Located in Peterborough, the Canadian Canoe Museum is North America’s only canoe museum and consists of nine exhibits that explore the canoe’s enduring significance to the people of Canada. The museum has examples of canoes and kayaks over the years and recounts the history of the Voyageurs in Canada. The 40,000 square foot space features a dramatic two-storey waterfall and guests can try their hand building a birch bark canoe. In May 2006, His Royal Highness Prince Andrew, the Royal Patron of the museum, visited to donate three royal canoes to the museum, which are on display.
After a visit to the Canadian Canoe Museum you might be tempted to find out more about the history of the Voyageurs, early European settlers who ventured across the land discovering potential settlements. If so, be sure to visit Samuel de Champlain and French River Provincial Parks to follow the paths of the Voyageurs. There you can canoe down the same rivers that the Voyageurs did more than a hundred years ago as they explored the new land. Bring your gear and let an experienced outfitter guide you as you camp along the shores, enjoy dinner over an open fire and discover your inner explorer.
Fort William Historical Park is another must see. The world’s largest reconstructed fur trade post is an interpretive historical site with 42 buildings and costumed interpreters that replicate the life of the voyageurs and fur traders. Be sure to visit in July when the fort truly comes alive during the Great Rendez-Vous festival, which celebrates the annual culmination of the fur trade at the original fort.