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French History in Quebec City with Canada à la Carte

The capital city of the Canadian province Quebec is Quebec City. It is one of the oldest European settlements in North America, and throughout over 400 years of existence, Quebec City has served as a capital. With culture from years past and scenery that will take your breath away, Quebec City should not be missed on any trip to Canada. Thanks to Canada à la Carte, the supplier sponsor of this article, you will not miss a moment of Quebec City’s charm.

60-Second Geography

Quebec City, Quebec

Aerial view of Chateau Frontenac hotel and Old Port in Quebec City, Canada

Aerial view of Chateau Frontenac hotel and Old Port in Quebec City, Canada

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Montmorency Falls, Quebec, Canada

Montmorency Falls, Quebec, Canada

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Small fort known as a Martello Tower on Plains of Abraham overlooking the St. Lawrence River

Small fort known as a Martello Tower on Plains of Abraham overlooking the St. Lawrence River

  • Quebec City was founded in 1608, giving it the title of one of the oldest established cities. With such a title comes years and years of history within the borders of this beautiful city. One of the most prominent and well-known historic areas in Quebec City is Old Quebec, a historic neighborhood. This area is also registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Old Quebec has decades of military history witnessed through the military structures that still stand, surviving age and battle. One of the most interesting of these military buildings is the Citadelle of Quebec. Also known as La Citadelle, it is the oldest military building in Canada. The Citadelle also forms part of the fortifications of Quebec City itself! It is one of only two cities located in North America still surrounded by some form of fortification. To this very day it is a living fortress, as the Royal 22e Regiment, the Canadian Forces’ sole French-language regular force infantry region.
  • If you plan on spending more than an afternoon in the neighborhood, make sure to stay at Château Frontenac an icon of Quebec. For over a century it has been situated atop Cape Diamond and overlooking the Dufferin Terrace and St. Lawrence River. When it opened originally, in 1883, it had 170 rooms. It now contains over 600 rooms spanning 18 floors. The hotel has been a favorite choice for celebrities visiting Quebec City, like Charlie Chaplin and Leonardo DiCaprio. The one thing that makes the hotel so unique is that it was built on the Saint-Louis Forts and Chateaux Archeological site. This particular site was the residence and seat of the French and British governors. If you decided not to stay, take a guided tour of the castle-like structure.  If you visit during the summer you might even get a chance to actually explore the crypt below Dufferin Terrace, which is believed to be where the decisions that affected all of North America were made. And if you cannot make it for either, still top by and check out the lobby; it is full of artifacts in custom display cases that date back some 200 years from the site.
  • Not 8 miles from Old Quebec is a beautiful site for any adventurer. Montmorency Falls lies on the dividing boundary of two boroughs, and offers beautiful views of the surrounding area. With multiple staircases to offer different views of the falls, and a suspension bridge spanning the crest of the falls visitors can get up close and personal with the 276 ft. falls. There is even an aerial tram that carries passengers from base to the top of the falls! After you have been awe-struck by the beauty and power of the rushing falls, spend the rest of you day exploring Montmorency Falls Park, which is the area surrounding the falls. Hike along one of the many trails that criss-cross through the park. For the real thrill-seeker climb one of the three via ferrata circuits, which are essentially hiking trails on a rock wall. The park offers a zipline experience through the trees, and in the winter you can partake in activities like snowshoeing or ice climbing! The Battlefields Park is another historic park to explore the rich past of Quebec City on your visit. This specific park is greatly important to the history of Canada, as it includes the Plains of Abraham. The outcome of The Battle of the Plains of Abraham was what decided the formation of Canada. Battlefields Park is home to trails and entertainment space, as well as monuments and historical structures related to the battle. For more history on the battle and the park, visit the Plains of Abraham Museum. It serves as both the park’s information center and educational center. With multi-media exhibition about the siege of Quebec and the Battle of the Plains of Abraham.
  • Quebec City has many museums of art and history alike worth a visit on your Canadian vacation. Musée de la civilisation à Québec is one of the most interesting of these. Located in historic Old Quebec near the Saint Laurence River, the Musée de la civilisation à Québec features exhibits about ancient and current world societies, including First Nations and modern Quebec. Most of the exhibits, permanent and rotating, are centered around humanities; the museum also offers tours, shows, and a discovery area for children. Visitors and residents of Quebec City of all walks of life will find something about the Musée de la civilisation à Québec to enjoy. Though not a museum, the Morrin Centre is a culture center designed to educate the historic contribution and present day culture of local English-speakers. One thing that makes the centre so unique is the building it is housed in: a former prison building, which is a designated National Historic Site of Canada. The Morrin Centre also contains the private English-language library of the Literary Society of Quebec. Morrin Centre is also used for culture events and functions, as the grounds are a perfect setting. For a little hands-on educational experience, go to the Aquarium du Quebec. A 40 acre property, the aquarium is home to over 10,000 animals representing more than 300 species. With a beautiful garden and outdoor pools, the aquarium has seven individual exhibit areas that are tailored to wildlife and nature found in different geological areas. In the Awesome Ocean exhibit, you can even walk through a tunnel in a sea water tank and see the ocean creatures from the perspective of a diver!
  • After all of the hustle and bustle of outdoor parks and museums you’ll have worked up an appetite. Lucky for you, Quebec City is full of delicious restaurants and cuisines to try. Cafe Saint Malo is a local favorite. Provided by two chefs, the meals are often derived from family recipes and focus on French cuisine. Enjoy your lunch on the terrace and soak up the rays of the sun to recharge and refresh. For a laid back meal surrounded by others, try the cafeteria-style eatery Paillard. With simple yet flavorful choices that give the boulangeries in France a run for their money, this restaurant is ideal for a quick, filling bite in the early evening or coffee and pastries for breakfast in the morning before you start your day. For a delicious dinner at one of the more upscale selections in Quebec City enjoy a meal at Restaurant Legende. The chef is dedicated to using local ingredients, especially mushrooms. Restaurant Legende is all about the community, and the impressive menu is a bonus.

Explore Quebec with Canada à la Carte

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Experience Two Cultures by Rail

Explore breathtaking scenery and historic cities as you travel on Canada’s premier rail service to Quebec City.

Quebec City Explorer

Admire 17th-century architecture and uncover the city’s rich history, which can be found down every cobblestone walkway.

Eastern Canada Discovery Drive

Journey through the urban centers and rural splendor of Eastern Canada, highlighted by a stay in Canada’s oldest city, Quebec City.

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