Hotel at a Glance: Wakefield Mill Hotel & Spa
The burbling La Pêche River supplies the background music at Wakefield Mill Hotel & Spa, nestled between the riverbanks and dense forests of Gatineau Park. The 4-star hotel lies inside a historic mill, and you can still see hints of the building’s former life; many guest rooms have exposed stone walls and original mill flooring. Others, located inside the LEED-certified Eco River Lodge, have large windows overlooking the river.
- Explore the property with complimentary showshoe rentals.
- Soak away stress in two riverside hot tubs, one with views of MacLaren Falls.
- Québécois specialties such as foie gras and bison tartar with mascarpone mousse are on the menu at the hotel’s Muse Restaurant. Adventurous eaters should try the chef’s tasting menu, which changes nightly.
- Sip a glass of wine by the fire at Heron Wine Bar.
- Floor-to-ceiling windows inside Spa Eau Vive look out onto MacLaren Falls. Enjoy the views during a hot-stone massage or seaweed body wrap. Two $20 spa credits are included with dining package options.
- Cross-country ski or hike in Gatineau Park, which boasts more than 100 miles of trails.
Wakefield, Quebec: Outdoorsy Town Along the Gatineau River
Even though it’s just a half-hour north of Ottawa, Wakefield couldn’t feel more removed from the bustling Canadian capital. Set along the banks of the Gatineau River, the town is surrounded by the quiet beauty of Gatineau Park, an extensive conservation park with lots of outdoor recreation. In the winter, skiiers can explore more than 50 cross-country skiing trails that weave through the park. Alpine skiing is also available at the Vorlage Ski Center just outside of town. When it warms up, you can hike densely wooded trails leading to stunning lookouts, or pack a lunch and head to the park’s free picnic areas, which open in mid-May. Swimming, fishing, mountain biking, and horseback riding are all popular warm-weather activities as well.
Located along the riverfront, Wakefield’s main drag is lined with independent shops selling local crafts and handmade chocolates. There’s also a thriving arts community, with numerous galleries and an annual art tour that showcases local artists each fall. For a night of live music, head to the Black Sheep Inn, where bands take the stage every weekend.
Book a spring break trip for the chance to win a second trip!