Activity note: Hotel check-in from 4:00 p.m. Walking 2 blocks to/from dinner.
Afternoon: Program Registration: 5:30 p.m. After you have your room assignment, come to the Road Scholar table in the lobby to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule that reflects any changes, other important information, and to confirm when and where the Orientation session will take place. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet when you check in. Orientation: 6:00 p.m. 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. This 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 holiday spirit radiates throughout Québec City, and New Year at the Château Frontenac is truly special. Periods in the daily 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/conditions. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.
Dinner: We will walk to a nearby restaurant in the heart of Old Québec and have a 3-course plated meal with appetizer (soup or salad), choice of entreé, dessert of the day, coffee (regular/decaf), hot tea, water; other beverages available for purchase from the bar.
Evening: To begin our exploration of Québec, we’ll stroll with our Group Leader through the streets of the Old City to the famous Terrasse Dufferin that stretches along the St. Lawrence River just below the Château Frontenac.
Activity note: Walking up to 2 miles. Dress in layers for winter conditions.
Breakfast: At the Château Frontenac, choose what you like from the extensive breakfast buffet amid beautiful seasonal decorations and surroundings. The Frontenac is the virtual “star” atop the city’s figurative Christmas tree with a wonderful sense of revelry and bonhomie.
Morning: We will be joined by a local expert who will tell us more 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, how residents deal with it in their daily lives, and get an overview of Québecois culture and holiday traditions.
Lunch: In the renowned restaurant Aux Anciens Canadiens, we’ll savor traditional food of Québec in a 3-course plated meal with appetizer (soup), choices of entrée, maple sugar pie, and beverage choices including a glass of wine or beer, soft drink, coffee, hot tea, water; other beverages available for purchase from the bar. The restaurant is situated in the city’s oldest house (1675). Its thick walls, solid joints, marvelous wainscoting, and recessed cupboards are characteristic of houses constructed during that era.
Afternoon: Led by our local expert, we’ll go on a walking field trip to 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 holiday spirit is all around, from exquisitely decorated storefronts to beautifully-lit cobbled alleys — a wondrous scene to behold.
Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions. If you have something special in mind, we strongly recommend making reservations in advance.
Evening: At leisure. There are many opportunities to enjoy the city’s nightlife and cultural resources. The Group Leader will happy to offer suggestions.
Activity note: Getting in/out of taxis. Walking and standing at museum.
Breakfast: Château Frontenac buffet.
Morning: We will take taxis for a field trip to Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec. The national museum of fine arts is in the heart of National Battlefields Park, also known as the Plains of Abraham, a site of exceptional beauty and significance in Canadian history. Led by a museum expert, we’ll learn about the fascinating history of the museum itself — comprising three buildings, styles, and periods — and its impressive collections including 35,000 works by 4,000 artists, dating from the 17th Century to the present. At the conclusion of our field trip, we’ll return to the hotel as we came.
Lunch: On your own to enjoy what you like. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.
Afternoon: With our local expert, we’ll take a a ferry ride across the St. Lawrence River and learn more about it. Have your camera ready for the best shot of Quebec City and the famous Chateau Frontenac.
Dinner: At Le Tournebroche, a gourmet bistro, we’ll have a special New Year’s Eve 5-course plated meal with coffee (regular/decaf), hot tea, water; other beverages available for purchase from the bar.
Evening: It’s New Year’s Eve. The Group Leader will escort us to the festivities area where the celebration will include a traditional music show, outdoor dance, big countdown, and midnight fireworks. Happy New Year!
Brunch: At the renowned Le Champlain Restaurant in the Château Frontenac, choose what you like from the gastronomic brunch buffet, one of the signature traditions of this grand hotel, the most photographed in the world and an enduring symbol of Québec City.
Afternoon: We will set out for a festive New Year Day ride in an authentic calèche (horse-drawn carriage). From our cozy seats, we will get a different perspective on North America’s only walled city including the beautiful 19th Century Parliament building. Next, we’ll explore the Museum of Civilization with its unique exhibitions on the First Nations, followed by workshop on local traditions with jig dancers, callers and square dancers (voucher included). Afterwards, we will gather for a closing session with our Group Leader to learn more about Québec today with Q&A about what we’ve seen and learned. We’ll hear about the social universe of present-day Québec in order to understand its health and educational systems, nationalist leanings, and the challenges that lie ahead for the province — sure to be a lively discussion.
Dinner: On your own to enjoy what you like. We will also have reservations at a popular Québec bistro if you would like to join the Group Leader (at your cost).
Evening: At leisure. Be sure to prepare for check-out and departures in the morning.
Activity note: Hotel check-out 12:00 Noon.
Breakfast: Hotel buffet. This concludes our program.
Morning: 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!