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Welcome to the Rose City of Windsor, Ontario, the southernmost city in Canada. Sharing the shore of the Detroit River with the American city of the same name, Windsor is a major player in Canada’s automotive industry. Although that industrial heritage has declined, a revitalization of Windsor has turned this once rust-belt stalwart into a hip city for young artists and other creative folk who have turned neighborhoods like Walkerville and Ford City into urban meccas. Each summer, Windsor co-hosts the Windsor-Detroit International Freedom Festival, which features a huge fireworks display, the world’s largest, over the Detroit River between the two cities. Windsor and Detroit also co-host the annual Detroit Windsor International Film Festival, a growing a renowned celebration of independent cinema. This part of Canada is a great place to base your explorations of this culturally rich landscape. Book an RV in Windsor, Ontario, today.
Windsor is one of the greenest cities in North America, with more than 3,000 acres of green space, 180 parks, 40 miles of hiking and walking trails, natural areas and forest cover - all within the city limits. There are numerous bike trails, including a local favorite, the Ganatchio Trail on the far east edge of the city. The city’s trail network connects to the LaSalle Trail, on the west, and can link to the Chrysler Canada Greenway, part of the infamous Trans Canada Trail. This trail is wonderful for hiking, jogging, horseback riding, and cross-country skiing during the winter months. A highlight of this trail is the Windsor Sculpture Park, which shows off several modern sculptures including stylized elephants, horses and penguins.
Point Pelee National Park is a gem, along the shores of Lake Erie near Leamington, and the southernmost point of Canadian mainland. An easy drive in your Windsor rental RV, this small park is definitely worth a visit. Experience nature like you’ve never seen with flocks of migratory birds in the spring, and monarch butterflies in the fall. Winter is also a treat with snowy trails past ice-decorated trees. Summer is the time to enjoy the park’s sandy beaches and beautiful views. There are paths and trails suitable for bicycling, canoeing or kayaking, and family walks. Although it’s Canada’s smallest national park, it is the most ecologically diverse national park in the country. Overnight camping is available here.
At the lovely Hillman Marsh, another quick ride in your Windsor rental camper, overnight camping is available nearby. This precious marshland environment is adjacent to Lake Erie and has pretty walking trails, a well-organized nature center, and viewing towers. This park is a birder’s paradise, featuring 87 acres of shorebird habitat, and support field birds as well. Hundreds of species have been spotted here, including a variety of herons, egrets, songbirds, waterfowl, and nesting pairs of bald eagles.
You won’t believe you’re just a few miles northeast of Windsor when you visit St. Clair National Wildlife area. On the shores of Lake St. Clair west of Chatham, this is the most important staging area for waterfowl, with wetlands and cattail marsh surrounded by constructed dams to help maintain natural water levels. At the transition between two major bird migratory routes, the Mississippi and Atlantic flyways, hundreds of thousands of ducks, geese and other waterfowl migrate through this area every spring and fall. Humans can enjoy hiking, skiing and snowshoeing activities on the well-maintained trail along the dams. This is also one of the best sports fishing areas on Lake St. Clair, and fishing outfit rentals are available nearby, as well as camping for your Windsor rental RV.
Windsor is an increasingly vibrant arts and food city, with several significant historical sites and places to spend the day with the family. Ouellette Avenue is the historic main street in downtown Windsor, and features a shopping district with goodies for folks of all interests and budgets.
A great place to stroll and enjoy a relaxing afternoon picnic is the Ojibway Prairie Complex of parks, nature reserves and gardens. Within the area, there are several places to spend time, including Ojibway Park, Black Oak Heritage Park, a nature reserve and natural area, as well as the Tallgrass Prairie Heritage Park.
For a glimpse into Windsor’s unique history, make sure to visit the Sandwich First Baptist Church, established by Underground Railroad refugees, and a national historic site. Another important historical site is the François Baby House, which served as headquarters by both American and British forces during the War of 1812. This beautiful building has also been designated a national historic site, and also serves as Windsor’s Community Museum.
Enjoy some casino fun at Caesars Windsor. On Windsor’s riverfront, overlooking the Detroit skyline, this is a great place to play or just people watch and enjoy the pretty city skyline. The creation of this casino actually led to the legalization of casino gambling in Detroit, and was one of the first casinos in the area.
The Capitol Theatre building in downtown Windsor has a long history of being a center for plays and feature films, since its founding in 1929. For a while, it sat decrepit and unused, but today it has been beautifully restored. Shows and events include dance performances, touring artists and the highly regarded Windsor Symphony Orchestra.
Art lovers appreciate the absolutely world-class collection housed at the Art Gallery of Windsor. Rotating exhibits have included luminaries like Andy Warhol, and regular events, workshops and classes make this a real community resource. The historical collection of art in the Chimczuk Museum celebrates the history of the Windsor area, including the Original People’s Culture and Legacy. There is also a wonderful Children’s Gallery and Learning Space for hands-on exploration and artistry. Rotating exhibits and temporary galleries are available for traveling exhibitions. Don’t miss the gift shops at either of these fine art museums.
You’ll find it easy to find a place to park your Windsor, ON rental RV. With dozens of area regional, provincial and national parks that offer camping, and a ton of private RV parks and resorts, you’ll be able to find places in the area to make your base camp as you get to know the area. There are two Walmart Supercenters available in Windsor, so you’ve got options for some self-sustained parking opportunities with the Windsor rental motorhome at these sites, too.
Windsor and adjoining Detroit are big cities where you can find just about any type of cuisine that you like, including international flavors like Chinese, Thai, and Mexican. American and Canadian food styles. Great burgers and steaks are readily available, as are vegan and vegetarian options. Many restaurants can accommodate gluten-free options, as well. Windsor also has a great Little Italy section, with great pizza eateries, casual, and fine dining options.
The Downtown Windsor Farmers Market is open on Saturdays from late May through early October. Here you can meet farmers and craft artisans, and enjoy diverse offerings of fruits, vegetables, hand crafted food products, and community booths. Enjoy weekly live music and entertainment, food demonstrations and special events.
Start planning your southern Ontario adventures today, and book a rental RV in Windsor.