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Christmas at the Chateau Frontenac in Québec

Program No. 19228RJ
Come celebrate Christmas amid the tradition of Québec City and iconic Château Frontenac, where you’ll enjoy a seasonal concert and the city’s festive atmosphere.

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Select your type of room
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Prices displayed below are based on per person,doubleoccupancy.


Luxury Hotel Fairmont Luxury Hotel Deluxe
Dec 22 - Dec 26, 2024
Luxury Hotel Fairmont 2,149
Luxury Hotel Deluxe 2,299


Luxury Hotel Fairmont Luxury Hotel Deluxe
Filling Fast!
Dec 22 - Dec 26, 2024
Luxury Hotel Fairmont 2,729
Luxury Hotel Deluxe 2,999

At a Glance

Christmas approaches in Québec City, a 400-year-old gem of Old World ambiance right here in North America! Enjoy four nights of yuletide learning as you wander narrow cobblestone streets, taking in the fairytale holiday atmosphere throughout the city’s festively decorated windows, lit warmly against the winter air. The city's most beloved landmark, the Chateau Frontenac, is your home as you discover traditional tastes of the season like "tourtière" meat pie and local delicacies made from maple, a fundamental Québec ingredient.
Activity Level
Keep the Pace
Walking up to two miles daily over uneven terrain, sometimes snow covered. Standing, stairs and cobblestones.

Best of all, you’ll…

  • Experience Québécois Christmas music during a private concert and in the streets with locals caroling door to door.
  • Indulge in perhaps the grandest Christmas tradition in Québec City, the annual dinner at the Chateau Frontenac.
  • Enjoy a visit to Québec’s Museum of Fine Arts, located on the city’s famous Plains of Abraham.

General Notes

Program includes independent time to explore the city and several meals on your own. Group Leaders will provide directions for self-directed excursions. Suggestions for free-time activities provided in preparatory materials.
Featured Expert
All Experts
Profile Image
Andrée Girard
Andrée Girard has been an active figure on the arts scene in Québec and in Canada for over 25 years. She worked as a broadcaster for CBC radio and television before becoming programming director for CBC French radio’s Chaîne culturelle for several years. She was also a founding member and director of the Conseil québécois de la musique. Over the course of her career, she has been associated with the creation of the Opus Prize, as well as the development of the Canadian Conference of the Arts.

Please note: This expert may not be available for every date of this program.

Profile Image of Andrée Girard
Andrée Girard View biography
Andrée Girard has been an active figure on the arts scene in Québec and in Canada for over 25 years. She worked as a broadcaster for CBC radio and television before becoming programming director for CBC French radio’s Chaîne culturelle for several years. She was also a founding member and director of the Conseil québécois de la musique. Over the course of her career, she has been associated with the creation of the Opus Prize, as well as the development of the Canadian Conference of the Arts.
Profile Image of Sylvie Nadeau
Sylvie Nadeau View biography
Born and raised in Montreal, Sylvie Nadeau loves Quebec's largest city, the province's vibrant, creative multicultural hub, which she has been exploring her whole life on foot, by subway and on her bike. A professional in the travel industry for over 30 years and a recipient of several awards honoring the quality of her work, Sylvie hosts and coordinates the activities of Road Scholar groups with competence and enthusiasm. Her funny French accent and infectious joie de vivre give all her programs and tours a very personal color. A sports enthusiast, Sylvie is offering a new series for active travelers in addition to the many programs she already coordinates, all highlighting the many colors of Quebec as presented by passionate Quebecers dedicated to sharing the richness of their unique Canadian Province.
Profile Image of Marie Legroulx
Marie Legroulx View biography
Marie Legroulx, a native of Québec City, has a bachelor's in history and a master's in Québec literature. She taught French and Québec literature at local universities for over 20 years. In 2008, she returned to college to become a professional in the tourism industry, and has since been leading historical, architectural and literary explorations. Québec history and language are topics close to her heart since she is a twelfth-generation Québécoise whose ancestors settled on the St. Lawrence River in the mid-seventeenth century.
Visit the Road Scholar Bookshop
You can find many of the books we recommend at the Road Scholar store on bookshop.org, a website that supports local bookstores.
A short history of Quebec
by John Alexander Dickinson and Brian J Young
A Canadian classic, A Short History of Quebec offers a concise yet comprehensive overview of the province from the pre-contact native period to present-day constitutional struggles. The authors bring a refreshing perspective to the history of Quebec, focusing on the social and economic development of the region and its diverse peoples.
A People's History of Quebec
by Jacques Lacoursiere
A People's History of Quebec is a lively guide to a little-known part of North American history. It tells of the settlement of the St. Lawrence Valley, but also of the Montreal and Quebec-based explorers and traders who travelled, mapped, and inhabited most of North America, and embrothered the peoples they met.
Shadows on the Rock
by Willa Cather
Set in seventeenth-century Canada, an evocation of North American origins highlights the men and women who struggled to adapt to the new world even as they clung to the one they left behind. The novel covers one year of the lives of Cecile Auclair and her father Euclide, French colonists in Quebec.
Montreal & Quebec City Guide - Lonely Planet
by Montreal-based author
Montreal and Quebec City really serve it up. You've got old-world grandeur, new-world sensibilities and big-city charms - there's enough neighbourhoods, restaurants and festivals to keep you mon-dieu'ing for months. This guide, penned by a Montreal-based author, gets you straight to the action. Pick & Mix: buy and download individual chapters from this book You could download free: Introducing Montreal (Very interesting!)
Bury Your Dead
by Louise Penny
BURY YOUR DEAD has come out to some spectacular results - hitting the extended New York Times bestseller list, as well as the USA Today and bestseller lists in Canada! It has been named one of the Top Ten Mysteries/Thrillers of 2010 by Amazon! This sixth Gamache mystery is set partly in the tiny fictional (and oddly murderous) village of Three Pines, in Québec’s Eastern Townships. However, most of the action takes place in Quebec City, a vibrant and sophisticated fortress city that lives in the present while guarding its past. It’s February and bitterly cold in Quebec City, but Chief Inspector Gamache barely notices. He's consumed with grief and guilt over his past mistakes. He spends his time with his now-retired mentor in the peaceful library of the Literary and Historical Society, a bastion of the dwindling English population. If Gamache thought death was finished with him, he was wrong. The body of a celebrated eccentric is found in the Lit and His, and Gamache is drawn again into hunting a murderer. The victim was an amateur archeologist with a monomaniacal pursuit to find the body of Samuel de Champlain. This is the great mystery that has haunted Quebec for centuries - Where is Champlain? The founder of Quebec died 400 years ago, and while the burial places of nuns, farmers and minor functionaries of the time are known, no one knows what became of the Father of Quebec. How could this be? As Chief Inspector Gamache digs through the crime and the venerable old city, it becomes clear the murder is rooted in this 400 year old mystery, and in people long dead but perhaps not buried. It also becomes clear to the Chief Inspector that to find the truth he needs to confront his own ghosts, and bury his own dead.
The Two Solitudes
by Hugh MacLennan
First published in 1945, and set mostly in the time of the First World War, this story revolves around the life and times of the fictional character Paul Tallard and his struggles in reconciling the differences between his English and French Canadian identities.
Champlain's Dream
by David Hackett Fischer
In this enthralling biography, acclaimed historian David Hackett Fischer brings to life the remarkable Samuel de Champlain—soldier, spy, master mariner, explorer, cartographer, artist, and Father of New France.
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5 days
4 nights
9 meals
4 B 2 L 3 D
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Quebec City, QC
Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

Activity note: Walking up to 1/2 mile on snowy sidewalk; some icy conditions, some stairs. Dress in layers for winter weather. Hotel check-in available from 4:00 p.m. Remember to bring your nametag (sent previously).

Afternoon: Program Registration: 5:30 p.m. After you check in and have your room assignment, join us at the Road Scholar table in the lobby to register with the program staff, get any updated information, and confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please locate your Group Leader and let them know you have arrived. Orientation will be held at tonight’s restaurant before dinner. The Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the up-to-date program schedule, discuss roles and responsibilities, logistics, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer questions. Periods in the schedule designated as “Free time” and “At leisure” offer opportunities to do what you like and make your experience even more meaningful and memorable according to your personal preferences. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Program activities, schedules, personnel, and indicated distances or times may change due to local circumstances/current conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding. Our program is based at one of the world’s most historic and charming hotels, in one of the world’s most historic and charming cities, within easy walking distance to all that Old Québec has to offer. Part of the learning experience will consist of delighting in the city itself decked out in a magical array of seasonal lights and decorations. The spirit of Christmas radiates throughout Québec City, and Christmas at the Château Frontenac is truly unique and special.

Dinner: At a restaurant in the heart of Old Québec.

Evening: We will stroll with our Group Leader through the streets of the Old City to the famous Terrasse Dufferin and form our first impressions of Quebec. Returning to the hotel, the remainder of the evening is free to explore further or just relax. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

Old Québec, City History, Spirit of Christmas
Quebec City, QC
Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

Activity note: Walking up to a mile on snowy sidewalk; some icy conditions, some stairs. Dress in layers for winter weather.

Breakfast: In the restaurant at Le Château Frontenac. The Frontenac embraces its role as the “star” atop the city’s figurative Christmas tree with a beautiful display of decorations and a wonderful sense of revelry and bonhomie.

Morning: At the hotel, we will be joined by a local expert who will tell us about the Frontenac and reveal its history — even some secrets! — as well as its role in Québec’s economic and social development and influence in the development of winter sports. We’ll then learn about the history of Québec City, the birthplace of French America and the first settlement in Canada. We’ll learn how winter has shaped the military and political destiny of Québec, and how residents deal with it in their daily lives. We’ll also get an overview of Québecois culture and Christmas traditions. Led by a local expert, we will explore the neighborhood surrounding the Château Frontenac. We’ll walk along narrow streets to illustrious monuments and significant buildings that eloquently illustrate aspects of the city’s history and architecture. The spirit of Christmas will be all around us, from exquisitely decorated storefronts to beautifully-lit cobbled alleys — a wondrous scene to behold.

Lunch: At a neighborhood restaurant.

Afternoon: Take this free time opportunity to discover and explore the German Market which showcase Quebec Culture. It's the last day, it will be open until 6:00 pm.

Dinner: At the renowned restaurant Aux Anciens Canadiens, featuring traditional foods of Québec and located in the oldest house in the city (1675). Its thick walls, solid joints, marvelous wainscoting and recessed cupboards are characteristic of the houses constructed during that era.

Evening: At Carter Hall of the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, we will enjoy a Road Scholar exclusive performance with classical musicians who have prepared a program of classical and seasonal music just for us.

Museum of Fine Arts, Free Time
Quebec City, QC
Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

Activity note: Getting on/off a bus. Walking up to 1 mile throughout the day, standing in museum.

Breakfast: At the Frontenac.

Morning: We will set out on an expert-led field trip to the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec (National Museum of Fine Arts). It is situated in Battlefields Park, also known as the Plains of Abraham, a site of exceptional beauty and significance in Canadian history. We’ll hear about the fascinating history of the museum itself. Guided visit to learn about their fabulous Canadian Inuit Art Collection and more.

Lunch: At the Museum café.

Afternoon: Free time. This period of time has been set aside for your personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. Please note that the period scheduled for free time is subject to change depending on local circumstances and opportunities for independent exploration. You may stay to examine the museum’s fascinating exhibits or explore more of what the historic district has to offer. If you would like to learn more about the Quebecers or the First Nations, we suggest a visit to Musee de la civilization; a voucher is included.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to have what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and will make reservations for Road Scholars who wish to accompany her (at personal cost) to one of Quebec’s fine restaurants.

Evening: At leisure. There are two choices that we recommend if you wish to attend a traditional Christmas Eve service full of liturgical pageantry and music. Both the Basilica of Notre Dame (Catholic) and the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity (Anglican) inhabit magnificent historic buildings. Immerse yourself in the joyful sounds of voices and organ for an evening to remember.

Ferry Ride, Rue du Petit-Champlain
Quebec City, QC
Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac

Activity note: Walking up to a mile on snowy sidewalk; some icy conditions, some stairs. Dress in layers for winter weather. Getting on/off a funicular.

Breakfast: At the Frontenac.

Morning: We’ll join our local expert and experience a ferry ride on the St. Lawrence River. We will discover the most beautiful view of Quebec City and learn about the river’s importance. The second largest river in Canada, the St. Lawrence River has been an important trade route in North America for centuries.

Lunch: On your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and will make reservations for Road Scholars who wish to accompany her (at personal cost) to one of Quebec’s fine bistros.

Afternoon: Walking is key to appreciating all Old Québec has to offer. To absorb more of the city’s holiday spirit, we’ll stroll along cobblestoned Rue du Petit-Champlain in the lower town, named for Samuel de Champlain who founded Quebec City in 1608. We can imagine ourselves in Old France thanks to the beautifully preserved architectural character and charm of North America’s oldest commercial district. We’ll feel as if we’re walking through history — no cars allowed! — seeing distinctive boutiques and little artisan shops in old stone or half-timbered buildings while carolers on street corners sing traditional Christmas favorites.

Dinner: In the ballroom at the Frontenac. Perhaps the grandest Christmas tradition in Québec City is the annual dinner at the Château Frontenac – the most photographed grand hotel in the world and a proud symbol of the city. Share favorite experiences and enjoy camaraderie with new Road Scholar friends during our farewell dinner.

Evening: As we linger at the Frontenac, the band will play contemporary popular music. We’ll complete our Christmas Day festivities in this setting that is très magnifique! A truly memorable experience. Prepare for check-out and departure in the morning.

Program Concludes
Quebec City, QC

Activity note: Hotel check-out by 12:00 Noon.

Breakfast: At the Frontenac. Say farewell to Québec and Christmas as we gather share our fondest memories of the program with new Road Scholar found friends. This concludes our program. Au revoir!

Morning: If you are returning home, safe travels. If you are staying on independently, have a wonderful time. If you are transferring to another Road Scholar program, detailed instructions are included in your Information Packet for that program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Don’t forget to join our Facebook page and follow us on Instagram. Best wishes for all your journeys!

Important registration tip:
If you want to attend the live lecture, please do not wait until the last minute to enroll.
If you enroll after a lecture is complete, we’ll send you a recording of the event.