Québec City at a Glance

Fontaine de Tourny at night with the Château Frontenac and the Price building illuminated in the background.
Jeff Frenette Photography

The birthplace of French North America and the only walled city north of Mexico is an open-air treasure chest that will delight history and culture buffs alike. Its European background and modern North American character are set off by a heady blend of history, traditional and contemporary art, and French-language culture to make Québec City a destination like no other.

Year after year, travel magazines continually rank the Québec City Area among the world's top destinations.

Find out what Quebec City is best known for.

    A UNESCO World Heritage Site

    • Founded in 1608 by French explorer Samuel de Champlain
    • Recognized as the cradle of French civilization in North America
    • A UNESCO world heritage treasure (1985) on account of its heritage site of Old Québec
    • The only fortified city north of Mexico
    • A unique North-American religious heritage: first catholic parish north of the Spanish colonies, first Anglican cathedral to be built outside the British Isle, and the only Holy Door outside Europe
    • An heritage influenced by different nations: Hurons-Wendat, French as well as British and Irish

    A French Canadian Culture

    • Capital of the province of Québec 
    • Home to a population of 717,000 inhabitants (Greater Québec City Area), 95% of them French-speaking. However, many people, including the vast majority of hospitality industry workers, also speak English
    • A very safe city, with one of the lowest crime rates in North America 
    • Among the world's best food cities 
    • Famed for its hospitality and joie de vivre

    A One-of-a-Kind Geography

    • 9,000 km2 in area (5 592 mi2)
    • Québec comes from the Algonquin word kébec, meaning "place where the river narrows"
    • Inaugurated in 1919, the Quebec Bridge is the longest cantilever bridge in the world
    • Divided into two distinct parts (the Upper Town and the Lower Town) linked by nearly 30 sets of stairs
    • Old Québec is easily walkable
    • Parks, wildlife reserves, and scenic attractions are minutes away, with a host of outdoor activities available all year round
    • Located less than 15 minutes by car from the city center, Montmorency Falls are 30 meters higher than Niagara Falls

    A Winter Wonderland

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