Friday, May 30, 2014

Le Vieux ~Québec~

It had been so long since I had been..

I was 10..the first time..with my mom..

Then a few years ago,outside of the main attractions Pont Rouge we went  to visit Marlene and Derek~  their ferme laitière.. their beautiful home..and a sweet garden..

So since I have been talking about going back....for YEARS..40... I would say..:)
We went..  Left on  Monday back on Thursday..yesterday..

It's only 3 1/2 hrs away..

I highly recommend it to anyone..anytime.
It is the shores of the St Lawrence..
Up and down cobble stone streets..mostly feels like up..:)

A photographer's paradise..

The people are friendly..all shopkeepers seem to be bilingual..
They all spoke English and French..
It is a very touristy town...and rightly so~

This cruise ship had docked..I think it came from Manhattan..Oceania..
The tour guide had a marker with Oceania on it..

All languages are heard.. throughout le Vieux ~Québec..
All smiles..universal.

Beaucoup d'histoire..

Many terrasses..many..take your many and all charming!

We had one nice day..  weather wise..  cold  torrential windy rainy day  ..
and another  beautiful nice day..
Although just that short distance from us..the gardening different..
Their gardens and leaves are a tad behind us..the leaves were annuals planted in the earth,and tulips just trees about to burst..I would say at least a 10 day difference..albeit that one apple blossom:)
And did I say WINDY?:)

The Promenade ..boardwalk.(la Promenade des Gouverneurs..).is magnificent in my biased opinion..  ap 1/2 mile long... of beautiful decking..wrought iron rail..and old fashioned gazebos line this famous boardwalk~ we walked it many times..the first time..we walked up the bezillion get to the very very top..I cannot even remember how many steps..

Wonderful wonderful walk..better than a treadmill any day. galleries..abound.. Quartier Du Petit Champlain below..

From our hotel..we could walk down..and back up..or take Le Funiculaire~
It's a lovely ride~

I recommend comfy shoes..a raincoat..just in case..sun glasses..sunscreen..   a hat..Some were buying winter tuques that cold windy rainy day..I had my daughters fun black cute  raincoat..w/ a hood..
I looked so cute with the hood!  (Not at all ...not one!)The coat yes..the rest not..
  .. and  a  point and shoot camera.
I was tempted with my  DSLR and last minute opted for the point and shoot..

Good idea!

Mind you..I saw high heels high boots high skirts..long skirts short shorts long pants..the whole gamut.:)

They have every popular store I am used to in Mtl....and boutique type shops..artisanal ones etc..

Restos  are varied.. as well as hotels..and a multitude of all!!

Le Chateau Frontenac is well loved and favored.

We opted for a neighbor ..a recommendation from a friend..
And I was happy with our choice..

Quiet little place..only 50 rooms.. facing the fleuve and a park.. and clip clop..calèches  go by..
I had a bay window with a writing desk to look out..

Old French windows..great views..Could set up and paint ..etc..
Our little meals varied..

I loved the French Onion a hidden little grotto style gem..

We munched at Paillard..and had coffees there..
One resto we looked at each other and actually took 2 bites and stopped..and we never complain..and didn't but I am certain that the plates were a give away.
We rarely eat out..
and we were reminded why..
A quiche by any other name is not a quiche:)

I had picked Le Lapin Sauté for our last night because I fell in love with the look..and the first time I saw it a guitarist was strumming such fabulous tunes right to the left of it..I bought one of his CDs on the spot..and vowed to eat there.:)

I had le lapin w/ honey and rosemary..
It was delicious..the night was cool ..we ate outside.. blankets are on the chairs..for you and heaters are mounted on the old stone walls..
Our serveuse..was as nice  as can be.. travels outside of the old city to Limoilou by vélo..and just graduated in Special Ed..doing a masters in Sept in Montreal..
She charmed us both..

Met a love couple:)

W/ 4 children on a business trip..

True Foodies:)

Collected stubs I did in Europe..
I love looking back on things like this..much later..

Every where you look..up the right to the left..
Sights and please..

I fell IN LOVE with some pillows from the line above..but they were the kind of cannot really buy for yourself..  a flap opens  with a poem inside..Be still my heart.
I have my thinking cap on..

Street signs..home signs..address signs..

Tout est beau!

From dawn till dusk~

Artisans..are easy to be here at the Glassblowing shop..
I loved his tools~

If you love stone buildings.. the water..cobblestone streets..



Then go..:)

A little getaway ..sure to please.

It is so charming..

And it's always nice to come home.

Bon Weekend..~


  1. Nice Mon...I felt like I was with you!

  2. Your post is such a lovely treat! Beautiful photos and words!


    1. The bread with Paillard on it reminded me of your breads Bonnie:)
      Right away when I saw them:)

  3. Monique, lovely, lovely photos of your return visit. We visited in the late 90s. You tempt me to return. '-)
    Fun to see your travel journal. Wish I had your talent!

    1. In the late 90s a lot of the ameliorations were done..I think..
      The shopkeepers are happy to tell you stories..
      The man I bought the CD from is originally from Mtl..and lives right there.. he even gave us his address..I walked by and took a charming..
      Lovely people..everywhere.

  4. Oh, sigh, sigh, oh, sigh...So many beloved, familiar sights, but seen through your colorful artistic lens, just love it!! We ate at Le Lapin Sauté one year for my birthday, this year at Casse Crêpe Breton. But we are not restaurant people either...I adore the atmosphere at Paillard. The harpist, I bought his CD years much so much! Merci for sharing your travel journal with us! I snuck a peak at your watercolor, might you show it in full? Maybe un de ces ans we will go at the same time & meet!

    1. You know I thought of you:)
      Especially since you have just been again..:)
      If I could paint like you I think i would set up shop les musiciens..

      We had reservations last year and had to cancel..
      The hotel was so nice they said we hope everything goes well soon..I was happy we were able to go ..
      I told them when we got there that we had had to cancel..So nice they were.
      We booked this February..

      Rita..we even just bought baguette and cheese for one dinner..
      The harpist is wonderful..and what a head of beautiful hair.
      His presence is so lovely there..
      There is another gentleman..I am sure you have seen him..he plays harmonica..with the most beautiful white fluffy dog I have ever his feet always.. calm..serene..

      It would be lovely to maybe meet one day..there..
      I am wondering..if we go back in a few years..if booking last minute is not better?
      That way you are almost guaranteed nice weather.
      But in fact..all weather brings it own adventures..:)
      The festival of lights during the holidays must be gorgeous..but the drive in winter ..always iffy..
      with our new 30 highways it was a breeze..
      Say I who is always the passenger:)
      You know..the last day..I sat on a bench on the Promenade..and painted the hotel across the street.
      I was happy no one stopped to look..
      It is really not good and is really pitiful and crooked..
      But what a nice feeling to be there doing that.
      I was surprised to not see any plein air easels set up.. by real artists:)
      Like the Marginal Way..etc..

      We did walk the artists' alley many times too..we have a longer one here in Old Montreal..
      I wanted so much to LOVE one so much I had to bring it home..but not one pulled my heartstrings that much..Not like in Florence..
      Oh my gosh I wish I had bought some there.
      I just want to say that you were inspirational in my wanting to go.
      From your past posts..etc..
      You have such a genuine way of showing your appreciation for something..that I knew I would revel in the sights and feeling.
      Thank you.

  5. Thank you so much for the tour! Your post really gives a sense of the city....I hope to be able to visit...someday....

  6. What a lovely treat to see this gorgeous post this morning. I feel as if I've been on a quick trip to Europe / France. So, so glad you brought your camera. How fun that you found a good restaurant and that they served lapin. Lapin is not easy to make as you know, so it's not often that you see it on menus. To me it signals that the Chef must know how to cook. Merci beaucoup for taking us along Monique. What a special place.

    1. Thanks know I love your trip
      You have seen and done so much..

      Not us..
      So it is fun for me to discover things..through this armchair travel:)
      It is very European in flavor and of course everything is French..
      And many macarons:)

  7. It all looks so beautiful and you must have had a wonderful time, I think I've seen photos of the beautiful city at Christmas time, have you ever been then?
    It just looks magical through your photos :) and it looks like spring must be as good of a time to visit as winter.

    1. Never,,I would enjoy a couple of's the iffy weather..would have to book last be sure..
      You would enjoy it I think Jenni..

  8. Lovely post Monique with fantastic photos. I really felt like I was just a few steps behind following you. Our daughter lived & worked there 18 yrs. ago. and she still says it was a lovely lively place to work in, but prefers to be back here in rural France with her French husband and her lovely boys. I'm so pleased to see that you had time to paint 'plein air' & hope we get to see some !! You have some lovely memories to look back on, even if it was only a short trip, you saw a lot.
    Enjoy your weekend back home.

    1. I am certain your daughter is as happy as can be in France..Amazing the French from France people that live in Mtl ..and QC..
      And vice versa I am certain..
      I don't think I could leave France..had I been born or raised there..The climate here can be fierce..

  9. how I love this post Monique & your gorgeous photos. they brought back such happy memories. my husband is from quebec (born & raised) and we celebrated our wedding anniversary last year with a week in montreal visiting the same spots as you. I also admired the pillows with poems when you opened the little flap. we stayed at a lovely hotel also & enjoyed visiting notre dame basilica, monte royal park, museum of the arts, saint joseph's oratory, cobble stoned streets, galleries, outdoor markets and cafes, walks along the st. Lawrence & all the charm and romance old montreal had to offer & for us, the bell center where we had tickets to watch "our team" the montreal canadiens (who won the game that night against the dallas stars) :-) thank you for sharing your lovely visit & happy moments. have a wonderful weekend enjoying being home xo

    1. The pillows are too cute..I am sure you could fashion one in a heartbeat Deb~
      Home is best:)

  10. This brought back happy memories. We saw that same lovely couple in love ;-) We vacationed in beautiful Quebec City in July 2009 , and enjoyed the charming stone buildings and flower filled window boxes. The majestic Chateau Frontenac hotel towering above the banks of the St. Lawrence, is so magical. The city looks as if it has been transplanted from France and reassembled on the cliffs jutting into the St. Lawrence River. We stayed at a lovely hotel in "uppertown", and enjoyed crepes each morning. I love the history and charm of Quebec City! Your photos make me want to go back today!

    1. I think I remember your trip:)
      I bet you will go back:)

  11. M, I just LOVE the way you shared your little trip. The comments, photos and sentiments. Perfect. I must try this when I return from Hawaii in July.

    1. A with your will be something I will look so forward to seeing:)

  12. Thanks for sharing your trip with us. What a beautiful city. I have to show Jerry to entice him to go. I think with all the wonderful French food it might be an easy sell.

  13. So nice to see QC through your eyes! I have not been since my honeymoon in 1981...I feel like I was right there along with you...I know that I must go again someday...hopefully sooner than later!
    Always nice to go away...always nice to come home...
    Bisous xo

  14. Thank you for sharing your beautiful trip - I love your comment "all weather bringing its own adventures" - truly it does. Le Lapin looks like a jewel of a spot. You've caught that so many gorgeous vignettes. Now I need to plan a trip there too!

    1. You need to both bring your paints..the art galleries are great Gail..thought of you!

  15. Simply lovely photos! I have never been to Quebec (well, I have never been to Canada at all), but it's my wish to one day visit this beautiful place! Thank you for sharing your beautiful photos :).

    1. I see loads of adventures in your future!!
      It's bright and shiny too.

  16. Thank you so much for sharing these wonderful photos of Quebec.
    My husband and I were there once ... in April ... it was frigid but wonderful.
    Had wonderful pea soup in a hole in the wall that was fabulous.
    Stayed at the Chateau Frontenac.
    diane @ thoughts and shots

    1. Funny the meals we remember..and all the moments~
      You must be so busy right now!

  17. Your photos are so wonderful seen through your perspective. Sounds like a lovely, lovely time.

    1. I just saw your summer place:) I look forward to seeing so much more!

  18. Que c'est beau ! Rien de tel que vos photos pour me donner envie de voyager et d'aller au Québec !
    J'espère que vous avez bien profité :)

    Bonne soirée

    1. Ce fut très agréable..

      Nous aimerions beaucoup retourner en France..
      La Provence pour un petit séjour une année..
      Ce fut mé toute beauté et de tout raffinement cette Provence~

  19. What a wonderful visit you have had. I enjoyed all of the photographs, many of them bringing back some wonderful memories for me. I was there when I was 16 years old with a group from school. We had a charming dinner in the old town. I fell in love. I have always wanted to go back and now you have taken me there through the eye of your camera. Thank you so much! I would love to see the paintings from your journal. I know you did some. How could you not. Sending you much love on a sunny Sunday morning. Sunday sun in the UK, so beautiful . . . hate to spend half the day in church, but c'est la vie! It will be lovely all the same. Love and hugs to you and J. xxoo


    1. I wondered if you had been:)
      Who knows maybe one day you will return..
      marie your apple crumble bars?

      Next post..Jacques LOVES them..made them yesterday..

      It's supposed to be a glorious day was at 6.30 when I got up..all of a sudden cloudy!

  20. How amazing and beautiful shots dear Monique:)

  21. Que c'est beau! J'adorerais m'y rendre.

    Merci pour ce merveilleux partage.

    Bises et bonne semaine,


  22. Just what i need it-)) We are going to Quebec this July, can not wait!!!!! Thank you for amazing moments here-)

  23. Beautiful photos, Monique. I'm determined to visit Quebec one day soon. I had hoped my Chicago daughter was within driving distance but it's 1,000 miles to get there from where she lives. Too far to go by car. I wonder if we could go by train. That would be an adventure.

    1. I hope you get to go one day..I think you would enjoy it Cathy..No Dehillerin though!

  24. So strange - I know I left a comment a few days ago but I don't see it today. I was happy you got to return and also that you didn't take your DSLR :) Lovely photos too!