"In 1608, while sailing up the St Lawrence, I discovered a place of exceptional beauty. There I founded the town of Québec. Gift of God, I will make thee worthy." So began French explorer Samuel de Champlain's European settlement on the banks of the grand river. Visitors have followed in droves ever since to enjoy this charming city that so clearly shows its European roots. Narrow winding streets, old stone homes and churches, ramparts and cannons, copper roofs, and Gallic architecture all bring to mind the Old World. Facing the river, the landmark Château Frontenac rises over Cap Diamant. Dufferin Terrace, built onto the flanks of the Cape, offers visitors a breathtaking view over the oldest commercial district in America, the Petit-Champlain.

A look to the east toward Île d'Orléans and the Beaupré Coast takes the imagination farther than the eye can see, to the river's end and the Atlantic Ocean. Not far from Battlefields Park, site of the territorial battle between French and English, the Citadel of Québec and city walls make up the largest fortifications still in use in North America. The only walled city in the Western Hemisphere north of Mexico, Vieux Québec is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is the only urban center in North America to share this distinction with celebrated cities like Versailles, Rome, Quito, and Cairo. The Québecois are a warm and friendly people with a vitality to match their surroundings, proud of the language and culture that make them unique in North America. Across the US border and a world away, their historic city awaits your rediscovery!
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