In the heart of Gatineau Park’s Chelsea sector, the Mackenzie King Estate is a site that is rich in history and has the added bonus of being accessible year-round. This country estate is the precious legacy of former prime minister William Lyon Mackenzie King, who owned the property for close to 50 years. Come enjoy a walk in nature, and discover this jewel in the heart of Gatineau Park. You’ll find magnificent English and French gardens, historical ruins and several hiking trails.
The Mackenzie King Estate in 2021
In 2021, the cottages and tearoom are closed for the season, and special activities are cancelled. However, the gardens, trails and ruins are accessible at all times.
- Parking lots: P6, open year-round. From May to October, parking fees are charged.
- Picnic area: During summer, there are picnic tables near the Moorside cottage.
- Toilets: There is an outhouse open year-round near the parking lot; washroom facilities near the Moorside cottage are open during the summer.
- Food and drink: There is a water fountain and a seasonal canteen, Pat Café.
- Universal accessibility: Most of the buildings and the paths between them are universally accessible. The hiking trails are not wheelchair-accessible. Free parking spots are reserved for those who have an accessible parking permit. Five manual wheelchairs are available upon request. We recommend that you use the accessible path during your visit to the Estate.
Visit the Mackenzie King Estate
The grounds of the Estate are open year-round. Self-guided, individual and group tours of the Estate are free. Guided tours and activities for school groups will not be offered in 2021. Guide-interpreters are on-site every day except Tuesdays.
Access to the Mackenzie King Estate by car depends on the time of year and the Gatineau Park parkway schedule.
You can access the Estate via the Champlain Parkway, from the Gatineau Parkway. Take the Gatineau Parkway from the Park’s south entrance (Boulevard des Allumettières or Alexandre-Taché Boulevard) or from Chelsea (Old Chelsea Road and Chemin du Lac-Meech).
Take Kingsmere Road from Chelsea. Follow the signage for parking lot P6, which indicates to turn left at Swamp Road, and then right on Barnes Road. The entrance to the Estate is on the left.
Points of interest
Open in 2021
Parking lot P6 is the starting point for hiking trails and mountain biking trails from spring until the fall. In winter, it’s the starting point for winter hiking, cross-county skiing and snowshoeing.
The Waterfall and Lauriault trails are a popular hiking loop. Leashed dogs are allowed year-round.
Ruins and gardens
King’s estate bears an enduring mark of his complex personality and romantic nature. His gardens, the collection of ruins and other features that he created stand even today as reflections of King’s ambitions and passions.
For safety and conservation reasons, it is not permitted to climb on the ruins.
Pat Café is affectionately named after William Lyon Mackenzie King’s dogs. It is open from noon to 4 pm on weekends until October 24, including Thanksgiving Monday. Weather permitting.
Closed in 2021
The Kingswood and Moorside cottages, faithfully restored and rich in artifacts, are now museums, which contain interactive exhibits. There are also interpretation panels inside the cottages and around the property.
Mackenzie King Tearoom
Take in the romantic atmosphere of the Mackenzie King Tearoom, while savouring a meal in an elegant historical setting. Enjoy English tea service and a seasonal lunch menu, featuring local producers, house-made products, wine and beer. The veranda overlooking the gardens is itself worth the visit.
About the Mackenzie King Estate
This 231-hectare country estate belonged to Canada’s 10th and longest-serving prime minister, William Lyon Mackenzie King. After spending almost 50 years (1903–1950) beautifying and expanding his property, King bequeathed his beloved estate to all Canadians.
The Mackenzie King Estate is also a popular place for small weddings. A reservation is required.
Did you know? William Lyon Mackenzie King welcomed many dignitaries to his summer home, including Winston Churchill and Yousuf Karsh.
Discover other interesting facts, and see historical photos on our interactive map.