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  • Writer's pictureJen Bedard

The Communities of NOTL - Old Town

In the heart of Ontario wine country, just beyond Niagara Falls, lies what has often been described as the prettiest town of the region, Niagara-on-the-Lake. The aboriginal people call it Onghiara, and it was previously also known as Butlersburg, Newark and Niagara.

Old Town is the original core of the town and Queen Street, with its many historical attractions, restaurants and shopping opportunities, is the main street. This urban area is

surrounded by greenbelt lands that are provincially protected, but the city centre is also laid out with beautiful flower beds just about everywhere.

Even though Old Town is a heritage district with a rich history, very few of its properties survived the American Invasion during the 1812 war. These include the infamous Angel Inn and St. Mark’s Anglican Church.

There are plenty of green spaces to be enjoyed in the town, including Simcoe and Queens Royal Park. The Niagara River, which creates the natural border between Canada and the USA, is never far away for those who love to be near the water.

With three significant historical sites, Fort George, Fort Missisauga and Butler’s Barracks, Old Town offers a diverse range of exploration opportunities. It has a wide range of housing styles and is a popular choice for those looking to settle in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Due its popularity with retirees, it has seen a 1% population growth yearly for quite a few years now and the over-65s constitute 22.6% of the population.

The Shaw Festival is an annual event that runs from April to November. Three theatres in the centre: The Festival, Royal George, and Court House, present productions written by George Bernard Shaw, his contemporaries and other play writers from the era of 1856-1950. The city also hosts many other exciting festivals through the year that are always well attended.

Old Town is a pedestrian and cyclist friendly city, mainly due to its tree lined streets and wider pavements. Many residents of the town leave their cars at home when going to school, work or out for pleasure since everything is within walking distance.

For those wanting to explore a bit further out, there are two golf courses, Peninsula Lakes Golf Club and Sawmill Golf Course, which are both within 5 km of the town. The beach area of Lake Ontario and the Marina offer sailing and walking opportunities. The nearby towns, the Welland Canal, and the wineries of the region are all close enough for memorable exploratory day trips.

The Niagara Real Estate market has managed to remain very stable and year on year prices are increasing at a steady rate in most towns of the region. This balance in the market is positive for buyers and sellers, and there are many opportunities for those seeking to downsize or upsize their homes.

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