Frequently Asked Questions
As you start to plan your visit to Akwesasne, questions are sure to arise. We’ve put together the following Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) to try and address some of those potential information needs. Of course, if you still have further questions, don’t hesitate to contact us!
Akwesasne experiences all four seasons. The winters are cold, wet and snowy while summers are warm and humid. Spring temperatures are fairly cool with ranges around 76.7°F (24.8°C) and 33.2°F (0.7°C) and rain is common. Summer temperatures can range from 70°F (21.1°C) to 85°F (29.4°C). Fall is usually chilly and windy with highs of 78.6°F (25.9°C) and 42.9°F (6.1°C). WInter temperatures drop below freezing, especially at night and range between 38.6°F (3.7°C) and 27°F (-2.8°C), snow, rain and sleet are common so driving conditions can be hazardous.
We offer tours year round but the best time to visit Akwesasne is Summer and Fall (June-October) to see the beauty of our land and rivers.
The People and Place
Akwesasne “land where the Partridge drums”, is the Mohawk name of our community. Residents of Akwesasne are mostly members of the Mohawk nation, although we do have a mix of different Nations and Tribes residing on our territory. Akwesasne is one of eight Mohawk communities in North America. The Mohawks are a part of the Haudenosaunee or Six Nations, otherwise known as the Iroquois. Further information is available here.
Akwesanronon (people of Akwesasne) are welcoming, fun-loving people. Please respect our community and residential areas. Elders are held in the utmost importance, always be courteous, show respect and listen when elders are speaking. For further information on visitor etiquette, click here.
AHG – weh – SAUCE – knee
Ak (short A, as in aqua, and K is always pronounced as G in Mohawk), We (short ‘e’ as in ‘when’), Sas (long A, like ‘ahh’), ne (long ‘e’).
Arrival & Departure
The tours are located in both Canada and the USA. Guests can request options that don’t require crossing the border. If a tour does cross the border, passports and proper paperwork are required. For further information, check out Plan Your Visit.
From Massena, NY: follow NY-37E this will take you right into the community of Akwesasne.
From Malone, NY: follow NY-37W through Westville and Fort Covington into the community of Akwesasne.
If you are required to cross the border to visit Akwesasne Quebec or Akwesasne Ontario, please look at our border crossing information here. We will also give further direction in your detailed tour itinerary and pre-departure information as border crossing in Akwesasne can be confusing.
From Cornwall, ON: Follow Brookdale Avenue to International Road, crossing the bridge. Be aware this is a toll bridge, further information is available here. On your return to Cornwall, you will have to pass through Canadian customs (CBSA), you can use the domestic lane as you have never left Canada. Further information is available in this article. Also, detailed information will be available on your tour itinerary and pre-departure information.
To Akwesasne NY or Akwesasne QC please visit Plan Your Visit. We will also give further direction in your detailed tour itinerary and pre-departure information as border crossing in Akwesasne can be confusing.
Major International Airports near us are Ottawa International Airport in Ontario, Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Quebec, and Burlington International Airport in Vermont.
If arriving by airplane at one of the major airports it is best to rent your car there, if you plan to cross the border during your visit please make sure your rental car can. Massena Airport has Boutique Car, the closest car rental on the US side of Akwesasne and Cornwall has a few rental places, Enterprise and National on the Canadian side.
Most of our tours do not require guests to bring anything, however, if there are any special needs they are listed on our Tour Descriptions. Any further information will be listed in your detailed tour itinerary and pre-departure information.
Detailed information will be provided on your individual tour itinerary once you have booked your tour.
Tips are always appreciated, and you are welcome to acknowledge your host with a tip. Typical guide tips are around 10% of tour fees.
Reservations & Payments
To book tours, Akwesasne Travel accepts all major credit cards by online payment or over the phone. It is important to note that many of our tour suppliers only accept cash for items purchased during their tour. So please bring cash if you would like to purchase gifts and other items from tour hosts during your tour.
On the Canadian side, there is one bank located on Cornwall Island, Ontario: the Bank of Montreal.
On the US side of the community, most convenience stores and gas stations have ATMs available. For events and vendor sales, it is recommended to carry cash.
Both US and Canadian currency are accepted throughout Akwesasne however exchange rates may apply at some vendors.
Most restaurants in Akwesasne serve American-style cuisine, some will carry traditional dishes on occasions such as Mohawk corn soup, fried bread, hash, and strawberry drink.
Special events, such as our annual powwow, offer a wider variety of traditional foods.
Health & Safety
Akwesasne is a safe community to visit. Akwesasne is a close-knit community and is very welcoming and unique. Akwesasne residents welcome visitors to come and learn more about our people and community.
Drugs and Alcohol
Akwesasne Travel operates under a drug and alcohol-free approach. Alcohol consumption and drug use are prohibited on designated Akwesasne Travel tours. If you are found under the influence of alcohol, illegal or recreational drugs prior to or while engaging in the activities, you will be asked to leave the tour.
All visitors to Akwesasne should respect and follow applicable laws while under the jurisdiction of the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe and or Mohawk Council of Akwesasne.