fun things to do with kids lower town quebec city   Travel for Kids
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Quebec City - Lower Town (Basse Ville)

Place-Royale Quebec City
In July 1608, the explorer Samuel de Champlain established a fur trading post along the river. This spot became Place-Royale, the market square and center of the commerce in Quebec City. In the Lower Town, the ships docked, people brought their wares to sell in the marketplace, and merchants built their storehouses and private homes. After earlier wooden buildings burned down, in the 18th century buildings were built of stone and they’ve lasted to this day.
    Musee de la Place-Royale – Start your explorations of the Lower Town at the Place-Royale, a charming cobblestone square.
Place-Royale Interpretive Center
    Head downstairs to "Place Royale in 1800" exhibits and activities in the vaulted cellar. Here, kids can experience life in the 1800’s for a cooper and his family with hands on activities. Climb into the four poster bed (curtained for warmth) in the bedroom, try making a barrel with traditional tools, sit at the dining table in the common room, and dress up in period costumes. Girls can put on woolen pinafores or dresses with full skirts and long coats for girls, pants with buttons (no zippers), baggy shirts and jackets for boys. Parents can dress up too, including some fancy dresses, plus white bonnets for ladies, and black hats for men.
    Upstairs, check out the model of Quebec City through the centuries, from Native American wigwams, to Champlain’s wooden fort, Fort Saint Louis on the hill (where Terasse Dufferin is today), and churches, houses and farms in the Upper Town. Watch a 22 min. 3D movie that traces the story of the founding of the New France colony, surviving the first winter, and what the environment was like when de Champlain arrived (this movie is super, good for older kids).
    Maison Chevalier – From the Place-Royale, nip down the street to the Maison Chevalier, home of a ship owner and trader during the French regime. Check out the cooking utensils, including a big black cauldron, waffle iron (not like ours today), a pancake grill and fish poacher. (This museum is free).
Royal battery
  Royal Battery (Batterie Royale) – This battery was part of the fortifications in the Lower Town, part of protecting the French settlement against numerous English attacks. In 1759, the English bombarded the Lower Town with thousands of cannonballs. With the crenellated walls, black cannons, and moat for the battery, kids can decide whether they want to be the French defending the town, or the British on the attack.
Quebec City ferry
  Ride the ferry – Quebec City is located at a particularly narrow spot on the St. Lawrence River. Where the old port was located is now the ferry terminal, and you ride the ferry across the river to Levis (15 min. across). From ferry, it’s great to watch the big ships going by (the St. Lawrence connects the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Ocean).
    On the other side in Levis, there’s a ice cream shop, restaurants and snack bar, kids can climb up the stairs to get a better look at Vieux Quebec (the view is excellent), run up and down the sandy little beach, then take the ferry back.
    Museum of Civilization (Musee de la civilisation) – Find out about the traditional way of life for First Nations people of Quebec (Inuit, Iroquois, Algonquin). Exhibits have all kinds of snowshoes, toboggans (yes, they used toboggans), cradles, baby moccasins, full size bark canoe, Inuit carvings. Another gallery is a complete overview of different parts of Quebec province. In the lobby is a crumbly wooden longboat from 1736, uncovered when the museum was built.
  Marche du Vieux Port – Stop into this indoor farmers market, where everyone in the family will want to sample the maple taffy cones, jam, cheese, pastries and chocolates. The maple cones (cornets), which look like tiny ice cream cones, come in two kinds - maple taffy (tire) and maple butter (sucre).
  Tip: From the Lower Town, the quickest and easiest way to get to the Upper Town is the funicular. Ride the funicular (Funiculaire), located in the Louis Jolliet House at the eastern end of Rue du Petit Champlain, up to the Place d’Armes. As you ride up, kids can see how the steep cliffs really were a deterrent for invasions by the English (or Americans).
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