Traveling to Quebec – Everything You Need to Know

Quebec Unsold Saver Deal 3 nights

Traveling to Quebec – Everything You Need to Know

Visiting one of Canada’s most gorgeous provinces? Good. Here are some things you might want to know before you start planning your trip.

Known as one of the friendliest places in the world, Quebec is an ideal vacation destination. It’s especially true for anyone who doesn’t need sunbathing to relax. It’s a great place to go alone, as a couple, or with the entire family.

However, you may run into some language barriers – as is the case with many bilingual places. This is particularly so in Quebec, which can be bilingual in name only in certain parts.

Check out some facts about the region before visiting Quebec to avoid missing out on anything or going in unprepared.

1. Brush Up on Your French

Quebecers speak joual

French is the predominant language in this Canadian city. A good number of the people understand English fine and wouldn’t mind talking to you in English. But many signs and menus may feature more French than English.

If you want to get around town easier when visiting Quebec, knowing a bit of French will definitely help. You should also keep in mind that Quebecers speak joual. It’s a working-class dialect with unique contractions that may throw you off at times.

At any of the tourist hotspots, however, you won’t have trouble as a native English speaker. But conversational French will make things easier for you if you plan on exploring offbeat neighborhoods.

2. The Cuisine Is Interesting

Quebec fine-dining establishments

Most of the chefs in the city come from diverse backgrounds. Even so, it’s undeniable there’s a heavy French influence in the cuisine. Pork, foie gras, scallops… These are on almost every restaurant menu in town. 

It may seem like Quebec is not a cultural mecca when it comes to the restaurant industry. However, most emphasize using as many locally-sourced ingredients as possible. For that reason alone, it’s worth checking out some of the fine-dining establishments.

3. It’s Cold During the Carnival

Carnaval du Quebec

Every February, Quebec hosts the Carnaval du Quebec. It’s a massive festival with tons of outdoor activities for locals and tourists.

The festival lasts two weeks and draws massive crowds despite the freezing weather. February is one of the coldest months in Canada, after all.

It’s an event for remarkable ice sculptures, contests, ice palaces, and a lot more. Just make sure that you pack appropriate clothing if you visit early in the year.

4. It Doesn’t Have the Best Roads

Cracks and potholes in Quebec

When it comes to infrastructure, Quebec doesn’t have much to brag about. Its roads are even notoriously known for cracks and potholes.

They can be in bad shape and get worse after the long cold winter. With the snow melting and the temperatures rising in early spring, the road conditions aren’t especially ideal for inexperienced drivers.

That’s why you’ll find Quebecers work on their roads every summer. As a result of all the construction work and repairs needed, however, you may run into traffic jams.

5. It Has Surprisingly Good Slopes

Quebec Le Massif

Tourists usually regard the western part of Canada as the best region for skiing. But Quebec may end up surprising you.

There are many ski resorts in the area if you visit in the winter. Le Massif, Stoneham, and Le Relais are all very close to Quebec City. If you hop in a car, they’re all a short drive away.

While not as memorable as the more popular tourist destinations, the ski slopes in Quebec are among some of the highest in the country.

6. No Underground Metro

Quebec Metrobus

If you’re to go on vacation in Quebec City without a tour, get ready for a different means of public transport. There’s no metro in Quebec so you can’t rush across town underground.

With the roads generally in poor condition as mentioned, getting a rental car is probably not the best idea. But this doesn’t mean that you have to walk. Among the top Quebec City travel tips? Use the Metrobus.

The city’s Metrobus system works just fine and doesn’t cost much. It also ensures that you don’t have to miss out on anything while traveling around town.

7. What to Expect from a Stay at the Hotel de Glace

Hotel de Glace in Quebec

When visiting Quebec, a trip to the Ice Hotel may seem like a no-brainer. There are tours of the hotel and many amenities you can enjoy. Most of all, you may also want to spend a night there and experience the accommodations.

An overnight stay at the Hotel de Glace sounds like a romantic notion. Yet there are some things you should know.

First of all, the hotel only opens from January to March. Second of all, it’s freezing and is totally not for the faint of heart. The only place to warm up in the hotel after all is the sauna.

Last but not least, the hotel only has around 40 rooms. Considering that it attracts tens of thousands of tourists each year, it’s hard to get a room if you don’t book well in advance.

8. UNESCO World Heritage Site

UNESCO World Heritage Site in Quebec

One of the reasons many tourists prefer Quebec over Montreal is the architecture. Old Quebec still has its walled fortification, which is now designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Interestingly enough, it’s the only site of its kind north of Mexico City. And it truly makes Quebec a gorgeous town to explore.

9. A Camper’s Paradise

Quebec Camper’s Paradise

If you don’t mind the cold, Quebec is an excellent place to plan a camping trip. There are many campgrounds in and around the city after all.

Spending a few nights surrounded by nature is among the best ways to experience the Great White North. It will also make you appreciate the natural beauty that Canada has to offer.

Furthermore, it’s also safer to take advantage of the designated campgrounds to avoid getting lost or picking up a fine.

A Fine Way to Experience Canada

Quebec is among the most beautiful regions of Canada. It’s a haven for every nature-lover and is very family-friendly. While the weather can be harsh for most of the year, there are plenty of things to do both indoors and outdoors.

Plan to arrive for the festival if you want to see the place packed with people and entertainment. Experience the protein-rich local cuisine. Step away from the busy streets and take advantage of the many campsites.

Although it has its share of quirks, planning a trip to Quebec is not as impossible as you may think.

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Traveling to Quebec – Everything You Need to Know