Settled along the Rideau Canal in Eastern Ontario is a quaint village with a surprising connection to its namesake thousands of kilometers away. Portland, Ontario is a serene community that just so happens to have a shared moniker with the eccentric and avant-garde city of Portland, Oregon, in the United States. Though one may be “weirder” than the other, they are worlds apart when it comes to their culture. But for this time around, we’re going to focus on the Canadian village.
Located about three hours away from Toronto, on the tranquil shores of Big Rideau Lake is Portland, Ontario.
The village is known for its three full-service marinas, one of which is the gateway for visitors to access Big Rideau Lake, according to its official site.
During the warmer season, it offers ample opportunities for avid boaters to embark on adventures across Big Rideau Lake’s pristine waters. Whether you’re a seasoned sailor or a novice enthusiast, both boat tours and boat rentals are readily available in town.
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Besides its aquatic allure, stroll through the streets and check out its charming stores, including antique and collectibles shops.
And in the winter, check out Portland’s highly anticipated Skate the Lake festival, usually held on the last weekend of January.
While Portland, Ontario, is known for its lakeside adventures, its namesake counterpart across the border in Oregon paints a very different picture.
Portland, Oregon, has earned a distinct reputation for its eclectic and unique culture, often referred to as “weird.”
According to Travel Portland, the US city is known for being a “sustainability-minded, bike-friendly city with easy access to nature; plentiful coffee, art, craft beer, delicious food, and live music; and crafty people who celebrate individuality and creativity (which, yes, some people call “weird”).”
Though the term “weird” isn’t taken as an insult. Per the travel site, locals like being known for their uniqueness. “Whether it be watching adults zoom down an extinct volcano in soapbox derby cars, joining in on one of the world’s largest naked bike rides, or crafting deliciously strange new types of doughnuts… locals do and embrace the city’s quirky vibes.”
While Ontario’s Portland may not share similarities in culture, it truly does capture the charm and vibrancy of a lakeside town, worthy of an adventure.
So if you’re ready to embark on your next road trip, it’s time to set your GPS. Explore the charm of Portland without needing to leave the country – just don’t forget to double-check your coordinates!