Only have 24 hours Quebec City, Canada? There’s no time to waste! Discover the best things to do, places to see, and restaurants to try in this jam-packed, one day itinerary in Quebec City, Canada.
My husband and I got engaged in Quebec City, so it will forever hold a special place in my heart. My bias aside, it is truly one of the most romantic cities, with old-world charm and an almost European character. Follow along on our whirlwind, 24-hour visit to this magical place!
Morning exploration of Old Quebec City
We began our day in Quartier Petit Champlain in Quebec City’s old town. We wandered the meandering, pedestrian-friendly streets lined with quirky, independent shops and quaint cafes. Afterwards, feeling up for a challenge, we hiked up the nearly 400 steps of the Cap-Blanc Stairs. Quebec City’s longest, historic staircase that connects Rue Champlain to the Battlefields Park above. The views of the river from the top are a well-deserved reward for making the trek.
Lunch break at Pub L’Oncle Antoine
After all that walking, it was time to pop into Pub L’Oncle Antoine for a snack break. On a nice day, we were able to sit outside, the perfect perch to people-watch over some cheesy goodness and a pint. However, the interior is really where the charm of this place lies. Its thick, stone walls, roaring fireplace, plush seating, and rich, wooden bar made us feel as if we’d stepped back in time. This cozy, cave-like atmosphere takes hole-in-the-wall to a whole new level.
Evening stroll along the St. Lawrence River
I should’ve known something was up when my husband suggested that we get dressed up and take pictures along the river boardwalk before dinner. When we stepped outside on a beautiful late summer afternoon, he made a bee line for a spot along the river “without so many people around.” He began telling me how much he loved me, and before I knew it, he was down on one knee with a ring box! By chance, a photographer caught the whole thing on camera, so we have beautiful pictures of the moment that we will always treasure. Whether it’s for a special occasion or a casual stroll, the stunning views of the St. Lawrence River at sunset are not to be missed.
Authentic French cuisine at L’Initiale
Following the proposal, we had the most amazing, intimate, and luxurious dinner at L’Initiale. This was a true, French culinary experience. The service was excellent and they made us feel so special. Champagne was waiting for us when we arrived, and we were sent home with a box of macarons and a copy of our menu signed by the chef as a sweet memento of our night. We did the La Dégustation menu with the wine pairings. It was pricey, but I would highly recommend it. I am a picky eater, but everything they presented was phenomenal, and the wine was perfectly paired to each dish!
Unwind at the Fairmont Le Chateau
Because it was (unbeknownst to me) a special occasion, we splurged and booked a room at the absolutely breathtaking Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac. Staying here was like staying in a real-life fairy-tale castle. Built in the late 19th Century and overlooking the St. Lawrence River, it is one of the most iconic and recognizable landmarks in Quebec City. Grabbing a nightcap at the 1608 Wine and Cheese Bar, offering sweeping views of the twinkling city below, was the perfect way to toast our trip before turning in for the night.
What would you do if you only had 24 hours in Quebec City?
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