Quebec – From Porte St-Louis to the Chateau Frontenac

Porte St-Louis

Under the French and British regimes, gates were raised all over town to limit the access to the city.  The Porte St-Louis is one of the first three gates built in 1693 under the French control.  With time and evolution of needs, most gates were demolished.  This one, however, was rebuilt in 1878 and is a beautiful landmark and symbol of the history of Quebec City.

When you are at this place in the city, you are within an easy walking distance to many visiting options, so don’t be surprised if the information on this icon is repeated in other posts.

If you wish to view up the Chateau Frontenac close from there, simply follow the rue St-Louis (street) and you will get to your destination.

Rue St-Louis

While strolling down to the Chateau, on St-Louis Street, you will encounter many beautiful historical houses and one of them is now the restaurant: Aux Anciens Canadiens. Yes, it is a restaurant but also is an historical house. Indeed, this restaurant is actually the oldest residential building in Old Quebec City. It was built in 1675-1676.  You can find information on this building next to the door – Maison Jacquet.

Look for plaques on nearby buildings and you will realize many are part of the history for different reasons.  Another example is at No. 47. The Louis-Joseph Montcalm plaque is a remembrance note of the location where Montcalm died after the historical fight on the Plains of Abraham against the British troops.

Chateau Frontenac

You do not need to stay at the hotel to appreciate its amplitude. This outstanding, distinctive hotel opened its door in 1893.

Built to attract upper-class in the region, it is not a surprise that the Canadian Pacific Railway got involved to finish the project. 

Trains at the time were an important way of transportation.

The hotel has hosted historical meetings and welcomed prestigious guests including Roosevelt, Churchill, Hitchcock and De Gaulle.

Sitting at almost the edge of Cap Diamant, it provides excellent photo opportunities from many angles. No wonder it is one of the most photographic castle-like hotels. It is surrounded by the Terrasse Dufferin, a nice place to walk around the estate which overlooks the St-Lawrence River.

It is recognized as a National Historic Site of Canada since 1981.

Monument Samuel-de-Champlain

Next to the Château on Terrasse Dufferin stands a tall monument for the founder of Quebec: Samuel de Champlain.

Terrasse Dufferin

Terrasse Dufferin sits at the edge of Cap Diamant above the Chateau Saint-Louis remains.

This boardwalk offers benches to sit, see street performers, walk and marvel at the massive Chateau Frontenac, see the beautiful park and statues, look down on a beautiful river and see the lower town.  You are next to the Citadelle if you want to visit.

This is also where you can connect to the lower town either via the staircase or by funicular.

Montmorency Park National Historic Site

This park may look like any other park today but it sits on the first location of the parliament of Canada-Uni.  In fact, it is the site of where the first draft of the British North America Act was written.  At that time, the location of the official parliament was under consideration by Queen Victoria. 

While Quebec hoped to get the prestigious title of “Capital” so did Toronto.  And we know the end of the story, the settlement was for a small place mid-way – Ottawa. This is why we first called Quebec “the Old Capital”. 

Unfortunately, there is no trace of the old parliament since it was lost in a fire but the Montmorency Park is at its location.

A monument dedicated to George-Etienne Cartier, one of the fathers of the Canadian Confederation, is in this park.

Another monument in this park is for Louis Hebert, the first French family to settle in New-France.

Note: the falls are not in this park.

2 comments

Comments are closed.