Located within the National Battlefields Park in Quebec City, Plains of Abraham is considered one of Canada’s most significant historical parks. Frequented by over four million visitors every year, the Plains of Abraham attracts tourists and locals who come to gaze at the 98 hectares of grassy hills and meadows, which were once the site of one of North America’s most defining battles.
Aside from its sheer beauty and size, the Plains of Abraham is an intriguing site because of its history. The Battle of the Plains of Abraham in 1759 was one of the most defining moments for the Seven Years’ War and for the fate of Canada.
On the very site where picturesque grassy knolls now stand, a British assault force commanded by General James Wolfe successfully defeated French troops, which led to the pivotal surrendering of Quebec to the British. The Plains of Abraham is named after Abraham Martin, a river pilot and fisherman who moved to Quebec City in 1635 and inherited 13 hectares of land.
One of the largest city parks in the world, the Plains of Abraham is a huge tourist drawcard, extending west from the Quebec Citadel along the highland of the St. Lawrence River. Visitors to the Plains are spoilt for choice when it comes to historical features and attractions.
The Joan of Arc Garden located near the municipal reservoir is a striking monument to the French heroine, with its colourful floral displays and a grand statue of Joan in the centre. Those who want to soak up as much of the history of the Plains as possible can hear from a modern-day Abraham Martin himself – the Abraham’s Bus Guided Tour takes 45 minutes and takes visitors on a historical pilgrimage through the park.
It is described with some humour by a fictional Abraham, in multiple languages. Other popular attractions in the park include the Québec City Martello Towers, the Plains of Abraham Trail and the Plains of Abraham Skating Rink (only in winter).
Both the Plains of Abraham and Battlefield Park are open year round and are free to the public.