Why Live in Niagara Region
As soon as you enter the Niagara Region, you notice a beautiful difference. With brilliantly coloured orchards, fields and vineyards that flourish from early spring to late fall, it really is Canada’s fruit basket. The region is home to some of the country’s best golf courses, as well as over 100 wineries. Niagara proudly claims icewine as its local specialty.
Once a successful fishing hub, Grimsby is now recognized as a pinnacle for the region’s fruit-growing industry. It’s usually one of the first wine and distillery tour stops, to help provide a taste of what’s to come. The town has also broken ground on some new waterfront properties, taking full advantage of its lakeside location. Lincoln serves the communities of Beamsville, Campden, Tintern, Vineland, Jordan and Rockway. The area is filled with wineries, produce farms and greenhouses. West Lincoln’s 22 communities have plenty to offer as well, such as country fairs and festivals, quiet cycling routes, and ample riverways that are perfect for canoeing and kayaking.
The largest city in Niagara, St. Catharines has been dubbed The Garden City for its vibrant parks and trails, which collectively span over 1,000 acres. Its downtown core boasts a cultural collection of art galleries, event spaces, restaurants and bars, all frequently occupied by Brock University students. Nearby Montebello Park hosts a variety of events during the warmer months, including the famous Niagara Grape and Wine Festival. Summer is also a great time to visit the friendly beachfront community of Port Dalhousie. There, you’ll find the historic carousel, which still only costs 5 cents for a ride! The Welland Canal is also a local landmark, along with its affiliated museum, where you’ll see ships from all corners of the world. To top it all off, St Catharines’ affordable real estate makes it the fifth-best city to invest in for 2019, according to Money Sense Magazine! Neighbouring Thorold has some great housing options as well, making it a great place to live for students and young professionals.
Niagara-on-the-Lake, affectionately known as NOTL, is a necessary detour on the way to the Falls. A sophisticated mix of historic and modern, its Heritage District encompasses world-class theatre, fine dining and elegant shopping. If you’re feeling particularly nostalgic, hitch a horse-drawn carriage ride around town or stay at an old-style bed and breakfast before your wine tour. About half of the region’s wineries are located in NOTL’s Ontario Wine Country, most of which are recognized internationally for their award-winning vintages. Explore them on a bus or on a bike, along with local craft breweries and distilleries. You can also visit Niagara College’s NOTL campus, which includes its own student-run restaurant, winery and brewery – right next to the region’s best outlet mall!
Niagara Falls’ main attraction is so marvelous, it’s in the city’s name. Three separate cascades – two in the U.S. and one in Canada – combine to form the second largest waterfall in the world. Canada’s Horseshoe Falls not only looks pretty, but the natural wonder also helps power the province. It’s made even more beautiful with lights at night and fireworks during the summer. If you want to get a closer look, take a tour with Hornblower Niagara Cruises, Journey Behind the Falls or Niagara Helicopters. Once you’ve basked in the mist, head up to the Clifton Hill tourist area, where you’ll discover casinos, arcades, go karting, mini putt, shops, restaurants, museums and haunted houses. If you’re looking for more natural options, Niagara Falls has its own share of easily accessible gardens and trails. The Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens offers almost 100 acres of greenery, as well as the popular Butterfly Conservatory. A summer GO train service makes trips to and from Toronto a breeze, while three bridges to the U.S. allow for easy crossing into New York state.
Niagara’s South Coast includes Pelham, Wainfleet, Welland, Port Colborne and Fort Erie. It has a spectacular shopping repertoire for fashion, antiques and collectables, along with an unparalleled art scene that features some of the country’s best artists. The Wainfleet Bog Conservation Area, the only wetland in the region, features undisturbed hiking trails and boardwalks, as well as bog plants, butterflies, and a wide variety of birds and animals – making for great nature photos. Welland is host to the main Niagara College campus, while Port Colborne has some of the best fishing that the country has to offer. Also in Port Colborne is the annual Canal Days Marine Heritage Festival, a four-day celebration featuring daily activities and nightly concerts. Located at the edge of both the Niagara River and the Canadian border, Fort Erie was the site of a major battle during the War of 1812. It’s also the home of Crystal Beach – known for its sparkling white sand!