For the past 10 years the Citroen Autoclub Canada has been taking advantage of the warm Ontario summers and organizing a summer outing in addition to what has been a tradition from day one; to do a spring and fall driving event. In the past few years the summer outing has been to the Niagara region. Laden with wineries, fresh fruit in season, and all the landmark tourist attractions, the region is extremely popular with day tourists from Toronto and visitors abroad. While that can make for crowded roads and long lines at many places, fortunately we have found routes that are less traveled and more scenic than the main roads.
View a photo gallery of the event here: https://flic.kr/s/aHskA7eDvq
The year we had absolutely perfect weather; July 16 was a touch cool, partly cloudy and dry. We had a varied gathering of members and their cars. We set out from John McCulloch and Chris Deja’s home in Oakville at 10:00 am after a little social gathering to enjoy coffee and breakfast snacks, making six stops along the way.
First was the Devil’s Punchbowl Conservation Area, a jut of the Niagara Escarpment the provided an spectacular lookout point over Hamilton with a view down the Lake Ontario shoreline where you can see as far as Toronto.
From there we motored over along the Ridge Road to Angel’s Gate Winery near Beamsville. They have an elegant tasting room and outside patio where we stopped for lunch and enjoyed some oven-fired personal pizza.
After lunch we did a little back-road driving in the Effingham – Pelham region. It’s a route we have taken before, but is always fun because of the narrow twisty roads and hills that are unusual to find in Niagara area.
As the afternoon progressed we made a second tasting stop at 13th Street Winery near St. Catherines before heading over to the town of Niagara-on-the-Lake and taking the Niagara Parkway toward Niagara Falls. Roadside fruit stands on the Parkway with fresh Niagara peaches available caused us to stop and stock-up on a few baskets.
As we went by the Brock Monument at Queenston Heights we stopped in at the circular drive at the steps to the monument for a photo op. It’s the place you see in the header photo of our monthly update bulletin and where we took that photo back in 2008 when we held our Niagara “Tour D Falls” weekend.
Continuing along the Niagara Parkway we turned into the business section of Niagara Falls where we once again dined at Paris Crepes, a very French restaurant we have come to love for its exceptional food and it not being in the tourist trap area of the city.
Returning back to Toronto we chose to take the expressway and as luck would have it we managed to drive at a time when traffic was moving freely. We breezed along all the way home! All in a all a very full and enjoyable day that really could not be improved upon.
Update: Senen Racki, who joined us with his lovely Peugeot 204 cabriolet, made a short stylized video of the event. As he says; “I was in the process of grabbing the pictures and video from Manuela’s iPhone, and found that the easiest way is to use Google’s Photos app. I didn’t do any editing. Google’s “bot” took the pictures in her online folder and, to my surprise, shortly afterwards it created a video collage automatically. It is actually pretty good. See for yourself: https://goo.gl/photos/GPNeMukYetoDXVoa6