Province/Territory: Quebec

Festival fun celebrating French Canada's heritage

  • 400 years of Quebec history
  • 07 venues of cultural fun
  • 01 fortified city north of Mexico whose walls still exist

Turn back time during the Fêtes de la Nouvelle-France when the days of Canada’s first European settlers come to life amid the real-life backdrop of historic Old Québec City. Narrow alleyways and cobblestone streets are a 17th and 18th century stage crowded with perfume sellers, rat-catchers, petty thieves, bartering merchants, barber/surgeons and hurdy-gurdy musicians. Dress in period costume and become part of the festival. Hear the clang of a blacksmith at his forge. Carve arrowheads with the Huron-Wendat people. Grab a bow and try your hand at archery. Become a town crier or an archaeologist searching for hidden artifacts. Smell gunpowder after musket shots are fired. Create your own family’s coat of arms. Sip sweet maple syrup at a town square food market. Then quench your thirst at an outdoor inn, partying to the rhythm of accordions and foot-stomping fiddles and realize that despite the centuries, everything old is nouvelle again.

Why you should visit
  • Meet a six metre-tall giant named Champlain during a grand parade.
  • Dine on local Quebec cuisine from pastries to duck confit.
  • Slip on a wig and becoming snobbish French nobility for a day.
  • Sample Irish whiskeys paired with Quebec cheeses and learning about the Irish role in New France.
  • Chat with a hangman and his wife.
  • Encounter free Cirque du Soleil performances in the streets.
  • Sip frosty Quebec cider in a grand hotel that thinks it’s a castle, Le Chateau Frontenac.
  • Ride through the cobblestone streets of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in a horse-drawn carriage.
  • Sail on an evening ferry across the St. Lawrence River to admire the twinkling lights and dramatic setting of the only walled city north of Mexico.

Weather

Visitor information
  • The New France Festival information.
  • Rates and dates.
  • Events take place in seven old Québec City indoor and outdoor locations - all within walking distance - as well as in the streets.
When to go
  • The festival takes places over five days every year in early July.
  • Even if you can’t make it for the festival, Québec City is a year-round French-Canadian hub of history and culture.
Need to know
  • French is the most-used language in the city, and English is widely understood and spoken.
  • Bring a phrase book and practice your French with locals.
  • Old Québec City is a popular summer destination so book accommodation early to stay in one of the old town’s many historic inns, hotels and B&Bs.
  • Bring a rain jacket in case of a summer shower.
Getting Here