During the 17th and 18th centuries, the area where the village of Port Stanley now stands, was inhabited by Native Peoples - Neutrals and Iroquois tribes.
When European explorers and travellers began their exploration of this area in the 1700’s, they would portage through this area on their way to
Ontario, from Lake Erie.
In 1832 a ferry service was started between the city of Buffalo, NY, and Port Stanley, Ontario.
Situated where the Kettle Creek meets Lake Erie, and originally named "Kettle Creek", the name of the community was changed in 1824 and named for Edward Smith-Stanley, 14th Earl of Derby, who was a former Prime Minister of Great Britain.
Hockey enthusiasts may be interested to know that the above mentioned Lord Stanley, was the father of the 16th Earl of Derby, Lord Frederick Stanley who became Lieutenant Governor of Canada and is the man after whom the STANLEY CUP is named!
By the beginning of the 20th Century, this village was a great tourist attraction on Lake Erie – not only for its sandy beaches but for the famous Stork Club which was popular with visitors who came to hear Guy Lombardo & His Royal Canadians
and dance to their Big Band Sound.
Today, there is no Big Band Sound here, however, you can enjoy the good food and music at GT’s Restaurant on the beach!
This small fishing village is a place where residents of
come at week-ends in the summer, filling the two beaches with beach towels and sun-screen!
It is a great place to spend the day with children or with a book sitting in the shade and watching the world go by!
If you have small children who want to play on the sand and paddle in the water, then try the Little Beach, which is located at the end of Main Street.
From the berms near the Little Beach you can check out some of the Southern Ontario fishing - why not pack a picnic and spend a relaxing day seeing what is biting in Lake Erie.
Adults and teens seem to prefer the Big Beach which you find at the end of William St, where you will find Sea-do rentals, restaurants and bars.
Remember when visiting the beach in the summer, please observe safety rules, check the flags for water conditions, and obey the life-guards who are on duty there.
If you are looking for a snacks or a burger & fries meal, try
on the beach, as they have juicy burgers and hot-dogs and it is lovely to sit inside where it is air-conditioned, or outside at the picnic tables..
at 128 William Street is a great place for a special meal and our family enjoys dinner there often.
If you're looking for a fun place to eat on the beach in the summer, you could check out
GT's On the Beach
which has a bar and is a fun place to stop and enjoy the beach.
One of the most recognizable land-marks in Port Stanley is the King George IV lift-bridge.
This magnificent bridge, which opened in 1939, spans the Kettle Creek just as it reaches the lake, and opens at regular intervals, to allow sail-boats to pass underneath.
Near the lift-bridge you will find the
Port Stanley Terminal Railroad
station, and can take the train ride to St Thomas, which has always been one of our family's favourite summer activities.
Check out their schedule of Special Events, including the
Santa Treats Train Ride
which runs from early December until the week before Christmas.
Residents and holiday-makers alike will enjoy the change of perspective when you see the countryside from the railroad carriages, as the beautifully restored trains make their way toward Union and St Thomas .......... "All Aboard!"