Canada: Quebec City at New Year’s

At New Year’s last year, Emily and I visited my sister in the great White North. It lived up to its name with blasts of winter storms and cold air that made even the mercury search for warmth. Naturally, instead of staying in her cozy home next to the crackling fire, the four of us headed a little further north to the wintery, European-esque wonderland of Quebec City.

There was much tradition to be witnessed in Quebec City. We explored some of the rich military history as we ambled about La Citadelle, learning of the past regiments and soldiers who lived there and exploring the still active military post.  During our time there, we grew a special fondness for Batisse, their regimental goat.  The fort provided both historical background of the city and panoramic views of the St. Lawrence River, Château Frontenac, and the Plains of Abraham (All famous places to Canadians as we, the Americans, have learned). When we left the fort, the sun was sinking and shimmering through the ice encased trees.

As we meandered from the fort and inside the city walls, other Canadian traditions were abounding as well, like hockey!  We took breaks to watch pick-up games of hockey on the local outdoor rinks, but only briefly because we need to keep moving to stay warm.  We ducked into local restaurants to stay warm as well. restaurants.  We’re not sure of the names of the restaurants we went into, but they were delicious. Trusting John’s gut, literally, to select our next dining locale was better than using a Zagat!  Everywhere we went served hearty meals, and we never wanted to leave.

We needed every last morsel though for all walking we did on the iced over cobblestone streets and winding alleyways. Each turn led to a new adventure or awe-inspiring vantage. At one point, we watched the full moon rise above the Château Frontenac, looked out over the St. Lawrence, and even took a sled ride down the toboggan chute on the river front. Fun times all around.

On the last day, we finally discovered one the most charming streets of the city located at the foot of the hill below the old town. It was an old cobblestone street, with an air about it that made you feel as if you were in a living version of a Charles Dickens novel. In addition to all of the boutique shops, street performers made their way through all the shoppers.  Across the alleyways, Santa’s laundry was hung. It was a festive atmosphere that warmed us on the cold days.  We can’t wait to get back.

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~ by Rob Page III on February 18, 2011.

2 Responses to “Canada: Quebec City at New Year’s”

  1. Beautifully captured. Quebec City is a wonderful place, as is Old Montreal.

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