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Renfrew is a town of 8,200 people (2016) near the Ottawa River in Eastern Ontario. Much of Renfrew's current prosperity can be attributed to its status as an economic centre for a surrounding rural region with a population of over 30,000. Renfrew is also an important stop for Ottawa-based cottagers and outdoor enthusiasts passing by on their way to nearby whitewater rafting, boating, camping, hunting, golfing, fishing, snowmobiling, down-hill skiing, and cross-country skiing.

Understand[edit]

The area's largest single employers are the Renfrew Victoria Hospital and the Bonnechere Manor (care home).

Tourism visitor centres:

  • At the corner of O’Brien and Mask Road - RV pump-out available
  • In the Chamber of Commerce Office beside the library at 161 Raglan Street South

History[edit]

Named after Renfrewshire, Scotland, in approximately 1848, Renfrew was settled largely in part due to logging in the area in the early 19th century, where the river was used in order to drive the lumber to locations such as Ottawa.

Get in[edit]

Renfrew is on Highway 17 (the Trans-Canada Highway), about 90 km west of Ottawa, at the junction with Highway 60.

Renfrew is on the Greyhound Canada bus route between Ottawa and North Bay.

By plane[edit]

  • Ottawa Airport (YOW IATA ) – international and domestic arrivals -
  • Arnprior Airport - personal aircraft and mid–sized commercial
  • Pembroke Airport (YTA IATA) - personal aircraft

Get around[edit]

Map of Renfrew

See[edit]

A historic downtown and many small parks, including Stewart Park behind the Presbyterian Church on Smith's Creek, and O'Brien Park, featuring the Swinging Bridge and a beautiful view of the museum and dam.

  • 1 McDougall Mill Museum, 65 Arthur Ave, +1 613-432-2129. Jun-Aug: daily 10AM-4PM. A former grist/flour mill that was run by John Lorne McDougall on property brought from Sir Francis Hincks. It has been converted into a museum featuring artefacts from the town's history and prominent citizens, as well as items of general interest.
  • Birthplace NHA/NHL Museum, 249 Raglan Street, +1 343-361-0202, . Jul Aug: Tu-Sa 10AM-4PM; Sep-Jun: Th 1PM-4PM, F Sa 10AM-4PM; the museum is wheelchair accessible F Sa 10AM-3PM. The Birthplace NHA/NHL Museum showcases hockey history from Renfrew County, including the fact that M.J. O’Brien and his son Ambrose started the National Hockey Association (NHA) from Renfrew in 1909. The NHA was renamed the National Hockey League in 1917. The museum features pictures and artifacts showcasing the early days of hockey in the NHA and NHL especially as it was represented in Renfrew County.
  • 2 O'Brien Theatre, 334 Raglan St S, +1 613-432-6139. The theatre offers popular current films, and a series of art, independent and foreign films in a restored 1930 theatre. Adults $11, seniors 60+ and youth <18 $9, matinees and Tuesdays $8.
  • Bonnechere Falls, Thompson Road.

Do[edit]

  • 1 Renfrew Fair, 115 Veterans Memorial Blvd (Hwy 60). The fair has been drawing mixed crowds for decades with its mid-way rides, exhibits, demolition derby, musical acts and livestock showcase. The fair takes place on the second weekend of ev $20 per person admission at the gate includes unlimited rides for one day (children 3 & under free).
  • [dead link] Valley Bluegrass Festival, 1 Ma-te-Way Park Drive. Four-day festival in mid-July. Advance tickets: weekend $70; at gate: weekend $80, Friday $20, Saturday all day $35, Saturday after 5PM $20, Sunday $20.

Buy[edit]

Eat[edit]

Drink[edit]

  • 1 Finnigan's Road House, 302 Raglan St S, +1 613-432-8982. Daily 9AM-close. Live music upstairs during the summer.

Sleep[edit]

  • Bide-A-While Bed & Breakfast, 43 Bank St S. 7-minute walk from downtown Renfrew. 2 informal rooms feature air-conditioning; 1 has a sink. The sitting room and the bathroom with shower/tub are shared. 3-course hot breakfast or continental breakfast is served in the dining room, and there's a communal living room with a TV, a DVD player and a library. From $95.
  • Days Inn & Conference Centre, 760 Gibbons Rd, toll-free: +1-800-329-7466. Free WiFi, a flat-screen TV, ironing facilities, desk, as well as coffee and tea facilities. Fitness centre, outdoor pool, and onsite business centre. From $114.

Connect[edit]

Go next[edit]

Routes through Renfrew
North BayPembroke  W Ontario 17.svgTCH-blank.svg E  → becomes Ontario 417.svgArnpriorOttawa
Algonquin Provincial ParkKillaloe  W Ontario 60.svg E  END at Junction Ontario 17.svgTCH-blank.svg



This city travel guide to Renfrew is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.