Wellness Tourism: 7 Ways to Embrace Self‑Care in Québec City

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Published on May 12, 2023
Auberge Triangle d'été
Auberge Triangle d'été

What is wellness tourism? It’s travel that enhances the physical and mental health of the traveller and is also good for the host community and the environment. Whether to discover new healthy habits or take an existing routine to the next level, it’s about making wellness part of the plan when selecting a vacation destination. Having a positive impact while travelling and coming home with head and heart full are the essence of this healing tourism trend. For examples of wellness tourism in Québec City, read on.  

Relax and Recharge

There’s a historic slice of heaven in Old Québec where culture and self‑care meet. Monastère des Augustines is a former convent turned into a wellness resort that offers a variety of personal transformation practices in line with its cultural and social mission.  

Old wings of the Monastère des Augustine and view of the exterior courtyard.
Le Monastère des Augustines

Today, day and overnight guests can experience a vast range of wellness retreats and activities in a setting that honours, preserves, and continues the work and outreach of the Augustinian Sisters. Contemplative walks, yoga, lectures, meditation, workshops, concerts, mindful eating, and massages are some of the options on offer to support overall health.  


The Augustinian Sisters were sent by King Louis XIII and arrived in North America in 1639 to serve as caregivers and apothecaries at the first hospital north of Mexico. Even back then, they took a global approach to health care. When their numbers began to shrink rapidly, the sisters decided to leave their valuable legacy to the people of Québec.   

Other options include the guided meditation at Oanaqa (which also offers wellness retreats, rituals, and drumming), the yoga at Auberge Triangle d’été, and the retreats at Temple Sanctuaire. Gîte des Belvédères also offers spiritual retreats with energy-boosting body care, meditation exercises and mindful hikes. For the devout among us, Old Québec also has options for religious pilgrimages

Being Active Outdoors

Reconnecting with nature is an essential form of self‑care. Time and time again, it’s been proven that nature is good for our health and well‑being. Spending time outdoors, alone or with others, keeps us grounded in the moment and provides the perfect setting for that meaningful conversation or chance encounter. 

Couple kayaking in the fall season at the Marais du Nord
marais du Nord, Francis Fontaine

Québec City is surrounded by rivers, hills, and forests that are totally spectacular in all four seasons. Places like Jacques‑Cartier National Park and Montmorency Falls are perfect for making the most of this giant outdoor playground

Urban parks in the city centre are another way to commune with nature. The streets of Old Québec are a favourite spot for runners, while the area’s vast network of paths and trails offer endless options for hiking and biking.  

Get Away from It All

Speaking of nature, why not make the most of the experience by booking a stay in a secluded getaway? We’ve come up with a list of options for every style and budget.  

  • Unusual accommodations: we love Centre de l’Hêtre, where the wellness packages include yoga, meditation, massage therapy, and on‑site outdoor activities, and the eco-friendly cabins of Escale au Lac, featuring their eco-responsible thermal experience.
  • Resorts: the mountainside and waterfront resorts here make it easy to be well, with a variety of activities and dining options right outside your door.      
  • Hotel‑Musée Premières Nations: inspired by the architecture of teepees and     longhouses, this 4‑star hotel offers a plush way to discover the local Huron‑Wendat community

Relax at the Spa

Whether for winding down after a long day outside or just to relax, spa time is self‑care at its finest. And of course, no visit to Québec City would be complete without a visit to a Nordic spa. Strøm Spa Nordique at the foot of Old Québec combines thermal baths, massage therapy, beauty treatments, and delicious food.  

From massages, wraps, and aesthetic medical treatment to baths, steam rooms, and saunas, Québec City’s spas and wellness centres have everything you need for self‑care.

Slow Down

taying longer offers a chance to slow down and live in the moment. When we give ourselves the luxury of time, everyday stress melts away and we can focus on what really matters—our relationships with people and the world around us. Having the opportunity to dig into local history and experience the culture of the neighbourhoods we visit is good for us and for others. And that’s what wellness tourism is all about.  

Explore Art and Local Heritage

Culture also has proven benefits for our health. And Québec City is a destination of choice for both history and art. Here are our top picks for a dose of culture:  

Enjoy Fabulous Local Food

Wholesome food is another important part of wellness and self‑care. Eating local is a sure path to healthy, delicious meals that also nurture the local economy. We love all the amazing options in Québec City, from Indigenous cuisine and terroir specialties to you‑pick farms and orchards and eco‑friendly restaurants

Calculate Your Trip’s Carbon Footprint

Your carbon offset will be used to plant trees in the boreal forest. Details

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Vaolo is a collaborative platform for travel experiences that get you off the beaten path. With inspiring recommendations on places to stay and things to do, Vaolo makes it easy for travellers to embrace sustainable tourism, delivering fully immersive experiences vetted by Vaolo explorers. 

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