tz757300 From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 2886 posts, RR: 6 Posted (2 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 1690 times:
Ideally I should have started this a while ago, but this is a spur of the moment decision to visit Quebec City this coming weekend. My main goal is to attend the Winter Carnival, but I know there must be more to do in the city than that. I am looking for a lot of sightseeing, food and drink, and activity ideas.
May initial questions so far are: 1. How decent if the public transportation since I'd rather just park my car in a garage and walk/bus everywhere. and 2. Also, realizing it's Quebec, are people that adamant about not speaking English?
warri1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 10129 posts, RR: 13
Reply 1, posted (2 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 1676 times:
Wear warm cloths, very warm. No problem with English at all. They switch back and forth, no problem.
Try to stay in Old Quebec, inside, or near the walls surrounding that area. Walking is easy if you are dressed correctly. Take a bus tour. Go to the Plains of Abraham above old Quebec. Visit the museum up near the Plains of Abraham. Visit the Museum of Civilization down in the old city. I believe that is free on Wednesdays. Walk the waterfront. Go to the Chateau Frontenac to walk the along the upper wall. There is usually a Toboggan run set up in front of the Chateau. Take the Funicular down to the lower town from in front of the Chateau. You can walk to the Plains this way if you are hardy enough, or want to live dangerously. Stairs and Cold. Visit Parliament just outside the old city on the hill. There are other museums in the old walled city also. Plenty of restaurants. On the Grand Allee coming down to the old walled city there are night spots, restaurants. Night spots., even a McDonalds.
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[Edited 2013-02-03 14:36:21]
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I didn't have any problem. I took one of those carriage rides around town (in the summer) and the driver was a native English speaker, born and raised in Quebec. There are more English speakers up there than a lot of people think.
Quoting warri1 (Reply 1): Try to stay in Old Quebec, inside, or near the walls surrounding that area
The Frontenac is a great hotel and close to the action. A couple of years ago I stayed at the Hilton, up on the hill. The views from the lounge on the top floor were fantastic. The Hilton also has a year round outdoor pool, which I hear is great n the winter.
These were taken in the summer, but the view in the winter would be just as great.
KingFriday013 From United States of America, joined May 2007, 1304 posts, RR: 10
Reply 3, posted (2 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 1601 times:
Quebec is a gorgeous city. warri1 and falstaff make some great points. I was there in 2006, but from what I remember you really don't need public transportation at all other than perhaps the Funicular, but you could even walk that distance (and I suggest you do! although do take the Funicular at least once). Lots of nice small shops. You can also walk down by the river which is also nice.
We had the pleasure and perhaps honor of staying at the Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac, the iconic castle-like building everyone thinks of when they think of Quebec that is featured on postcards and keychains. It's old school but gosh is it pretty, inside and out. You can't get a better location, either.
There is this one restaurant, it looked like a cottage a bit IIRC and it's sort of in the downtown of the old city. I can't remember the name of it for the life of me but when you see it you can't miss it. Get yourself lost and maybe you'll find it, but they had the best mussels I've had in my entire life. They also had zabaione (for dessert) which was fantastic.
EDIT: I was looking at a Google map since I was intrigued, and I found it!!! It is the Restaurant Aux Anciens Canadiens. It's not the cheapest of places to eat but IMHO it is without a doubt worth it. Read up on the menu first to make sure it's someplace you'd want to try -- looks like they don't have the mussels anymore.
On our second-to-last day, my father and I went skiing at Mont-Sainte-Anne, which is only 25 miles or so outside of Quebec (we rented a car) and that was a lot of fun. That is the only mountain I know of where you can actually ski over the top and down the other side, and they have a slopeside sugar shack! (They pour boiled maple sap into these trenches filled with snow and give you a popsicle stick, and you basically make taffy out of it. It is great )
I do hope to go back to Quebec someday. It's such a charming city and I had a great time. Enjoy your trip
[Edited 2013-02-04 03:41:02]
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GrahamHill From France, joined Mar 2007, 2976 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (2 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 1562 times:
If you have time, you can also go and see the Montmorency falls just a few kilometres North of the city. You can drive around the Orleans Island just across the Montmorency falls and try the local products.
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
stlgph From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 9682 posts, RR: 25
Reply 6, posted (2 years 3 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1522 times:
Winter Carnaval is absolutely amazing. I'll be going for my 5th year in a row the 15/16/17. There's a lot you can see and do up there, there's a lot of local museums and all that, but the Carnaval atmosphere is so fun and mesmerizing and there are so many events going on which you can see that you might as well just forget about them and go without an agenda.
Get yourself a walking cane and fill it up and have yourself a grand ole time -- you'll be feeling very good after two of them.
The friday night dome and dance party is fun.
The saturday night night parade is tons of fun.
Make sure you hit up the toboggan at the Frontenac and take a walk down the Petit Champlain. Stopping at Chez Ashton for a poutine is mindless stupid fun -- make sure you get yourself a waffle or two from one of the shops at St Jean. I speak some french, enough to get around -- where one is really in trouble is stopping somewhere like Wal Mart in Drummondville, but a lot of restaurants are quite catering. The only one that wasn't catering was the Pub Alexandre on Rue St Jean. I was speaking french and they were still complete dicks - so much to the point we just got up mid meal and left.
Make sure you definitely call your card companies and tell them you're headed to Quebec before you go. Sometimes I found I ran into a lot of ATM's where getting cash was a problem - my card wouldn't go through. I always have luck at the RBC Bank in the plaza next to the Capitol Theatre and at the ATM in the Frontenac outside the Starbucks.
Also, dress in layers. Heavy layers. If you have snow pants or snow boots - wear them. If you wear jeans, take a few extra wears and definitely do thermals. One year it was so cold a bottled water froze in my hands in less than 5 minutes. I had on about 5 or 6 layers. It was entirely crazy, but batshit fun.
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