A day trip to Wendake invites you to slow your pace and open your mind. Located just 20 minutes north of the bustling streets of Quebec City, Wendake is a First Nation and home to the Wendat people. This destination offers world-class accommodations and authentic and engaging experiences. Through a day trip to Wendake, you can explore the world through Wendat viewpoints and traditions.
We recommend a day trip to Wendake as part of a wonderful winter weekend road trip to Quebec City. Read more about visiting Quebec City in winter here >
Begin your day trip to Wendake by slowing your pace
Typically, we’d recommend starting your day trip to Wendake by visiting the Huron-Wendat Museum, located inside the Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations. However, the museum is closed until June 2024 for a scheduled update to its exhibits.
Instead, begin your visit at the Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations but with a different purpose. Arrive at Wendake mid-afternoon and set aside some time to enjoy the hotel’s stunning new lobby bar. This addition, part of a renovation in late 2023, creates a comfortable and spacious year-round lounge area with views of the Akiawenrahk River. Relax around the fireplace that acts as the lobby’s centrepiece as you settle your mind into a contemplative space.
Some guided tours and activities are available during the winter months. Explore those offerings here.
Take a winter night walk through time at Onhwa’ Lumina
Once dusk falls, head toward Onhwa’ Lumina. This trail operates on weekends and some weeknights throughout the winter and is part of the Lumina Night Walks series created by Moment Factory, a Montreal-based firm that creates immersive multimedia experiences. All Lumina Night Walks are a spectacular meld of night hiking and brilliant light shows, but Onhwa’ Lumina goes a step further by combining this magic with a dive into Wendat culture.
As you walk through Onhwa’ Lumina, seven distinct light displays are matched with QR codes posted along the route. Each scan will take you to interactive guides and puzzles that explain different aspects of the Wendat way of life. You’ll visually explore concepts such as circles and cycles, the importance of Wendat villages and ancestors, and the origins of the land the Wendat call Turtle Island. This experience invites you to discover Wendat culture in a way that’s certain to leave an indelible mark on your soul.
End your day trip to Wendake with Indigenous cuisine at Restaurant La Traite
Food is so often demonstrative in culture. Cap off your visit to Wendake by returning to the Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations for world-class dining at Restaurant La Traite. Here, the menu combines Wendat traditions with locally sourced ingredients, many of which can be found growing wild in Quebec’s boreal forest. Enjoy meats such as bison and venison, boreal berries like sea buckthorn and raspberry, and Bannock, a bread that’s a staple for many Indigenous peoples.
Three, four, and five-course dinners, optionally with wine pairings, are offered alongside an à la carte menu. La Traite supports Indigenous businesses throughout its operations, including an extensive list of Indigenous-made wines sourced from British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley. A dinner here is truly a memorable and eye-opening experience.
How to get to Wendake from Quebec City
Wendake is an easy 20-minute drive from Quebec City. From Old Quebec, follow Route 136 on the waterfront west to Autoroute 973, which joins with Autoroute 73. Follow this north to Rue de la Faune, then continue west for 10 kilometres. You’ll find Wendake on the eastern bank of the Akiawenrahk River.