Historically, the Niagara Peninsula is one of the most colourful regions in Canada.
The majesty of the Falls made the region a location of wonder from its earliest inhabitants until the present day. The seeds for the development of Canada were sown in this very area and its proximity to the United States has made it a destination for travelers for hundreds of years.
Niagara Region Destination Video
More Niagara Region Information
The Niagara Region is comprised of 12 distinct municipalities, Niagara Falls, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Fort Erie, St. Catharines, Port Colborne, Thorold, Wainfleet, Welland, West Lincoln, Pelham and Lincoln. The Niagara Peninsula is bordered by three bodies of water, Lake Ontario, the Niagara River and Lake Erie and it is cut through by the world famous Welland Ship Canal which runs from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario.
One of the most fertile regions of Canada, the rich soil of Niagara has sustained inhabitants near and far since the very beginning. Lush vinyards, resplendent fruit orchards and productive farmland have all added to the success of the Niagara Region. Coupled with the Lake effect which contributes to a mild climate, the Niagara Region has always been a desirable location to put down roots.
Each of the twelve Municipalities has its own distinct characteristics and is an integral part of the mosaic that is Niagara.
The Queen of the Niagara Region, without question, is Niagara Falls, the World’s Most Famous Address and the Honey moon Capital of the World. The vacation destination for more than 16,000,000 visitors a year, from around the globe, Niagara Falls is on the list of one of the places one has to visit in a lifetime. A pretty City of about 82,000, Niagara Falls is still a small town at heart. While most residents of Niagara Falls may not get the opportunity to travel around the world, the world comes to Niagara in a never ending stream every year. Tourism is the number one industry in Niagara Falls and most residents have worked in the industry at some point in their life, usually as a teenager making money for school. Niagara Falls, USA is just across one of the three International Bridges located in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Both sides of the border offer distinctive but beautiful views of the mighty cataracts.
Located at the mouth of the Niagara River and Lake Ontario, the First Capital of Upper Canada, is one of the prettiest towns in Ontario. Historically preserved to the delight of its many visitors, the quaint little town is also home to the world famous Shaw Festival Theatre. A plethora of antique shops, artisans and artists, little boutiques and wonderful restaurants, Niagara-on-the-Lake is also home to a host of charming B&Bs and beautiful, full service Hotels and Inns. Set in the middle of Niagara Wine Country, the little town is picture perfect no matter the season and even in the fall and winter, a number of festivals and events keep the town bustling.
The beautiful Garden City, framed by the Niagara Escarpment, provides visitors with the culture of a prolific arts community, the splendour of wine country, and the excitement of local attractions. Just 15 minutes from Niagara Falls, St. Catharines is a picturesque city, rich in theatre, history, and outdoor recreation. From great days to good nights, your day’s activities can be topped off with a great night at one of our local hotels, motels or B&Bs. Discover all of what the Garden City has to offer. Residents from all over the Peninsula flock to St. Catharines to shop at Niagara’s largest indoor Shopping Mall, the Penn Centre. The Grape and Wine Festival, which takes place every Fall in St. Catharines is one of the oldest, consistently run Festivals in Canada.
In 1943, Sir Winston Churchill drove along the Niagara River Parkway. Impressed by the majesty of the Niagara River, he said it was the best Sunday afternoon drive in the world. The road still follows the Niagara River from Fort Erie all the way to Niagara-on-the-Lake and takes a detour into nearby wine country. For those staying in Fort Erie, the history of Canada is an open book. A critical strategic point, Fort Erie abounds with the remnants of conflict and trade. The original Old Fort Erie played a dramatic role in the War of 1812 and today offers a glimpse to those days through re-enactments. There is also a rail museum and the Ridgeway Battlefield Museum. Straying a little from the serious topic of history, visitors will find the open and vast waters of Lake Erie a tantalizing mix of cool water for play and hot sandy beaches for relaxing.
In the heart of the Niagara Peninsula are the charming hamlets of Fonthill, Fenwick and Ridgeville of Pelham on Highway 20, the scenic route between Niagara Falls and Hamilton. Discover gently rolling hills, lush orchards with roadside stands, artist and artisan galleries, antique shops, unique craft and gift shops, and fine country dining. Visit Canada’s oldest living sugar maple tree, the Comfort Maple, 90 feet high and 85 feet wide. Enjoy St. John’s Conservation Area natural park with wooded walking trails and a stocked trout pond for fishing. Explore one of Niagara’s great jewels, Short Hills Provincial Park, with wetlands, waterfalls and a stocked trout pond for fishing. Pelham, and the hamlets of Fonthill, Fenwick and Ridgeville also offers family camp sites, picnic facilities and a swimming area.
Nestled in the hills of the Niagara Escarpment, the little town of Grimsby is part of the fertile belt that threads through the Niagara Peninsula. A pretty town with an abundance of Nurseries, the residents take obvious pride in the appearance of their quaint homes. Both the Art Gallery and the local Museum tell the story of Grimsby residents, heroes and artists. Two primary events are the headliners for the Town of Grimsby – the November Santa Claus Parade and the annual Festival of Art, held each September. Located on Highway 20, Grimsby is also easily accessed from the Queen Elizabeth Way.
The City of Port Colborne offers visitors a vibrant, active and fun community. Located on the north shores of Lake Erie, Port Colborne offers a thriving festival and entertainment scene that includes live theatre, white sand beaches, culinary favourites, the community’s world class Sugarloaf Harbour Marina, fishing, golfing, recreation and unique shopping districts along the historic Welland Canal – truly a community that ensures quality of life for the entire family. The Canal Days Marine Heritage Festival, held every July, offers activities and attractions that will enliven the senses. The Tall Ships gather in Port Colborne each August holiday weekend, for a four-day celebration of history and heritage. Explore the decks, try your hand at the wheel, or feel the spray as you cruise a Tall Ship on Lake Erie.
Surrounded by vineyards and orchards in Niagara’s lush Twenty Valley, Lincoln is an easy drive from Toronto or Buffalo. Located on the Queen Elizabeth Way in the Niagara Region, and adjacent to the south shore of Lake Ontario, Lincoln is within the major populated areas of central Canada and near the eastern United States. Our small towns and villages, filled with wineries, antique shops, historical sites and natural attractions, make Lincoln a unique place to live, work, and call home.
Sample the best of West Lincoln, with a drive along its scenic back roads where you’ll see vast farmland and meandering rivers. If canoeing is your sport, try paddling down the Twenty Mile Creek or the Welland River. Or if a leisurely bike ride is more your style, the quiet country roads of West Lincoln make for an ideal scenic cycling route. Country fairs and festivals abound in West Lincoln’s villages. In Smithville, join in the fun at the Annual Frolic on the Twenty, or taste some home-style cooking at the annual Smithville Fall Fair. There are many accommodation choices in West Lincoln from amongst the quaint bed and breakfasts that are ready to welcome you.
Thorold is located in the heart of the Niagara Region, just five minutes from St. Catharines and ten minutes from Niagara Falls. The Welland Canal passes through the heart of the city, and the Twin Flight Locks, located downtown, attract thousands of tourists annually. Thorold is also the location of the War of 1812 battle site, Beaverdams, where, on June 25, 1813, Colonel Charles Boerstler and his American troops were defeated by a force of 80 British regulars and 300 Caughnawaga Mohawks.
Known officially as “The Rose City”, Welland is home to over 50,000 residents who represent a blend of many different cultures. The community hosts an abundance of recreational opportunities and is conveniently located in the centre of the Niagara Region. The City of Welland is a truly unique canal city blessed with a bilingual (French/English) population that emits a unique charm within the Region of Niagara. The city was first settled in 1788 by the United Empire Loyalists.
A small and growing tourist industry is located near and on Lake Erie at the southern area of Wainfleet called Long Beach. Wainfleet is also the home of the Marshville Heritage Village, a living history museum, recreating life in Ontario circa 1850-1910. Wainfleet is a great summer destination for the whole family. For a relatively low cost your family can enjoy several camping and resort areas, the warm beaches of Lake Erie, and the clean country air. Wainfleet is conveniently located on highway #3.