One of the oldest cities built by European settlers in North America.




484.1 km²



Average Annual Temperature

4 °C

Student-friendly Rank (world)


Summary of Quebec City

Located on the banks of the St. Lawrence River, Québec City is the capital city of Canada's Québec province. Known for its classical architecture and a distinctive European feel, like most of the province, Québec City (Ville de Québec) is the second most populous city in the province after Montreal and the eleventh most populous city in Canada. The Historic District of Old Québec's fortified city walls are the only ones of their kind left standing in northern North America, and in 1985, were designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Québec City was the first city in Canada to be established with the goal of becoming a permanent settlement rather than a commercial outpost such as St. John's, Newfoundland, or Labrador and Port Royal, Nova Scotia. In 1535 the French explorer Jacques Cartier built a fort where he remained in residence for a year. He returned in 1541 to build a permanent settlement, however, it was abandoned in 1542.

Today, Québec City is one of Canada's largest cities. As of 2016, it had a population of 531,902, with 800,296 concentrated in its metropolitan center. Most of the city is French-speaking. Native English speakers represent only 1.5 percent of the city's population. The city is divided into 34 districts and six boroughs. In 2002, several nearby towns were annexed to accommodate growth.

Québec City is located along Canada's St. Lawrence River near the confluence with the St. Charles River. Due to its location along these waterways, most of the area is flat and low-lying. However, the Laurentian Mountains north of the city offer increased elevation.

Quebec City is the most European of any city in North America, they speak French all the time. There is a part of town called Old Quebec which is really like being in France. The architecture is just gorgeous, food, shopping. I'd say Quebec city is the most beautiful city in North America I've seen.
Sebastian Bach.
QuebecCity Ranked
  • Beautiful City
    the capital of Quebec is rated as the most beautiful city in Canada and 23th in the world
  • Safest City
    Québec City was ranked 3rd safest city in the world by the CEOWORLD magazine.
  • Photographed
    The Chateau Frontenac of Quebec City is the world’s most photographed hotel.
  • City walls
    A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Quebec City is the only city in Canada and the United States to still have its original city walls.
  • Dairy Producing
    Quebec is the largest dairy producing province in Canada
  • National Historic
    It is wonderful. There are 37 National Historic Sites in Quebec City
  • Travel and Leisure
    Québec City ranks 3rd, behind New York City and San Francisco, among the 10 best cities in the U.S. and Canada.
  • Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre ≈ 859.72 CAD
  • Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre ≈ 673.53 CAD
  • Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre ≈ 1,418.75 CAD
  • Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre ≈ 1,065.00
  • Price per Square Meter to Buy Apartment in City Centre ≈ 2,909.72 CAD
  • Price per Square Meter to Buy Apartment Outside of Centre ≈ 3,048.38 CAD
  • internet ≈ 40 CAD
  • Electricity used for lighting ≈ 20 CAD
  • Milk (regular), (1 liter) ≈ 1.96 CAD
  • Rice (white), (1kg) ≈ 4.14 CAD
  • Eggs (regular) (12) ≈ 3.17 CAD
  • Beef Round (1kg) (or Equivalent Back Leg Red Meat) ≈ 16.69 CAD
  • Domestic Beer (0.5 liter bottle) ≈ 2.74 CAD
  • Cigarettes 20 Pack (Marlboro) ≈ 12.00 CAD
  • One-way Ticket (Local Transport) ≈ 3.50 CAD
  • Monthly Pass (Regular Price) ≈ 89.50 CAD
  • Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff) ≈ 1.75 CAD
  • Gasoline (1 liter) ≈ 1.17 CAD
  • Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult ≈ 40.45 CAD
  • Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour on Weekend) ≈ 31.75 CAD
  • Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat ≈ 13.00 CAD
  • Laval University ≈ 18,151.6
  • Université de Quebec City ≈ $14,450
  • Collège O’Sullivan De Québec ≈ $14,257
Cost of Living Per Month ( 2 persons)
  • Housing
    Rent Apartment and Hydro : $845.00
  • Internet
    Internet : 40.00
  • Phone
    Phone with interet : $38.00
  • Transportation
    Transportation : $88.00
  • Groceries
    Groceries and household items : $234.42
  • Entertainment
    Entertainment and dining out : $130.00
  • Health
    Health and fitness : $40.45
  • Extras
    haircuts, clothes,broken phone screen and so on. : $125.00
  • Total

Old Québec

Walk along the fortified walls surrounding this UNESCO World Heritage Site, and admire the view from every angle. For all its 400 years of incredible history, it’s still very much alive: magical in the winter and popping in the summer. Full of charming little streets and local shops, Old Québec is best visited on foot.
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Québec City's Walls ( North America’s only walled city )

You might be asking yourself: “Why is Québec City Walled?” In fact, the escarpment of Cap Diamant provided the colony of New France with a natural defence system on the west side. A decision was made to build fortification walls on the other sides to provide a better protection. From these walls, the colonists could spot enemies approaching from land, as well as from the St. Lawrence River, giving them ample time to prepare a defence. A system which worked well for hundreds of years. Today, the ramparts remain intact as a testament to the character, history and battles that have taken place since the 17th century.
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Place Royale

Place Royale, this historical gem, is where Québec City was officially founded. The unique period architecture testifies to the combined French and British influences so characteristic of the city’s built environment.
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Citadelle de Québec

At the top of the famous Cap Diamant lies the biggest British fortress in North America. Built by the British between 1820 and 1850 to defend the city, the Citadelle is a remarkable military heritage site and home to the Musée Royal 22e Regiment, where you can learn all about the history of the regiment and the fortress.
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1. Scenic Beauty

Quebec has three national parks. These are Forillon, Mingan Archipelago, and La Mauricie. In total, these parks cover 927 km² (358 sq. miles). These parks are renowned for their camping sites, hiking trails, and wildlife observation opportunities. Whether you live in a city center or a rural community, Quebec offers you easy access to pristine areas of nature through its National Parks.

3. Lower Housing Costs

Across both city and rural environments, real estate and housing rental prices in Quebec are considered low. Montreal, Quebec’s largest city, has an average home price of 72 percent of the Canadian average. The differential in monthly rent is also comparative. Overall, Montreal is ranked as the fourth least expensive city out of 68 top cities in North America. Quebec City is ranked as the most affordable of the top 68 cities in North America. In terms of housing alone, the average price of a family home in Quebec City is 55 percent of the average home price in Canada. Real estate prices outside of the major two cities are even lower. It is not uncommon to find homes in the 1,200 to 1,500 sq. foot (111 to 139 m²) in rural communities for sale below the USD $120,000 range.

5. The economy is booming

Over the last 20 years, some 66,000+ jobs have been created in Quebec City, bolstering what has become one of the backbones of Canada’s national economy. In addition, unemployment has historically been below the national average. In terms of industries, public administration, manufacturing, commerce and tourism lead the way. The five reasons listed here are just the start of what you’ll find in Quebec City. So, what else is waiting for you? There’s beautiful scenery, thriving culture, diversity, sports, stunning architecture and so much more.

2. Affordable Electricit

The cost of residential electricity in Quebec is the lowest in Canada, and by some accounts, the lowest in all of North America. The average cost per kWh in Quebec is $0.073. This can be compared to the national average in Canada, which is $0.174. Depending on what American city is used for comparison, the cost of residential electricity in Quebec is one-quarter to one-half of that in the United States. This low price holds steady whether you reside in Montreal, Quebec City, or any of the rural communities across the province. In terms of how the electricity is sourced in Quebec, the majority is generated with hydroelectric dams. This qualifies the electricity used in Quebec to be labelled as coming from a renewable source.

4. It’s one of the safest places to live

You should know that Quebec has repeatedly ranked as one of the safest provinces in all of Canada (if not the safest), with a crime severity index (CSI) score that falls well below other popular provinces like Alberta and British Columbia. CSI is a measure that takes into account how often a crime is committed and how serious the crime was, so it’s a good indicator of safety. Quebec City has also fared particularly well within the Quebec province when it comes to occurrences of crime. In fact, one report from 2019 found it to have the lowest CSI of all Census Metropolitan Areas, and the city has been named the safest metropolitan area in all of Canada to raise children in.

6. Transportation options are plentiful

Many people in Quebec City choose to own and drive an automobile, but a wide variety of alternatives exist for those who don’t. The city is a haven for cyclists with well-lit and well-defined bike paths in place for people to commute to and from parts of town. There’s also a local bus network, Réseau de transport de la Capitale, that’s affordable and offers routes throughout the metro area. Via Rail Canada provides train transport that’s efficient and connects Quebec City to other places throughout Canada. And should you need to fly, Jean Lesage International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the entire country, with service to destinations across the globe.

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