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ACTIVITIES - ST CATHARINES: Shopping
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Activities, St Catharines
St. Catharines is a quiet city nestled in the heart of Niagara, offering year round experiences with its rich history, local cuisine and wineries, exciting festivals and bustling waterways.

St. Catharines played a prominent role in the Underground Railroad, and was the final stop for hundreds of slaves seeking freedom in the 1800’s. Harriet Tubman, known as “Black Moses”, was a leader of the abolitionist movement who led slaves along Niagara’s Freedom Trail from Fort Erie to the Black Methodist Episcopal Church on Geneva Street in St. Catharines. Posted throughout the city you will find Freedom Seeker signs to help you retrace their steps of this amazing journey.

The Welland Canal serves as a passageway between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario, built to bypass Niagara Falls. The Canal has shifted locations four times between 1829 and 1932, and remnants of the old locks can be explored throughout St. Catharines. The Welland Canal provides visitors the opportunity of watching massive cargo ships move up and down the escarpment through a series of eight locks in a brilliant feat of engineering. The Canal area is full of activity with people fishing, using the trails, picnicking, boating and ship watching.

Old Port Dalhousie Harbour is a charming village found within St. Catharines, perched on the beaches of Lake Ontario. The first home of the Welland Canal, Port Dalhousie, the village is graced with 18th century lighthouses, 19th century homes and take a ride on a vintage carousal for 5 cents! Henley Island is home to the Henley Regatta and the annual Dragon Boat races, and is a lovely spot to relax in the grandstands and watch the rowers glide by.

St. Catharines is the proud host of a multitude of festivals throughout the year. Many of the city’s festivals and activities take place in Montebello Park, which was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, who achieved wide acclaim as the planner of New York City’s Central Park. The festivals attract hundreds of thousands of visitors and locals every year and include the Grape and Wine Festival, the Ice Wine Festival, Canada Day family street party, Folk Arts Festival, Port Dalhousie Canada day celebrations (complete with fireworks!), weekly free outdoor concerts, a Classic Car Show, an independent music festival, and a Downtown Pub Crawl.

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