One of the best things about the holidays is the magical transformation of average city streets, parks and storefronts into scenes of holiday splendour. At every turn, you can find the twinkling of holiday lights, festive decor, ornate Christmas trees, garland and everything else that embodies good cheer.
There are few places on Earth, however, that compare with the most magical of all holiday destinations: Quebec City’s Quartier Petit Champlain. Located near the historic Old Quebec district, this uber-charming neighborhood boasts a perfect five-star rating on Yelp, thanks to its lovely cobblestone streets, quaint bistros and shopping (there are more than 45 boutiques!), stunning architecture and overall fairytale ambience.
Though picturesque year-round, during the holiday season Quartier Petit Champlain becomes downright enchanting. Strolling along you’ll see pine trees adorned with lights and fresh snow, twinkling garland strung from one building to the next, ice sculptures, carolers belting out the most festive of holiday songs and countless storefronts that will prompt you to whip out your camera (you’ve got to do it for Instagram!).
As if all this wasn’t magical enough, there are also hidden nativity scenes that can be found throughout the plaza and an enormous advent calendar projection on the side of a church.
Even Santa Claus recognizes the abundant holiday spirit in this quaint neighborhood. Now through Dec. 24, jolly old Saint Nick can be found handing out gifts to children at Felix Leclerc Park. Stop by Dec. 9 for Family Day, a free outdoor holiday celebration made extra special with Santa and his elves, Christmas crafts, games and music.
For some pretty views of the surrounding area and the St. Laurence River, be sure to ride the famed Old Quebec Funicular, which connects Lower Town to Upper Town. It’s an easy, fun way to get yourself from Quartier Petit Champlain back to Dufferin Terrace to tour the rest of the city.