Like Griffintown in Montreal or Williamsburg in Brooklyn, within a few years, Saint-Roch went from a working-class neighbourhood to the place to be. Food, culture, technology, fashion, nightlife: take off on a mission to discover the hippest of what Québec City's Lower Town has to offer!
How to Get There
On foot from Old Québec or Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Saint-Roch is easily accessible in 5 minutes by walking down the many stairs. It's good for cardio! The Faubourg elevator, at the corner of Sainte-Claire and Saint-Réal streets, also connects the Lower Town and Upper Town. Comes in very handy with a stroller or a bike! The 800 and 801 Métrobus lines regularly come through the neighbourhood, at the De Sainte-Hélène and Université du Québec stops. You can also go London-style and take the red double-decker bus, whose tourist route includes a stop in the heart of rue Saint-Joseph.
What was the most important commercial street in Québec City until the 1960s? Rue Saint-Joseph Est! The main now reclaims its title thanks to young creative entrepreneurs. To check out trendy shops, eat in the most talked-about restaurants, knock back a few in a pub or watch the latest hit show, Saint-Roch is where you go!
The area is particularly appreciated by foodies: the city's best restaurants rub shoulders with little neighbourhood joints where you get great value for your money, while microbreweries are really taking off and brewing refreshingly original beers. Don't forget to visit a gourmet grocer to take back a piece of the local products home with you!
In summer, young professionals from the web and video game industries blend in with the student crowd looking for a place to eat outside in Jardin Jean-Paul-L’Allier, a real oasis of greenery in the heart of the city.
In winter, Saint-Roch is illuminated by a 15-metre Christmas tree; simply magical! It is also host to the Jamboree since 2005, the FIS snowboard and freeski world cup. If you can never get enough thrilling experiences, that's where you need to go!
All year round, you can tap into the neighbourhood's lively spirit both day and night thanks to the many bars and pubs where you can keep the night going after a concert or play. An amazing light path guides your steps along rue Saint-Joseph, reacting to people and movement. Brilliant!
A Bit of History
One of Québec City's oldest faubourgs (a faubourg is a district located outside city walls), tucked in between the cliff that leads up to the Upper Town and the Saint-Charles River, Saint-Roch remained a working-class district for a long time. Today, that's where tech businesses have their headquarters, where young professionals set up shop, all while preserving the social diversity that defines the area.