June 27, 2017

Oh, Canada!

I am planning a road trip this summer and after some consideration, I decided to head to Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.imageThe route I have chosen will take me up through western Pennsylvania and then western New York to Niagara Falls, where I have booked an AirBnB just a few minutes walk from the Falls. I’ve never been to this part of New York, and never been to Niagara Falls! imageFrom Niagara Falls, it’s less than two hours to Toronto. One of the places I want to visit is the Textile Museum of Canada. I love textiles, and this museum sounds like an amazing place. I am bummed that I am just going to miss a Marimeko exhibit, but I am sure I will find enough other things to catch my attention. imageAnother museum I want to check out is the Design Exchange. Objects in its collection explore five decades of Canadian industrial design. And the most notable about this museum is its location - situated inside the historic Toronto Stock Exchange building, a wonderful example of art deco design.

From Ontario, I head up to Ottawa, the capital of Canada. According to the map, the route between Toronto and Ottawa parallels the north side of Lake Ontario. The tower at the Parliament is a replica of Big Ben in London. Ottawa is very British, so that should be fun. imageThere are also some good antiques markets in Ottawa, so I hope not to miss them.

From Ottawa, it’s off to Montreal. I’ve been there a number of times, and love the strong French influences of the city. imageOne of the main reasons I want to head to Montreal is to spend time at the Osler Library at McGill University. Sir William Osler, MD, was a huge influence at my job, although 100 years ago, and I am working on an abstract to present a paper next year. McGill also has an amazing rare book collection that I’d like to see.

And of course, I want to stop at some of the Marche Aux Puces in the region, just to see what a vastly different region has on offer. Who knows what I might find!

One of the best museums I’ve visited is the McCord Museum of Canadian Life. imageI remember seeing an exhibition on Upstairs/Downstairs life, complete with the appropriate clothing. But what made it stand out for me was the cheeky heads on the mannequins – silver teapots for Upstairs, crockery ones for Downstairs. 

From Montreal, I head back south, with a stop along the Hudson River to break up the long drive. I would love suggestions for places in any of these three cities that you think I shouldn’t miss. One person already gave me some gardens to see, but when I googled it, I found they were FIVE hours NORTH of Montreal! Uh, no.

Thanks for any suggestions!


  1. When I visited Toronto with my family as a teenaged, I recall a very striking castle-like structure we toured called Casa Loma. I trip up the CN Tower was also a memorable experience.

    Enjoy your trip!

  2. there are some beautiful design stores on Yonge Street between St. Clair and Rosedale.look for Absolutely, Putti, Hopson Grace. It's a lovely area to wander.

  3. The McCord has an amusing game on line as to how one would act when presented with a host of social situations. As A Victorian character one has to walk a fine line.

  4. When we were in Montreal (wow, 16 years ago now......!) we stayed in a McGill university student housing building - grad student apartments with kitchen, 2 bedrooms, etc for a VERY reasonable price. Walkable to subway, canal and a lovely market (Atwood, perhaps?).


    1. Thanks, Ceci! I have been doing AirBnB and seem to be getting some fun places.

  5. Don't miss Roycroft in East Aurora, NY, home to the early arts and crafts movement in the US.

  6. Try to go over the border to Niagra on the Lake. It will remind you of small English villages and Victoria BC. Great ice wine is made there. We loved the area!

  7. Hi Meg,
    I was excited to hear that you are planning such a nice road trip to Ontario and Quebec. We do that trip every year as my sister lives in Waterloo, Ontario. We have taken several routes but our favorite is through Prince Edward County, Ontario, across the northern shore of Lake Ontario. We have a sweet place we have stayed many times in Wellington, Ont....right on the lake, called The Village Inn. There are many vineyards in that area and some lovely old stone homes. Coming from Cape Cod, we go north through the Adirondack area of NY State and then cross the border at the St. Lawrence Seaway....there is a fun way taking several ferry rides, as we slowly make our way to Waterloo....SW of Toronto by about 1.5 hrs. There is much to see! Enjoy

  8. PS.....Hope you do get to the Textile Museum. I love it and have seen some incredible quilt shows there.....some work done by my sister, Margaret Anglin. Your ideas for places to visit are so intriguing and should yield you an amazing journey! Ottawa has a working farm in the center of the city. Kingston, Ontario is amazing with antique shops and art galore. It s a thriving university town.

  9. Meg, my husband lived in Ottawa many years ago. His father was a diplomatic attache' so I googled US embassy in Ottawa, thinking there would be interesting things near by the building. It seems there is a National Gallery, a Peacekeeping monument and the new embassy building is near Byland Hyland something like that Market. According to Wikipedia there is a Cathedral and well that sounds like a sight to see..... Good luck enjoy your excursion.


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