Travel around these charming towns located in Ontario's Southwest. We teamed up with Arienne Parzei to discover the hidden delights, culinary hot-spots, and outdoor beauty within Oxford county and Windsor/Essex. See what these small towns have to offer!
Getaway to Oxford County
Are you a cheese lover? If so, Ingersoll is the perfect place for you! This town in Oxford County, also known as the dairy capital of Ontario, is full of character and charm. From taking a tour of their Cheese Museum to exploring their quaint downtown shops and boutiques, Ingersoll is an ideal destination for travellers. Their scenic trails are an escape for those wanting to admire nature and the rich land the town calls home. Take a trip to the Leaping Deer Adventure Farm for an afternoon full of petting animals and exploring corn mazes. Don’t forget to taste some of the local favourites in town! The Olde Bakery Café and Chocolatea will surely impress any ‘foodie’.
Visit the only municipality in Ontario to house all of its original heritage buildings. This small town just east of London, is full of cultural events, historic sites, and a mixture of wining and dining. Spend your Saturday afternoons buying local produce at the Woodstock Farmer’s Market. Just down the road, experience a one hour info session on beekeeping at Oxford Honey and Supplies where you can even buy everything you’ll need to start beekeeping on your own! Feed your taste buds with delicious food from local favourites Fritzie’s, Sixthirtynine, and Bartley’s Dairy Bar. End your visit with a cold beer from Upper Thames Brewing Company, a beer enthusiast’s perfect hangout!
Tillsonburg is surrounded by history and farm life views. Experience the perfect getaway with family and friends, and embrace what ‘small town charm’ really feels like. Settled in 1825, Tillsonburg is full of stories. The Annandale National Historic Site will transport you back in time to show a glimpse of how past generations lived. Don’t forget to try some treats from The Cup and Cake, and organic and locally sourced specialities served at Indigo Lounge. Explore Tillsonburg’s downtown as you stumble upon shops and antique stores that are sure to spike your interest!
Getaway to Windsor/Essex
Located on the banks of the Detroit River, this charming town is full of rich history. Serving as a key site in the War of 1812 and the Underground Railway, Amherstburg is one of Ontario Southwest’s oldest towns. Spend an afternoon touring its historic sites, such as King’s Navy Yard Park and Fort Malden National Historic Site. Relax and grab refreshments at a winery, brewery, or distillery all located in Amherstburg. Finally, cap off your visit to this history-rich town by gazing at the sunset along the vast waterfront that outlines the city.
Canada’s most southerly town, Kingsville is full of Victorian heritage and charm. Visit Annabelle’s Tearoom for high-tea and experience the luxury of the Victorian era. Also known for being a thriving culinary hot-spot, be sure to indulge in food from Merli’s Eatery and Beverage House; locally sourced products are the main ingredient! If you have a sweet tooth then check out Dutch Boys Chocolate for some mouth-watering truffles. End off your visit to Kingsville with a beer from The Grove Brew House or a glass of wine from Pelee Island Winery, the largest estate owned winery in Canada!
This weekend getaway, ideal for adventure and outdoor enthusiasts, is located just 30 minutes east of Windsor on Lake St. Clair. Being a waterfront community and the Muskie fishing capitol of Canada, Lakeshore is home to local seafood restaurants, ready to serve-up some fresh fish-and-chips to fuel up between activities. Take a trip away from the lake to experience a cycling tour of the parks and waterways of Belle River. If you’re a golf lover, the 18-hole, parkland style, golf course at Rochester Place Golf Club and Resort will cap off your scenic weekend by the water.