The Wonders of Winter: Seasonal Adventures in Quebec City

Embark on an educational adventure to a wintry Québec City and learn to thrive like a local with specialist-led historic walks, fun-filled excursions and dog sledding.
Program No. 24039RJ
5 days
Starts at
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5 days
4 nights
8 meals
4 B 2 L 2 D
Check-in, Registration, Orientation, Welcome Dinner
Quebec City, QC
Le Monastère des Augustines

Activity note: Hotel check-in from 4:00 p.m. Walking about 1 mile; city streets and sidewalks.

Afternoon: Program Registration and Orientation: 5:00 P.M. After you have your room assignment, join us at the Road Scholar table in the hotel lobby conference room to register with the program staff and get your welcome packet containing the up-to-date schedule that reflects any changes, other important information, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet when you check in. Remember to bring your name-tag (sent previously). Orientation. 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 staffed with an expert Study Leader who will also serve as our Group Leader. This person will be our primary resource in making the most of independent study time, offering local knowledge and insider tips to discover Québec City beyond the highlights. 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. After orientation, we will set out with our Study Leader as we stroll through the streets of the Old City to the famous Château Frontenac and form our first impressions of Québec.

Dinner: In the hotel restaurant, we’ll have a 3-course plated meal featuring regional cuisine and beverage choices of coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase.

Evening: At leisure. Continue getting to know your fellow Road Scholars, settle in, and get a good night’s rest for the day ahead.

Old Québec City, Architecture & History, Ferry
Quebec City, QC
Le Monastère des Augustines

Activity note: Walking up to 6 miles throughout the day; city streets and sidewalks, mixed terrain trail with snow, uphill and downhill; unavoidable stairs.

Breakfast: In the hotel restaurant, the breakfast buffet offers a variety of choices such as eggs, breakfast meats, pancakes, and more with beverage choices of milk, juice, coffee, tea, water.

Morning: We will meet in Hotel lobby and set out with our Study Leader on our first field trip through the Plains of Abraham. Walking from west to east we will follow the nature path that runs along the cliff. Long before the historic battle of 1759, the area situated just outside the city wall was famous for the diversity of its natural resources. After walking in the footsteps of the country’s first herbalists, we will climb on the fortifications for an overview of military and civil architecture. In the Old City, we will learn about the various districts marked by the presence of French, English, Scottish, and Irish immigrants who left a significant legacy of architecture, economic, social and political heritage. As we reach Cap Diamond, we will have an amazing view of Quebec's natural harbour made of three very ancient geological formations. Our field trip will end at the famous Château Frontenac.

Lunch: At the Frontenac, we’ll have a 2-course plated meal with beverage choices of coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase. The Frontenac — one of the landmarks of Québec City and the most photographed hotel in the world — boasts a fascinating history. It was named in honor of Louis de Buade, Comte de Frontenac, who served as the governor of France’s colony in Canada during the late 17th century. Bon appétit!

Afternoon: We’ll leave the highs of Cap Diamond and explore the lower part of Old Québec down to the river level. This was the birthplace of French America and the first settlement in Canada. It represents centuries of compromises and struggle between people and geography to facilitate defense and economic development while protecting the natural bounty of the St. Lawrence. Our winter experience of winter in Québec would not be complete without encountering the mighty St. Lawrence River. We’ll board the ferry and see river ice being pushed aside as the ferry maneuvers to the other shore. Then we’ll have a photo op for the best picture of Cap Diamond and the defense system that has come to be known as the Gibraltar of North America. Returning to land, we’ll explore the Quartier Petit-Champlain, the site of Québec’s first port. As one of the city’s original neighborhoods, it has gone through various periods of development, decline, and revitalization. Today, after an extensive restoration project, the quarter exudes an Old World atmosphere with historical architecture, narrow streets, artisans and craftsmen, charming boutiques, and much more.

Dinner: On your own to explore the varied and exciting Quebec City dining opportunities. Our Study Leader will be happy to offer suggestions.

Evening: At leisure.

Montmorency Falls & Cliff Walk, Ice Hotel
Quebec City, QC
Le Monastère des Augustines

Activity note: Getting on/off bus; driving about 56 miles, approximately 1.5 hours. Walking up to 2 miles; mixed terrain trail; snowy trail and pavement; unavoidable stairs. Walking across a suspension bridge.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet.

Morning: We will hop aboard a bus with our Study Leader for a field trip to Montmorency Falls Park, where the falls are one and a half times higher than Niagara! Winter brings dramatic changes. In very cold weather, the spray freezes along the cliffs and at the foot of the falls, forming what is known as the Sugarloaf — a rounded mass of ice. We’ll board the bus and ride from the river to the top of the falls. At the top of the falls, we’ll take a path along the cliff, climb a few staircases, and cross the suspension bridge that stretches across the river, giving us a dramatic impression of winter’s power. Note: Specific activities may be determined by local conditions at the time of the program.

Lunch: We’ll ride to a local restaurant and have a 3-course plated meal with beverage choices of coffee, tea, water included; other beverages available for purchase.

Afternoon: Next, we will set out on a walking field trip to explore the amazing Hôtel de Glace — the Ice Hotel — one of Québec’s winter wonders. It is completely rebuilt each December, made of 30,000 tons of snow and 500 tons of sculpted blocks of ice. With a local expert, we will walk through this working hotel that has a lifespan of only three months a year and learn about its design and architecture. Then we’ll return to the hotel with time to freshen up and relax before dinner.

Dinner: On your own to enjoy what you like.

Evening: At leisure.

Laurentian Mountains, Dog Sledding, Free Time
Quebec City, QC
Le Monastère des Augustines

Activity note: Getting on/off a motorcoach; driving about 40 miles, approximately 1 hour. Elective toboggan run involves getting on/off 2-person traditional dogsleds.

Breakfast: Hotel Buffet.

Morning: We will board our bus for our field trip to the Laurentian Mountains. On arrival, we’ll have an opportunity to go dog sledding. Typical of Nordic countries and climate, dog sledding is an ancient mode of transportation based on a cooperation between humans and dogs. Under the supervision of professionals, we will experience the art of dogsledding through snow fields and forests. Next, we’ll have an opportunity to experience winter fun with an elective toboggan run, one of the city’s most stimulating activities. There are three parallel runs for toboggans that can carry up to four people. After the ride, we’ll walk to the nursery and meet the puppies before returning to the hotel.

Lunch: On your own to have what you like.

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. You might like to go snowshoeing or simply relax and enjoy the hotel amenities.

Dinner: At a renowned restaurant in Québec, we will celebrate the spirit of winter with a traditional fondue meal with a beverage choice of coffee, tea, water; other beverages available for purchase. Share favorite experiences with new Road Scholar friends during our farewell dinner.

Evening: At leisure. Prepare for check-out and departure in the morning.

Program Concludes
Quebec City, QC

Activity note: 12:00 Noon hotel check-out

Breakfast: Hotel buffet. This concludes our program.

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!

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