Québec City at a Glance

Tourny Fountain
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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