I started my day with a croissant and coffee at Tim Hortons, which is not far from my hotel (there’s also a McDonald’s if you like this option). After I ate, I spent some time at the Monastere des Augustines. There, I intentionally practiced mindfulness by tuning into the quiet and the sounds of the organ choir while sitting in the chapel. I’ve not felt that internal quiet in a long time so this was not only much needed but also an experience worth reckoning. I walked the first two floors, looking into rooms and saying “Bonjour” to a staff member or nun in passing. I couldn’t check out the part where the rooms were but I can sense tranquility and comfort in them just from the brief walk. I checked out the boutique and was intrigued by the merchandise: oils, lotions, candles. Sadly, the cafeteria closed 30 minutes before I arrived so I couldn’t check out the goodies. An American from NY and I chatted briefly but nothing noteworthy.
From the Monastery, I was determined to find La Citadelle and I’m glad I was persistent. While I didn’t take the tour, I was able to walk around the structure with freedom. I followed the path here and there like a kid in the candy store. After my tiring walk around La Citadelle, I re-traced my steps back to the main road where it would lead me back to the Hotel Frontenac.
I decided to investigate the tour that I was considering the day before. I walked over to the tourist information located near the Hotel Frontenac and asked about the church that was on the tour, how to get there, and if it’s far from the Falls. I decided that without data on my phone nor a good understanding of the countryside, that it would be best to let someone who knows do the work. For $57 (including tax), I was scheduled to leave at 1230pm for a tour of the countryside. Normally, I like to do the work and thus, save money but certain things need to be left with the experts.
Once I’ve settled my afternoon activities, I spent more time walking along the Terrasse Dufferin (Dufferin Terrace), which sits beside (or behind) Hotel Frontenac. I walked all the way to the stairs leading to the Governors Promenade. The stairs are not for the faint of heart, so take your time. It’s not steep or difficult, there’s just too many. Today was a perfect day to be at this location- the sun was generous and everywhere there were people running or walking or just enjoying what looked like a nice Spring day. The beauty of the St. Lawrence against the sun was stunning at the very top. From here, you can follow the path you’ve already taken (in this case, the many steps), which connects you to La Citadelle.
At Rue du Fort and Rue Saints-Anne, I found a place to rest my tired feet after climbing the stairs. At noon, I was enthralled by the music coming from a very talented street artist just in front of the Information Touristique. At the same time, church bells from the Notre Dame Cathedral were ringing. Priceless.
My next post will be my afternoon activities.