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Overview

With sprawling parks and tree-lined streets, London is often referred to as “the forest city.” In 1793, John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, selected it as a suitable site for the future capital for the province. Ultimately Toronto was awarded that honor, but nonetheless, the city of London was officially founded in 1826. It has a gracious – and rather British – feel, enforced by having a River Thames, street names such as Oxford and Piccadilly, and a renowned school, the University of Western Ontario. Architectural styles range from impressive early 19th-century edifices to the contemporary Raymond ...

With sprawling parks and tree-lined streets, London is often referred to as “the forest city.” In 1793, John Graves Simcoe, the first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, selected it as a suitable site for the future capital for the province. Ultimately Toronto was awarded that honor, but nonetheless, the city of London was officially founded in 1826. It has a gracious – and rather British – feel, enforced by having a River Thames, street names such as Oxford and Piccadilly, and a renowned school, the University of Western Ontario. Architectural styles range from impressive early 19th-century edifices to the contemporary Raymond Moriyama-designed Museum London. A family-friendly city, London has an unusually high proportion of kid-friendly attractions, along with several excellent museums and historically themed parks. As you would expect, with the presence of a large university, there is an assortment of affordable, bistro-style eateries and pubs, and a lively music scene around Richmond Street.

Joanna Ebbutt
About the Expert

Joanna Ebbutt is the author or editor of three Insight Guides to Toronto and Canada, and coauthor of Off the Beaten Track: Western Canada. She has been writing about travel for three decades, including chasing the aurora borealis in Northern Ontario.

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Joanna Ebbutt for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Late spring, summer, early fall, Christmas-New Year’s holiday season