Quebec City - Part 1 - Orlando / Florida Guide
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This is the place that Europe and North America merge. Québec City’s historic streets, shops and food provide a base to then explore the wider province.
As it’s built on top of a cliff which is surrounded by ancient fortified walls and guarded by a working citadel, it’s no surprise to find out that Québec City has a checkered history.
Though the First Nations Algonquin discovered it first, the British and French subsequently fought over ownership of this prime location on the St Lawrence River. It was claimed as New France in 1608, then for the British in 1759, it then went back and forth before eventually Québec was declared a Canadian province in 1840.
Québec City is now distinctly Gallic and at the last count, 96% of its population speak French as their first language. Old wars are the last thing on anyone’s mind as the locals are far too busy enjoying brunch and lattes in the many Parisian style cafés that line the streets of the Old Town.
There is one battle that you will still face though and that’s the hills. Québec City is nicknamed ‘the city of stairs’ for very good reason, you need to be nimble to fully explore here and also wear something comfortable on your feet.
Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport is about 16km south-west of the city centre. There are no direct flights to Québec City from the UK and the easiest route is to fly via Montréal which is an easy connection. Total flight time from the UK is around 11 hours and returns cost from £600pp although there are deals to be had if you are flexible. British citizens do not require a visa for stays of up to six months but will need to fill in an E311 Custom Declaration form which is usually given out on the flight. In Arrivals there is an information booth with help available 24 hours a day, there is also a currency exchange and several ATMs.
Getting into town is easy with a number of options. Taxis are readily available; the fixed rate for rides into the city centre is currently around £25. The Réseau du Transport de la Capitale (RTC) Bus 78 also runs between the airport and Les Saules bus terminal with single fares costing around £3.
If you don’t fly into Québec City, the fastest and most convenient way to get there from Montréal is to take the train, with several departures daily. The journey takes from just over three hours and one-way fares start at around £25. Québec City’s Gare du Palais train station is a ten-minute walk from the Old Town and of course, there is a taxi rank outside.
Québec City continued in part 2
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