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North America > Canada > Ontario > Southwestern Ontario > Essex County (Ontario)

Essex County

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Essex County, Ontario is the southernmost region of Canada with one of the longest growing seasons in the nation, unique outdoor activities and fascinating historic sites. The Lake Erie shore and Pelee Island viticulture areas offer 13 wineries and the Canadian Club distillery.


Map of Essex County (Ontario)

Other destinations[edit]


Conservative Mennonites have resided in Essex County since 1786. They emigrated to Ontario (then known as Upper Canada) from the United States after the American Revolution in 1776. They came from Pennsylvania, home to Mennonite immigrants since 1683.

Essex and much of Ontario's Niagara Peninsula served as a terminus for a vast Underground Railroad which led fugitive slaves north across abolitionist states to Canada. Ohio in particular bordered both slavery in Kentucky and freedom across Lake Erie, placing its routes among the shortest and most popular paths to freedom.

Today, major industries range from agriculture (a former Heinz factory cans tomato juice in Leamington) to auto manufacturing (Chrysler operates both in Windsor and across the river in suburban Detroit). The region is one endpoint for the Windsor-Quebec corridor, one of the most populous regions in the nation.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

There is a small airport in Windsor (Ontario).

By boat[edit]

  • The Pelee Islander, +1-800-661-2220. Daily trips to Sandusky and mainland Essex County. Service to Sandusky is limited to once daily during the summer months, and is further restricted during the spring and fall. Advance vehicle reservations.
  • The MV Jiimaan. The largest passenger ferry along the Lake Erie route to Pelee Island, to the foot of Jackson St., Sandusky, Ohio. From Leamington, Kingsville Govt. Dock, and Pelee Island.
  • Marinas.

By bus[edit]

By car[edit]

From the United States:

  • Windsor-Detroit Tunnel. Take the tunnel. Between Detroit and Windsor connecting the US Interstates I-95, I 96 and I 75 to Ontario's Highway 401, it is one of the fastest routes between Ontario and the United States.
  • Ambassador Bridge. The world's longest international suspension bridge.

From Canada:

  • From the Toronto area, take Highway 401 westbound; all exits beyond Tilbury are in Essex County
    • It is possible to take a plane to Detroit from Toronto and drive from there
  • From Niagara and Buffalo, take the QEW up to Hamilton and merge onto Highway 403

Get around[edit]

It is advisable to use cars, when possible. Public transit in Essex is non-existent except for in Windsor and Tecumseh (both have their own bus systems).


  • Art Gallery of Windsor.
  • Colasanti's Tropical Gardens.
  • Essex County Steam & Gas Engine Museum, Co-An Park, 11071 11th Concession, McGregor, +1 519 726-0606. Essex County Steam & Gas Engine Show, John Deere brand tractors and equipment, also includes a flea market, craft and food vendors, and a bake sale. Three-day event held the second weekend in August.
  • Serbian Heritage Museum, 6770 Tecumseh Rd. E, Windsor, +1 519 944-4884. M-F noon-4PM. Exhibits change every three to four months.
  • Willistead Manor.



Wineries and tours[edit]


  • Capricorn Pottery, 559 County Rd. 20 West, Kingsville (2 minutes west of downtown Kingsville at County Rd. 20 west), +1 519-733-8991. Capricorn Pottery, established in 1977, showcases the handcrafted stoneware and RAKU pottery works of potter Gloria Gellner. Adult and Children's pottery classes available on site. Always call ahead for daily studio hours.
  • Devonshire Mall.
  • Windsor Crossings Outlet Mall.




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This region travel guide to Essex County is an outline and may need more content. It has a template, but there is not enough information present. If there are Cities and Other destinations listed, they may not all be at usable status or there may not be a valid regional structure and a "Get in" section describing all of the typical ways to get here. Please plunge forward and help it grow!