See all of Old Québec City in 1 day! [A Travel Guide]

Board a plane to get to Quebec City. You’ll get there faster and will be able to do all the city activities in one day. We flew to Quebec City from Toronto via Porter Airlines. Yes, flying can seem expensive sometimes but if you go during non-peak season or during sales or using a cheap airline, the price can be just right. Porter airlines just happened to have a sale during the time we wanted to travel and they are well known for being an affordable airline in any case. It was a much smaller plane but the leg room was still quite spacious and the overall service was good. Total travel time: 1.5 hours.

Use Uber to save time. Since Quebec City is a small city, getting from one part of the city to another is fast and using an uber will not cost much nor will it take long.

Buy a Bus Day Pass. The airport and the train station has vending machines that sell bus day passes. For only $8.75, a day pass can get you around Old Quebec City in the cheapest way. Waiting for buses won’t take too long as there are many buses going in and out of the downtown core.

Rent A Bike for a day. There are a few bike rental shops in the city. You can even rent a tandem bike if you’re travelling in twos!

Start at The Latin Quarter – This is my favourite area in all of Old Quebec City! The alleyway is reminiscent of the streets of Paris and a bit of Diagon Alley (you heard that right, my Harry Potter friends 😉 ). Filled with cute cafes, restaurants, independent shops, a theatre and lots of fairy lights, this was basically all I needed to see to make my whole Quebec trip worthwhile 😄 (The very first photo in this post was taken in this street).

Keep walking down the Latin Quarter and you will see the Théâtre Petit Champlain near the end of the street. I didn’t actually see a show in this theatre but I came for the “Famous Red Door”. The entrance of this door is always swarming with international tourists wanting to touch it and take photos with it. Why’s that? It’s because this red door made an appearance in the famous Korean tv show, Goblin. Yep, now you know.

Here’s a comparison of me and the Goblin character hehe. I had to 🙈

As you wander towards the west side of the city, and around the Latin Quarter, you’ll see the Umbrella Art Installation. Luckily, these umbrellas are here to stay! Adding a touch of modern art to the Latin Quarter, these colourful array of umbrellas are Instagram worthy AF ☔😍

Once you’re done at the Latin Quarter, ride the Funicular to get you back up to the main square. Located in the Latin quarter, this historic link ride (dating back to the late 1800’s) will save you some energy and time up the steep hills from the lower to the upper part of the city. And plus, you’ll get a nice view of the lower town once you’re going up. $3.00 per ride/direction.

At the top of the Funicular, walking to your left you will see the Fairmont Le Château Frontanac. It is a massive Castle Hotel in the Upper part of Old Quebec City. You don’t have to stay here to enjoy it. Everyone is welcome to hang out around the parameters of the hotel and the view from below is so cool! It’s so lively around this hotel. There is always live performances and plenty of benches to sit on and enjoy the view looking out over the St. Lawrence River.

Walking around the upper part of Quebec city is just as fun as walking in the lower part. You will see the famous La Boutique de Noël. Is it ever too early for Christmas?! The answer is definitely no! This place is filled with every Christmas decoration you need! Who cares if it’s summer! Go buy a snow globe and Christmas cards – because.. why not! LOL 🎅🎄

EXMURO Art Installations around the city – From June 20, 2019 to October 14, 2019, you can find cool and instagrammable 3D art works around the city.

Echo by Jeffrey Poirier

Morrin Cultural Centre – Formerly a prison, this now cultural centre houses a beautiful library that makes you feel like you’re Belle from Beauty and the Beast in the library scene. I initially wanted to visit and go up to the second floor to get some photos, but sadly the second floor was closed for the day, so here’s one of me on the main floor.

Maison de la littérature – This is a public library and centre for the literary creators. The architecture of the interior is unreal. It feels like you’ve just entered the foyer of the elvish world from The Lord of the Rings 🤩

Image captured by @tutrampham

Take a Ferry to Lévis – There’s not much to do in Lévis but the ferry ride to and from the city gives you the best postcard view of Old Quebec City. $7.30 for a roundtrip from and back to Quebec City.

Montmorency Falls – About a 45 minute bus ride or 30 minute Uber ride from downtown. Get ready to wear your hiking clothes and running shoes because the stairs up and down to see the falls is a long one – but so worth it! I was so sad I didn’t get to ride the cable car or do the ziplining because the workers were on strike 😦 Make sure to call ahead of time to ensure they are up and running so you don’t miss these opportunities!

Poutine – You can’t go to Quebec and not have poutine! Poutine originated in Quebec in the 1950’s and now it is a super popular dish world wide! But poutine in Quebec is the real deal! The cheese is rubbery and squeaks when you chew it and the fries are thick and crisp which gets slightly soggy from the gravy. You can find poutine at almost all restaurants in the city!

Café La Maison Smith – I love how Quebec City resembles so much of Paris. Especially the cafes and their store fronts with the Parisian chairs and small tables facing the streets.

Paillard – This cafe and boulangerie reminds me a bit of Paris. There are so many Parisian pastries to choose from, including macarons. You can’t leave Quebec City without trying the Signature Paillard smoked meat sandwich. Consisting of dill pickles, mayo, smoked meat and served with coleslaw on the side, it’s the perfect breakfast sandwich to start the day in my opinion. And don’t forget to take a salted caramel jar or two to-go that makes great gifts for your friends and family back home.

Chocolato – It was 30 degrees, feeling like 40, so we were always thirsty and wanted something cold to drink or eat. So ice cream it was!

Le Chic Shack – Since I missed out on the Shake Shack in the United States, Le Chic Shack seemed like the closest thing to that! The truffle sweet potato Fries with the Chic Sauce and grated parmesan was out of this world! For the burger, I settled for Le Tamago. It had an Asian twist to it with a Japanese egg salad, ramen eggs and togarashi pickles! Aside from the dry brioche bun, the overall burger was quite delicious 😋

Homebound

And that wraps up my trip to Quebec! I hope you enjoyed this post and found some tips and recommendations helpful. For my trip home, I took the VIA Rails back and soaked in the nature scenes! Free wifi with a cup of orange juice and train snacks were perfect for our ride back 😊

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