Québec - European Charm Right Next Door
Located in the Eastern part of Canada, the charming province of Québec is a hub of culture; Montréal and Québec City attract tourists from all over the world who can’t wait to experience the atmosphere of the authentic street food scene and stunning city parks as well as the unique old parts of town that are truly a blast from the past. Read on to discover the wonderful things that you can do that make up ‘La Belle Province’ or ‘The Beautiful Province’.
Just a short walk from downtown Montréal lays the old historical city centre. Marvel at the amazing architecture that decorates your surroundings, or perhaps take a guided tour on a horse drawn carriage and learn first-hand about the beauty around you that is Old Montréal.
Mount Royal Park
Take a leisurely stroll down to one of the many city parks in Montréal. Landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted, known as the landscape architect of New York's Central Park, Mount Royal Park is specifically breathtaking. Nestled on a small mountain in the center of the city, it is commonplace to see picnickers, musicians, medieval enthusiasts and sports lovers. Here you can find the stunning belvedere that overlooks most of the city, as well as Beaver Lake and many walking trails.
To find some of the best shopping the city has to offer, take a trip down to Old Montréal and discover many one of a kind boutiques. We also recommend shopping in the heart of downtown along St. Catherine Street or along St. Denis Street for a more local vibe.
The Montréal Museum of Fine Arts is one of the most renown cultural destinations in the city. Spread across four pavilions, it is the largest museum in Montréal and regularly hosts world-class exhibitions. Another popular option is the Musée d'art Contemporain, which showcases many original works of contemporary art, whilst Musée Grévin is the famous waxworks museum – definitely worth a visit to see some of the life-like statues of famous celebrities.
To experience the city’s food scene and buzzing atmosphere, it is definitely worth visiting the Jean-Talon market, loved by locals for its fresh produce and great coffee shops. Food trucks are also a great way to discover local cuisine and they can be found all around the city. If you happen to be in town on the first Friday of the month this summer, head down to the Olympic park where a gathering of food trucks takes place. As for restaurants, Joe Beef, Pied de Cochon and Chasse et Pêche are great examples of the city’s gastronomic offering.
Every June, the Montréal International Jazz Festival attracts tourists from far and wide that wish to indulge in its lively atmosphere. Did I mention that it is considered the largest Jazz festival in the Guinness world records? Some other can’t miss events are the Just For Laughs comedy festival, the prestigious Formula 1 race and the Osheaga music festival.
Full of charm, Old Québec is a UNESCO world heritage site complete with cobbled streets and old-world architecture. The turrets of Château Frontenac overlook Old Québec and provide the best views of the city. Now a luxurious hotel, its grand interior and hotel service definitely merit a visit, even if you just want to look around. Did you know that Quebec City is the only remaining fortified city north of Mexico? Walk along the old stone walls that still stand around the old part of the city! Also, be sure not to miss the Petit Champlain area; known to have the most beautiful street in Canada, it boasts great shopping and restaurants.
Québec City is home to many wonderful city parks; one of note is The Battlefields Park, consisting of the Plains of Abraham and Des Braves Park. Old war stories whisper through this park, telling tales of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham and the triumph of the British, as well as the artillery pieces that can be found all over the site, including the Martello Towers.
For a trip back in time, the Musée de la Civilisation showcases the history of ancient civilisations as well as rich cultural exhibits that illustrate the fabric of Québec society. Another great museum to visit is the Aquarium du Québec. Discover some of the most wondrous underwater species at Aquarium du Québec including the Awesome Ocean exhibition – view marine life from the point of view of a diver!
There are a number of awesome festivals that are held in Québec City – head down to the Plains of Abraham for the Festival d’été de Québec – the 11-day music event held in July where big headliners are the stars of the show! Step back in time at the Festival de la Nouvelle France; in August every year, participate in everything that is French – including dressing up as old-style townsfolk!