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Quebec City Cruise Port: Tips, Attractions and Weather

Chateau Frontenac hotel. Credit: Pixabay Creative Commons license
Chateau Frontenac hotel. Credit: Pixabay Creative Commons license

The historic Québec City on the Saint Lawrence River is one of the high points of any cruise to New England and Canada.

This UNESCO World Heritage Treasure, the only fortified city in Canada and the United States, is packed with enough attractions and excursions to last a week. Alas, cruise visitors may not have that much time if they plan to fly home from Québec City on the day they arrive on their cruise or the day after.

Cruise visitors will arrive at a massive port facility with multiple berths. A restaurant and wifi access are available within the cruise terminal, according to Port Québec. But visitors won’t stay long. The city has too much to see and do.

Attractions and Shore Excursions

Because of Québec City’s famous and lengthy history, guided city tours dominate many of the available cruise shore excursions. A guided tour is one of the more informative and least expensive ways to see the best of Québec City. A two-hour group tour on foot will usually cost less than $50 per person (unless it is a private tour).

Tour highlights include the old-world French atmosphere of Old Québec; Place Royale, where Samuel de Champlain founded his first trading post in 1608; Place d’Armes, the wide public square formerly used for military parades; and Chateau Frontenac hotel, the “world’s most photographed hotel”.

Anyone who doesn’t take a paid city excursion can walk a little more than one mile south of the docks to see Old Québec, Place Royale, Place d’Armes and Chateau Frontenac hotel along the riverfront.

Another nearby attraction is Montmorency Park, which is another National Historic Site. “Montmorency Park has been a cemetery, a seat of religious and civil power, a strategic military site and an urban park,” according to Parks Canada.

Energetic walkers will have the flexibility to spend as much or as little time as they want with each attraction.

Anyone with enough time may want to take a five-hour tour to Montmorency Falls and the Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré. The tour may include visits to Chocolaterie de l’Ile d’Orléans chocolate shop and the Cuivres D’Art Albert Gilles copper art museum.

Cruise Weather

Quebec monthly temperature averages
© 2021 Scott S. Bateman

Québec City weather is somewhat cooler than other cruise ports in Canada. Average daytime temperatures hover in the low to mid 60s Fahrenheit during the peak cruise month of September. They reach into the mid 70s in August and drop into the low 50s in October.

The city has a steady amount of rainfall each month during the cruise season. The average is about four inches per month from August through October. So the risk of rain shouldn’t affect visitor decisions on the best months to go.

Scott S. Bateman is a professional journalist who has traveled widely throughout the Caribbean and the Americas. He is the author of four books about cruising in the Caribbean, Alaska and Mexican Riviera.
September 11, 2021

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