We recently took a weekend getaway to Québec City for the second year in a row. It is only a five hour drive from upstate New York but feels like a world away. I imagine it would be wonderful to visit any time of year, but it is truly a winter wonderland with the cobblestone streets covered in snow and the greenery and lights that remain up all season.
We chose to stay at the same hotel as last year - The Hôtel Port-Royal. It is a lovely boutique hotel located in Old Québec (Vieux-Québec) and the location is unbeatable for exploring. They are also family friendly! Our room was spacious and charming, and because of the exchange rate it was also only $76 per night. It was a little hard to leave the comfort of our warm accomodation in the morning, but well worth it for a short stroll over to La Maison Smith for maple lattes, hot chocolate and croissants.
After our petite breakfast, we wandered the streets of the old port including the pedestrian street Quartier Petit Champlain
If you visit Québec in the winter, this street is a must. It looks like a Christmas village complete with music, lights, tiny shops and falling snow.
For views of the Saint Lawrence river, take the stairs or the funiculaire up to the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac. It's also a great place to people watch, grab a coffee or enjoy winter merriment during Carnaval de Québec.
We began our afternoon by trekking over to La Grande-Allèe du Vieux-Québec. I really enjoyed this area of the city for its Victorian architecture, lovely row homes, cafes and its proximity to Battlefields Park (a huge, urban park and a great place for winter sports like nordic skiing and snow shoeing). After a short stroll through the neighborhood, we stopped for some poutine at Chez Ashton.
In the evening we took another walk to enjoy the lights and festivities (spiked hot chocolate anyone?) and we ate dinner at a cozy diner that was less than a block from our hotel.
Another highlight of the weekend was taking a scenic drive out of the city to visit the Hôtel de Glace (Ice Hotel). Henry loved exploring all the corridors, eating maple sugar snow candy and sliding down a huge slide made entirely of ice.
It was a beautiful mini holiday. Until next time, Québec.