BURLINGTON: THE IDEAL VACATION PLACE
Located on the shore of Lake Ontario, Burlington is a vibrant city that is home to many local Canadians and expats who have made the city their home. It offers a high quality of living to residents and tourists as well, which is why foreigners keep coming back. Burlington is considered as one of the most ideal vacation spots in Ontario. The city is also recognized as one of the best cities to live in Canada.
HOW IT BEGAN
Before it was invaded by its primary settlers, the area of Burlington was a forest. It became home to many First Nations people in the early days. In 1792, it was named as the “Burlington Bay” by a lieutenant governor in Upper Canada named John Graves Simcoe. The name Burlington was coined after the Bridlington town located in Yorkshire, England. The first farmers who settled in the site cultivated the land and took advantage of the moderate temperature and fertile soil. Farming then became the first industry that made the place known to nearby villages. In the year 1915, Burlington was designated as a town. More settlers arrived and permanently made Burlington their home. The farming industry still thrived until the twentieth century. In fact, Burlington was declared as the "Garden of Canada" because many of the country’s agricultural produce came from the city.
After the Second World War, more settlers were encouraged to live in Burlington because of the cheap electricity and good transportation access. In 1939, the population of Burlington started increasing and skyrocketed after a few years. New homes were built and new businesses were established. In 1962, the town was merged with Aldershot and most of the Township of Nelson. Finally in 1974, Burlington was designated as a city. The population has continued to grow until now.
YOU MIGHT WANT TO CHECK OUT...
╣Joseph Brant Museum. This is one of the important places of interest in Burlington. It has ongoing exhibits that show the history of Burlington from the time when it was still a village until it became a town and eventually, a city.
╣Ireland House. This is another history museum that depicts the family life in Burlington from the 1850s to the 1920s.
╣Burlington Art Center. Burlington Art Center houses some of the most amazing exhibits of artworks made by international and local artists. It houses a collection of Canadian ceramics. Most of the collections are from artists who have lived in Burlington. Visiting the art center is free of charge to anyone who wants to witness exhibits held every eight to ten weeks.
╣Burlington Parks. Burlington has 325 hectares of parkland. You can find 115 parks including the Waterfront at Burlington Downtown, Central Park, The Beachway, LaSalle Park and Kerncliff Park.
╣Royal Botanical Gardens. This park is the largest in Canada. Many daily guided trips are offered here because this interesting place has 900 hectares of greenery, natural areas and gardens. You can access them by foot or with the use of a car or shuttle bus. It houses the world’s largest collection of lilacs and is considered as a National Historic Site in Canada.
╣Mapleview Center. It has more than 150 stores in it while the Burlington Mall located in Maple Avenue also has over a hundred stores. It is just one of several malls located in the city so you will never run out of places to shop in Burlington. You can just choose which one is nearest the place where you are staying.
╣the downtown core located at Brant Street, if you are interested in small shops instead of the bigger malls. Aside from boutiques and shops, it also has cafes and restaurants nearby so you can indulge yourself with food right after shopping.
╣over 200 places to dine in Burlington. Some of the dining places you can try are the Easterbrooks, West Plains Bistro, Kelsey’s Restaurant, East Side Marios, West Plains Bistro, Mandarin, Beaver & Bulldog, Le Chinois Chinese Burlington, Turtle Jack’s Muskoka Grill, 50/50s Restaurant, Charles Dickens Pub, Honeywest, The Carriage House and La Costa Nuova. There are several other restaurants you can try that serve different international cuisines.
╣Ribfest. This is Canada’s largest held on Labour Day Weekend during the month of September. It celebrates the solidarity of the workers in Canada—public or private. During this day, everyone takes a holiday off from work with regular pay. People in Burlington enjoy music and of course, the most flavorful ribs in all of North America.
╣the Sound of Music Festival. This event is celebrated during Fathers’ Day weekend held every month of June. Burlington downtown celebrates with different kinds of music, games and other gimmicks. It features a street fest with many performers from different parts of Burlington. Many people from other parts of Canada visit Burlington to celebrate the festival.
╣Halloween at the Ireland House. This is the Ireland House museum's Halloween celebration. It features museum displays showcasing the mourning traditions of Canadian people throughout the years. The museum prepares many activities and programs that kids will enjoy. Costume parades and games are held, as well as a barbeque and refreshments are given to attendees.
TOURISTS SHOULD KNOW
The nearest airport to the city is the Hamilton International Airport, which is only a 30-minute drive from Burlington. The Lester B. Pearson International Airport is also of short driving distance because it is only 45 minutes away. Two other international airports include the Niagara Falls NY International Airport and Buffalo New York International Airport. If you are coming from another country, you can check any available flights to the above airports and then just rent a car or ride a cab to get to Burlington.
If you are traveling by car, the city can be easily accessed through highways QEW, 407 and 403. If you are traveling by train, ride the GO Transit which has daily services to and from Toronto, or the VIA Rail that travels to and from London, Windsor and Niagara Falls.