The Governors Promenade (Promenade des Gouverneurs) is a giant boardwalk in Quebec City that connects the Plains of Abraham Park to the Dufferin Terrace (Terrasse Dufferin). The Dufferin Terrace is close to the famous Chateau Frontenac hotel, the Funicular, and the Breakneck Stairs that connects Upper Town to Lower Town. The elevated promenade stretches along the Citadel with the fortification wall on one side, and a gorgeous view of the St. Lawrence River on the opposite side. You can start at either end of the boardwalk. This is a great free activity where you can get some exercise, enjoy the scenery, and make your way from one destination to another.
We really didn’t plan it this way, but we started at the Plains of Abraham. This is kind of like cheating in a way. Walking the Governors’ Promenade usually ensures that you climb a whole bunch of uphill staircases and steps – at least over 300. However, since we started at the Plains of Abraham side after walking around the Fortifications & the Citadel, we ended up walking down the stairs the entire time! It doesn’t really matter what you do. If you’re into completing the full stair climbing experience, start at Chateau Frontenac! If you’re there more for the view and less for the exercise, start at the Plains of Abraham. No matter which way you end up going, it is guaranteed that when you visit Quebec City, you’re going to end up climbing a whole lot of stairs anyway – it’s an extremely hilly city with many stairways!
We found the Governors’ Promenade where the Citadel meets the Plains of Abraham park along the cliff edge. The Battle of Abraham was fought here many years ago; now, the area is a sprawling park with many picnic tables and trees. The Plains of Abraham is a great place to relax or have a picnic in the sunshine.
We walked down the boardwalk and enjoyed the views of the river. We could see straight across to the island of Lévis as we slowly sauntered along, fully absorbing our surroundings. We saw many people jogging and walking, mostly in the opposite direction than we were going! The path really wasn’t very busy. We walked at our own pace stopping many times for photos. Thankfully, it was a gorgeous day outside and the sun was shining brightly.
And we arrived back at the Dufferin Terrace (Terrasse Dufferin), a giant boardwalk with many shaded pavilions. It is where Chateau Frontenac is located, and where you can travel between Upper Town and Lower Town using the Funicular car or the Breakneck Stairs.