The next morning, after a day exploring and subsequently falling in love with Quebec (as well as developing a bit of a crush for autumn with its beautiful fall foliage), we packed up and headed out to explore even more of the province of Quebec, beyond its beautiful capital city.
Our main destination for the day was Sacacomie but with such a beautiful drive ahead, we figured it made sense to stop off in a few spots along the way to make the most of the day.
Our first stop was Wendake, a little town (or perhaps a village) you’d be easily forgiven for not having heard about.
With beauties like Quebec and Montreal taking centre stage, places like Wendake aren’t necessarily amongst the top of most people’s list of spots to visit but Wendake is so worth popping into – even if just for a few hours.
See in Wendake, you have a community of First Nations people (the original people in Canada before the Brits, French…etc) all headed over and a visit here is a chance to experience a part of Canada’s story you might perhaps not have heard of otherwise.
To make the most of the visit though, we headed over to Hôtel-Musée Premières Nations, which is, as the name suggests a hotel, but also a museum (I think the name translates to Hotel Museum Of The First Nations).
Here, you get to not only hear the tales of the First Nations people who lived in the area the Huron-Wendat but also experience first-hand, how they lived. As it turns out, the Huron-Wendat, had a fairly cordial relationship with the settlers from Europe, with marriages across these communities being fairly common.
Arguably one of the most interesting spots when you Wendake visit is definitely checking out the Huron-Wendake houses. It’s a brilliant opportunity to find out about how they lived, farmed, hunted, protected themselves from predators and all the little details as to why the buildings were constructed the way they were.
There are so many bits and pieces we learnt here and there but I’ll leave most of that for you to find out for yourself when you visit.
After grabbing a quick bite to eat here, we carried on to Sacacomie, on a drive that was constantly broken up with stops to check out that stunning fall foliage!
Bit of a spoiler alert – this isn’t even nearly as colourful as some of the places we would be visiting over the coming week. We genuinely have never experienced autumn like we did here in Quebec.
In Sacacomie, we checked into the Sacacomie Hotel, a hotel deep in the woods with stunning views of the lakes and forest and one absolutely amazing Nordic spa.
Seeing as we had no plans for the rest of the evening, we headed down to the spa to relax and take in the sunset, in the most delightfully tranquil setting.
It was every bit as delightful as it sounds/looks.
Dinner that evening was also at the hotel. Actually, in a lot of ways, the hotel is kind of like a resort in that everything you’d need for a getaway is here. You can even head out on activities during that day to explore more of your beautiful surroundings.
The hotel was actually originally built as a cabin for the owner at the time who just wanted somewhere to escape to in the woods. Soon enough, his friends got interested and started visiting with him.
He soon cottoned onto the idea of building a hotel for other people to just come to escape their busy lives and reconnect with nature and it’s just grown and grown since then. At its core is connecting with nature, something we would be doing the next day.
But first things first though, dinner! And what a dinner it was.
Soups kicked things off, swiftly followed by pork for myself and I can’t quite remember the name of what Lloyd had, I just remember how delicious it was when I tasted it.
Oh, I almost forgot, before we started dinner, we did what I guess is something of a Sacacomie tradition (if you’re game for it, of course, which we were).
Essentially, you get a shot of maple whisky in a glass made of ice, a few words are said (like a toast in French so I won’t even attempt to repeat it) and, with your back to the forest, you down the shot in one and chuck the ice glass into the woods.
Suffice to say, it starts quite the fire in your belly before you settle down for dinner.
Dessert was a Mille Feuille for me and chocolate for Lloyd.
The menu for dinner changes every day so you’re in for a treat if you’re staying several days.
After a quick post-dinner, wander around, we decided to call it a day, eager to explore the next morning.
The next morning, we got up bright and early for breakfast, after which we got into a rather rugged ATV and headed out into the woods.
Don’t worry, we had a guide here (you can get one with the hotel) otherwise we almost certainly would have been lost in the woods.
And so off we went, traipsing through the colourful autumnal forest, stopping every so often to take in the view while also learning more about the area and the wildlife present here.
It was one of those mornings where we didn’t really ‘do anything’ per se, (in that there was no real aim/goal except to just explore) yet it was still one that felt like we did so much.
It was also nice to see the colours of autumn coming through here but as it turned out, the very next thing we did truly showcased those autumn colours at its very finest.
Will show you exactly what I mean in the very next post! (Also, it was at this point that I think I officially accepted that perhaps we might have been officially converted to ‘leaf peepers’ 😄😄)
*Would put it all in this post but it would be waaaaay too many photos in one post and would probably take forever to load.