Vibrant Cities & Charming Towns

Vibrant Ontario

If you’ve spent time in Ontario you know how vibrant the four seasons can be. After we posted our blog about unique town names many of you shared unusual Ontario towns of your own. Danno Cardinal’s suggestion on Facebook of “Violet Hill, Ontario” got us thinking: How many Ontario town names have been inspired by a vibrant colour? We searched Flickr for your best photos of Ontario towns that live up to their colourful names:

Violet Hill, Ontario
Part of the region of Hills of Headwaters, Violet Hill is as picturesque as its name. One of the most notable attractions is Mrs. Mitchell’s Restaurant, restored one-room schoolhouse built in 1889. The restaurant is named after the real Mrs. Mitchell, who once taught in the schoolhouse.


Photo by Grant Macdonald

Silver Islet, Ontario
Home to one of Ontario’s first silver mines, the buildings originally constructed to house miners are now used as private summer cottages. The old general store has been restored, and serves light meals, in addition to selling a variety of knickknacks. Nearby Sleeping Giant Provincial Park has an exhibit in its visitor centre, detailing the structure and history of the mine.

Heading to Thunder Bay, Silver Islet Lighthouse

Photo by tburton

Orangeville, Ontario
If there was ever a place to check out vibrant gold leaves of fall, the countryside surrounding Orangeville has you covered. Not only is the area home to beautiul rolling hills, it also has a vibrant arts community. Painters, potters, glassblowers, woodcarvers, weavers, sculptors and jewellers all create here – in styles that range from classical to contemporary to avant-garde! Every season studio tours and art exhibitions are launched, including the acclaimed Headwaters Arts Festival in the fall. Discover your favourite artist at a woodland studio, the Alton Mill or at an eclectic small town gallery.


Photo by Grant Macdonald

Cherry Beach, Ontario
The perfect place to watch a cherry-colored sunset, this beach is one of Toronto’s hidden gems.

Cherry Beach ~ Sunset

Photo by ~EveidencE~

Slate Islands, Ontario
These rugged slate-coloured islands have a rich history and are one of the few places where woodland caribou can still be found. Remnants of two native settlements, as well as a former timber operation are located here. There has been speculation that the central islands are the remains of an ancient meteorite (Ontario Parks).

Summer lightning, Slate Islands

Photo by jamuudsen

Honey Harbour, Ontario
The honey-colored sunsets of Honey Harbour may be just one of the inspirations for the name of this busy port community. An entry point to Georgian Bay’s 30,000 islands, Honey Harbour is a paradise for many cottagers and campers.


Photo by spivak

Know of a vibrant Ontario town? We want to hear about it!