Quartier Petit-Champlain#4 in Best Things To Do in Quebec City
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- 4.0Food Scene
Even shopaholics can't escape this town's devotion to history. Sitting on the southeast edge of Old Québec, the Quartier Petit-Champlain is the oldest shopping district in North America and a great place to pick up souvenirs. Here, boutique shops and cozy cafes spill out of restored houses. And a fun fact: One of the neighborhood's houses belonged to Louis Jolliet, the French Canadian explorer credited with discovering the Mississippi River. To avoid the crowds, recent travelers recommend going either early in the day or in the evening.
Make sure you save some time to climb the famous Escalier Casse-Cou (Breakneck Steps), or at least ride the funicular to the top to enjoy fantastic views of Old Québec.
You can explore the Quartier Petit-Champlain any time, but note that restaurants and stores have varying hours of operation. Although you don't necessarily have to spend money to enjoy this shopping street, you might find yourself drawn to some of the souvenirs or snacks. For more information, visit the area's website.
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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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