Hidden Gems: Dundas, Ontario, The Sweetest Little City in Canada

By Guest Post | January 28, 2016

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Love homegrown charm, mixed with friendly culture and vibrant nature? Then Dundas, Ontario might be the ideal place to get away in Canada.

Dundas, Ontario is the hometown of travel blogger Lauren of Justin Plus Lauren. This is her guest post, filled with insider tips!

I might be a bit biased, but Dundas, Ontario in Canada is my favourite place in the world. Even though I no longer live there, I still think of Dundas as home and constantly return to visit friends. Even though I cherish many special memories from my times in Dundas and adore my friends, there are so many other reasons why I’m stopping by my hometown.

Dundas, Ontario isn’t only a place to be enjoyed by locals.

Dundas is an underrated destination that can be easily visited by anyone traveling to other popular cities in the area, such as Toronto or Niagara Falls. Whether it’s for the beautiful natural spots, the summer farmers’ market, the cute downtown shops, or the numerous local festivals, Dundas has plenty to offer its visitors.

What’s So Great About Dundas?

Dundas is a Nature-Lover’s Paradise

If you love waterfalls, you’ll want to visit Dundas. Both Webster’s Falls and Tew’s Falls are spectacular and easy to access along the local hiking trails. Tew’s Falls is actually only a few meters shorter than Niagara Falls! Along the trails, you’ll catch glimpses of the stunning gorge and an outlook point that we call “The Peak” where you can enjoy views from the top of the escarpment overlooking the entire town.

justin plus lauren, the peak, dundas ontario, hidden gems canada
Lauren and Justin at The Peak in Dundas, Ontario.

Other great trails can be found at the Dundas Valley Conservation Area where you can hike or bike. This is particularly enjoyable during the fall when leaves begin to change to vibrant shades of red, orange, and yellow. If you’re going for a longer hike in Ontario, Dundas is located along the Bruce Trail, a hiking trail that runs for 800 km across the province.

Want more Canadian nature?
Don’t miss our complete guide to camping on Vancouver Island.

You Can Shop, And Eat, And Drink, Too!

Once you’ve finished hiking, take your thirst and hunger to the downtown core along King Street.

dundas ontario, hidden gems canada
The charming downtown in Dundas, Ontario.

Some of my favourite spots are Detour Coffee, an independently-owned cafe where you’ll find delicious brewed coffee that they roast themselves. B.Love Conscious Eatery is a vegan, organic, gluten-free, and raw food establishment with yummy meals and delectable desserts. Be sure to try their Thai Noodle Bowl while you’re there (and don’t forget to try some chocolate treats for dessert!).

Finally, if you’re looking to enjoy a drink on a patio, check out a favourite in town: the Collins Brewhouse, around since 1841.

Visiting the West Coast?
Here are our favourite things to do in Vancouver in the summer.

Dundas, Ontario has an annual festival each year called the Cactus Festival, during the third weekend in August. There used to be a prominent cactus grower in Dundas which is how Dundas became known as the “Cactus Capital of Canada”.

During the festival, the main road in town is shut down to traffic and there is a giant street party, complete with live music, vendors, buskers, and even a midway. It’s definitely worth checking out!

If you want to see Dundas in action, you can check out a short video that Justin and I made about my love for my hometown.

How to Get to Dundas, Ontario

Dundas is about halfway between Toronto and Niagara Falls, an easy day trip from either one. Just search Dundas, Ontario on Google Maps for exact directions! If arriving from Toronto, take the Queen Elizabeth Way (QEW) highway going southbound. If traveling from Niagara Falls, take the QEW towards the north.

About the Author

justin plus lauren, detour coffee, dundas ontario, hidden gems canada

Lauren is one-half of Justin Plus Lauren, a travel blog that she writes with her boyfriend, Justin. These two Canadians are part-time travellers who are slowly travelling all over the world. Lauren is passionate about veganism and seeks plant-based meals wherever she goes. She adores nature, animals, outdoor adventures, coffee, and her cat, Chickpea. Find out how to get the most out of Niagara Falls in the winter on their blog.

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