The Best Time to Visit Québec City

Vue aérienne sur le Vieux-Québec en automne
Mélanie Jean

We often decide when to visit a destination based on the weather. So when is the best time of the year to visit Québec City?

Québec City is totally transformed by the changing seasons, so it depends what kind of experience you’re looking for. Spring, summer, fall, winter: each brings its vibe, its own activities. If you want to avoid the tourist season, come in April, May, or June, rather than July, August, or September. Winter is also the best time to visit Old Québec, which is at its most magical under a blanket of snow.

The best season for a perfect vacation in Québec City: whichever season you want!

Wend Through a Winter Wonderland

 

Femme entrant dans l'Hôtel de Glace
the_essentialist_

Average temperatures by month (high / low):
December: -4oC, 25oF / -13oC, 9oF
January: -8oC, 18oF / -18oC, 0oF
February: -6oC, 21oF / -16oC, 3oF

Average annual snowfall: 305 cm / 120 inches in the city, 400 cm / 158 inches in the surrounding mountains

Activities: skiing, snow tubing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling and more winter activities

Fluffy white snow and pure magic

While the temperatures can start to feel a little wintery mid-November, the snow often waits until December and sticks around until late March. Dressing properly is essential if you really want to make the most of this unique trip.

From late November to the end of December, enjoy the German Christmas Market and Christmas lights before partying the night away on New Year’s Eve. In January and February, spend your time at Québec Winter Carnival, visiting the Ice Hotel, tubing at Village Vacances Valcartier or enjoying one of the funny winter sports.

The Sweet Delights of Spring

Three passers-by stop to taste maple taffy in the Petit-Champlain district.
Francis Gagnon

Average temperatures by month (high / low):
March: 0oC, 32oF / -9oC, 16oF
April:  8oC, 46oF / -1oC, 30oF
May: 17oC, 63oF / 5oC, 41oF

Activities: spring skiing, sugar shacks and more spring activities

Nature awakes in a sweet way

As the snow melts and the temperature slowly rises, many of us put our winter boots in storage and switch to less bulky clothing - unless of course, winter drags on a little longer and stretches into April.

Spring is sugaring-off season in Québec, which means most locals are venturing to a cabane à sucre (sugar shack) for lively French-Canadian folk music and hearty dishes that locals will top with maple syrup.

It’s time to explore Québec City: beautiful gardens with gorgeous blossoming flowers and dine at restaurants serving up delicious gourmet food. Should you experience rainy days, there is a lot to do in addition to indoor attractions, shopping and the many museums. Also, one of the best moments to visit Montmorency Falls and Canyon Sainte-Anne is during spring, when the falls are at their fullest thanks to winter run-off.

Summer Lovin

 

Pique-nique sur la terrasse Dugua De Mons
The Lost Two – Claudia Nieroda & Kaan Blofield

Average temperatures by month (high / low):
June:  22oC, 72oF / 11oC, 52oF
July: 25oC, 77oF / 14oC, 57oF
August: 24oC, 75oF / 13oC, 55oF

Activities: cycling, swimming, canoeing and more summer activities

Festivities and good times abound

In summer, Québec City is abuzz with activity. Warms days are filled with people wandering down the cobbled streets of Old Québec and sipping locally crafted beer on a patio. If you feel like escaping the city, you can go on a day trip to Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier, Montmorency Falls and Île d’Orléans or Wendake; there are several options to choose from.

Summer is the best time to visit Québec City for festival enthusiasts; thousands of people flock to the Festival d’été de Québec (an 11-day music festival) each year. Other popular summer events include New France Festival and Grands Feux Loto-Québec (free fireworks).

Fall in Love with Colours

Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier en automne
Mathieu Dupuis, Sépaq

Average temperatures by month (high / low):
September: 18oC, 64oF / 8oC, 46oF
October: 11oC, 52oF / 2oC, 36oF
November: 3oC, 37oF / -4 oC, 25oF

ActivitiesHiking, fruit-picking, wildlife watching and more fall activities

A heavenly experience

Autumn is the best time to visit Canada and Québec City for those who love nature. While the changing colours of the leaves are pretty in every province, Québec and Eastern Canada offers a brighter array by the end of September and early October.

Seeing the rusty oranges, golden yellows and ruby reds of autumn is truly a unique experience. Venture to Montmorency Falls, Île d’Orléans or Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier to experience the best fall colours - perfect little day trips from the city - or stay in the city and visit parks like the Plains of Abraham.

In fall, the temperatures are cooling off once the sun goes down. Most patios remain open in autumn in Québec City, so be sure to enjoy the good weather and gorgeous scenery while enjoying warm earthy Québecois cuisine.

So when is the best moment to visit Québec City?

There is no such thing as THE best time to visit Québec City because the city shines all year. The choice is yours!

See also the weather averages and activities to do by month.

Watch Québec City's Four Seasons

Aerial view of Old Québec illuminated in the early evening, view of Chateau Frontenac and Holy Trinity Church.
2:54
Québec City in 4 Seasons - Your Best Vacation Destination

Discover the beauty and richness of Québec City's four seasons with its breathtaking landscapes, multiple activities, unique culture and major events.

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