1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 1
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1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024

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Greetings, Internet Stranger! I’m Stella Jane, author of the travel guide Get Lost, and welcome to a perfect one day in Quebec City itinerary. Quebec City is a memorably beautiful place, with its historic buildings and gorgeous stone walls. There are enough fun activities and gorgeous sights to last any tourist several days.

Well, today we’re going to pack as much beauty as we possibly can into one itinerary. We’ll visit one of Quebec’s best art museums. Then we’ll head to a unique historic site and learn all about Quebec City’s history, with fun facts galore. Along the way, we’ll eat more delicious food than you can shake a stick at.

But why waste time shaking sticks, when we can be having fun? Come on!

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

#1 TOP PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
OLD TOWN WALKING TOUR
✔️
Tons of fun facts
✔️ Convenient and affordable

#2 PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 3

QUEBEC FOOD TOUR
✔️ Delicious authentic treats
✔️ Expert local guide

#3 PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 4

ALL OTHER QUEBEC CITY TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

one day in quebec city itinerary

One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

Morning: Musee National des Beaux-Arts du Quebec

Whew! That’s quite a mouthful. But in English, the Musee National des Beaux-Arts du Quebec just means the Fine Art Museum of Quebec. And here, we can find some of the best and most interesting Canadian art out there.

However, Canadian art isn’t the only thing on display at the museum. They also have very well curated temporary exhibitions, as well as a tasty museum café. There will be plenty here to keep us occupied all morning, so let’s get started with…

Approximately Top 5: Musee National des Beaux-Arts du Quebec

one day in quebec city itinerary
1) Special Exhibitions

As I mentioned, this museum frequently features special exhibitions on the ground floor, and if the exhibition that was there when I spent my one day in Quebec City itinerary are there when you visit, you won’t want to miss them.

The special exhibit that I saw was about America as seen through art. (It seemed like the exhibit was talking about my home country, the good old US of A, rather than America, the continent.) As an American, I was a little apprehensive to see an exhibit on America through its art in Canada. What would the Canadians think of us.

However, I found the exhibit fascinating. There was a good amount of commentary about America’s ills like consumerism and racism. There were some artists you’d definitely expect to find, like Jasper Johns and Andy Warhol. However, I also got the chance to discover some new artists like Helen Lundeberg, whose work you can see in my photo above. Thanks, Canada!

one day in quebec city itinerary
2) Edmund Alleyn

All right, now we get into some Quebecois art. This piece was cool for many reasons. First, it’s made using photos that the artists took of people visiting the site where the famous Montreal Expo 67 took place. (This was a kind of World’s Fair that really put Montreal on the map.) Doesn’t get any more Canadian than that!

I also like that the photos are displayed on plexiglass, so the people visiting the museum end up sort of reflected in the work of art. Since the photos are of people who were all attending a different exhibition, it ends up blurring the line between spectator and spectated.

But why are some of these people blue? I read the docent notes and couldn’t get an answer. I guess this is what they mean when they say that art makes you ask the big questions.

one day in montreal itinerary
3) Sculpture Time

Another thing I liked about this museum is that there were plenty of odd sculptures to admire. Look at all the shapes, sizes, and colors here! It made the museum feel more like a playground for adults than a stuffy museum.

All that was missing for a perfect adult playground were some perfect adult beverages. (And in fact, we will be able to have a cocktail with our lunch if we so desire.)

Do you see that Green M in the background of my photo? That’s an optical illusion by Montreal artist Serge Tousignant called “Green Pincers”. As you walk around the sculpture, it appears to change shape. You’ll have to go to the museum and get up close to see how it works for yourself.

one day in montreal itinerary
4) Lost in Nature

There was a terrible accident when someone drove this car into the museum. It got stuck on a whole bunch of grass and no one could get it out! Please help!

Or, is this wooden Mercedes a commentary on industrialization and consumerism and how these social ills have taken us away from a proper communion with nature? You decide!

one day in quebec city itinerary
5) Lunch at Cafe Quebecor

Fortunately we don’t have to leave the museum to eat lunch because there’s a lovely place right inside the museum called Cafe Quebecor. I very much enjoyed my soup and sandwich lunch. I started with a creamy cauliflower soup…

one day in quebec city itinerary

And then continued with a fancy smoked trout tartine topped with roe. (A tartine is basically a sandwich that’s only got half its clothes on.) It was just enough food to give me energy for the rest of our day exploring Quebec City.

one day in quebec city itinerary

Instead of dessert, I had a Bloody Caesar, which is Canada’s national cocktail (probably). It’s a Bloody Mary made with Clamato juice instead of tomato juice. I drink as many of these as I can when I’m in Canada, to blend in with the locals.

one day in quebec city itinerary

One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

Afternoon: La Citadelle de Quebec

OK, we’ve spent the morning of our one day in Quebec City itinerary in a museum, and we even ate lunch in the museum. So you might be thinking that we should spend the afternoon in another museum. And you’d be right! But La Citadelle de Quebec isn’t exactly a museum.

I mean, sure, there’s a military museum inside the citadel, where you can see some old Canadian medals and things. But the main event is a guided tour of this historically important building. If your tour is anything like mine, it will be well worth taking. And considering that this is the most notable landmark in Quebec City, I don’t really think you can say that you’ve spent time in Quebec without coming here.

Our guide, whom I shall call Remy, wouldn’t allow us to take his picture because he said that he is so beautiful that if we want his photo, we need to pay him. (Pretty sure that was a joke.) And we’ll discover more Canadian humor with…

Three Fascinating Facts: La Citadelle de Quebec

one day in quebec city itinerary
1) What’s this about a museum?

As soon as you enter the citadel and buy your ticket, you’ll reserve a spot on the next guided tour of the citadel. (You can only explore the citadel with a guide. Wandering about on your own is NOT permitted.) As this is Quebec City, both French and English tours are available, but I chose to wait for the English tour.

While you are waiting, you may spend as much time as you like checking out the military artifacts at the museum. There was even a Canadian veteran there acting as a volunteer docent who explained some of the objects to us.

Do you see this little flag with a royal beaver on it and the phrase, “Je me souviens”? Well, don’t forget this French phrase because it means “I Remember”, and it’s the official motto of Quebec. You’ll see it all over town. No one is exactly sure what it means. That’s a little ironic that the motto is “I remember”, and yet no one remembers why.

one day in quebec city itinerary
2) Why is the citadel?

Well, a fortification has been located at this spot since the 17th century. Back then, this area was French territory, and they wanted to protect their land from the nasty, invading British army. However, the British were eventually victorious, and Quebec became part of the British colony of Canada.

The citadel you see today wasn’t built until the 19th century, when Quebec was already part of Canada. So why was it built? The French weren’t trying to take it back, after all. Who were they defending themselves from?

one day in quebec city itinerary

Alas, the answer is that it was built to protect Canada from the Americans. After all, Canada had been involved on the British side during the War of 1812, and we weren’t on such good terms.

The citadel has been important in other military conflicts, namely during World War II, when Winston Churchill and FDR met here to discuss Allied military strategy. And the famous 22nd regiment is stationed here to this day. (That’s why you can’t go exploring.)

one day in quebec city itinerary
3) What is the Royal 22nd?

The Royal 22nd is the premiere francophone regiment in Canada. Remy demonstrated how difficult it had been for francophone soldiers always having to serve in English-speaking units. Even though they understood some English, it’s hard to follow commands quickly if you are translating in your head.

He then demonstrated this principle by barking out some commands in French and seeing how quickly we could follow him. Sadly for him, I speak French, so it was easy for me to follow the commands right away. But many of my compatriots weren’t as lucky.

There’s no need to ask which battles the 22nd regiment participated in because there are blocks with the names of those battles in the citadel. They’ve played an important role in many military conflicts, including World War II. I won’t forget this when I go back to the United States. In fact, you could say, “Je me souviens!”

one day in quebec city itinerary

One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

Evening: Dinner at Arvi

I really must emphasize how many wonderful restaurants there are in Quebec City. I know that it’s a city with French origins, so I really shouldn’t be surprised that they are good at food. I had just never heard very much about Quebecois cuisine before going to Quebec City. I supposed I assumed it was all maple syrup and stew.

That’s why I was most pleasantly surprised to find Arvi, a wonderful tasting menu restaurant that serves the finest local ingredients. This is an excellent chance to find delicious foods it would be difficult to locate outside of Quebec.

You don’t exactly get to order because there is a set menu every night. However, there are a few extra dishes you can add to your menu, and I suggest adding at least a few, like these gorgeous local oysters that were the perfect way to start the meal.

one day in quebec city itinerary

Next was a light and flavorful swordfish with broccolini and buckwheat. The green from the broccolini is definitely needed to make this a stunning dish instead of a beige one. But either way, it was a fine and flappy piece of swordfish.

one day in quebec city itinerary

No matter how many dishes you’re eating tonight, there’s always room for fresh bread and butter, right? That’s just science.

one day in quebec city itinerary

Up next, we have some decadent veal sweetbreads with lettuce and shrimp. “Je me souviens” that Quebec is famous for excellent shrimp, though I had just learned this the day before. It’s always good when a tasting menu alternates rich dishes like this with lighter dishes like the swordfish. That way your stomach doesn’t explode, which would be embarrassing.

one day in quebec city itinerary

And we’re back to the lighter dishes with a chilled tomato, cottage cheese, and rhubarb salad. I’ve never had cottage cheese on a tasting menu before, and I honestly was worried it would taste like I was on a diet, but have no fear! It was creamy and delectable.

one day in quebec city itinerary

The final “extra” course that I ordered was this perfect slice of foie gras served on brioche with local birch syrup. I had to try this because I’m used to foie gras being served with fruit for some added sweetness, but I had never had tree sap as a sweetener with it before. And as everyone “souviens”, Quebec has the best tree sap.

one day in quebec city itinerary

So this was an extra dish, but not one that I ordered–just a little gift from the kitchen. We’re doubling down on the bounty of Quebec seafood with lobster bisque with potato. It seems a little warm for a balmy July evening, doesn’t it? But it wasn’t. Lobster bisque is always welcome in my books.

one day in quebec city itinerary

For the final savory course on our one day in Quebec City itinerary, I present turbot with zucchini and sweet clover. For some reason in my photo the turbot looks like a piece of chicken, but I promise that it isn’t.

And I was super impressed with a tasting menu that had basically no meat except for the bonus foie gras and was still indulgent.

one day in quebec city itinerary

Can you guess what fruit is in this dessert? I bet you can’t, unless you’re Canadian. It’s actually haskap, which has a lovely tart berry flavor. Oh, I just love finding new foods to eat. And this was a perfect end to our perfect one day in Quebec City itinerary.

One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

Where to Stay?

Quebec City is a fairly small and historic city. I had pretty much no trouble walking everywhere, except to the airport. However, you’ll still want to pick a central location in a safe and convenient neighborhood within walking distance of the main attractions.

That’s why I recommend the Hotel Relais Charles Alexandre. It has a perfectly convenient location within walking distance of many Quebec City attractions. My room was clean, cozy, and comfortable. There was also a good breakfast every morning and an extremely helpful staff.

If you’re looking for a great deal for this amazing hotel, click here. And if you’d rather save money on tons of other hotels in Quebec City, click here. This search engine will help you find the perfect place to stay during your plans for your One Day in Quebec City Itinerary. With plenty of options to choose from, I’m sure you’ll find something for your schedule and budget.

That’s a Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

What would you do during a One Day in Quebec City Itinerary? Could you follow a series of complicated military orders in French? Are you ready to start booking your hotel in Quebec City? Please email me at stellajane@aroundtheworldin24hours.com and let me know!

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: One Day in Quebec City Itinerary

#1 TOP PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
OLD TOWN WALKING TOUR
✔️
Tons of fun facts
✔️ Convenient and affordable

#2 PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 3

QUEBEC FOOD TOUR
✔️ Delicious authentic treats
✔️ Expert local guide

#3 PICK

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 4

ALL OTHER QUEBEC CITY TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

Note: If you want to know how I put my travel itineraries together, just click here. Keep in mind that while each article is about how to spend 24 hours in a place, that doesn’t mean you should have a One Day in Quebec City Itinerary.

Add another 24 hours in Montreal. Experience a one day in Montreal itinerary. You can also try a day of the best Canada Montreal things to do. Go for 24 hours in Quebec City.

1 Perfect One Day in Quebec City Itinerary 2024 8

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