Vibrant Cities & Charming Towns

What’s in a Name?

While Ontario is famous for its vibrant cities like Toronto and Ottawa, it is also full of small towns rich in Ontario heritage with unique names  We searched Flickr for some of your most stunning photos of Ontario’s most unusual towns:

1. Welcome, Ontario

Could a place sound any more inviting? Welcome, Ontario is a quaint crossroads located just north of Port Hope. The surrounding area is popular with cyclists who enjoy the rural landscape.

In A Garden Show

Photo by Jeannot7

2. Lotus, Ontario

Looking for a little Zen? Lotus, Ontario is bordered by Lake Scugog to the east and Kawartha Lakes to the north.

Hay field near Lotus, Kawartha Lakes, Ontario

Photo by David Watson

3. Shakespeare, Ontario
What more perfect name for a town neighbouring Stratford, Ontario, home of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival? According to local history Shakespeare was founded in 1832 by David Bell, and was previously known as Bell’s Corner. The name was changed from Bell’s Corner to Shakespeare in 1852 when Alexander Mitchell suggested naming the town after his favourite playwright.


Photo by redmann

Fryfogel's Inn, Shakespeare Ontario_1476

Photo by Bobolink

4. Nogies Creek, Ontario
While its more famous neighbour Bobcaygeon has been immortalized by the Tragically Hip, the little crossroads of Nogies Creek has its own charm. Check out the Nogies Creek paddling route and snap a few photos like these:

Photo by Mattie & Den

Photo by Mattie & Den

6. Wawa, Ontario

What is the story behind name of this Northern Ontario town? Wawa takes its name from the Ojibwe word for “wild goose”, wewe. Wawa’s namesake is celebrated in the form of a large Canadian Goose sculpture overlooking Highway 17.


Photo by northernontario_outdoors

on08h019 Wawa, Ontario, Giant Goose 2008

Photo by canadagood

7. Old Woman Bay, Ontario

One of Ontario’s most uniquely named places is also one of the most spectacular. Some say the name comes from the outline of a woman’s face in the bluff.


Photo by Henry w. L

Old Woman Bay - Lake Superior - Ontario

Photo by Philip Scott Johnson

What are your favourite Ontario towns with unique names?

8 replies on “What’s in a Name?”

Franz, Ontario( Junction with Canadian Pacific Railway & Canadian National Railway(Algoma Central Railway- now owned by C.N.)W.F. Clerque empire in the early 1900’s. The railway name was orignally called Hobon before the A.C.R. crossed in 1912. W.C. Franz was a superintendent in the Clerque empire and the location was named in his honour after the new station was built that year.Franz is located at Mileage 81.4 C.P.Rail White River Subdivision & Mileage 194.9 C.N. Sault Subdivision- with a transfer yard maintained and served by both companies.

Hawk Junction ( Junction of the Soo Sub – Northern Sub and (Michipcoten Sub) Michpicoten Harbour- when the line ran into the :Harbour”. There is a lake at Hawk Junction known as HAWK LAKE. It gets mixed up with another location here in Ontario with the same name( HAWK LAKE) in Northwestern Ontario.

Wawa is kinda cool. I like the name Enterprise which was given to a hamlet north of Kingston after a visitor remarked it was an enterprising place. Apparently was known locally as Shirt Tail Corners until the 1930s (now, there’s a story). Turkey Point is another one I like. Some local folklore suggests Lake Erie town may have gotten its name from an earlier settler who had a prominent Adam’s Apple.

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