Quebec City combines old European charm and the political center of a modern city. Named after the province of which it is the capital, it is smaller than its sister city of Montreal but offers a similarly grand array of history and culture. Here are the top sites to see in Quebec City.
Top Tourist Attractions of Quebec City
The city was founded in 1608, and the oldest portion was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1985. Old Quebec is the only walled city north of Mexico. Quaint shops, narrow streets, and stone buildings, you will need at least a half day here but will probably want to spend more time.
Atop the Cap-Diamant, this famous hotel is one of the most photographed in all of North America and is an icon of the Quebec City skyline. If you can’t stay there, it is still definitely worth a visit.
Also known as the Plains of Abraham, this was the site of France’s cessation of Canada to Great Britain during the French and Indian War. Now a 267-acre park filled with gorgeous gardens, riverfront vistas, and ornamental cannons commemorating the history.
The founding site of the colony of Quebec is now a quaint square with plenty of shops and eateries. You will also find interesting art in this section of the city, including a bust of Louis XIV.
Montmorency Falls Park:
8.5 miles outside of Old Quebec sits this 272-foot waterfall. You can climb the sometimes-treacherous staircase to the top or take a cable car for some of the best views of the city.
A former military fortification built in 1879 that is now a boardwalk just below the Chateau Frontenac offers a great view of the St. Lawrence River. In the winter, you can take a toboggan ride down the boardwalk.
An active military site since 1850, the largest British-built fortress in North America took 30 years to construct. It now hosts an infantry division of the Regular Canadian Armed Forces and a museum on the history of the Canadian military.
The oldest shopping district in North America has many quaint boutiques along with its souvenir shops. You can climb the “Breakneck Stairs” or take the funicular to the top of the quarter for a breathtaking view of the city.
It was first a military prison in the 18th century. It was then was used as a civilian prison until being repurposed as the city’s only English-language library. Today, you can take a tour of the jail cells or explore the Victorian library with artifacts dating back to the 16th century.
National Museum of Fine Arts:
More than just an art museum, the three buildings that make up the collections are architectural and historic attractions in their own rights, including one being the former Quebec City Prison. In addition to viewing the art, you can take a tour of the remaining cells.