Ontario is the most populated province in Canada. You can only imagine how many small towns are in the province, each with their unique stories, mysteries, and things they tend to be known for. Some are home to historical landmarks and architecture from centuries ago while others contributed to blockbuster hits. Though we’re sure there are hundreds more villages and small towns we have yet to dive into, we’ve compiled a list of a few small towns in Ontario with unique and unusual claims to fame.
Did you know that Ontario is home to some of the smallest jails in all of North America? We’re also riddled with castles, shipwrecks, and even Brussel sprouts. You’ll understand why soon.
Eager to know more? Keep on reading. Here are 6 small towns in Ontario with unique and unusual claims to fame.
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Today in things-you-probably-didn’t-know-about-Ontario, our province is actually home to the smallest jailhouse in North America – several of them, at least.
Spanning 4.8 meters wide and 6 meters deep, this jailhouse is smaller than even the smallest bachelor pad in Toronto at just over 300 square feet.
The jailhouse is located in Tweed, a small town in the central-eastern Ontario county of Hastings. Although it’s no longer housing any prisoners, you can still pop by and snap some photos behind bars.
More like a village than a town, Pain Court was established in 1854, as one of the earliest French-speaking settlements in southern Ontario. According to its website,
Laprise Farms Ltd, which is situated in the countryside of Pain Court, has become the largest producer of Brussels sprouts in Canada as of 1998.
This picture-perfect Ontario town is known for its storybook-like castles, historical shipwrecks, massively stunning mansions, and waterfront views. The town of Gananoque is a gem worth exploring on your next road trip.
Whether you’re heading east towards Ottawa or west to Kingston, Gananoque is the perfect stop if you’re looking to grab a bite or stretch your legs. Hoping to spot a castle? Feast your eyes on the 1000 Islands, which Gan happens to be the gateway to.
From the outside, Stratford resembles a typical charming small town in Ontario, of which there are many!
Heritage buildings, artisan boutiques, and historical landmarks line the streets and you’ll feel transported to a different era.
But, look closer, and you’ll discover that this place is teeming with world-class talent, activities, and attractions centered around performing arts, poetry, and literature.
Anyone a fan of IT? The terrifying clown flicks were filmed in Port Hope, about an hour east of Toronto.
“If you’ve seen the movies, you’ll recognize Memorial Park downtown where a 20-foot statue of Paul Bunyan presided and members of the Losers Club sat nearby at a picnic table,” shares Port Hope Tourism.
“And don’t miss the laneway off Walton Street beside the film’s Quality Meats store. You can still find the sign in the alleyway for a souvenir selfie.”
You can actually take part in a self-guided walking tour to explore all the movie sites.
There seems to be a theme with Ontario and small jails… Creemore just so happens to be home to one of the smallest jails in all of North America.
According to South Georgian Bay Tourism, this jail was built in 1892 and has a three-cell structure that is the smallest in Ontario and possibly all of North America.