Saturday, September 5, 2009

Elora, Ontario

One of the reasons we love rv’ing is the opportunity it gives us to see another part of this country we live in and today was no exception. We set out on a sunny Sunday to visit the small towns in the area that give that special flavor to southern Ontario. One needs only spend an hour on the freeway from the big city of Toronto and you can enter into a totally unexpected world to someone unfamiliar with the area.

We drove thru Guelph, Ontario, which is a university town with that unique look and feel that I have only seen in movies. The detour thru town made that part a bit complicated, but we did manage to get to the other side of town and carried on with the day.

That set the pace for the day and we carried on for a Sunday country drive. We had plans to see lots so we didn’t plan to stop at all villages and we followed the roads past fields of corn, lots of corn, assorted crops and cattle, too.
Art on the river
We next entered the small village of Elora, found parking for the truck and set out to see the sights. We didn’t do any shopping but we did enjoy walking the streets of shops and seeing the boutiques and works of local artisans. Some of it a bit surprising, but all interesting.

Ruins of old
Some of the buildings are a few hundred years old and yet are meeting the needs of today. It is amazing to think that they were built so long ago and yet are still standing today. Many of them, though, have succumbed to the ages and didn’t weather the storms.

Shops along the Grand River
The old buildings line the Grand River just across the bridge. This location made a great place to take a picture that makes me think I am in Europe. We follow the street that takes us down to Elora Mill, which is no longer a mill but a hotel and enjoyed their viewpoint near where the Grand River meets the Irvine River.

Horse and buggy parking lot
We decided we had best eat some lunch before setting out for St.Jacobs and it was while we did, that a local gentleman suggested we visit Victoria Park. So off we went to do that. On our way we managed to get a picture of the local horse and buggy stop. Now if that isn’t a flashback……..

Irvine River Gorge at Victoria Park

Victoria Park was not as expected with a big parking lot, but a small treed area with places to picnic, cars parked on the roadway, and mainly for hiking and viewing the gorge. The river is a long way down there but there are stairs that make it very accessible for those that want to play in the river. It was surprising to see all those enjoying different activities in the water. Many were just splashing in the water but some were taking kayaking lessons and others were learning how to raft thru the rapids on the river.

So this will explain why we didn’t do all that we had hoped to do on this great day. There is always more to see and enjoy and we want to see it all but there just isn’t enough time in the day for that ! But we did see more on this day so follow us onto the next stop.



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