Niagara-on-the-Lake Things To Do
In addition to the wonderful treasure trove of historical attractions, Niagara-on-the-Lake is also the home of the world renowned Shaw Festival. The Shaw's stage comes alive for 8 months of the year and celebrates the works of George Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries on 3 stages; the 800 seat Festival Theatre, the Royal George Theatre and the Courthouse. The grounds of the Shaw are resplendent with beautiful gardens and architecture. The Shaw Shoppe offers unique and special gifts. The Shaw is a short walk from picturesque and lovely downtown Niagara-on-the-Lake.
Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club is the oldest operating course in North America, established in 1875. The nine holes, challenging golf course is located right in the Heritage District. The avid golfer is sure to want to include this course in the roster of courses visited. Located right on the shore of Lake Ontario, it's hard not to be distracted by all the surrounding beauty. Fort Mississauga was originally located on this site and a pathway leads to the old fort.
The Antiques and Artists Route is a specially signed route from the Queen Elizabeth Highway to the town of Niagara-on-the-Lake. The route takes you on an especially wonderful journey to all the secret places in and around Niagara-on-the-Lake. See artists at work and craftsmen creating masterpieces in this idyllic, creative atmosphere. Explore an abundance of antique shops where treasures abound and merchants love to haggle over their wares. Memorabilia and collectors' treasures are plentiful in this, the oldest part of Ontario, Canada.
Niagara on the Lake Wineries have become a signature attraction for the millions of guests who come to Niagara each year. Over 50 wineries are located between Grimsby and Niagara-on-the-Lake. The very well-marked Niagara Wine Route will lead the explorer to a vast array of wineries many offering tours, tastings, seminars and a warm welcome. Each winery is unique and offers its own special personality to the guest. The Niagara Winery Route was developed in 1987 and has grown from 13 original wineries to the size where the visitor has to return again and again just to take them all in. Several Festivals celebrating the lush grape harvest have developed over the years including the Icewine Festival, the New Vintage Festival and the world renowned Niagara Wine Festival which takes place each Fall with 10 days of celebration.
Biking is one of the most popular outdoor activities in Niagara. The Niagara River Recreation Trail winds its way along the Niagara River Parkway from the north end of Fort Erie to Fort George in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Safe and well maintained, the bike trail passes through some of the most spectacular scenery in Niagara. Stop for a picnic, gaze at majestic Niagara Falls, and take a break at a neat little roadside fruit stand along the way until you have reached your destination. The Toronto-Niagara Bike Train, operated by VIA Rail Canada has become very popular with cyclists who want to bring their bike with them to take advantage of the many bike trails which abound in Niagara. 2008 saw the beginning of a new tradition for cyclists in Niagara - The 1st Annual Great Waterfront Trail Adventure from July 4 - 11. Covering 680 km. of waterfront and 41 communities over an 8 day period, the end to end bike tour runs from Niagara-on-the-Lake to the Quebec border. In its first year over 170 cyclists of all ages enjoyed the WOW of the adventure, Wonderful Ontario Waterfront.
Birding has become one of the fastest growing activities for the traveler. Bird Kingdom an indoor free flying aviary in Niagara Falls is yet another soaring adventure for the whole family. The Niagara River Corridor running from Lake Erie (Fort Erie) to Lake Ontario (Niagara-on-the-Lake) is approximately 56 kilometers and has received international recognition by conservationists for the plethora of birds which can be spotted along the Niagara River Parkway. Varieties of ducks, geese and swans find winter refuge along the River's banks. The Niagara River is also home to the largest number of gull species in the world. Over 19 varieties of gulls from all over the earth migrate to the banks of the Niagara River each year. The Niagara River is also the only natural nesting habitat in the southern part of Ontario for the Peregrine Falcon. The Beamer Conservation Area, just north of Grimsby, a short jaunt from Niagara-on-the-Lake, has also recently reported the comeback of the Bald Eagle population. Viewing platforms make bird sightings even more enjoyable and in April, the Annual Hawk Watch Open House takes place on The Bruce Trail. Binoculars are a necessity for the birder visiting Niagara.