Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre#8 in Best Things To Do in Quebec City
Sitting about 22 miles northeast of central Québec City, this stunning religious site in the small town of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré was first constructed in 1658; the current structure was built in the 1920s following a fire. The basilica honors Saint Anne, the patron saint of Québec. Pilgrims travel across the globe to pay their respects to Saint Anne and to benefit from her miraculous healing powers. Legend has it that one of the basilica's original builders began his work on crutches, and was able to walk without them upon the construction's completion. Many visitors commemorate this miracle by leaving a crutch at the front door.
While the outside of the basilica is a sight to behold, the inside is also breathtaking. The central vault is completely covered in mosaics, while 240 stained-glass windows drench the basilica with color. Recent visitors said this gorgeous church is a must-see landmark, and some recommend taking the time to sit and gaze up at the beautiful ceiling.
You do not have to pay to visit the Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré, which is open every day at 8 a.m. and stays open until 5, 5:30 or 9 p.m., depending on the season. Before you visit, check the basilica's website for a schedule of daily services; that way, you can tour the site at your own pace without disturbing worship. To get to the basilica, it's best to either drive or hail a taxi.
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#1 Old Québec (Vieux-Québec)
Clustered around the city's harbor on the banks of the St. Lawrence River are the quaint stone buildings and narrow, winding streets of Old Québec. This historic neighborhood (and UNESCO World Heritage site) houses some of the city's most notable attractions, including the Citadel, the Quartier Petit-Champlain and the Notre-Dame Basilica. Just make sure you give yourself plenty of time here: You'll find it difficult to resist popping into one of Old Québec's artisan shops or stopping to warm up with an aromatic cup of coffee at one of the many charming cafes.
Many Québec City visitors cite the neighborhood's atmosphere as the primary draw, with many saying it feels just like being in Europe thanks to its cobblestone streets, stunning architecture and friendly locals.
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