It’s going to be a year filled with celebrations as Canada marks its 150th Anniversary of Confederation in 2017. Several events and activities have been lined up throughout the year for the special occasion. As part of the celebrations people can visit National Parks, National Marine Conservation Areas and National Historic Sites operated by Parks Canada across the country free of cost with a Discovery Pass.
Canada Discovery Pass Highlights
Here are some features of the pass.
- If you are travelling in a group, you need just one pass for the entire group travelling in one vehicle or arriving together at a particular site.
- The pass is valid only for those historic sites managed by Parks Canada.
- Separate tours, camping fees or parking will not be included in the Discovery Pass and will have to be paid for.
- The discovery pass must be displayed front facing on the rear view mirror or the dashboard on the driver’s side.
The town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, a short distance from Niagara Falls has several historic sites. With your discovery pass, you can get free admission to these sites and explore several facets of Canadian history. Let’s take a look at some of the attractions in this town.
Niagara National Historic Site Pass Locations
Fort George National Historic Site of Canada – Battlefield and Fort
This military structure built along the Niagara River played an important role in the War of 1812 to defend Upper Canada. It was the site of several battles during which the fort was conquered by American troops and later reconquered by the British. It ultimately fell into ruin in the 1820s.
Today, Parks Canada maintains the reconstructed fort which serves as a museum and has various sections including living quarters for the army men. Log blockhouses, workshops, a hospital, kitchens and a guardhouse were a part of the original structure. You can also see a stone powder magazine, an original remnant of the fort.
A major attraction at the fort for visitors is the re-enactment of the war. You can even join the action by wearing a soldier’s uniform and firing the Brown Bess musket. The ambience is further enhanced by military music from the Fife and Drum Corps and Band of Music.
Butler's Barracks National Historic Site of Canada
The barracks were once home to officer John Butler who headed a military unit named Butler’s Rangers during the American Revolutionary War. First constructed in 1778 along the Niagara River, the barracks were brought down while constructing Fort George in 1800. It was rebuilt in 1818 and was used by the British military and later by the Canadian forces. The barracks represent hundreds of years of military history and also contain the Lincoln and Welland Regimental Museum within it. Exhibits and artifacts including weapons, uniforms, medals, photographs and more have been displayed here.
Fort Mississauga National Historic Site of Canada
Work on this brick fort started during the War of 1812 and was completed after the war. A pedestrian trail leads to the fort which is situated on the grounds of the Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club. The fort was initially used by the British army to defend Upper Canada and later by the Canadian army as a training ground.
Since it is located on the golf course, visitors need to ensure that golfers get to complete their shots before they proceed with the sightseeing. Visitors should not deviate from the marked trail till they come right up to the fort.
Mississauga Point Lighthouse National Historic Site of Canada
A few years before Fort Mississauga was built, a lighthouse was constructed on that very site in 1804. It was the first lighthouse to be erected on the Great Lakes on the shore of the Niagara River. The lighthouse made way for the construction of Fort Mississauga. The remains of this lighthouse are said to be beneath a portion of the fort so there is no evidence of the structure that once stood there. A commemorative plaque bears testimony to the historic lighthouse.
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