Durham Region

Parkwood Estate, Oshawa Ontario.

Durham Region is the region directly east of the City of Toronto. The area has a variety of landscapes and communities, including eight municipalities: the Town of Ajax, Brock Township, Municipality of Clarington, City of Oshawa, City of Pickering, Scugog Township, Town of Whitby and Uxbridge Township. A series of major lakeshore urban communities contrast with a variety of small towns, villages, hamlets and farms, that lie immediately inland.

The relatively flat lakeshore area marked by the bluffs, wooded creeks and ancient shoreline, contrasts with the hummocky topography of the Oak Ridges Moraine running parallel to the shoreline only 15 miles to the north. This diverse landscape of woods, headwaters, ridges and hollows gives way to rolling farmlands and lakes to the north. Here the Municipality spreads into the prime recreational lake lands of Simcoe and Scugog.

The First Nations history encompasses over 600 years of occupation by Iroquois, Huron and later the Mississaugas. The Natives developed a network of trails and pathways used for trade and communication purposes. Museums in Oshawa, Scugog and Uxbridge provide artifacts and information on the native history of the region.

Agriculture has been an important factor in the economic development of Durham Region. From pictorial research to displays of implements and working machinery, the museums and galleries of the area offer a multitude of ways to discover the history of agriculture, the second largest industry in Durham Region.

A major driving force in Durham’s economy has been automotive manufacturing. Colonel R.S. McLaughlin, a pioneer in the transportation industry, was born on the family homestead in Darlington Township. He later built Parkwood, The R.S. McLaughlin Estate, Canada’s last Grand Estate. Inspired by early 20th century Beauzarts style, the mansion represents rare residential designs. The formal gardens, art deco style and unique and luxurious period conveniences of the inter war years are showcased. City in Motion murals located in downtown Oshawa depict the early days of the automotive industry.

This museum was once home to L.M. Montgomery.The region was home to many famous people and events. The Uxbridge-Scott Museum and Archives houses the largest display dedicated to the author of Anne of Green Gables, Lucy Maud Montgomery who lived in the area from 1911 to 1926. James Llewellyn Frise, a cartoonist during the depression and war; Kohn Jury, founder of the Jury and Lovel drugstore chain; Major Maude Campbell Davidson Jackson, a prisoner of war in the Philippines, and Sir Ambrose Thomas Stanton, M.D., researcher of tropical diseases, among others are acknowledged in the Region.

Fine art exhibits like the Robert McLaughlin Gallery provides an exciting programme of exhibitions and educational activities that represent a wide variety of art, from the work of local artists to those of national and international importance. The Cannington Centennial Museum houses the works of Robert Holmes, renown for his watercolours of Canadian wildflowers. Established in 1976, the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington provides an exciting art exhibition and education program, exhibiting contemporary art from local, regional and nationally recognized artists.

Beaver River, Cannington Centennial, Scugog Shores, Uxbridge-Scott, Oshawa Community, Bowmanville and Clark are museums located throughout Durham Region offering the opportunity for genealogical research. Reference materials including newspapers, tombstone information, census records, church registers of births, deaths and marriages, photograph collections, maps, family trees and family files can be found at many of these locations.

Several museums and galleries feature horticultural or pictorial displays to further our understanding of the development of gardening from pre-settlement times through the early 20th century. Horticultural displays range from modest plantings in domestic setting to spectacular specialty gardens and attractions.

Limba the Elephant, Bowmanville Zoo, Durham County, Ontario.Our picturesque roads will take you on an adventure with a multitude of attractions that will appeal to the entire family. Talk with the animals on 42 acres of untamed, natural parkland at the Bowmanville Zoo. Experience 35 acres of show gardens at Cullen Gardens and Miniature Village. Try your luck at the The Great Blue Heron Charity Casino tables and slots. Visit our world-renowned Mosport International Speedway, host to major North American Championship Races. Come aboard the Scugog Island Cruise ship and take part in a 90-minute tour of Lake Scugog including steamship history, nature, and native history. Tantalize your taste buds with an afternoon sampler from an extensive selection of fruit wines. Enjoy shopping at one of many auctions, country markets, shopping centers or Victorian Villages.

Four seasons of outdoor fun await you in Durham Region. Test yourself as you cycle or hike on the Oak Ridges Moraine. Peer through your binoculars and be amazed by what nature has to offer as you stroll the Waterfront Trails. Take part in cross-county or downhill skiing, snowshoeing, and so much more. From beginner to pro, golfers will enjoy and be challenged by courses throughout the area. Fishing is also a year-round activity in Durham Region. Lake Ontario provides Coho, Chinook, pink and Atlantic salmon as well as migrant rainbow, brown and lake trout for fast and furious action. The cold-water streams flowing from the Oak Ridges Moraine harbour native brown and speckled trout in the headwaters while the lower reaches play host to salmon and trout migrating from Lake Ontario in the spring and autumn. Lake Scugog is a fishing mecca for everyone. The winter season is great for ice fishing, while autumn tests the skills of anglers trolling for the mighty muskies. Fish Lake Simcoe year-round with cold-water fishing in the deeper waters and warm water angling in the shallower shorelines. Thousands of fishing huts will dot the surface of the lake during the winter months, many of them owned and operated by commercial operators who provide transportation, bait, tackle and a warm hut.

Join us for one of Durham’s fabulous events. Fall Fairs, Maple Syrup Festivals, Car Shows, Garden & Studio Tours and Performing Arts, available to entertain you all year round.


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