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The 20,000 works at Musée National des Beaux-arts du Québec range from the traditional landscape paintings of Cornelius Krieghoff to the controversial abstraction of Paul-Émile Borduas and the avant-garde sculptures of Serge Tousignant. Non-Quebec artist Arthur Lismer's lovely St-Hilarion is one of the Museum's prized possessions. A huge slate of activities awaits art, music and cinema lovers. The museum hosts numerous events and exhibits throughout the year, so call ahead for more information.
This is one of Quebec City's most popular parks and historical attractions. Commemorating the daring 1759 attack in which Quebec fell to the British under the leadership of General Wolfe, Plaines d'Abraham features two striking Martello Towers offering rotating displays and great views over the St Lawrence River. The interpretive center is housed in the Musée du Québec.
La Barberie is a micro-brewery that serves up some delightful varieties of local beers with their menu that changes on a daily basis, so you are sure to have something new here every time you visit. Some of the kinds of beers you are likely to find include Classic White, Blonde Bucolic, Light Rousse and Sure Cherry. They organize beer tastings on a regular basis, but one can order their sampler anytime they visit. The taproom has a warm feel, while one can also sit by their patio on a sunny day.
A star-shaped enclosed fortification located atop the promontory of Cap Diamant, the Citadelle of Quebec contains 300 years of military history within its stone-cut Vauban walls. Constructed out of sandstone between 1820 and 1850, this grand British fortress rests on four bastions and three curtain walls and comprises of 24 buildings. The citadel is popularly known as the Gibraltar of America, and is the official residence of the Canadian monarch and the Governor-General of Canada, besides also functioning as an active military structure. Owing to its longstanding military association, the Royal 22e Régiment of the Canadian Forces is stationed here. One of the most significant landmarks of Quebec, the Citadelle of Quebec invites droves of tourists to take a guided tour of the fortress and the museum, witness the awe-inspiring changing of the guard and enjoy sweeping views of the St. Lawrence River from its historic ramparts.
History, which is everywhere in the city, is most evident in its beautifully preserved fortifications that date from the early 17th Century. As the only remaining walled city in North America, Quebec has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors are free to walk along the nearly five kilometers (3.10 miles) of walls witnessing the Fortifications of Quebec National Historic Site. The interpretation center offers an intriguing look into the military and architectural design features. Guided walking tours offer further insights.
Galerie d’art inuit Brousseau et Brousseau, in Quebec's Vieux-Quebec neighborhood, was established by Raymond Brousseau in 1974. This gallery was where Brousseau could showcase his collection of sculptures by local artists, that he has been accumulating since 1956. In 1999, he opened the adjoining space as the The Brousseau Museum of Inuit Art. The Hydro Quebec Room is a permanent zone that showcases the original collection by Raymond Brousseau. Beautifully crafted sculptures by local Inuit artists, mainly revolving around their culture and beliefs, comprise the artworks on display at both these galleries.
Bordered by the St. Lawrence River, Old Québec or Vieux-Québec is the historic heart of the modern day City of Quebec. Divided into two distinct parts, the Upper Town and Lower Town, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is a gateway into the history of the province. The Upper Town is set atop the Cap Diamant and is the city's historic administrative and military hub. Its most iconic landmark, the Citadelle with its star shaped design is an arresting edifice while the Chateau Frontenac is a mesmerizing vision of Victorian grandeur. The Upper Town is also one of the sites of the Carnaval de Quebec, considered to be among the largest winter festivals on the globe. The Lower Town, at the base of the mount, is the livelier of the two with a bustling market and vibrant Old Port. Amid hundreds of historic buildings, tourist attractions, pubs and restaurants lie dozens of boutiques, galleries, souvenir shops and other distinctive establishments. The Church of Notre-Dame-des-Victoires is another of Old Québec's many treasures.
The beautiful Museum of French America (Le Musée de l'Amérique française) offers many multidisciplinary insights into the history of North America's French communities. There are two permanent exhibits: The Settling of French America is a multimedia trip from France to the colonies, while The History of the Collections Séminaire de Québec boasts an unmatched assortment of religious art and scientific instruments. Guided tours are available in both French and English.
Dating back to the year 1647 and replacing a former chapel, the Cathedral-Basilica of Notre-Dame de Québec is a listed World Heritage Church and the first of its kind to be elevated to the rank of minor basilica. The church is a fine example of Neo-classical architecture and its interior was designed by Jean Baillairgé. A tour to the cathedral would take you through the main features of the cathedral that includes the stained glass windows, paintings and the tomb of Quebec's first bishop, François de Laval.
This most beautifully preserved area of Vieux-Québec is also one of the city's cherished shopping districts. Quartier Petit Champlain is certainly heavily thronged to and many establishments cater to the visiting hordes. There are, nonetheless, many unique boutiques to be unearthed. Quebec fashion designers are featured heavily on the rue du Petit-Champlain, including Oclan, Point de Mire, Les Vêteries and Zazou. Numerous art and crafts galleries provide everything from souvenirs to high-end housewares; well-known stores include Brin de folie and the Galerie d'Art Bégin and Pauline Pelletier. High-quality jewelry is on offer at the magnificent Pierre Vives and Louis Perrier Jewelers. The district abounds with cafes and restaurants.
Museum of Civilization plays host to a wide variety of locally and internationally themed exhibitions. In a building that effortlessly combines ancient colonial architecture with ultramodern additions, visitors feast on bilingual exhibitions ranging from Xi'an, Eternal Capital, a multimedia exploration of the ancient Chinese city, to Encounter with the First Nations, which focuses on Quebec's Native Peoples. Guided tours are also available.
The history of Quebec and Canada is intertwined with that of the Saint Lawrence River and its sailors. Naval Museum of Quebec aims to preserve the memory of the Canadian sailors' history from the beginning of the 20th Century, during both war and peace. The museum offers several activities designed to demystify the life of the sailor and has a fascinating exhibit featuring little-known facts about Quebec's naval history.