Highway 3 passes through the tiny hamlet of Eagle and before the opening of Highway 401 in the 1960's, Highway 3 was the major road running east to west through Southern Ontario.
Today it is a road that goes through some main towns and also some tiny, sleepy villages and today carries just a fraction of the truck and car traffic that it once did.
Eagle, Ontario is one of my favourite villages and is located on Highway 3 between the cities of Chatham and St Thomas. The expression "Don't blink or you'll miss it!" really does apply to Eagle, however, if you do take the time to stop, I think you will be glad you did.
The main reason for visiting Eagle is the newly re-opened Lakeview Gardens & Greenhouses (formerly Swains Greenhouses) which are well worth a visit.
UPDATE - LAKEVIEW GARDENS HAS CLOSED
There is ample parking and there's lots to see, from their gift-shop and commercial greenhouses that supply retailers province wide, to their delightful cafe.
We met the owner, John Collins, when we were there last summer and were so pleased to learn about the planned rose gardens and other improvements to the property, and to see the well laid-out indoor gardens.
The displays are a delight and I have shown some of them here.
We spend a happy afternoon wandering round the displays, water features and looking at the plants and flowers.
You can buy everything here to build a water feature in your own garden - you would be the envy of the neighbourhood!
This water feature has such a whimsical look - this "Ancient Mariner" sits waiting to welcome visitors!
In the pond behind him, there's an assortment of plastic crocodiles and ducks, designed to swim in your home pond or water feature - the crocodiles are quite convincingly menacing as they float around the pond.
We decided to have a cup of tea in their newly renovated cafe before heading home, but the cakes and pastries looked soooo...... good that we indulged ourselves and had some of their home-baked goodies!
I must also say that the renovations to the cafe are great, there is such a fresh elegant feel to the surrounding now.
As we left the Greenhouses at the end of our visit, I noticed the Eagle Community Centre and a Serbian Orthodox Church on the opposite side of the road.
I'm not sure how often this facility is used, nor how big their congregation is, but it looked a little incongruous in its surroundings.
We took a drive, heading south down Graham Road, toward the Lake and found that there was a wonderful view of Lake Erie at the end of the road.
The day was clear and to the left we could see the cliffs near Port Stanley and beyond.
Once we were back on highway 3 and heading home to St Thomas, we saw the signs for the E M Warwick Conservation Area , which is administered by the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority.
We took a drive down McKillop Rd to the Conservation Area, but it was closed for the winter, however, I know that winter camping for groups is available if you contact the Lower Thames Valley Authority for permission and rates.
On our way home I thought about the many reasons why people might want to come to Southern Ontario for a holiday, or to live here.
I snapped this picture which might show why - this was at 4:30 on a Sunday afternoon in spring - do you see the crowds?
Do you see the traffic jams? No!
The open spaces are one of the many reasons why I love Southern Ontario, there is room for everyone!