Our family vacation this summer was a short trip to Quebec City, one of the oldest cities in North America. Founded in 1608 by French explorer and navigator Samuel de Champlain, the city on the St. Lawrence River is a beautiful place to visit with enough historical ambiance to please any history buff.
With three kids, even a three-day road trip can be exhausting. We made the best of the time we had there. After a long day’s drive from Ottawa, we got to our hotel by suppertime. We grabbed some take-out pizza and ate at the park by the site of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham.
This decisive battle between the British and French took place in 1759, when British soldiers climbed the steep cliff under the city in darkness to surprise and defeat the French. With Quebec City in their hands, the British were able to take control of Canada the following year.
The next day, we drove downtown to Old Quebec. Our first stop was La Citadelle, a fortress built between 1820 and 1850 that is still in use by the military. We watched the impressive changing of the guard ceremony and had our picture taken with the regimental mascot, Batisse the goat.
After lunch, ice cream cones in hand, we walked through the city streets toward the river. Old Quebec is enclosed by the only remaining fortified city walls in the Americas north of Mexico. The many heritage buildings along the narrow streets give the area a European feel. We ended up on the boardwalk by the magnificent grand hotel the Château Frontenac, where we had a gorgeous view of the river and watched a street entertainer juggle fire on a unicycle.
After a rest back at our (non-luxury) hotel and an early dinner at Boston Pizza, we took the kids to the Mega Parc, an amusement park within the Galeries de la Capitale mall. This was the highlight of the trip for them!
On our final morning we visited the Montmorency waterfall, a spectacular sight on a gorgeous summer day. The cables in the photo are zip lines – would you be brave enough to glide across?
Another long drive brought us home with many good memories of a beautiful and fascinating city.