Why go to Quebec City?

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Getting to Quebec City

Excellent road, rail and air connections ensure that getting to Quebec City is really easy. The majority of visitors will travel to Quebec City by air, arriving at the Jean Lesage International Airport.
Visitors who are arriving via other Canadian cities could make the journey by car, bus or train. Finally, you can also choose to arrive at Quebec City on a luxury cruise liner – in this case you will disembark conveniently close to the beautiful Old Town.
Let’s have a closer look at all the available options for getting to Quebec City.
Let’s have a closer look at all the available options for getting to Quebec City.
  1. By Air:

The Jean Lesage International Airport is conveniently located just 16km from downtown Quebec City. Access to the city is quick and easy via Blvd. Wilfred Hamel (138) or autoroute duPlessis (540). You can hire a car at the airport or take a taxi, Uber or airport shuttle into town. A taxi ride will cost you around $35.
There are direct flights to Quebec City from many cities in Canada and the USA – the airport is served by several airlines to ensure you can get to Quebec City from just about anywhere.

Air Canada
Air Inuit
Air Transat
American Airlines
Delta Airlines
PAL Airlines

Porter Airlines
United Airlines

  1. By Bus

Busses provide an excellent and comfortable budget option for getting to Quebec City. The Intercity Transit boasts 222 bus stations all across Quebec province making travel to the city easy.
The Orleans Express offers a daily service between Montreal and Quebec City – expect comfortable reclining seats, electrical outlets and free Wi-Fi. If you are coming to Quebec from the USA you can use the Greyhound service to Montreal and then change to the Orleans Express.
There are two main Quebec City Bus Stations:

Sainte-Foy Terminal, 3001 chemin des Quatre-Bourgeois and Gare du Palais Bus Terminal, 320 rue Abraham-Matin (closest to the Old Town)

  1. By Train

Traveling to Quebec City by train is an excellent option. You get to sit back and relax while watching the beautiful scenery fly by.

If you are travelling to Quebec City from other Canadian destinations you will use the VIA Rail Canada service which offers comfortable seats, Wi-Fi, meals and more.

There are several different travel classes to suit your budget and most inter-Canada rail trips from major cities are direct. The earlier you book your rail journey the better the price – there are limited numbers of cheaper tickets available. Book online at: VIA Rail Canada

If you are traveling from the USA you will need to use the Amtrak service into Montreal, where you will change to a VIA Rail Canada connection. Amtrak
Quebec City has two train stations, Gare du Palais (Central Station) and Gare de Sainte-Foy. Onward travel within the city is provided by bus, taxi or Uber.
Gare du Palais Train Station
  1. By Car

Traveling by car in Canada is a pleasure due to an excellent road network. Visitors will arrive in Quebec City via Highway 20 (aka Jean-Lesage autoroute) which runs along the south shore of the Saint Lawrence River or via Highway 40 (aka autoroute Felix-Leclerc) which runs along the north shore.
If you are travelling from Montreal, Highway 40 is slightly longer but far more scenic. If you have some spare time you can take a scenic drive from Quebec City to Montreal and back, looping along both of the highways, stopping here and there to visit wineries, historic towns and interesting shopping districts.

If you are travelling from Montreal, Highway 40 is slightly longer but far more scenic. If you have some spare time you can take a scenic drive from Quebec City to Montreal and back, looping along both of the highways, stopping here and there to visit wineries, historic towns and interesting shopping districts.

  1. By Boat

Possibly the most beautiful and romantic way to get to Quebec City would be to arrive by luxury cruise liner! There are several cruise lines which offer small-ship cruises along the Saint Lawrence River to Quebec City. The passenger cruise terminal is conveniently located in the Petit Champlain neighborhood, close to the Old Town.

Getting Around Quebec City

Unlike many major tourist destinations, getting around Quebec City is easy, with several options available to visitors.

Most visitors will enjoy exploring the Old Town (Vieux Quebec) on foot – strolling along the many quaint cobblestoned passages is an adventure in itself and all the major tourist attractions are relatively close together. Walking tours of the Old Town are extremely popular and will take you to all the major attractions.

While walking may be very pleasant in summer, winter can be very cold indeed and you may prefer to travel from attraction to attraction in a convenient (and heated!) Métrobus.

There is also a funicular railway which you can take from the Lower Town (Basse Ville) up to the Upper Town (Haute Ville) to save yourself a steep walk. The fabulous views along the way are an added bonus. If you have limited mobility or are travelling with young children, an inexpensive taxi ride can be the ideal way to get from Point A to Point B.

On Foot

Using your own two feet is by far the best way of getting around Quebec City, especially the Old Town which is home to almost all the major tourist attractions. Just be sure that you come prepared for the elements – dress warmly and make sure you have suitable foot ware to cope with snow or icy conditions in winter. When you start to feel too chilled you can pop into one of the many welcoming coffee shops for a hot drink and a delicious French pastry.
The oldest Breakneck Staircase is a popular way for tourists to get from Lower Town to Upper Town and back

By Bike

Some visitors may like to explore Quebec City a little beyond the main touristy attractions. It is easy to visit the suburban areas by bike along one of several beautifully paved bike trails. Most of these start in the Old Port Area where there are also several bike rental stations. If you think biking around the city may be a bit strenuous, electric bikes are also available.

One of the most popular trails is the 5.5-mile Corridor de la Riviera Saint Charles, which starts at the Old Port Market and continues along both banks of the river. The views are exceptional and you can combine excellent sight-seeing with some exercise.

By Bus

Although it is wonderful to walk around the Old Town’s tourist attractions there comes a time when you could be feeling really cold or your feet need a break. This is when the city’s excellent Métrobus service is a real blessing. The service offers 6 routes which offer convenient stops within a few minute’s walk of all the main attractions. The Métrobus is also really inexpensive – you can buy a single journey ticket for around $3.00 with discounted fares for children and seniors. It is even cheaper if you buy a One-Day Pass, or one of their other multi-day discounted fares.

When you venture outside the Old Town walls you will find another excellent public bus service which offers over 60 routes throughout the city, called the RTC (Le Réseau de transport de la Capitale). If you are going to be in the city for more than a few days you will find various discounted RTC passes available on their website: https://www.rtcquebec.ca

By Funicular

The quickest and most scenic way to reach the Upper, or Old Town from the Lower Town is to jump aboard the funicular railway. The funicular, which was built in 1879, follows a steep track which directly connects the Old Port to Old Town attractions like Dufferin Terrace and Place-Royal.
Your journey up the cliff face (at a steep, 45 degree angle) offers excellent views of the Saint Lawrence River and the Lower Town. You will find the lower Funicular entrance at15 rue Petit-Champlain. The entrance from the Upper Town can be found on Dufferin Terrace, conveniently close to the Chateau Frontenac. A ride on Le Funiculaire will cost you $3.75 – children and people in wheelchairs travel free. The Funicular does not operate in snowy conditions.

There is also a (free) elevator service (Ascenseur du Faubourg) which connects the Saint-Roch neighborhood to the Saint Jean-Baptiste neighborhood.

By Boat – The Quebec City Ferry

Operating between Quebec and Levis, across the Saint Lawrence River, the Quebec City Ferry is a little-known gem. The quick 12-minute ferry ride offers a whole new perspective of famous Quebec City landmarks like Dufferin Terrace and Chateau Frontenac.
The ferry operates all year round – watching the movement of the ice on the river is a fascinating winter experience. Adults pay $3.75 for a one-way ride, while seniors and children enjoy reduced fares. If you have hired a car it will cost you between $6.50 and $8.90 to take your vehicle on the ferry.

By Taxi

There are plenty of metered taxis in Quebec City. All the major attractions have a near-by taxi rank where you can wait. It is also possible to hail a taxi on the street or order an Uber. Taxis can be a great boon to visitors with mobility restrictions and for families with younger children.
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