Today we’re spending time in Carleton Place, located less than an hour from downtown Ottawa right on Canada’s own Mississippi River. Let’s take a look around!
Like much of the Mississippi Mills area, Carleton Place saw its first European settlers in the early 1800s. Textile and lumber mills were the order of the day and those early families recognized the value of Carleton Place’s waterfall.
The new town took the name of one of its earliest settlers and was known as Morphy’s Falls. In 1829 the building of a post office prompted a renaming to Carleton Place, after a street in Glasgow.
After becoming an official town in 1890, Carleton Place experienced a period of growth driven by the construction of the timber trade-inspired Brockville and Ottawa Railway. Additional transport opportunities presented themselves via Mississippi Lake.
Carleton Place’s proximity to the river and lake rooted the town’s culture in its natural surroundings. Providing both livelihoods and recreation, the waterways were the lifeblood of the community. Today they offer bountiful natural areas and a great appreciation for the river that helped forge the town.
Downtown Carleton Place is filled with history, great food, and terrific shopping. You’ll discover historic buildings along Bridge Street as you take one of two self-guided walking tours.
The Fire Hall, Crafter’s Market, Heritage Inn, and the Old Federal Building are just a few of the historic buildings you’ll find lining Bridge Street. Keep an eye out for the Moore House, built in 1850 for one of Carleton Place’s founding families. It was moved to Bridge Street in 2007 and is rumored to be just a little bit haunted.
Town Hall Square offers a place to relax and enjoy the river scenery. You’ll also find local murals and a giant chess board in this well-maintained public area.
Looking for more local history? Stop in at the Carleton Place and Beckwith Heritage Museum. You’ll learn about the area’s lumber and textile industries along with its military history.
Everyone needs pampering now and again, and the residents and guests of Carleton Place have a bounty of options. Angel’s Roost Organic Spa offers massage, manicures, reflexology, and more. Elegance Spa treats you to a warm, relaxing, tranquil experience.
Several of the spas, including the Mahogany Spa on Napoleon Street, offer packages for groups. Couples, bridal parties, and more can treat themselves to a relaxing, indulgent day to renew body and mind.
The Stalwart Brewing Company is a friendly, laid-back downtown brewery. Specializing in original flavours brewed on-site, The Stalwart offers a great experience for beer lovers living in Carleton Place and is a stop on the Good Food Tour.
The Braumeister Brewing Company offers authentic Bavarian-style beers in their German-themed beer hall. Grab a German pretzel or sausage while you visit!
If wine is more to your liking, head over to the Carleton Place Winery and learn to ferment your own. You choose and mix the ingredients and 6 weeks later come back and bottle your fermented wine. Great wine and a great experience rolled into one.
Carleton Place is filled with historic homes and a number of them remain private residences. If you’d like to own a piece of local history watch for one of these beauties to come on the market.
They are joined by many newer homes in the town’s tranquil neighbourhoods. Whether you’re looking for a small two-bedroom home to retire, a large luxury home to raise your family, or something in between, you’ll find it here.
Carleton Place is home to more than 10,000 people. It’s an attractive place to live for people relocating to Ottawa who are looking for small-town charm and big-city convenience.
Good Food Tour in CArleton Place
Do you have trouble deciding where to eat in a new town? Then you’re in luck because Carleton Place has a three-hour guided Good Food Tour twice a week that will bring you to the best eats in town.
You’ll hit hot spots for both food and drink as you enjoy the walk through downtown. Tour guide Cathy Reside will fill you in on a little town history as you go from place to place.
Three hours feels long for a walking tour but you’ll spend more time eating and drinking than walking. You’ll make stops at Sagar Indian Cuisine, the Black Tartan Kitchen for bistro fare made from local ingredients, and the Good Food Company for homemade baked goods.
Carleton Place offers an abundance of outdoor activities for residents and visitors of all ages. Enjoy a stroll on the Mississippi River Walk, the Riverside Trail, or the O-Kee-Lee Nature Trail.
Fishing, boating, swimming, and bird watching are just a few of the activities you’ll find tied to Carleton Place’s waterways. The Mississippi River and Lake offer both serene places to take in the beautiful views and fun for the whole family.
If you’d like to see the sites on two wheels, you can rent a bicycle in Carleton Place for $5 a day!