Old world charm awaits you at Niagara-on-the-Lake. Stroll the mature tree lined streets and browse antique and boutique shops at ease in this laid back town. You may even see a horse drawn carriage transporting visitors to a bygone era. Located in the heart of Ontario’s wine country, this quaint village has a serious focus on quality food and drink. Of note: the region is home to some of Canada’s oldest and most established vineyards. With almost 40 wineries in the region, there is a tour to suit anyone's tastes. Pop into your favourite winery for a tasting or try a bike tour or a guided tour with a local operator. Make sure to sample the region's signature Icewine and if you happen to be visiting in January, try the Niagara Icewine Festival. The town is bordered by Lake Ontario and the Niagara River, so there is no shortage of waterfront views.
To learn more about all there is to see and do in Niagara-on-the-Lake, scroll down or visit the town's tourism website.
Where is Niagara-on-the-Lake?
Niagara-on-the-Lake is located in Southern Ontario, a 25-minute drive north of Niagara Falls. Fly into Niagara International Airport (IAG), Hamilton International Airport (YHM), Toronto Pearson Airport (YYZ), or Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (YTZ) for easy access to the city. Niagara-on-the-Lake is about a 1 hour drive from Hamilton, Ontario and about a 1.5 hour drive from Toronto, Ontario.
The WEGO operates a shuttle from May to October between Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls.
Things to Do in Niagara-on-the-Lake
Best known as Canada’s Niagara wine region, a visit to Niagara-on-the-Lake isn’t complete without touring a local winery. If you are sipping your way through town, try one of the craft breweries and distilleries that also call Niagara-on-the-Lake home. Also highly regarded as a culinary destination, the local bistros and restaurants offer farm to table dishes that easily pair with a local libation.
History buffs should visit to Fort George National Historic Site. This Parks Canada attraction offers insight into over 250 years of Canadian history, including the War of 1812. The site was also a training facility for soldiers for both World War I and World War II. Interpreters in historical dress will guide you through the past for a greater understanding of the area.
If visiting in winter, the annual Niagara Icewine Festival brings the village to life every January. Spanning two weekends in the Historic District, the event turns the town into a winter wonderland perfect for sampling the region's wines, food, and shopping.
It is easy to enjoy the great outdoors in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Take in a round of golf at one of the many courses. The multi-use trails in town offer easy access for hiking, jogging, and biking with no shortage of waterfront views. Those seeking adrenaline can head out on the water with the Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours for a whitewater adventure in the Niagara River.
Nearby Niagara Falls is a 20 minute drive away for a quick trip to view the majestic Horseshoe Falls.
Niagara-on-the-Lake Neighbourhoods & Districts
Often called Ontario’s prettiest town, Niagara-on-the-Lake’s focal point is the Heritage District. Stoll past the Victorian architecture under the canopy of mature trees while you dine, sip and shop. Fort George National Historic Site is located on the banks of the Niagara River, where interpreters in historical dress will regale you with its rich history. Just beyond the village, the lush landscape is dotted with wineries and makes for a picturesque car or bike ride.
A pedestrian-friendly neighbourhood full of unique shops complete with horse-drawn carriage rides to relive the history of the region.
Fort George National Historic Site
A Parks Canada site spanning centuries of Canadian history.
Beyond town there are almost 40 wineries crafting the signature wines of the region.
Things to Know About Visiting Niagara-on-the-Lake
Whether you’re still in the planning stages or you’re already on your trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake, you'll appreciate what the locals recommend around the city.
Niagara-on-the-Lake is important in the history of Canada: called Newark from 1792 to 1797, it served as the first capital of Upper Canada, the predecessor of Ontario.
Consider private driving tour services like yourDD, who will provide a personalized wine tour experience with a professional driver using your own car. Simply let them know which wineries you want to visit and they can map out the ultimate wine tour for you.
Where to snap a great Instagram pic
Queen’s Royal Park is a picturesque little parkette along the Niagara River that looks out towards the US shoreline and features a pretty wooden gazebo.
Where to go for a hike
Where to shop
Quaint shops, boutiques, galleries and cafes line Queen Street, the main thoroughfare in town.