Niagara-on-the-Lake – Travel and Photography Blog

January 6th, 2012

A beautiful horse stands in harness waiting for a buggy fair. (Ian C Whitworth)

The very charming town of Niagara-on-the-Lake in Ontario is found just over the Niagara River from Youngstown New York and is just down stream approximately 20 kilometers from Niagara Falls where the river runs into Lake Ontario.  While the name of the town varied throughout its history, the current name was not officially granted until 1970.

Tall ship passes a vineyard at Niagara on the Lake (Ian C Whitworth)

A bed and breakfast in Niagara on the Lake displays a vacancy sign out front (Ian C Whitworth)

Niagara-on-the-Lake is a great place to relax while browsing the local shops and galleries, ride in a horse drawn carriage, take in a nice meal with a local wine and stay at one of the fine hotels or bed and breakfast locations.  Some of the main tourist attractions include the Shaw Festival Theatre, Fort George, wine tours of the many local wineries and of course a short drive away, Niagara Falls.

A wine tasting room is all set for guests at a Niagara Peninsula vineyard in Ontario Canada (Ian C Whitworth)      Wine ages in oak barrels in a underground celler (Ian C Whitworth)

The 28 wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake make this a wine lovers paradise!  I love to visit regularly throughout the year to sample and pick up my favourites to keep me in stock.  The Niagara Region is famous world wide for their ice wines and they regularly win awards for their fine product.  The world’s largest estate producer of ice wine is Pillitteri Estates Winery (one of the 28 local wineries).  Several of the NOTL wineries are built to LEED certified standards (leadership in energy & environmental design) ensuring sustainable practices.  Further information on the areas wineries can be found at

Two glasses with Pillitteri red icewine (Ian C Whitworth)      A view between the vines during a snowfall at a Niagara on the Lake vineyard (Ian C Whitworth)

While most people visit in the spring through fall time period, winter can bring some unique opportunities for us photographers.  For those who have not visited Niagara Falls during the height of winter, you are missing out on some amazing image opportunities.  Also, the vineyards take on a whole other appearance and visual attraction.  For those ready to brave the cold with their camera, see the winter photography tips below.

Winter dawn view of the gazebo at Niagara on the Lake (Ian C Whitworth)

Here are a few winter images of Niagara Falls to tweak your interest.  The constant spray from the falls freezes on the trees, rails, lampposts and anything else that gets in the way to add to the winter scenic beauty.

Looking at the American Falls during the Winter in Niagara. (Ian C Whitworth)


An icy and wintery view of the Canadian falls in Niagara. (Ian C Whitworth)      Tourists brave the Canadian winter to view Niagara Falls surrounded by ice and snow. (Ian C Whitworth)


 (Ian C Whitworth)



Winter view of the US Falls at Niagara (Ian C Whitworth)      Night view of the Skylon tower at Niagara Falls beween the spotlights for the falls (Ian C Whitworth)

Niagara Region Fun Facts: Photography Tips:
  • NOTL population is approximately 15,000
  • The Shaw Festival was started in 1962
  • Niagara-on-the-Lake has 28 wineries
  • A frozen grape produces just one drop of ice wine
  • At peak times the flow of water approaching Niagara Falls can be as much as 5.7 million liters per second
  • Currently the falls move about 1 foot per year as a result of erosion, in the past this number was around 3 feet
Cold weather photography

  • Extra battery as battery life is reduced
  • Acclimatize your equipment between warm and cold areas – by leaving in the bag for a period time prior to exposing directly to the new temperature will allow the camera to gradually change temperature avoiding possible damaging condensation
  • Fingerless gloves with the flap to cover your fingers in-between shots
  • A polarizer filter and lens hood will help minimize glare and lens flare

Horse & Buggy wait for a fair at Niagara on the Lake (Ian C Whitworth)

Plan to take a trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake and enjoy this quaint town and the many wineries with their excellent VQA Ontario wines.


References:  Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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