This City Is The Best Place In Canada To Spend Christmas & It'll Transport You To Europe

It's full of holiday magic. 🎄✨

A person stands on a street in Quebec City with trees and stores lining it. Right: A cobblestone street lined with glowing Christmas decor.

A person stands in Quebec City. Right: A street in Old Quebec.

You don't have to leave Canada to find magical Christmas destinations. The country is home to tons of cute Christmas towns and cities that are full of holiday cheer, including one spot that has been called the top Christmas destination in the country.

During the holiday season, Quebec City is transformed into a winter wonderland, with its cobblestone streets, Parisian-style cafes, and designer boutiques dressed in twinkling lights and festive decorations that turn the city into a real Christmas village.

With tons of winter activities, a traditional European Christmas market and an old-town feel, a visit to Quebec City during the holidays should definitely be on your Christmas list. Here are nine festive ways to spend the holiday season in the capital city of La Belle Province.

Stroll along Rue du Petit-Champlain

Address: Rue du Petit-Champlain, Quebec City, QC

Why You Need To Go: This postcard-worthy street in Old Quebec is a must-visit, especially at Christmas time.

The street is one of the oldest commercial streets in North America, and really highlights Quebec City's European charm, lined with one-of-a-kind boutiques and cute restaurants.

Having been called the most beautiful street in Canada, rue du Petit Champlain is lovely to visit all year, but a visit in winter allows you to take in the magical holiday displays with the added benefit of fewer crowds compared to summer months.

The street is lit up beautifully in winter, with twinkling lights, Christmas wreaths and trees, and holiday decor that looks like something right out of a movie.

Throughout December, you'll find Christmas choirs singing holiday tunes along the street, a Santa Claus race, and magical holiday shopping opportunities.

Quartier Petit Champlain website

Stay at the historic Fairmont Le Château Frontenac

Address: 1 Rue des Carrières, Quebec City, QC

Why You Need To Go: The Fairmont Chateau Frontenac is an iconic Quebec City hotel that's a destination all on its own.

Come Christmas time, the hotel is beautifully decked out in holiday decor, filled with numerous glowing Christmas trees, holiday wreaths and more that will make your visit even more enchanting.

Famous for its food and a designated UNESCO World Heritage site, there's possibly no better place to base your trip.

During December, the hotel also offers a number of Christmas events, including holiday afternoon tea, holiday brunch, and a festive Christmas celebration in the hotel ballroom.

The Fairmont Chateau Frontenac website

Visit a German Christmas Market

Address: Old Quebec, Quebec City, QC

Why You Need To Go: The German Christmas market in Quebec City is a magical holiday tradition that transforms the heart of Old Quebec into a spectacular Christmas village.

Visitors will be treated to colourful light displays, traditional wooden kiosks selling holiday items and gifts, and more than 90 exhibitors from Quebec, Germany and Europe.

This year, the Christmas market will have five sites for visitors to discover around Old Quebec: The Bergdorf - The Desjardins Alpine Village at Place d'Youville; the Marktplatz presented by Galeries de la Capitale, at place de l'Hôtel-de-Ville; the jardins de l'Hôtel-de-Ville; Sainte-Anne Street, and the Christmas Castle presented by Fairmont Le Château Frontenac at Place d'Armes.

Quebec City German Christmas Market website

Skate at Place D'Youville

Address: 995, place D'Youville, Quebec City, QC

Why You Need To Go: What could be more magical than skating on an outdoor rink surrounded by lights?

Place D'Youville in Old Quebec is a classic place for hitting the ice, with the beautiful Théâtre Capitole, Palais Montcalm, and Saint-Jean Gate surrounding you.

You can rent a pair of skates and glide across the ice to musical accompaniment, then take a stroll along Rue Saint-Jean through one of Québec City’s signature neighbourhoods, Faubourg Saint-Jean-Baptiste.

The site is also part of the Quebec City German Christmas Market, meaning you can head here to peruse the wooden kiosks.

The rink opens in mid-November and is free to access. It's equipped with a refrigeration system for perfect ice at all times.

Place D' Youville website

Stop for a bite in the Grande Allée

Address: Grande Allée, Québec City, QC,

Why You Need To Go: The Grand Allee is known as the "heart of Québec City's nightlife."

Here, you'll find numerous restaurants and bars and will be in close proximity to several major attractions, including the Musée national des beaux-arts and the Parliament Building.

While it's a great spot to visit all year, in December, the area also draws sightseers with its beautiful decorations and buildings all aglow.

Grande Allée is also a hot spot to ring in the New Year in Quebec City.

For more winter fun, just steps from the Grande Allée is the Plains of Abraham where you can enjoy skating, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.

Grande Allée website

Go tobogganing at Au 1884

Address: Terrasse Dufferin, Quebec City, QC

Why You Need To Go: Built in 1884, this slide is possibly Quebec City's oldest attraction and a must-do in winter.

Open for sliding from mid-December until mid-March, here, you can toboggan down the hill next to incredible views of the St. Lawrence River and the iconic Château Frontenac hotel.

Slides can hold up to four people, so you can go with friends or family or race each other in separate lanes. Hold on tight though — the slides can reach speeds of up to 70 kilometres an hour!

Au 1884 website

Shop on Avenue Cartier

Address: 1105 Avenue Cartier, Québec, QC

Why You Need To Go: A few minutes from Old Quebec, the Plains of Abraham and the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, Avenue Cartier is a charming spot with lights hanging above the street and decorated storefronts.

Avenue Cartier offers a different shopping experience than what you’ll find in Old Town Quebec. This part of the city is said to be more popular with locals than tourists, and instead of shops selling kitschy souvenirs, you'll find upscale stores and eclectic boutiques here.

Avenue Cartier is ideal for window shopping and looking for gifts in its pretty boutiques. It runs through the heart of Quebec City’s Art District and is also home to one-of-a-kind restaurants and bars.

Avenue Cartier website

Stay in an ice hotel

Address: 2280 Boul. Valcartier, Saint-Gabriel-de-Valcartier, QC

Why You Need To Go: The Hôtel de Glace in Quebec is a one-of-a-kind ice hotel where you can feel just like and ice queen for a night.

Located at the Village Vacances Valcartier about 30 minutes from Quebec City, the incredible hotel is the only thing like it in North America and is made entirely out of snow and ice.

Described as a "Nordic getaway," the ice hotel features majestic snow arches, crystal-clear ice sculptures and unique ice-sculpted rooms.

You'll feel like the star of a Christmas Hallmark movie — party because one was actually filmed here!

Hôtel de Glace website