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Quebec City, QC City Review

Review Score
  • Attractions
  • Community
  • Nightlife
  • Restaurants
  • Shopping
Reviewed by:
An contributor
September 18, 2010

Quebec City is one of the most picturesque and quaint cities I have visited in my travels. My first encounter with Quebec City was in 2007 with a high school french class. Between great food, great Quebecois music, and beautiful sights, it's hard to not love Quebec City. Since that trip, I have returned to La Belle Province three more times always to attend Carnaval, Quebec City's annual winter festival. I would absolutely recommend any first-timers to go to Quebec for Carnaval.

Carnaval takes place every year from late January until mid February. Le Bonhomme, the festival's jovial snowman mascot bedecks the city and welcomes guests to join into the festivities. Between its extreme sports competitions (including tobogganing, ice-canoeing, and dog sledding), Parades, and traditional Quebecois music, the festival is perfect for both families and young adults. Personally, I'd be hard pressed to choose my favorite part of Carnaval. It's probably a three-way tie between the Beaver Tails (a Quebecois fried-dough pastry similar to funnel cake), exploring the Ice Castle and ice sculptures, and relaxing in the Arctic Spa Village in twenty five below degree weather.

Aside from these wintry festivities, there are a lot of sites to see in the city. Quebec City has a long and rich cultural history. The fortifications surrounding the city as well as Upper Town are testament to over 400 years of existence. Chateau Frontenac is the most popular attraction within Quebec. This castle in Upper Town is a beautiful boutique hotel. Even if the hotel is out of your price range it is definitely still worth visiting. Tour guides dressed in nineteenth century period costume give tours of some of the most beautiful rooms and recount the stories of some of their most famous clients. Old town's narrow streets are filled with lots of shops selling traditional Quebecois wares as well as antique, and clothing stores.

There are very little things worth complaining about within Quebec City. As a city, shopping, lodging, and restaurants tend to be somewhat expensive. Nevertheless, there are definitely good places to shop, eat, and stay on a budget. There's not a lot in the way of youth hostels, however, I have had great experiences staying in La Belle Planete Hostel. And the second and probably more discouraging thing about Quebec City is the cold. In the winter months, the city is ice covered. It is not particularly slippery on the sidewalks and the roads are clear, however the wind is completely numbing. It is completely necessary to wear snow boots with thick wool socks to prevent your toes from freezing off. But don't worry! In Quebec, wearing numerous layers of clothing and having a scarf wrapped around your face is fashionable.

Quebec's province slogan, "Je me souviens", or, "I will remember" promises that anyone who visits Quebec is guaranteed to fall in love with the city.

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Quebec City Demographics

Quebec City Population
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
Population 2006715,0007,886,000
Population density2165
Land area (square km)3,1541,357,743
Median age of the population39.538.8
Population 15 years and over83.9%82.2%
Population change (2001 to 2006)4.7%8.9%
Quebec City Marital Status
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
Quebec City Languages & Place of Residence
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
English only2%8%
French only96%81%
Both English and French2%1%
Canadian-born population96%85%
Foreign-born population3%15%
Non-permanent residents1%1%
Quebec City Education
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
Population 15 years and over in school full time13%12%
Age group 15-19 attending full time6%6%
Age group 20-24 attending full time5%3%
Population 15 years and over in school part time4%4%
Age group 15-19 attending part time1%1%
Age group 20-24 attending part time1%1%
Quebec City Earnings & Household Income
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
Average earnings, all persons (2010 est.)$40,215$39,670
Average earnings, worked full time (2010 est.)$53,370$52,943
Average household income (2010 est.)$72,989$71,123
Quebec City Transportation
MetricQuebec CityQuebec
Car, truck, van, as driver76%73%
Car, truck, van, as passenger5%5%
Public transit10%13%
Walked or bicycled8%8%
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