Sleepy, charming, and quintessentially French Canadian, Quebec City made for the perfect weekend getaway. I had contemplated moving our trip a million times – your girl is not fond of below freezing temps – but I am so glad that we got to experience Quebec City in all of its winter glory. And I loved our trip so much that I decided to share all the details with you! Read below for my suggestions on where to stay, what to do, and (most importantly) where to eat. Enjoy!
Where to Stay:
Fairmont Le Château Frontenac
Fairmont Le Château Frontenac is honestly a destination within itself. Dubbed the most photographed hotel in the world, the architecture alone makes the hotel worthy of a visit. The chateau has been serving guests – including the likes of fashion icon Grace of Monaco – for over a century, which is not surprising considering its hospitality. From location, to service, to convenience (the Château is home to numerous gourmet restaurants and, necessarily, a Starbucks!), I promise the splurge will be worth it!
Rooms can be reserved for around 200-300 CAD a night, depending on the season.
The Château is also home to a resident pup, who is sure to make you feel right at home!
What to Do:
Sledding at the Château
For only 3 CAD a person, the toboggan slope will have you feeling like a true Canadian in no time. Not to mention the gorgeous views you can take in from the top of the slope. Fun Fact: The slope was built at the same time as the Château (in the 1800’s!) in order to attract more visitors, a fact I learned only AFTER I made it to the bottom of the hill. Sled at your own risk!
Quartier Petit Champlain
As you step into the funicular from the Château, you can’t quite see what awaits you at the bottom of the cliff. And then suddenly, it hits you – the scenery of Quartier Petit Champlain. Surrounded by cliffs of snow, littered with ice sculptures, and lined with dashing storefronts and picturesque cottages, this quaint Quebec City neighborhood has all the charm of a European village – so much so that I was sure to visit each day of our trip!
Notre-Dame de Québec Basilica-Cathedral
Gold-paneled decorum, exquisite architecture, an ancient crypt, and it’s free – need I say more?
Where to Eat:
Place Dufferin – High Tea
At 55 CAD a person, high tea at Place Dufferin – located within the Château walls – is certainly a bit pricey. But it is so, SO worth it. Their tea room has an Alice in Wonderland theme, which would have fulfilled every fantasy of my five-year-old self. You are greeted with local kombucha and then invited on a culinary experience, as they call it. You’ll enjoy some of the best pastries, tea sandwiches, and views in Quebec City, all while warming up with a pot of your favorite hot tea. Even Geneo approved.
Note: Place Dufferin also hosts a breakfast/brunch buffet every morning for, I believe, 35 CAD. Very convenient and a super way to try an array of local cuisine!
Yes, “lapin” means rabbit. Yes, that makes me incredibly sad (which is why I stuck with hot chocolate), but Lapin Sauté truly is a staple in Quebec City. If you can get past thoughts of Thumper, you have to try the poutine – you won’t be sorry!
1608 Wine and Cheese Bar
Located right in the Château, this wine and cheese bar – named after the year of Quebec City’s founding – is a must stop shop for the famous Québécois cheeses.
Le Sam Bistro
The chic yet convenient Le Sam Bistro was our go-to. If you’re like me, you love French food – but every now and then you just need a burger. This is your place.
Located in the Château. Priced around 20 CAD a plate.
Champlain – the Château’s fine dining option – has it all, from incredible interior design to superior service. But it is very, very French. As in you won’t be able to read the menu French. We both skipped out on the more gamey options, like duck and rabbit, sticking instead with a good old, well done, American filet mignon. I’m not saying it wasn’t delicious – I’m just saying that it’s more suitable for the more adventurous crowd. Priced around 50 CAD a person.
La Maison Smith
French Canadian “Starbucks,” AKA a must.
“Italian” was the last thing I thought I would eat in Quebec City. And yet I’m so glad that I did. Geneo and I agreed – Sapristi was one of the best Italian meals of our lives (and we have eaten a LOT of pasta over the years!). I totally regret not taking a picture – but honestly the food was gone before I could! If you go, you HAVE to get their signature pasta dish. Priced around 20 CAD a plate.
Our Quebec City recap has come to an end – I hope you’ve enjoyed all of my suggestions! Feel free to comment below with your own 🙂