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On the banks of the Saint Lawrence River in Canada, Québec is romantic, historic and cosmopolitan all at once. It has a strong European flavour thanks to its French colonial past, with cobblestone streets in the old town. At the top of the city, landmark hotel Château Frontenac's fairytale turrets soar into the sky. It's home to art galleries and culture, plus a lively food scene that ranges from fine dining to comforting poutine, a local speciality made from fries, cheese and gravy.
There are plenty of hostels in Québec city to choose from. You can stay in a heritage building at the heart of Old Québec, Scandi-style rooms on idyllic Île d'Orléans or spacious digs in a leafy residential district. While many are within an easy stroll of attractions in the city centre, some Québec hostels have extras to help you get around such as free shuttle buses, or scooter and e-bike hire. Pick a Québec city hostel with a rooftop terrace for great views, or with a shared kitchen to cook meals in. Use the free Wi-Fi to help you plan your next day.
The city's historic district is split into two. The Upper Town was once Québec's military centre, and it's characterised by defensive stone buildings. This leads down (or you can ride the Old Québec Funicular railway) to the charming Lower Town, where there are buzzing local markets and the Old Port to explore. It's known for its pretty Place Royale square and independent cafés and boutiques in the Petit Champlain district. A few kilometres east, the rural island of Île d'Orléans has popular cycling trails, vineyards and scenic views.
Québec has many attractions. You can explore its military history at the Citadelle of Québec, home to a museum and a still-active garrison, or roam the Plains of Abraham within the historic Battlefields Park. Discover fine art at the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec or learn about indigenous culture and contemporary issues at Musée de la Civilisation. The roaring Montmorency Falls are just outside town, and there are hiking trails through the vast glacial valleys of nearby Parc National de la Jacques-Cartier.
Jean Lesage International Airport is a 20-minute taxi ride from the city centre. You can take bus number 78 from the airport to the city centre, stopping at Terminus Les Saules. There are trains and buses from Montréal, which has connections to major US cities such as New York. Within Québec, there are buses and taxis, but the best way to get around is on foot.