We arrived in the outskirts of Quebec City under gray skies. We immediately came accross a wonderful surprise…a magnificent waterfall, just before entering the city.
Technically, this is in the town of Lévis, across the St. Lawrence River from QC. The Parc des Chutes-de-la-Chaudière is a nature haven formed as the Chaudière River drops 115 ft over ancient sedimentary rock.
The mist from the falls makes its own ecosystem and is the home for some interesting rosette lichen.
There are hiking/biking trails, a large suspension bridge and a hydropower plant.
We continued on and explored downtown Lévis. This gave us a great view of QC and Hotel Frontenac through the mist—a teaser of what we’d see tomorrow.
The next day, we had blue skies as we crossed the Pierre-Laporte Bridge to a bus stop on the Quebec side.
Again we are able to use public transportation to tour a jammed city.
We started our tour at the St. John Gate.
Champlain founded Quebec 350 years ago as a trading post. Its location soon made it a prime military fortress, resulting in the walled city of Old Quebec. It has several sections: Upper Town, Lower Town, the Citidelle, the Latin Quarter. This made touring a bit easier to plan.
We started out on the river walk along the St. Lawrence, complete with scores of cannons. This was our first close look at Hotel Frontenac.
And we had a great view of Lévis from the QC side.
Quebec City has energy in the air. Hotel Frontenac was setting up for a major sponsored bicycle race. This is one of the most photographed sites in Canada.
We had a sidewalk café lunch across the square at Auberge du Tresor.
And we found an artists’ alley, Rue du Tresor, beside the restaurant. You could talk to the artists about their original art.
Street scenes help capture the local color….
The Rue du Petite Champlain, in Lower Old Town Old Quebec, is the oldest—and narrowest—commercial district in North America. (It’s probably one of the most charming, too.)
Wall Art known as Fresco of the Rue du Petit-Champlain is drawn on a house at 102 Rue du Petit-Champlain and represents the history of the district, the bombardments of 1759, the fires and landslides.
Quebec is a city filled with all manner of art…
As we continued through the city, we found this Log Driver Sculpture, L’Homme-Rivière at the Édifice Price. This detailed work was literally in an alley.
This bronze and stone sculpture, Le monument aux Frères éducateurs, was by Jules Lasalle.
The Helping Hand, Book and Quill Pen sculpture on Rue Donnacona is a monument to the Ursaline Sisters Children’s School.
The flower gardens beside the ornate Canadian Institute were naturally beautiful.
And this led us to some beautiful old churches.
St Andrews Church was build in 1759.
The Basilique-Cathedrale Notre-Dame de Quebec is the oldest church (1647) in the New World north of Mexico.
At the top of the city, the Citadelle stands guard.
Beside the fort is the Governors’ Walkway–Promenade des Gouverneurs—310 steps climbing Cap Diamant from Dufferin Terrace, to a long walk overlooking the river. The path is beside the exterior wall of the fort.
The Promenade led us to the Plains of Abraham.
This was the site of the 1759 Battle of Quebec, a deciding point in the French and Indian War. The British won control of Quebec, allowing them to take control of Canada. Downtown Quebec is in the background.
The Citadelle, sitting beside the Plains, overlooks Old Quebec in this view.
Heading back into town, we passed the Saint-Louis Sally Fort.
To catch our bus, we made our way back to the Old Town gate at Artillery Park.
Next we’ll travel to a stop at Riviere du Loup. We had heard it was a beautiful area. Boy, were we surprised. Nothing prepared us for what we found!