Around this time of year, many people that we know was planning trips down to sunny destinations. Places like Mexico and the Bahamas were being mentioned. Where were Barb and I planning on going? Well, let’s just say that when we arrived on Thursday it was 28 degrees colder than when we left Vancouver. Do we know something that everyone else doesn’t or are we completely nuts? Maybe a bit of both but Barb and I can’t help but love the Québec City Winter Carnival.
We came to the winter carnival for the first time five years ago and we had such a good time that we knew that we would be back. We’ve actually been back to Québec City three years ago with Peter and Liz but that was during October but that trip didn’t have anything to do with snow.
Sidebar: There is simply no more beautiful place in the world than Québec in October. You really have to make one trip in your lifetime driving through Québec in the fall as the colours of the trees at that time of year is breathtaking.
We will be in Québec City for a total of 4 full days and return home on the morning of the 5th day. We’ve found that this is just the perfect amount of time to spend here and get a chance to experience pretty much everything that we want to see. There’s all kind of outdoor activities that are free (with some exceptions) once you buy the $12 pass (referred to as an “effigy”) that you attach to your coat. The effigy is traditionally a representation of the carnival ambassador: Bonhomme Carnaval.
From sliding down hills in inner tubes with kids, skating in the outdoor rink at Place d’Youville, Barb and I have found all kinds of fun things to do at the Québec winter carnival. The main thing that we find is necessary to enjoy one’s self, is to dress appropriately and don’t try to act your age. 🙂 Some of the most fun that we’ve had is lining up with 10 year old kids to be pushed down a hill in an inner tube together – only to climb back up the hill for another run.
Everywhere we go throughout the city people have smiles on their faces and seem to be having a great time. Yesterday we went skating (falling on our butts several times in the process) and then warmed up afterwards with some hot coffee. We’ve never had so much fun.
Perhaps the only thing that we’ve enjoyed more than the outdoor winter activities here in Québec City is the food. There’s an endless choice of really great restaurants here – one of our favourite meals so far was a Québec tourtière. This particular tourtière was made with several types of wild meat: deer, wild boar and bison meat were all used and the broth was just delicious – all baked inside a hand-made pie crust.
Tomorrow we will be returning back to Vancouver with all of our memories and we will be saying our goodbyes to Québec City once again. Definitely one of our favourite destinations, it is only a matter of time before we return.
PS: Some of you already know that we have planned an Excellent Adventure to Australia in just a few months from now. All of our bookings have been made and we’re all anxiously waiting for our departure date. Of course, there’s the small matter of the cyclone that just blew through one of our destinations off the coast of Australia. More on that after we survey the damage.