a square on the site of the garden of Champlain’s Habitation (1608).

    Adjacent to the Citadel and the streets of the old city, the Parc des Champs-de-Bataille preserves the grassy, cliff-top Plains of Abraham—where French hopes of New World dominance were forever dashed on September 13, 1759. Though the French lost the battle, and with it their American empire, visitors will discover that here in Quebec French culture has enjoyed an enduring triumph.

    Quebec City is serviced by an international airport and a rail hub. Many U.S. visitors arrive by private car, though passports are now required for such travel.

    Those in search of a winter wonderland should visit in February, when the Carnaval d’Hiver (Winter Carnival) is in session. Winter sport, arts, and entertainment are all on offer and the chill air is amply warmed by Quebecois hospitality—and plentiful food and drink. For those with warmer blood, the Summer Festival, held in July, turns much of the Upper Town into a festive outdoor stage.

    Old Quebec is made for walking. The city’s ancient streets are narrow, winding, and so rich with unexpected treasures that a leisurely pace is well rewarded. The wide-open Plains of Abraham invite exploration by bike or, in winter, by cross-country ski."

    From: http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/world-heritage/historic-district-old-quebec/

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    PLACE ROYALE

    by Martman Updated Sep 1, 2014

    Place Royale is a pretty (and hidden) location in the old city. I found no specific aspect of this location which made it different to the rest of the Old City. It is simply very pretty and of historical interest. When I visited Place Royale, I could not walk around much as they were making a movie at the time.

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    ST. LOUIS GATE

    by davidjo Written Jul 22, 2014

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    Porte St. Louis, as they say in French, dates back to 1694 but has been rebuilt 1791, 1823 and 1880 and still remains to this day. There are 3 other gates, Saint Jean, Prescott gate and Kent gate. Quebec remains the only city in Canada with fortified walls.

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    Plenty of free summer activities!

    by Jefie Updated Aug 22, 2013

    Summer always seems too short in Quebec City, but not because of the weather - it's mostly because there's always something fun to do! Since 2008, there's been an increasing number of free events in the city: most city parks offer free concert series, including those offered at the Plains of Abraham's Edwin Bélanger bandstand (http://www.ccbn-nbc.gc.ca/en/activities/kiosque-edwin-belanger/). Also, two of my favourite activities are the fireworks competition held over the St. Lawrence River every Wednesday and Saturday night in August (http://www.lesgrandsfeux.com/index-en.html) and the free Cirque du Soleil show presented at the Agora (http://www.cirquedusoleil.com/en/events/chemins-invisibles/show.aspx). These are hugely popular so Just make sure you get there early enough to get in!

    At the 2013 Cirque du Soleil show Fireworks over the St. Lawrence River
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    Ursuline Convent and School

    by Jim_Eliason Written May 31, 2013

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    Built in 1639, this convent is the oldest girl's school in North America and is still operating today. It was founded by Mother Marie of the Incarnation who is currently in the process towards sainthood.

    Ursuline Convent and School Ursuline Convent and School Ursuline Convent and School Ursuline Convent and School Ursuline Convent and School
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    Serendipity

    by celsomollo Written Feb 28, 2013

    Romantic European atmosphere, one-of-a-kind boutiques & bistros, a great shopping experience. The Petit Champlain Quarter is renowned as one of the most beautiful sites of Old Quebec.

    Set at the foot of the cliff below Chateau Frontenac, this neighbourhood, with its authentic atmosphere, is a must when visiting Quebec. Particularly magical in the winter, with their legendary décor made of literally thousands of lights, the narrow streets of the Petit Champlain Quarter, lined with quaint little shops and warm bistros, offer an incomparably romantic experience all year round.

    Of course it’s magical just to stroll around the area. But to get the whole experience of the place you must go in a few shops… that is where you’ll get in touch with the passion of the people that make Petit Champlain tick. Whether you are greeted by the owner or by an employee – the welcome and the advice will always be genuine and sincere.

    Working together as a co-op for over twenty years, the artisans and merchants collectively own 27 buildings in the area and consider being the proud keepers of this wonderful heritage. In their boutiques and art galleries, you’ll discover their precious finds from here and all over the world.

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    Ice Hotel

    by celsomollo Written Feb 28, 2013

    Located at only 10 minutes from downtown Québec City, the Hôtel de Glace is a must-see attraction to discover each winter. The authentic Hôtel de Glace in America, has seduced over half a million people around the world since its opening in 2001. With its huge snow vaults and its crystalline ice sculptures, the Hôtel de Glace impresses by its dazzling decor. From January 5th until March 24th.

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    Musee National des Beaux-Arts du Quebec...

    by johngayton Updated Dec 8, 2012

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    ...to give it its proper title!

    Of the three major art galleries I have visited here in Canada (the other two being Ottawa's and Montreal's) this has been far and away my favourite.

    It may seem a tad strange for me to attach my "People Make Places" tag to a municipal art gallery but here it fits! The woman on the ticket desk greeted me with a genuine welcome and quite happily explained that only the temporary exhibitions required paying for, the permanent exhibitions are free. Even the custodians in the exhibition rooms bade their visitors cheery bonjours and freely imparted their knowledge (in either French or English) of the works to anyone who asked.

    Being a cheapskate I only did the rounds of the permanent exhibition but was suitably impressed by both the range and the focus of the works on display and also the couple of little bits of humour which pop-up in unexpected places.

    For me the most impressive thing about this gallery is that everything connects, everything has a Quebecoise theme - either by Quebec artists or illustrative of local life, history, nature or landscape. The works range the whole of the Province's time span from the Innuit to the modern, classical and contemporary. According to the blurb there are almost 3,000 artists represented, employing over 300 different mediums. But despite the diversity the rooms are thoughtfully put together and each tell their own chapter in the artistic story of the region.

    Yep, this is a very accessible gallery and certainly a must-do for anyone interested in the artistic and historical aspects of Quebec, both as a Province and a City.

    As to the touches of humour - I'll leave you to discover those for yourself!

    Opening hours depend on the time of year - during the summer 9am-6pm, 7 days a week, with late opening until 9pm on Wednesdays: during the winter 10-5, closed Mondays, and again late opening Weds.

    A small PS - Note that photography inside is not permitted.

    Permanent Collection is free, temporary exhibitions $15 (with various concessions available).

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    WALKING TOUR

    by davidjo Written Apr 5, 2012

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    The best way to see the old city is to walk as most of the famous sites are within easy reach and can easily be covered in one afternoon. The tours we took was very interesting and you can find details at www.frommers.com/destinations/quebeccity. We did the upper city tour in the morning and the shorter lower city tour in the afternoon, both of which were excellent.

    CANNONS GATE CHATEAU FRONTENAC
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    Image Mill: A Visual History of Vieux Quebec

    by milliturtle Written Jul 7, 2011

    This show was created for the 400th anniversary of Quebec City in 2008. It was so popular that they extended the show till 2013. The 2011 edition was the one we saw and they've added 3D effects to the display.

    The show is projected on the silos across from the Vieux Port from Tuesdays to Saturdays at 10pm. As you enter the sound staging, you can get a pair of 3D glasses from the volunteers / staff in red. There are no seats, so you may want to bring a couple of those camping chairs with you, or else you might feel a little numb from sitting on the ground for close to 1 hour.

    The show was visually interesting, although I sometimes cannot see the 3D effects, probably because I wear glasses. The acts basically go through the different important historical periods of the city, from the natives, to the colonization, to the war, to the World Wars, to the modern times. Each act takes on a special theme and the show was set to music. It is quite interesting, although the end was a little too long, mainly because that was the time when photographs and video records are available, so that act felt more like a slideshow than the artistic representations of the earlier periods.

    Anyway, it is also free and a nice way to spend the evening. According to a website, there are also tickets available for reserved seating, but unlike the Cirque du Soleil show, I don't think it's necessary because you can always bring your own chairs or blankets to sit on.

    Wide angle view of  the display This is supposed to be 3D - you need those glasses
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    Les Chemins Invisibles-Free Cirque du Soleil Show

    by milliturtle Written Jul 7, 2011

    "As the sun sets over the horizon, in his “royaume de tôle” (tin kingdom), the Emperor beckons all to take part in an out-of-the-ordinary urban cabaret presented outdoors under the Dufferin highway overpass in Quebec City’s lower town district."

    Yes, this is a free Cirque du Soleil show that has been running for three years (as of 2011) during the summer months. The show starts every Tuesday to Saturady at sun down and proceed to show you a magical world of acrobats, street dance, trapeze artists, and other circus performers, accompanied by the trademark Cirque du Soleil staging and soundtrack. It was a fast paced, urban, roughly 60 minute show, that takes place at the open air theatre of L’ÎLOT FLEURIE . Did I mention it's free?

    My friend and I went during the Canada Day weekend, so the show starts at 9:30pm. We actually got there at around 8:20pm and there were already lots of people waiting. By 9:00pm (when the "gates" open), the crowds had snaked out to Boul. Charest! Since we arrived relatively early, we managed to nab a couple of standing spots on the little mound at the back. (This is essential for shorter people like us.) That was the perfect spot because we can see all the action on both the main and side stages. It's hard to describe each act: there were tight rope walker, trapeze artists, fire eater, a trampoline troop (?), and many other stunts; let's just say the show has the same production quality as other Cirque du Soleil shows I've seen. The only thing is that you have to stand for the whole show, so including waiting time, we stood for over 2 hours.

    There are a limited number of seats on the side of where we stood. People need tickets to get into that area, so we think you might be able to buy tickets. According to the Quebec Tourism website, there are tickets sold on site or through the Billetech Network. It may be worth it to save a couple of hours of standing time.

    (For 2011, the show is on from June 24 to Sep 3. I am hoping this will become an annual event, seeing as the show has been running for 3 years now.)

    The stage - view from the little mound The Crowd warmers Tight rope artist (?) and other acrobats The end
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    Parc de la Chute-Montmorency and the falls.

    by Regina1965 Updated Jun 2, 2011

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    In Parc de la Chute-Montmorency there is an awesome waterfall, so powerful. It is 83-meter- high waterfall - 30 meters higher than the Niagara Falls.

    You can take a cable car to the top of the waterfall or walk there, but when we were visiting it was so cold and so windy that we just wanted to have a look at the waterfall, not even too close as we were getting soaked, and then just get back into the car. May 2011 was darn cold in Quebec. I will have to come back here and visit this park again. There is a big manor on top of the hill, Manor Montmorency, where there is a restaurant and a shop. And so many interesting things to see and do, so another visit is necessary.

    There is an entrance fee, I think we paid CAD 12 for the car.

    There is another smaller waterfall, The Bridal Veil Falls, close to the big waterfall, which we also visited (see my photo).

    The awesome waterfall. The Bridal Veil falls. Cable cars which take you up on the hill. The route up to the waterfall, panoramic stairs. The waterfall.

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    Bathing Beauties....Fontaine de Tourny...

    by Greggor58 Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    OK...not what you're thinking....but the Fontaine de Tourny is worth a detour to inspect...simply admire for a few minutes or use as a starting point for a tour of the Assemblée Nationale du Québec...if you would like to visit the seat of the Government of Quebec..Its situated just outside if the main or front entrance to the Parliament building...and is in the center of a traffic circle

    The fountain was a gift presented by La Maison Simons to the City of Quebec for its 400th anniversary.It is really quite elaborate and is one of two identical fountains that were originally located at opposite ends of Allées de Tourney in Bordeux,France which has been "twinned" with Quebec City since 1962.The design of the fountain is by sculptor Mathurin Moreau and was created in the 1850's..Originally Mathurin Moreau was commissioned by the Bordeux Public works as a celebration of sorts to commemorate the ntroduction of running water in the city...

    Its really an exquisite sculpture and fountain....and first was seen in public at the Paris World fair in 1855...

    If you might be interested in more details of its history you can contact the phone number listed below...

    Fontaine de Tourny,Quebec City,Quebec,Canada. Fontaine de Tourny,Quebec City,Quebec,Canada.
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  • Tours Voir Québec Old Quebec Walking Tours

    by biguenique Written Aug 13, 2010

    In my opinion, the best way to begin a journey in a foreign city is by taking a walking tour. It's a cheap and pleasant way to know what there is to see and do around.

    Actually, I would recommend this tour to any Quebec resident as well; there is so much to know about this city... I've been surprised myself that there was so much left to discover, although I've been living in Quebec for 12 years! When friends or family come to visit me, I take the tour with them whenever we have the chance, and I still learn new things every time.

    Tours Voir Québec's walking tour is certainly one of the best of the kind in Quebec City. Their Grand Tour is a 2 hours walking tour that brings you around the Old City, from higher to lower town (Le Petit Champlain). It goes downwards most of the time, so it's suitable for older people too, or people with disabilities or younger children. The tour also ends near the Funiculaire, allowing to go right back to the higher town without effort, if needed.

    Groups are limited to a maximum of 15 adults, to ensure a more personalized approach. The staff and guides are very kind, and above all definitely passionate about their jobs. They are very knowledgeable about not only the History and architecture of the city, but also about all there is to see and do as a visitor. It's worth a minute to ask your guide what activity there is to do around after your tour.

    Back at counter, you should also check the other tours they offer. They started a Food Tour recently, that brings you to the Faubourg Saint-Jean-Baptiste, a more "lively" and less touristic district near Old Quebec, bringing you closer to Quebec's people. They also partner with a plenty of other attractions that you can get at a discount price if you took the Grand Tour: boat cruises, cycling tours, bus tours of the region, as well as other deals on museums, the Citadel, the Observatoire... they even offer an inflatable boat (zodiac) tour on the St. Lawrence river !

    Whether you're a Quebec resident or visitor, I definitely recommend this tour!

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