Visiting Niagara-on-the-Lake: Activities You Won’t Want to Miss

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

We welcome you with open arms. We want you to enjoy your stay in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Spring is finally here! And at Lakelands B&B, we’re excited to get the 2016 season underway. If you’ve landed on our little website, it must mean you’re considering a stay with us. Nothing makes us happier than seeing our guests enjoy the beauty of Niagara-on-the-Lake. NOTL is a charming town, full of history and class. It’s located at the breathtaking point where the mighty Niagara River carves its way along the Niagara Parkway and empties out into Lake Ontario. And don’t forget: We’re also surrounded by more than 20 wineries, each with its own personality and hospitable nature.

At Lakelands B&B, we welcome you with open arms. Zoli and I want you to enjoy your stay in Niagara-on-the-Lake. That’s why we’ve come up with this handy guide to give you some ideas!

Walk or Bike: Exploration is Easy in NOTL

This town is a paradise for those who like to explore. There are so many walking and cycling trails to suit all tastes. If you enjoy lakeside scenery (which includes the river and gorge), Niagara-on-the-Lake’s waterfront trail is the perfect journey. You’ll find two historic military forts, boutique shops and picnic areas along the way.

If you’re up for more of a challenge, consider a hike in the Niagara Glen. This is a unique place of beauty deep within the river Gorge. The moderately steep hike leads past mossy boulders, which were left behind as the Falls eroded thousands of years ago. It is one of the best preserved examples of Southern Ontario’s original Carolinian forest. Remember to wear suitable footwear as it’s quite rugged terrain. This hike will take you deep down to the Niagara River rapids. NOTL is certainly Ontario’s best destination for outdoor exercise and relaxation. Maps and info can be found here.

Unique Shopping Experiences Await You

No trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake is complete without a stopover on Queen Street. Located in the heart of town, you’ll find many retail shops worth a browse. Shoppers will see one-of-a-kind items they won’t find back home. And you’ll also come across some interesting galleries filled with unexpected treasures. From everyday needs to special gifts, you’re sure to be pleased with the shopping here.

Nothing Wrong With Just Taking a Break

After a leisurely stroll, take a coffee break in the Old Town. One of our favourite spots is Balzac’s on King Street, which is housed in a historic building that used to be a rail station. Grab a cappuccino, sit down, and people-watch for a while. Or if the day is warm and you’re in need of a cool treat, look for the yellow awning on Queen Street. That’s where you can order up the best Italian gelato ever at Il Gelato di Carlotta.

‘Fresh’ is the Word at The Farmer’s Market

On Saturday mornings (May 28th to October 8th, 2016) starting at 8am until 1pm: The farmers of Niagara-on-the-Lake come out with fresh, organic produce. All of it is grown locally. This is the place to stock up on ingredients to take home. Of course, there are also flowers, baked goodies, and cooked foods for a healthy snack.

On Wednesday evenings (May 25th to Sept 21st, 2016) at 4:30pm until dusk, something very special happens. The Farmer’s Market transforms into what we call The Supper Market. Food trucks are lined up and picnic tables are set out. You can grab a bite and some beer or wine. We invite you to join the locals and watch the sun go down in a socially relaxed and fun atmosphere. Of course, the vendors are still around. So feel free to take a stroll and grab some take-home items.

Visit Local Wineries: The Heart of NOTL!

At Lakelands B&B, we want our guests to take full advantage of the wineries here. That’s why we present our visitors with complimentary tasting vouchers upon check-in. Be sure to bring these along when you head out. If you’re unsure where to begin, we’d be happy to suggest some spectacular winery routes. From there, just decide whether you’d like to explore by car or bike. We can also arrange an organized tour that will take out all the hassle. This way, you won’t need a designated driver either. You and your loved ones can simply enjoy all the excellent wines produced at each venue. Keep in mind many of these wineries have lovely restaurants where you can break for lunch!

Wine Country Ontario is full of useful information if you’re planning a trip here.

Fort George: A Spectacular Trip to the Past

Canada’s War of 1812 comes to life inside Fort George. This national site is something history buffs won’t want to miss. Wander through the buildings or listen to military music by the 41st Fife and Drum Corps. Visitors can also watch live musket demonstrations and enjoy beautiful views of the Niagara River and Lake Ontario. Visit their website to see what’s on while you’re in town.

Golf Your Way to Happiness

Here’s some golf trivia for you. Did you know Niagara-on-the-Lake boasts the oldest golf course in North America, dating all the way back to 1875? The NOTL Golf Club is a semi-private venue with a 9-hole course. It draws on the atmosphere of a private club, but still welcomes the public with open arms. The best of both worlds.

There’s a new ‘Belle’ in Town!

Experience the magic of The Niagara Belle. This paddle wheeler sets sail along the Niagara River from the opening of the Gorge all the way to Lake Ontario. Enjoy three spacious decks and revel in the unique views of this historic river. Visit their website for special events on board. Lots of fun, and something different!

Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours for Thrill Seekers

Nothing is more sensational than an electrifying high-speed ride upriver into the Niagara Gorge, through the Devil’s Hole rapids, then to the edge of the Whirlpool and back in a one-hour journey. Whirlpool Jet Boat Tours. Need we say more?

Dine Like Kings

There are so many great restaurants in town, many with farm-to-table menus. For some of the more popular spots, make sure to book reservations ahead of time — especially on weekends. Many wineries also have excellent restaurants. Treat yourself and check one out! Meanwhile, here’s one of our favourite resources: Niagara on the Lake Restaurants. Visit their website for a comprehensive list of what’s popular in town.

The Shaw Festival Theatre: Definitely a Must!

This world-renowned theatre has been part of Niagara-on-the-Lake for 52 years. It is perhaps the number one reason guests return season after season. There are four stages in town and the season typically goes from April until October each year. Consider catching a show after a fabulous dinner. Certainly a great way to cap of the night.

Traditional Pub Experiences

If you’re ever in the mood for some more casual fare, why not give our pubs a try? One popular spot is the Irish Harp. Created in a traditional Irish setting, this popular joint offers excellent food, fantastic beer and some great whisky too. The fish-and-chips are absolutely delish! Meanwhile, The Olde Angel Inn is another good choice. The oldest operating inn in Ontario, this venue was built in 1789 then rebuilt in 1815 after the War of 1812. Before you go, check out their website’s events calendar. Local acts are always booked to entertain diners.

NOTL is also proud to announce three micro-breweries: Oast, Silversmith Brewing Company, and the Exchange. Check out a brewery tour or grab a beer and some food in one of their pubs. You can certainly bet it’ll be a great time.

Music Niagara and Other Musical Escapes

Each year during Music Niagara, exceptional composers and performers come together to delight both amateur and sophisticated listeners. It’s wonderful to experience these performances at intimate venues around NOTL, like churches, parks, wineries and restaurants. Check out the calendar and get tickets to some of the greatest acts. It’s really a must-do in Niagara-on-the-Lake!  

Outdoor concerts are also popular in our little town. One of our favourite venues is the Jackson-Triggs Winery Amphitheatre. If there’s a performance there, do go. Ranging from rock to folk to classical, there’s something for everyone. The winery also has options for a special dinner with beverages in their on-site cellar.

Day Trip to Niagara Falls

Just 25 minutes by car, the thundering Niagara Falls is worth the trip. Stroll along the water’s edge to hear the roar of the water as it plunges into the mighty river. Take full advantage of your trip there and visit the area’s top three attractions: Journey Behind the Falls, Niagara’s Fury and the Butterfly Conservatory. There’s also WEGO bus access which includes shuttle transportation between each attraction. The most economical way to enjoy these sites is by purchasing a Niagara Falls Adventure Pass.

If you’re interested in getting a literal ‘feel’ of Niagara Falls, consider a Hornblower

Niagara Cruise. It begins at the Canadian dock, past the American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and gets up close and personal with the thundering waters. But beware, you will get wet when you enter the powerful mist of the mighty Horseshoe Falls. For more information on the types of cruises available, check out their website. A fun and safe way to experience one of Canada’s greatest wonders!

Book Your Stay with Lakelands B&B

We hope you have found this blog post interesting and informative. During your stay with us, we’re always available to provide more suggestions. We’re also happy to assist you with the perfect itinerary for a memorable visit. So book your stay with Lakelands B&B. We look forward to hosting you during this 2016 season.