Sunday, June 07, 2015

Wandering in the Old Town | Quebec City Part 1

My family recently spent a little over a weekend in Quebec City. For those of you who don't know where that is, it's the capital of the French-Canadian province Quebec, and many call it the most European city in North America. There's a beautiful section of the city called "Vieux Québec" (old Quebec) where all of the buildings are very old, but really nicely kept. The area has a very european feel and is a great place to wander around... I decided to take a bunch of photos in and around old Quebec, and I've put together a trilogy of blog posts with these photos. 

The first thing that you should know about Quebec is that it's very French... it was colonized by the French hundreds of years ago, and they definitely left their mark... everybody there speaks Canadian French (most speak some English as well), and there are tons of European grocery stores in the old-Québec area. The whole city is full of steep hills and giant staircases, so it's a beautiful place to walk, but not the most accessible area for everyone.

A staircase that has a whole lot of stairs in it—this photo only shows a little under half of them!
One of the many, big hills in Quebec City with a gorgeous view in the background.
Another hill!

Hotel mirror selfie break in the morning! (Or an attempt at one :p)

At all of the entrances of the formal Old Quebec area, there are stone archways like this one... the city used to be an armed fort a couple hundred years ago, so there is a wall that surrounds the whole old town, complete with the Citadelle (a fortification)

The buildings are almost all old establishments, and although they are modernized and renovated, a walk down the streets feels like a walk back in time.

I love how the roofs in Québec are all at different heights—it creates a beautiful collage that's visible when walking down hills.

In the spring and summer, there's a ton of greenery in the old town: hanging planters filled with colourful flowers line most of the shops and restaurants, and the trees are in full bloom.

Another thing that adds to the beautiful scenery is the skyline... there are some "mountains" (I say huge hills rather than mountains, but oh well...) visible in the distance from most parts of the city.

While wandering in old Quebec, I spotted a very pretty LUSH store, and decided to look around for a minute inside. I was met by a super nice lady who was completely fluent in both French and English (it was really impressive!), and she told me all about how the store had opened only a few days before, and quickly invited me to sit down so she could use a scrub and skin conditioner on my arm. I honestly loved both of the products that she showed me, but I couldn't justify spending over 20 dollars for a scrub! (It's on my "if I ever get kinda rich wish list" now, though... hahaha!) If you ever visit Quebec, though, I would definitely recommend visiting the LUSH shop on rue St. Jean, as the people there are amazing, and the store is gorgeous and organized really well!

Another cool thing about Quebec City is the little alleyways that are everywhere. This one in particular was filled with the art of quite a few independent artists who were selling their work. These little lanes are a great place to just wander and admire artwork!

On the way to dinner one day, we spotted the cat on somebody's windowsill. It was too cute not to take a picture! We also found some adorable dogs around town...

Random cute dog that I saw number one...
Random cute dog that I saw number two :)

After dinner on one of the evenings that we were in Quebec, the sunset was absolutely beautiful... it was one of the prettiest ones I have ever seen in my life, and I did a lot of running to go and grab my camera, and then run to the top of a hill to take some amazing photos before the whole thing ended.

Have you ever been to Québec City? Stay tuned for my next post to see more photos! :)

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