*This article featuring an itinerary to Quebec City with kids was done in partnership with Destination Québec Cité, who provided a media pass to some of the sites on this list. All ideas and opinions expressed are that of the writer, Antonia Grant. Find additional disclosure information at the bottom of this article.*
Planning a Quebec City itinerary with kids guarantees an exciting and memorable family vacation to Canada! There are tons of fun things to do in Quebec City with kids that cater to all ages. From exploring the historic sites of Old Quebec to indulging in delicious treats at charming cafes, there’s something for everyone here. Don’t miss visiting popular attractions like the Quebec City Aquarium, where kids can get up close with fascinating marine life, or the exhilarating Montmorency Falls, which offers breathtaking views. Then, plenty of kid-friendly hotels in Quebec City provide comfortable accommodations and amenities designed for families, ensuring a pleasant stay for the whole family. Based on our recent girls’ trip (my daughter, mother-in-law, and I), here’s how I recommend spending 4-Days in Quebec City with kids!
Day 1 in Quebec City with Kids
My daughter, mother-in-law, and I loved visiting Quebec City! The city offers so many amazing things to do, a charming ambiance, and top-notch eats. The first day of our Quebec City itinerary for families is all about exploring Old Quebec. Old Quebec is a charming UNESCO World Heritage site with cobblestone streets, historic architecture, and a vibrant atmosphere. It offers a rich cultural experience and stunning views of the Saint Lawrence River. Start your day at Café La Maison Smith Notre-Dame, on Rue Notre-Dame. Here you can enjoy views of the bustling Place Royal Plaza, with Notre-Dame-des-Victoires Catholic Church perched on one end. Keep reading to discover what to do in Quebec City with kids (the perfect start to 2 or more days in Quebec City for families!).
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Explore Old Quebec City
When visiting Quebec City with kids, any fun family itinerary must start by exploring the enchanting Petit Champlain Quarter. Stroll through its charming narrow streets, browse or window-shop its unique boutiques, and indulge in delicious treats (you’ll find crepes and ice cream along this street!). There is a lovely kids’ clothing shop and plenty of souvenirs here too.
Then, hop on the Funiculaire du Vieux-Québec for a thrilling ride up to Dufferin Terrace. Alternatively, you can take the 10-15 minute steep walk up the hill to reach the upper part of Old Quebec. (Trust us, it’s worth taking the funicular up the hill at least once, though the view is better going down the hill.)
Once you reach Dufferin Terrace, kids and adults alike can marvel at panoramic views of the Saint Lawrence River and watch street performers (when there is cooperative weather). Together, take a leisurely walk along the terrace. There are some great spots to take family photos here! Then, check out the iconic Fairmont Le Château Frontenac, a majestic castle-like hotel. It’s also the most photographed hotel in the world! While we didn’t choose to do this, families can also enjoy its grandeur by treating kids to afternoon tea or visiting the observation deck. These stops in Old Quebec offer a great mix of history, charm, and fun, ensuring an unforgettable experience for the whole family.
Nearby, don’t miss seeing Notre-Dame de Québec Basilica-Cathedral. Enjoy the grand architecture from the outside. Then, if interested, head inside to see more of the cathedral. Built in 1647, this cathedral also boasts the only Holy Door outside Europe. In the back, you’ll even find a small museum dedicated to the early years of the church and its bishops.
Lunch + Other Sites to See in Old Quebec
While you’re in Old Quebec, it’s time to have lunch! There are many options here, including Le Chic Shack (burgers), Bistro St-Malo (French food), and La Pizz Place Royale. We opted for crepes for our first lunch in Quebec City at Crêperie & cie 5.0. They were delicious! They had savory and sweet options. My daughter loved getting to watch them fashion each crepe.
Finally, other sites worth exploring in Old Quebec include the Quebec City Walls, the Parliament Building, the Plains of Abraham, the Old Port, and La Citadelle de Québec. Finally, walk along the ramparts, viewing the stationed canons from times past and enjoying views of the Old Port and city below. Regardless of what you see on your self-guided tour of Old Quebec, it’s undoubtedly one of the best things to do in Quebec City with kids.
See the Marine Creatures at Aquarium du Québec
After lunch, it is time to see some marine creatures at Aquarium du Québec. This cozy aquarium is certainly one of the best Quebec City things to do for families. There are two large buildings with several exhibits inside each one, as well as a few outdoor areas to explore. I recommend starting with the building furthest from the entrance to learn about fresh and saltwater species like lobsters, octopuses, and sea urchins. There is a touch tank and aquarium tunnel in this building too! Afterward, head outside to see the arctic animals, including harbor seals and polar bears. Nearby, you’ll also find a small adventure course and playground for kids to burn off any extra energy they may have.
Then, make your way to the remaining building, which features deep sea creatures. There is even a room FILLED with multiple types of jellyfish. This was one of our favorite parts of the aquarium. You’ll also find a second touch tank, with sting rays, in this building. Finally, there is also a gift shop, dining options, and other amenities on-site. Indeed, if you only have 2 days in Quebec City with kids, this is a must-stop!
Dinner at D’Orsay Pub
Now that you have finished day one of this Quebec City itinerary with kids, it’s time for dinner! Families will love D’Orsay Pub for its friendly service and European-influenced menu, including delicious items like fresh pasta and mussels. In particular, hungry parents may enjoy options like paella, braised beef pappardelle, or their poutine! A kids’ menu is also available for little ones, including chicken strips and pasta. The interior is fun and contemporary, offering several unique dining areas (including an upstairs!). It’s a great spot to end your first day in Quebec City with kids!
Day 2 in Quebec City with Kids
Day two on our Quebec City itinerary with kids offers a chance to learn more about the Huron-Wendat people and culture. Today, you’ll explore many of the best Quebec City things to do for families, including a fantastic museum and park. Firstly, start your day with coffee and croissants at Les Cafés du Soleil (this was our favorite breakfast stop!). Then, if you’re wondering what to do in Quebec City with kids, keep reading to learn more ideas to fill your own itinerary!
Learn Something New at the Musée Huron-Wendat
When planning a Quebec City itinerary for families, make sure to include a visit to the Musée Huron-Wendat. Located in nearby Wendake (about 25 minutes from Old Quebec), this cultural gem provides a fascinating insight into the rich heritage of the Huron-Wendat people. Spend the morning immersing yourselves in their history, traditions, and art.
Start by going through the indoor exhibits (use the same entrance as the on-site hotel). Here, you will discover captivating exhibits showcasing traditional crafts, artifacts, and storytelling. Engage with interactive and informative displays that kids and adults will appreciate. Through the audio guide and written displays, learn about their ancestral knowledge, spiritual beliefs, and their enduring connection to the land.
Afterward, head outside to see the Ekionkiestha National Longhouse. This full-size replica allows families to experience aspects of the daily life of the Huron-Wendat from the pre-contact period.
Musée Huron-Wendat offers a unique and enriching experience that will deepen your understanding of local indigenous cultures. With 2 days in Quebec City, you’ll have ample time to explore this remarkable museum and appreciate the cultural diversity that thrives here. For those interested, guided tours are also available.
Lunch Ideas for Day 2
After visiting Musée Huron-Wendat, have lunch in Wendake (there are plenty of great nearby options) or head back to Old Quebec. We opted to head back and have lunch at La Pizz Place Royale since it was close to our hotel. Le Chic Shack is another great option in the upper part of Old Quebec for a quick, but lovely lunch.
Domaine de Maizerets
Ready to get outside? Domaine de Maizerets is a great option near Old Quebec City for families. We definitely recommend adding it to your Quebec City itinerary with kids, as this large urban park offers endless opportunities for family fun. Undoubtedly, families will love its vast green spaces, picturesque gardens, and serene walking trails. Kids can run, play, and connect with nature on a beautiful afternoon.
We started at the playground during our visit, where my daughter loved climbing the large pyramid structures. Then, we walked along the path to check out the nearby pond. My daughter loved running across the old wooden bridge and counting the many ducklings swimming along with their mama ducks. Afterward, we checked out some of the wooded trails and found another lovely pond with many birds and other small creatures. With its tranquil ambiance and beautiful natural landscapes, Domaine de Maizerets provides a delightful escape from the bustling city and promises an enjoyable day of exploration and relaxation for all! It was an excellent place for us to recharge and enjoy a little fresh air.
Enjoy a Quebecois Dinner at Restaurant La Bûche
Your Quebec City itinerary for families must include trying Quebecois cuisine. Quebecois cuisine celebrates local ingredients, bold flavors, and a rustic charm that reflects the province’s cultural and historical heritage. It is known for its hearty and comforting dishes, often influenced by French and Indigenous cuisine. Some iconic Quebecois foods include poutine, tourtière (a savory meat pie), and tasty desserts like maple taffy and sugar pie. We opted to try Quebecois food at Restaurant La Bûche, and I’m so glad we did!
This rustic, yet chic restaurant offers some of the best Quebecois in town! As a popular spot, we recommend making a reservation. We didn’t do this, but when we arrived, the hostess let us make one for the following day, so it all worked out! At Restaurant La Bûche, parents can dine on traditional fare like tourtière (one of the best dishes we had all trip!), Quebec shepherd’s pie, and gnocchi with venison. There is also a kids’ menu, which includes items like poutine or meat-filled croquettes. This was the best dinner we had in Quebec City, so you’ll definitely want to add it to your itinerary!
Immerse Yourself in the Stories of the Huron-Wendat Peoples at Onhwa’ Lumina
Wondering what to do in Quebec City with kids in the evening? Head back to Wendake to experience Onhwa’ Lumina. This enchanting evening walk celebrates the life and stories of the Huron-Wendat Nation. Walk along the accessible 1.2-kilometer (0.7-mile) route and experience a storytelling event like never before.
Families will be transported into a rich world filled with natural magic using lights, sound, and other video projections. Ancestral rhythms and songs, visual storytelling, and audio guides will help you learn more about the Huron-Wendat peoples, as well as evoke an emotional reaction to the vibrant stories, while nestled amongst the trees. We were so impressed by the way everything was put together. We left the experience completely in awe! This was one of my favorite experiences during our 4 days in Quebec City.
I highly recommend doing the Musée Huron-Wendat first, however, so that you have a foundation in the history and origin stories of the Huron-Wendat Nation. It will definitely help you better understand what you are seeing at Onhwa’ Lumina. Undoubtedly, this experience is one of the best things to do in Quebec City with kids!
Day 3 in Quebec City with Kids
Day three of our Quebec City itinerary with kids is a mini road trip around Île d’Orléans! Start your day with coffee and croissants at Paillard. You’ll have loads of great options to choose from! We really loved the apricot and almond croissants, in particular.
We had hoped to stop at Parc de la Chute‑Montmorency before heading to Île d’Orléans, but it was raining, and our group didn’t want to hike in the rain too much. I would, however, recommend that you start your day here so that you can see Montmorency Falls. Not only is it on the way, but it’s a great place to hike and take in beautiful views. Depending on the season, you can also get panoramic views from a cable car or embark on a zip line experience.
Take a Mini Road Trip Around Île d’Orléans
Just 35 minutes from Old Quebec, Île d’Orléans is a picturesque island in the middle of the Saint Lawrence River. Known as the “Garden of Quebec,” it offers a scenic and tranquil escape from the city. The island is renowned for its agricultural heritage, featuring lush farmland, orchards, and vineyards. In fact, the island’s fertile soil produces various local products, including berries, apples, maple syrup, and artisanal cheeses. Visitors can also explore the charming village and historical sites, then enjoy breathtaking views of the river and surrounding landscapes. Undoubtedly, it is one of the best Quebec City things to do for families.
The drive to Île d’Orléans is lovely! You will get to cross a large bridge, giving you unparalleled views of the Saint Lawrence River. After arriving across the bridge, head right to go around the island. In total, it takes about an hour to drive around the island. But don’t just drive! There are many lovely stops around the island for families.
Things to Do on Île d’Orléans with Kids (in order of appearance along the drive):
- Sainte-Pétronille’s Wineries: A lovely winery that offers sweeping views of the surrounding vineyard. Adults can do a tasting, while kids enjoy roaming the green spaces. You can also get charcuterie here for lunch (that’s what we did!).
- Chocolaterie de l’Île d’Orléans: This charming chocolate shop is a super fun stop! Kids and adults alike will love trying the various chocolates, which come in many shapes and sizes. We grabbed a few to go to enjoy on our drive.
- Parc Maritime de Saint-Laurent: This maritime park offers an intimate collection of exhibits about the ship-building past of Île d’Orléans. You can do a self-guided or guided tour to learn more about wooden boatbuilding, including seeing a rowboat shop.
- Manoir Mauvide-Genest: Built in 1734, this country manor is one of the last seigneurial homes still standing. During the summer season, you can take a guided tour to learn more about the house and its first family.
- Les Fromages de l’isle d’Orléans: Here, try the first cheese ever made in North America! Shopkeepers even wear period clothing, making it extra fun for kids. Everything we tried was delicious – another spot where we grabbed a few things for the road!
- Maison Drouin: Another historic home, and one of the first on the island, which has been turned into an interpretation center. Here, you will learn all about the history of Île d’Orléans! It’s right next door to Les Fromages de l’isle d’Orléans.
- La Midinette: A delightful bakery and snack bar, where you can find bread, pastries, and pizza. Or, enjoy more filling options like codfish fritters, fried calamari, and chicken. A delightful selection of homemade soda, cocktails, and imported wines is also available. Take a picnic with your goodies and enjoy views of the Saint Lawrence River!
- Then, depending on the season, you can also stop at one of the many farms on Île d’Orléans, including Ferme Jean-Pierre Plante (strawberries and other berries), La Seigneurie de l’Île d’Orléans (a lavender field), Relais des Pins Sugar Shack (a sugar shack), Cassis Monna & Filles (black currants), and Cidrerie Verger Bilodeau (an apple orchard and cidery).
Dinner at La Pizz Place Royale
Back in Old Quebec, it’s time for dinner! We were so delighted by La Pizz Place Royale that we decided to eat here again for dinner. The pizza is top-notch, and the service is incredible. A lovely outdoor seating area is available on nice days. Or, you can choose to sit inside. Either way, you’ll be treated to delicious pizza with views of Parc de l’UNESCO. Afterward, take a stroll through Parc de l’UNESCO, Place Royale, and Quartier Petit Champlain.
Learn a Bit About Quebec City’s History with a Ghost Tour
One of the best things to do on this Quebec City itinerary with kids has to be one of the Les Promenades Fantômes’ Walks with Ghosts in Old Quebec. This family-friendly guided tour of Old Quebec shares the history of New France from 1600 to 1830. Told from the perspective of executioner Jean Rattier or his infamous wife, Marie Rivière, families will learn many tales of criminals, executions, and other spooky events that happened here. We chose the Animated Guided Tour Crimes in New France, but there are other options.
My daughter loved the interactive experience and was delighted to be chosen to act out a series of stories. The tour guide we had was absolutely incredible! We learned a lot about the city – past and present. It was a unique way for us to end our time in Quebec City. Undoubtedly, it’s one of the best things to do in Quebec City with kids at night – and we highly recommend it!
Day 4 in Quebec City with Kids
This Quebec City itinerary with kids ends with brunch on day four! We have a very special brunch spot picked out for you. However, if you have more time and plan to do a 5-day itinerary in Quebec City, I’ve shared some more things to do with kids below! Keep reading to discover a few more Quebec City things to do for families to add to your own itinerary.
Brunch at Le Casse-Crêpe Breton
Be sure to make time for brunch at Le Casse-Crêpe Breton on your Quebec City itinerary for families. One of the best places for crepes in Old Quebec; you won’t leave this place disappointed! They offer savory and sweet crepes. Select from one of the local favorites, or build your own using high-quality ingredients. My daughter packed her own crepe with berries and whipped cream, while I enjoyed one with house-made apple sauce. Milkshakes, juice, and espresso drinks are also available. One thing is certain; this is sure to be a delicious family meal! For us, it was a great way to end our time in Quebec City.
Choose Your Own Adventure with One or More of these Things to Do in Quebec City with Kids:
If you’re planning a 5-day itinerary in Quebec City with kids or an even longer stay, there are still plenty of fun things to do! Here, I’ve listed a few things we saved for next time to help you finalize your itinerary. Keep reading to plan your Quebec City itinerary with kids.
- Take a walking tour of Old Quebec with Cicérone Tours
- Musée de la Civilisation (reservations are recommended)
- Explore the Plains of Abraham and the Plains of Abraham Museum
- Citadelle de Québec
- Aux Trois Couvents
- Observatoire de la Capitale (the highest view in the city)
- Cross the suspension bridge and take a hike at Parc des Chutes-de-la-Chaudière
- Village Vacances Valcartier (a waterpark just outside of Quebec City)
- Jacques-Cartier National Park (about 30 minutes from Old Quebec)
Tips for Visiting Quebec City with Kids
There are a few things to know before visiting Quebec City with kids. From checking the weather to knowing a few useful French phrases, here are some tips for traveling to Quebec City with kids:
- Learn some key phrases in French. While most places have English-speaking staff, it is helpful to at least know how to say things like “Do you speak English”, “Good morning/good evening”, “please”, “thank you”, and the number of your party to assist with restaurants – in French. Remember that outside of the tourist areas, you may find even less English. Be patient and be prepared to use a translator if needed.
- Check the temperatures before you go! Summers can be chillier than many from the US may expect. Even in the summer, you will want to pack layers and rain gear.
- As a Canadian city, everyone needs a passport to get through customs and immigration here (even babies).
- The best time of year to visit depends on what you want to do! Winter can be just as charming and fun as summer. Note that the sugar shack season is from late February through April.
- How many days do you need to explore Quebec City? Based on our experience, at least three days. More days may be desired, depending on what types of activities pique your interest.
- For this itinerary, you will need a car – especially to get to Wendake and Île d’Orléans. Alternatively, if you decide only to visit things in Old Quebec and the surrounding neighborhoods, you can skip the car and rely on walking and public transportation.
- Planning to pair Montreal with a visit to Quebec City? We did! It’s about a 3-hour drive, depending on traffic. Alternatively, a bus and a train can get you between cities.
Hotels in Quebec City for Families
Now that you know what to add to your Quebec City itinerary with kids, you may be wondering about the best hotels in Quebec City for families! There are many to choose from! We stayed at Royal Dalhousie in Old Quebec and loved it! The spacious apartments come fully stocked with everything you may need. Plus, many offer great views of the Saint Lawrence River. The staff is very friendly, the accommodations are comfortable, and there is even a rooftop terrace. We had a two-bedroom apartment with floor-to-ceiling windows onto the river, and we felt absolutely spoiled. I can’t recommend it enough!
If you’re looking for other options, try Hilton Quebec (breakfast and outdoor pool), Fairmont Le Château Frontenac (breakfast and indoor pool), Hôtel Palace Royal (breakfast and indoor pool), Le Capitole Hôtel (indoor pool), Auberge Saint-Antoine Relais & Châteaux, or Quebec City Marriott Downtown. Finally, you can also find plenty of options using Vrbo or Airbnb.
I hope this Quebec City itinerary with kids helped you plan and get excited about your own trip! From the best hotels in Quebec City for families to delicious restaurants and fun things to do, I’ve included all of our favorites from our recent trip. We had a lovely time in Quebec City, and I hope that you will too. Enjoy visiting Quebec City with your kids!
*Unless otherwise noted, all images within this article belong to and are courtesy of Antonia Grant.
*This post may contain affiliate links that may earn us a small commission, at no additional cost to you. Affiliate links in no way inform the hotels, sights, products, or other recommendations included in our articles. All opinions and recommendations expressed here are that of the attributed author, Antonia Grant.
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