Wakefield, QC

Wakefield is a charming community on the Gatineau River about half an hour north of Ottawa. With its pleasant atmosphere and interesting boutiques, it is a popular tourist destination. Many tourists reach the village by the Hull-Chelsea-Wakefield Steam Train, a scenic excursion with views along the Gatineau River.

Wakefield's historic covered bridge was rebuilt in 1997, having earlier been destroyed by fire.

The steam train draws tourists from around the world, and is one of the few of its kind remaining in Canada.

The Blacksheep Inn, a popular spot for live music.


Another popular spot in Wakefield is the Blacksheep Inn -- or Auberge Mouton Noir, as the outdoor signs say to conform with Québec's language laws. Its relaxed, though unpretentious, bar hosts some of Canada's best live music from various genres: folk, country, world, blues, etc. Many people travel from Ottawa to Wakefield to experience music in this intimate atmosphere.

Wakefield has a large artistic and craft community, no doubt attracted by its scenic location in the Gatineau Hills. It also draws participants in a variety of outdoor sports -- skiing (both downhill and cross-country) in winter, and boating, canoeing and kayaking in summer.

The community is largely anglophone, though English and French communities live side by side.

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© 1999 Richard McGuire: digital photos, text & design..