Traveling alone to the province of Quebec in August 2011 I spent my first week in Montreal then traveled to Quebec City on an afternoon train with Via Rail. It was an enjoyable journey of 3 1/2 hours or so. I arrived in Quebec to a sunny afternoon and made my way to the Hosteling International Auberge Internationale De Quebec on Rue Sainte Ursule in the old city. If you prefer a hotel you can find the latest rates and availability for hotel rooms in Quebec City here.
The historic district of old Quebec is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.
My first night I walked around Old Quebec and along the St Lawrence River – strolling along the Samuel de Champlain Promenade and watching the sky turn pastel shades of pink and blue as the sun was setting.
The restaurants around Old Quebec seemed quite expensive to me and I thought maybe they were just over-priced due to Quebec being a busy tourist location. I decided to try out some seafood and selected a restaurant with outdoor seating so I could people watch.
I enjoyed the most exquisite seafood dinner – described on the menu as: lobster and sauteed scallops, black tea & shiro-shoyu miso pureed white beans, braised radishes, edamame, shiitake mushrooms. It was an exceptional meal.
I decided Quebec restaurants were not over-priced after all.
At the hostel I had been informed that 2 free events were taking place during my stay. My first night I attended a wonderful outdoor video presentation along the harbor. The film depicted the history of Quebec and it was displayed along the harbor structures.
I wasn’t certain how to get to the event so I asked a couple walking along the street. They spoke only French but we managed to communicate sufficiently and I understood that they too were going to the free event so I followed their lead.
Quebec is wonderful city to go walking. Stroll around Old Quebec enjoying the sites and stop at a café for some lunch. If you enjoy shopping visit Simons – started as a family business in 1840 and moved to the current location in 1870. I’m not much of a shopper but I went to Simons and bought two beautiful blouses, both on sale so the total was just under $40 CDN.
One of the highlights of my trip to Quebec was getting to see a free outdoor performance by the spectacular Cirque du Soleil which originated in the village of Baie-Saint-Paul just east of Quebec City.
The performance Kingdom of Tin was part three of the five-part series entitled Les Chemins invisibles (Invisible Paths) – shown over a span of five summers from 2009 to 2013. I haven yet to see any listings or information about a 2014 free Cirque du Soleil show in Quebec City.
Another major attraction in Quebec is the Notre Dame de Quebec Basilica-Cathedral which was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1989.
The official motto of Quebec is Je Me Souviens which means “I remember”.
Quebec is a beautiful historic city and having already visited in the summer I would like to some day visit in the winter to experience the Quebec Winter Carnival, visit Bonhomme, and stay at the Ice Hotel! I’m fond of stating that I’m allergic to winter but I have seen photos of Quebec in winter and it looks absolutely gorgeous – La Belle Province!