Looking for some serenity? A visit to Waterdown and Flamborough is the perfect escape in the city for those looking to slow down and savour dining, nature and rural attractions.
There’s live music to keep toes tapping while enjoying an inviting atmosphere (including an open fireplace) and good food. The menu leans heavily on pub classics and comfort food – burritos, bacon burger poutine, wings, and burgers. Add a pitcher of draft beer for everyone at the table.
Located in a Victorian-era mansion from 1868, this pub feels authentic. Each night has a daily food special (tacos, burgers, rib, prime rib, etc.) In summer, its patio is the place to be.
Even meat eaters are inspired to believe vegan cuisine can be both tasty and healthy. Imagine guilt-free, good-for-you, soy and dairy-free baked goods like donuts and peanut butter cups. There’s also heartier items like rice bowls, tacos, burgers and slow-baked fries.
It has fed diners for more than 40 years in an old-time atmosphere. It’s one of the few restaurants that still prepares some select dishes right at your table, including chateaubriand for two, Caesar salad, and desserts like bananas foster or cherries jubilee. There may be flames so lean back.
This new arrival to Waterdown’s dining scene has quickly earned a reputation for expertly prepared Italian cuisine. Ingredients sourced from local farms make the difference. Its ample menu includes risotto, pizza, pasta, meaty mains and tapas, served in a contemporary space.
Coffee shops and treats
How many ways are there to love chocolate? Count them all here. You’ve got truffles, barks, caramel peanut butter cups, chocolate dipped bacon, bars and pretzel sticks. Sign up for a hands-on workshop or chocolate and wine pairing class. (There’s also a location in Dundas.)
Looking for a memorable high tea experience? Take your pick from several choices including "The Waterdown High tea" layered with finger sandwiches, scones and preserves and the "Little Prince and Princess Tea" made for younger tea lovers.
This family run cafÃ© is fast is fast becoming a Waterdown favourite thanks to their satisfying breakfasts, deluxe sandwich combos and melt in your moth apple fritters.
SEE AND DO
For nearly 45 years, the action here has been thrilling fans of harness horse racing. Gamblers can also go for a win at the slot machines. Non-gamblers can dine at one of the track-side restaurants and watch the ponies from there.
Hikers know the hiking trails near Waterdown well. With entry points to the scenic Bruce Trail, it’s a natural spot to begin exploring. The twists and turns of the Waterdown Trail are challenging as it stretches over ravines and down into the Grindstone Creek valley.
Drop by this cidery in Freelton housed in a charming farm house and you’ll get an education about what goes into award-winning ciders. Some of the province’s best, made from heritage apples, are produced here. Taste a few and enjoy a cheese plate while looking out over picturesque orchards.
Don't be confused by the multiple names for Smokey Hollow Falls - also known as Grindstone, Waterdown or Great Falls. They all describe the same beautiful ribbon waterfall in its leafy forest setting that flows from Grindstone Creek in Waterdown with amazing hiking all around.
Cyclists from far and wide will come here to upgrade their equipment, buy clothing and get expert advice. This premium bike shop is also a gathering place for fellow cyclists.
Look for something out of the ordinary? Find one-of-a-kind jewellery designs and unique workshops, too, geared to beginners and more experienced participants, here. Enroll in a wedding band workshop and create something truly special for your beloved, guided by expert goldsmiths.
This is the world’s first fine art gallery featuring works by musicians. These aren’t works by just anyone. This retail shop sells those by big names like David Bowie, Eric Clapton, John Lennon and Janis Joplin. Browsing or buying are equally satisfying.
With rich farmland close by, it’s not surprising that there’s a strong focus on local produce. More than 25 vendors gather from mid-May to the end of October to sell their wares, from prepared foods and artisanal bread to free-range eggs.