A Visit to Port Hope

The Albion House in Port Hope
The Albion House in Port Hope

August 9, 2010

We spent an enjoyable couple of days in the town of Port Hope recently, when we went to opening night of The Music Man. Our daughter has been living and working in Port Hope for a year, so when my son got the role of Tommy in The Music Man there, he said “That’s great, I can live with Chelsey for free!” Chelsey told us “That’s great, Thomas can pay for half the rent!” Well, the two have sorted it out, coming to an equitable financial arrangement. We took the opportunity to see them both!

Port Hope is a historic town just an hour east of Toronto on Lake Ontario. There are many wonderful Bed and Breakfast establishments – we enjoyed the Albion House, where our hostess, Paula, gave us delicious berries, blueberry pancakes, eggs, bacon, English muffins and more for breakfast.

We had dinner at Bualai Taste of Thai Restaurant, where all the servers were dressed in exquisite traditional Thai silk costumes of many colours. We also had lunch at Trattoria Gusto, eating gourmet pizza on their patio, overlooking the fast flowing Ganaraska River.

There are many interesting antique stores, and lots of shopping opportunities – shoe stores, jewellery shops, and stores selling unusual purses and other accessories. The downtown on Walton Street is lined with beautiful old storefronts, restored to their 1830’s charm.

For those of us travelling from southwestern Ontario, getting through Toronto can be a challenge. We’ve made this trip several times, and have figured out that if you could drive at 100 kms/hour all the way, the 401 would get you from Strathroy to Port Hope in three hours. But when can you travel the 401 at 100 clicks all the way? If all things were equal and you were driving 100 kms per hour, the 407 takes about 20 minutes longer than the 401. However, you invariably sit in stop & go traffic on the 401 for more than 20 minutes. So if you prefer to keep moving and have less traffic around you, take the 407. However, in about a month, you’re going to get a bill for $16.00 to $19.00, depending on the day and time.

Only one problem marred our visit. Somewhere in our travels, I drove over a nail, and ended up with a flat tire. Special thanks to Northumberland Tire where my tire was promptly repaired on a busy Saturday morning.

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