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Review of Musee Huron-Wendat

Musee Huron-Wendat
Ranked #2 of 8 things to do in Wendake
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The museum introduces, in a very interactive fashion, a unique collection which brings one to the heart of the Huron-Wendat culture, explores themes from the historical territories and recalls native memories and knowledge. The museum offers more than a simple visit; it introduces a bona fide cultural voyage. Apart from all the collections, one can find, in close proximity to a restores brook, outdoor theme gardens where one may discover the beauty and power of the medicinal plants.
Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Canada
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 August 2013

Loved the interactive aspect as well as the layout. Personnel was warm and inviting. Highly recommended!

Visited August 2013
1 Thank Zinmcar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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149 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Level 6 Contributor
494 reviews
295 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 174 helpful votes
“Well-done museum, elegant hotel and restaurant”
Reviewed 12 August 2013

. Situated about 15 kilometers north of Vieux Quebec, the town of Wendake has a gentle charm – whitewashed 17th and 18th Century buildings along winding lanes, bright red and purple flowers in planters. The Wendat (the French called them Huron) complex features everything from a full-sized replica of a traditional longhouse to a modern conference center and a posh hotel that would have been at home in Aspen – elegant décor featuring animal skins and lots of glass. Wood facing, stained a sort of redwood color, ties the modern buildings together. The hotel’s restaurant serves what might be called New First Nations cuisine – fish and game (red deer, caribou) dishes, appetizers featuring produce and herbs that might have been available to the Wendat people in the early 17th Century when they migrated to this region from the area around what is now Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The menu looked intriguing, but we weren’t in the mood for ambitious fine dining. The $135 tab for the evening tasting menu includes wine pairings. Judging from the call brands lined up behind the bar, this is no “dry” reservation.
Accessed through the hotel lobby, the museum is laid out in the round, with a grove of slender birch trunks in the center, next an array smaller artifacts, such as awls and especially finely worked moccasins, in pedestal cases, then larger, curved glass cases containing larger pieces, from carrying baskets and showy wampum sashes to snowshoes to canoes, with bilingual texts posted alongside explaining aspects of the Wendats’ beliefs, traditions and daily lives. Finally, similar cases, except one-sided, are arrayed around the wall. Downstairs was a temporary exhibit of paintings and constructions (a couple of which employed gilded caribou horns) by a contemporary Wendat artist. Visitors could also watch young artisans engaged in beadwork – for sale, of course, in the boutique.
In terms of museumology, the Huron-Wendat Museum strikes an effective balance between old and new. Slides and film clips of animals in the forest and Wendats engaged in various activities play around the domed ceiling above the cases without detracting from their contents. At one point, a visitor can lift a handset and hear a Wendat man talk about taking his first hunt with his grandfather.
An asphalt path leads down from the hotel and museum to a pretty stream and a traditional vegetable garden. Like the Pueblo people of the Southwest, the Wendat, once they settled and took up agriculture, relied on the Three Sisters – squash, beans and corn. Bilingual interpretive signs explain that these three crops support each other: beans climb the corn stalks, and squash shade the soil, slowing evaporation during dry times.

Visited August 2013
2 Thank Sandy S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Quebec City, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Very interesting”
Reviewed 13 April 2013

Nice way to learn about Hurons. The museum is one large round room, but filled with traditional artifacts and objects. We cannot take pictures.

Visited November 2012
1 Thank Aidan44
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“A great introduction to the first nations culture”
Reviewed 6 January 2013

We spent a few hours at this beautiful small museum full of artefacts from the first nations culture. The guided visit is a must. The guide was very knowledgeable and interesting. We were a small group (just our family at the beggining of the visit) and we had great insights about the first nations stories and culture.

Visited December 2012
Thank myriam_traveltips
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2012

We had a fascinating vist to Wendake. We got a couple of buses up from Quebec City - the tourist office will tell you which ones to get. We first walked along the gorge and the swollen river and rapids were a dramatic sight. We went to the museum but found it was closed for lunch (from 12 -1 oddly) so we walked up to the Huron vilage which took about twenty minutes. Wendake town was not what we expected. The streets were named in both English and the Huron language and looked more prosperous thatn we had imagined. The Huron Village is in a rather unprepossessing site in an industrial park but none of that is apparent once you go in. We waited about 20 minutes for an English speaking guide to be available and then a young Huron woman appeared to take us round. She was excellent - she spoke with passion and deep knowledge about the exhibits we were seeing and really made them come alive - but also spoke in a very thought-provoking way about the history of the Huron people, what it was like to grow up in a Huron community and contemorary First Nation problems. After the tour there was plenty of time to wander round ourselves, visit the gift shop (which was better value and quality than we had seen elsewhere) and eat a meal in the cafeteria which sold tasty, good value, traditional food. All the staff we spoke to were very friendly and helpful. It was a really good visit and a highlight of our stay in Canada.

Visited May 2012
3 Thank Nick H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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