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North America > Canada > Ontario > Northern Ontario > Timmins

Timmins

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Timmins is a city in Northern Ontario with a population of nearly 42,000 (2016 census). The city stretches over approximately 2,961.52 km² (1,840.20 sq mi) of land, making Timmins one of the largest cities in Canada, larger than Luxembourg.

Understand[edit]

The city is in one of the richest mineral producing areas in the Western Hemisphere. It is a leader in the production of gold and base metals. Main attractions are mining tours and outdoor recreation.

History[edit]

Human settlement in the area is at least 6,000 years old; it's believed the oldest traces found are from a nomadic people of the Shield Archaic culture.

Until contact with European settlers, the land belonged to the Mattagami First Nation peoples. Treaty Number Nine of 1906 pushed this tribe to the north side of the Mattagami Lake, the site of a Hudson's Bay trading post established in 1794. In the 1950s, the reserve was relocated to the south side of the lake, to its present location.

Gold discoveries in the Porcupine Camp during the early years of the 20th century attracted investors to the area. The gold rush of 1909 earned Timmins the nickname of the “City with the Heart of Gold”. The area became home to dozens of prospectors during the "Porcupine Gold Rush" who explored the areas around Porcupine Lake and the Frederick House River. Rich ore deposits in the Canadian Shield led to Timmins being founded as a company town to house Hollinger employees. In 1912, mine manager Alphonse "Al" Paré named the mining settlement for his uncle, Noah Timmins, who was President of Hollinger Mines.Most settlers grouped around Porcupine Lake and the Dome, one mile from the lake. Four miles down the road, around the McIntyre Mine, the hamlet of Schumacher was established. The gold mines declined in the 1950s.

Climate[edit]

Timmins has very cold winters, being in northern Ontario, but temperatures in late summer and autumn tend to be among the coldest for any major city in any Canadian province, although during the spring and summer it can get hot.

Get in[edit]

Timmins is fairly easy to access. Ontario’s section of Highway 11 (one of the longest roads in the world) connects with Highway 101 about 1 hour east of the city. It is always best to check weather and road conditions before departure, since the winter months (December through to early April) in Northern Ontario can sometimes provoke difficult and unsafe driving conditions. Timmins is also accessible by snowmobile.

By car[edit]

The easiest way into Timmins if coming from southeastern or southern Ontario is to make your way to North Bay and continue heading north on Highway 11. Timmins is approximately 350 km north of North Bay. From Southwestern Ontario you could use Highway 400/69 through Perry Sound. Some people take the Ferry from Tobemory to Manitoloin Island. The city is minutes away from the Trans-Canada Highway, thus providing easy access to other cities. Other highways servicing Timmins are #144, #101, #655 and #11.

By bus[edit]

Ontario Northland serves Timmins with regular scheduled departures to and from over 60 destinations around Ontario, such as Toronto, North Bay, and Sudbury.

By plane[edit]

  • 1 Timmins Victor M. Power Airport (YTS IATA), +1 705-360-2636, fax: +1 705-360-2675, . Air Canada Express serves the Pearson Airport in Toronto. Bearskin Airlines serves Kapuskasing and Sudbury. Air Creebec serves the communities of Attawapiskat, Fort Albany, Kashechewan, Moosonee and Peawanuck. Porter Airlines has daily service from Billy Bishop Airport in Toronto. Timmins/Victor M. Power Airport (Q2235247) on Wikidata Timmins/Victor M. Power Airport on Wikipedia

By train[edit]

Ontario Northland used to offer train service to Matheson, with a connecting coach to Timmins, but rail service on the Toronto-North Bay-Cochrane line has been abandoned in favour of buses.

Get around[edit]

If you are staying downtown, you can get around on foot for the most part. Otherwise, the city offers efficient bus service, and has many taxi and car rental companies.

On foot[edit]

Downtown Timmins is small enough to explore on foot and can make for an interesting afternoon. Most of the outlying areas will require transportation. See the Do section for information on walking trails.

By bus[edit]

  • Timmins Transit. An efficient transit system serving the community through 9 routes. Bus fare is $3.00 for adults, $2.75 for seniors, students and children 5 and over, and free for children under 4 years of age (when accompanied by fare paying passenger).

By car[edit]

With the help of a map, Timmins is simple to navigate. Most destinations can be found off of Highway 101 which turns into Riverside Drive and Algonquin Boulevard throughout the city.

Some car rental companies include:

  • National Car Rental +1 705 268-3456
  • Discount Car & Truck Rentals +1 705 264-4484
  • Budget Rent A Car (located in the airport) +1 705 267-2393.

By taxi[edit]

Taxi companies in the area include:

  • Northern Taxi +1 705 268-6868
  • Veteran’s Victory Taxi +1 705 264-2333
  • Beal Taxi +1 705 264-2201.

See[edit]

Timmins' main appeal is its outdoors atmosphere, seeing as how it is surrounded by beautiful forests. There are a multitude of outdoor activities offered in the region year-round. Timmins is also an important landmark in the history of mining, following its success in the 1909 gold rush.

Museums[edit]

  • Timmins Museum - National Exhibition Centre (Temporarily Located on the site of the Timmins Gold Mine Tour), +1 705 360-2617. The Timmins Museum is a multi-purpose facility that highlights the art, heritage and traditions of the Porcupine Mining Camp, Northeastern Ontario and Canada in a variety of exhibits. The Timmins Museum includes a resource library, local artist's gallery, as well as travelling exhibitions on a mixture of national themes.

Tours[edit]

  • Cedar Meadows Wildlife Park, 1000 Norman Street, +1 705 268-5800. Overlooking the great Mattagami River, the 175 acre park is ideal for exploring the wilderness or just simply relaxing. Visitors can enjoy a wagon ride or (sleigh ride in the winter) where elk, moose, deer and bison can be observed in their natural surroundings.
  • Summer Industrial Tours, +1 705 360-1900. During the summer months, Porcupine Gold Mines-Goldcorp offer free tours to individuals interested in learning about the many natural resources Timmins has to offer. The Porcupine Gold Mine-Goldcorp tour allows individuals to visit the Pamour Open Pit Mine, Coniaurum reclamation site and the Hollinger Information Centre. Long pants and closed toe shoes are recommended for these industrial tours. Must be 12 years of age or older to take part, and those aged 12 to 16 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

Historic landmarks[edit]

As legend has it, in the spring of 1909, Harry Preston, a member of the Jack Wilson camp slipped on a rock and uncovered a mound of gold. His discovery created the gold rush of the Porcupine Camp and brought in miners and their families from all around the world. Today, Timmins is a thriving community rich in cultural diversity and mining heritage. Discover the city’s legacy and learn more about the people who made it all possible.

  • Downtown Timmins, At the corner of Spruce Street South and Third Avenue, you can see the former train station built in 1912. It is used as the ONR Terminal and leased commercial space. Turning left on Third Avenue brings you right into Timmins’ busiest street in the downtown core. On the right side is the city’s Walk of Fame. Prominent citizens have been commemorated here with plaques set in the sidewalk. Along Third Avenue, you will see many local shops, retail services, and restaurants reflecting this vibrant northern Ontario community. Look for the parkette (beside the CIBC Bank on the corner of Third Avenue and Pine Street) that houses a site commemorating Shania Twain; Timmins’ country singing sensation. Her hand prints are embedded in cement below a plaque in her honour. Across the street is Bucovetsky’s department store. Established in 1909, it is the oldest business in the city. Third Avenue was laid out in 1911 and some of the buildings here date back to 1912.
  • Saint Anthony of Padua Cathedral, 274 Fifth Avenue. This French baroque architectural gem was built in 1936-37. The first church (built in 1922) burnt January 29, 1936. The cross to the left was erected in 1934 in memory of Jacques Cartier’s 4th centenary.
  • McIntyre Community Centre, 85 McIntyre Road, Schumacher. The facility was built in 1938 for the employees of the McIntyre Mine. It is a scale model of the Maple Leaf Gardens, complete with the famous red, green and blue seats and end balconies. The Center is still very active and features an arena, curling rink, ballroom, auditorium and a diner style coffee shop.
  • McIntyre Headframe, Behind the Community Center, towering majestically over Pearl Lake is the McIntyre Mine #11 headframe. The 3rd largest producer of gold in Canada is closed today, but the city plans to redevelop the headframe and its immediate surroundings as a heritage monument to gold mining in the Porcupine Camp.
  • Schumacher Park, McIntyre Road, Schumacher. Home to three monuments honouring the mining history of Schumacher. The iron statue overlooking the highway is a representation of Mr. Sandy McIntyre discovering gold, while the other one depicts a wealthy American investor named Frederick W. Schumacher, for whom the town takes its name. The headframe is a replica of the McIntyre Mine.
  • St. Alphonsus Church, Father Costello Drive, Schumacher. The church is covered with many murals painted by local artist, Mr. Ed Spehar. Father Les Costello was rector of this church for over 23 years. This beloved priest, co-founder of the world famous Flying Fathers hockey team, was a prominent figure in our community known for his sense of humor and his generosity.
  • International Flags, Father Costello Drive, Schumacher. At the end of the street, you will notice a collection of flags representing the community’s rich ethnic diversity and heritage throughout the summer.
  • Whitney Cemetery/Deadman’s Point, Haileybury Crescent, Porcupine. Over 70 people lost their lives in the great Porcupine fire of July 11, 1911. Due to the close proximity of Porcupine Lake, many lives were saved. However, one unusual tragedy occurred when a mine manager by the name of Robert A. Weiss thought he could save his family by taking them down a mine shaft. Sadly, the fire used up all the oxygen in the shaft and the whole family perished. Most bodies of the fire victims were sent home, but 17 were buried here. A monument was erected in their honour by the Toronto Board of Trade.
  • Gold Mine Road, This road is known to the locals as the “Backroad”. A number of mines were on this road. Since 1960, most of them have been torn down. The first mine on your left is Porcupine Gold Mines - Goldcorp (formerly Dome Mine and Porcupine Joint Venture); the only gold mine which has been in operation since 1910. The story of the discovery of the Dome reports the accidental finding of a vein of gold by a prospector who slipped on some moss while climbing the side of a mound (or dome), exposing the vein of gold. Hence, the name “Dome Mine”. Further on to your right, is the Paymaster Headframe. The Paymaster Mine was closed in 1934.

Do[edit]

The atmosphere in Timmins is generally relaxed and slow-paced. Most activities revolve around the outdoors. The summers are great for camping, golfing and more. There are plenty of winter activities such as downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, tubing, snowmobiling and more. The Timmins recreation services website offers more information on outdoor activities.

Summer[edit]

  • Many campsites offer equipment rental for fishing (check before-hand).
  • Mountjoy Independent Farmers' Market, +1 705-268-6571. Open mid-July to mid-October Saturday mornings only from 8AM - 12PM
  • Uncle Buck’s Trout Farm, +1 705 268-6286. Open May to September from 9AM to 9PM for fly and bait fishing.
  • There are over 10 well-groomed walking trails in and around Timmins. For maps and more information visit the Timmins Outdoors website.
  • There is a skatepark open daily which is free of admission. +1 705 360-1361
  • Gillies Lake and Hersey Lake are the areas most popular family swimming beaches.

Golfing[edit]

Timmins is home to three golf courses.

  • The Hollinger Golf Club, Shania Twain Way, +1 705 264-8450. This is a 18-hole course open 7 days a week. It has a club house, power cart/equipment rentals and a driving range.
  • Spruce Needles Golf Club, Dalton Road, +1 705 267-1332. This is an 18-hole course open 7 days a week. It features a licensed club house, power cart/equipment rentals and a driving range.
  • Sandy Falls Golf Course, 1777 Mahoney Road., +1 705 267-7014. This is a 9-hole course.

Parks[edit]

  • Rapid Fire Paintball Park, 200 Feldman Road, +1 705 268-1825. This park features a driving range, Two 18-hole mini-putt course, go-karts, and paintball.
  • Rapid Fire Paintball Park, +1 705 268-1825. Access from Mattagami Blvd. Open daily from 10AM to 10PM.
  • Hollinger Park, +1 705 360-1377. Corner of Algonquin Boulevard and Brunette Road. This park is a beautiful town landmark (historic mining site) that has a small children’s water park (open during the summer), a playground and picnic tables. There is a mini-putt range as well as batting cages on-site.
  • The White Waterfront Park, +1 705 360-1377. Near Porcupine Lake. Features a similar set-up to Hollinger Park, with picnic tables, a children’s playground and a small water park.

Winter[edit]

  • The Timmins Snowmobile Club, +1 705 264-7066. Timmins is the centre of Ontario's vast network of snowmobile trails. With over 2,000 members, the club maintains hundreds of kilometers of groomed trails and a clubhouse where visitors are welcome. You will require a permit to snowmobile. These are available from several local vendors and prices range depending on the length of the permit.
  • Kamiskotia Snow Resort, 5050 Kamiskotia Road., +1 705 268-9057. A fully equipped winter destination offering snow boarding, downhill skiing, tubing, clinics and lessons. The Base Lodge includes a cafeteria, lounge, locker rooms and a rental retail shop.
  • Porcupine Ski Runners, Highway 101, +1 705 360-1444. This facility has well-groomed trails for cross-country skiers. The cost for one day is $3 for a student or senior, $7 for an adult, or $15 for a family. The chalet is open from 8AM to 9PM daily, however the trails are accessible at all hours (there are 4 km of lights for night skiing). It is also possible to go snowshoeing at this facility. It only costs $1 for a student or a senior, $3 for an adult, or $7 for a family.

Skating[edit]

There are several arenas in the city that offer public skating at reasonable rates. Call the Timmins Leisure Services hotline at +1 705 360-2655 for more information.

  • Archie Dillon Sportsplex, 396 Theriault Boulevard.
  • McIntyre Community Centre, 85 McIntyre Road, Schumacher.
  • Mountjoy Arena, 814 Park Avenue.
  • Whitney Arena, Highway 101 East, South Porcupine.
  • Confederation Sports Facility, 303 Cameron Street South.

Each winter season the City of Timmins maintains outdoor ice rinks for public use. The following is a list of outdoor skating facilities available to the public. Unless specified, these facilities are unsupervised. Call the Timmins Leisure Services hotline at +1 705 360-2655 for more information.

  • Whitney
  • Mountjoy Arena
  • Roy Nicholson Park (2 rinks, 1 supervised)
  • Railway Street Porcupine
  • Park Avenue
  • Porcupine Lake Skating Oval
  • Gillies Lake Skating Oval

All-season[edit]

  • The Archie Dillon Sportsplex, 396 Theriault Boulevard., +1 705 360-2655. This handicap-accessible facility has 3 pools (hot, deep and a 37 metre/6 lane) with 2 diving boards and a rock-climbing wall. Supervised public and family swims are offered at various times throughout the week for a small admission. Home of the Timmins Marlins Swim Club (TMSC) www.timminsmarlins.ca
  • The Timmins Cinema 6, 215 Cedar Street South, +1 705 268-7070. Daily matinee and evening shows in digital theatre sound. Regular admission for evening shows is $9.25 for adults (14+) and $6 for children and seniors. Matinees are $7 for adults and $5.75 for children and seniors. Discount Tuesdays are $6.50 for adults and $5.50 for children and seniors. Please note that all prices are subject to change without notice.
  • The Midtown Bowl, 70 Algonquin Boulevard., +1 705 267-3500. A 5-pin bowling alley that offers Rock’n’Bowl on weekends.

Community events[edit]

  • Summerfest This is a family oriented weekend of fun. It offers a wide variety of activities for all, designed to bring the community together and celebrate summer. Summerfest events are intended to promote pride in our community while getting residents physically active and generally having a great time.
  • Ribfest Usually held at the end of June, the Ribfest is a festival held at Gillies Lake. It is a day of award winning ribs and chicken, prepared by some of the best Ribbers in North America. There are also live performances by local bands, a beverage tent and tons of children's activities!
  • Timmins Multi-Cultural Festival On the first Sunday of June, Timmins holds a multi-cultural festival celebrating its unique cultural diversity. Italian, Croatian, Polish, German, Scottish, Austrian, Finnish, Chinese, Filipino, and Indigenous cultures as well as many others join together to celebrate the diversity of the community.
  • [www.larondetimmins.ca Saint-Jean Baptiste] French Canadian celebration every June. Day filled with activities for the whole family. Local and national francophone artists perform.

Buy[edit]

  • Mountjoy Independent Farmers Market, Centennial Hall on Park Avenue (next door to the Mountjoy Arena), +1 705 268-6571, . Mid-July to mid-Oct: Sa 8AM-noon. The Market features fresh, locally grown produce, seasonal berries, herbs and flowers. Delicious jams, jellies, preserves, home-baked fresh breads, pies and desserts are available. The Mountjoy Farmers' Market also has a varied selection of craftspeople and artists with unique quality items for sale.
  • Downtown Timmins, +1 705-264-8733. A vibrant shopping area in the centre of the community, boasting a mix of some 250 businesses. Major banks include: ScotiaBank, Bank of Montreal, CIBC and TD Canada Trust. Popular locally-owned shops include 3 Small Rooms.
  • Timmins Square, +1 705 267-6433. The largest regional shopping centre in Northeastern Ontario. approximately 70 shops and services including fashion stores, home furnishings stores, electronics stores, sporting stores, department stores and a full service food court with 6 tenants. There are also 2 fully-licensed restaurants on-site (Montana’s and Siva’s). The mall has recently undergone renovations and is constantly attracting new businesses.
  • Timmins Chamber of Commerce, 77 McIntyre Road, +1 705 360-1900. This is the destination for information on tourism in Timmins, in Ontario and in Canada, as well as for souvenirs of the City with the Heart of Gold.
  • There is also an area of Riverside west beyond the Timmins Square that has Canadian Tire, Wal-Mart, Michaels, Mark’s Work Warehouse, Dollarama and Home Depot.

Art[edit]

  • La Galeruche, 32 Mountjoy Street North (Centre Culturel La Ronde), +1 705 264-8353. M-W 9AM-5PM, Th F 9AM-7PM, Sa 10AM-2PM. This gallery highlights the work of the region's Francophone population. Expositions are changed monthly.
  • Porcupine Art Club, +1 705 264-5438. Roy Nicholson Park, corner of Pine Street North and Eighth Avenue. Various art projects are on display in the clubhouse and can be viewed at occasional public showings or by appointment.
  • Joanne's Art Centre, 42 Pine Street South, +1 705 268-9585. M-W 9:30AM-5:30PM, Th F 9:30AM-5PM, Sa 9:30AM-5PM. Custom framing, art supplies, antiques, and giftware from all over the world. A second floor studio displays and sells prints from various artists.
  • Michael Davidson Studios, 657 Pine Street North, +1 705 237-2890. M-F 9AM to 5PM, Sa M-F 9AM-noon. A freelance artist preserving a part of the town's heritage. In his studio, you will find original artwork by him and Dale Pessah, limited edition prints, and decorator prints. After years of drawing portraits, Michael is now travelling across Ontario capturing historical sites and landmarks in each community. Custom framing of photos, canvas, and needlework is also available.
  • Timmins Native Friendship Centre Moccasin Gallery and Gifts, 316 Spruce Street South, +1 705 268-6262. M-F 8:30AM to 4:30PM. Assisting local aboriginal artists in selling their art and craftwork. You will find authentic moccasins, dream-catchers, paintings, books, etc.
  • Aboveground Art Gallery, Timmins Museum: National Exhibition Centre (Temporarily located on the site of the Timmins Gold Mine Tour), +1 705 360-2600 ext 6607. M-F 9AM to 5PM. The largest commercial art gallery in the area. Features original work of local and regional artists in a variety of medium including soapstone, gypsum and James Bay river-rock sculptures by Cree carver, John Ivan Etherington (Moose River).

Eat[edit]

While in Timmins, be sure to dine at some of the fantastic locally-owned restaurants. Since a 2003 by-law, all restaurants, bars and bingo halls in the city are smoke-free.

Budget/take out[edit]

  • Chez Nous Take Out, +1 705 267-7297. Offers delicious poutine, known as Shania’s (and just about everyone’s) favorite.
  • Don’s Pizzeria, +1 705 264-1361. A fully licensed Italian restaurant.
  • The McIntyre Coffee Shop, +1 705 360-5225. Offers all day breakfast and home-cooked meals. It is located at the site of the one of the city’s oldest gold mines, near the city’s landmark headframe, and features a wall of fame for Timmins’ NHL hockey players.

Mid-range[edit]

  • Broadway Restaurant, 71 Third Avenue, +1 705 264-3434. Offers breakfast all day and a variety of home-cooked meals.
  • Choy Se Kam's, 246 Algonquin Blvd W, +1 705 264-6200. This is a fully licensed authentic Cantonese cuisine restaurant, specializing in Hong Kong style seafood.
  • The Golden Dragon Buffet Restaurant, 128 Third Avenue, +1 705 268-8898. Offers the largest Chinese/Canadian buffet in town.
  • La Chaumière, 32 Mountjoy Street North, +1 705 267-1101. Offers delicious home-cooked meals.
  • Mickey J’s Big House Bar & Grill, +1 705 267-3333. A fully licensed restaurant and pub with a vibrant night-life. They have karaoke Wednesday’s, as well as live entertainment on weekends.
  • Restaurant Nadeau, 293 Wilson Ave, +1 705 238-2664. Delicious home-cooked meals.
  • Siva’s Family Restaurant, +1 705 268-8882. Fully licensed, offers all day breakfast, a buffet and a pasta bar.

Splurge[edit]

Sleep[edit]

This guide uses the following price ranges for a standard double room:
Budget Under $75
Mid-range $75 - $125
Splurge Over $125


Budget[edit]

Mid-range[edit]

  • Bon Air Motel, 355 Algonquin Blvd. E, +1 705 264-1275. 1 queen: $85, 2 double: $99, 1 king suite: $185.
  • Comfort Inn, 939 Algonquin Blvd. E, +1 705 264-9474. 1 queen: $107.17 to $127.27; 2 double: $107.17; 1 king suite: N/A
  • Ramada, 1800 Riverside Dr, +1 705 267-6241. Smoke-free hotel, 105 rooms. 1 king: $99; 2 double: $99; 1 king suite: $139 $100-140.
  • Travelodge, 1136 Riverside Dr, +1 705 360-1122. 1 queen: $94; 2 double: $94; 1 king suite: $135

Splurge[edit]

Learn[edit]

Stay safe[edit]

If you're driving in to the area, be warned that the roads can be snow-covered and icy in the winter and early spring - take to heart everything discussed on the winter driving page. Your best bet is winter tires (chains aren't allowed), however taking a bag of sand or kitty litter in your trunk can help you if you're stuck and spinning your tires. Most locals are happy to help push if you get stuck. In case of a breakdown, make sure that you take along a standard road safety kit with flares, gloves, and a warm blanket.

The forests surrounding the city are home to potentially dangerous wildlife such as black bears, always take caution when traversing the walking trails or when camping. One suggestion is to carry a whistle or arm yourself with bear spray to ensure your safety when enjoying the outdoors, both alone or with a group.

Go next[edit]

Timmins can be a good place to make your way to if you're looking to explore non-road access towns in Northern Ontario. Airline carriers such as Air Creebec and Thunder Airlines can take you to regions that you can't drive to, such as Moosonee and Attawapiskat

This city travel guide to Timmins 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.