It's a rural community, with elementary schools, a high school, several cafes, restaurants and bars. The area surrounding the town is primarily agricultural land, with tomatoes, tobacco and corn among the chief crops. Area farmers generally suffered from the decline of the tobacco industry, but natural health and organic crops are being explored, such as ginseng, as well as lavender and wine grapes.
Waterford's earliest known inhabitants, from around the year 1000 until approximately 300–350 years later, were the Algonquin nation. They were noted flint-workers and evidence of their skill in crafting arrowheads is still to be found in open worked field areas surrounding the village. The next wave of inhabitants were the Attawandaron nation, the Neutrals, who occupied the region from about 1350 until their absorption by the Iroquois 300 years later. The last significant native nation to occupy the area was the Mississaugas.
Founded in 1794, this community was established as a saw and grist mill community. Settlement of this area, with rich soil and large forests, within Townsend Township, started in 1794, and by 1782 Paul Averill was operating saw and grist-mills on Nanticoke Creek. By 1851, Waterford contained the Township Hall and many industries, including a large agricultural implements factory built by James Green. The railway arrived in 1871 and helped increase growth.
Waterford is 60 km southwest of Hamilton (Ontario): follow Upper James St (Highway 6); at Hagersville, turn right onto County Road 9.
On foot. There are no public transport services.
- Waterford Heritage & Agricultural Museum, 159 Nichol Street, ☏ . Tu-F 10AM–4:30PM, Su 1–4PM. Objects related to the history of Waterford and the former Townsend Township, as well as the agricultural history of Norfolk County, in the Pickle Factory, one of Waterford's best known industrial landmarks. Wheelchair accessible. By donation.
- 1 Pumpkinfest, Lions Community Centre, 53 West Church Street, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. October 18, 19 & 20, 2019. A huge "pumpkin pyramid" of 1500 carved pumpkins is an annual tradition for this autumn festival. A car show and a soap box derby are some of the other attractions at Pumpkinfest.
- Waterford Heritage Trail. A well-maintained 15-km trail along the former Lake Erie and Northern Railway through pumpkin fields, alongside ponds, and over an old railway bridge from Waterford to the beach. It's mostly flat, and suitable for walking or biking.
- Waterford North Conservation Area (Waterford Ponds), 226 Concession 8 Townsend, ☏ , toll-free: . May 1 – October 15. The three ponds at Waterford North Conservation Area are home to an array of fish species including largemouth bass, northern pike and a variety of panfish. Pickerel Lake, Willow Pond, and Bass Lake, the three ponds in the conservation area, are the result of gravel pit rehabilitation, with deep rocky bottoms and pronounced shorelines. 47 of its 100 campsites have 30 amp service. It offers shady picnic areas, a small sandy beach with unsupervised swimming, and canoe and kayak rentals.
- Waterford Antique Market, 80B Alice Street, ☏ . W-Su 10AM-5PM. 2 floors and over 70 vendors.
- St. James Eatery, 10 St James St S, ☏ . Tu-F 6AM-3PM, Sa Su 7AM-3PM. Cafe and deli.
- Yin's Restaurant, 40 Main St S, ☏ . Su 10AM-8PM, M-Th 10:30AM-9PM, F 10:30AM-10PM, Sa 11AM-10PM. Chinese restaurant.
- The Perks of Norfolk, 2619 Cockshutt Rd, ☏ . M-F 6AM-3PM, Sa Su 7AM-3PM. Homemade soups, sandwiches, burgers, wraps, desserts.
- The Gibbled Goose, 22-26 Main Street, ☏ . Su Tu-Th 11AM-11PM, F Sa 11AM-1AM, kitchen closes at 9PM, F Sa late night menu 9-11PM. English-style pub.
- Swazees, Old Hwy 24, ☏ . Daily 11:30AM-midnight.
- The Butter Barn Bed and Breakfast, 98 St James St S, ☏ . Sitting room with fireplace, satellite TV, free Wi-Fi, continental breakfast (included) or hot cooked brunch (extra), outdoor spaces, lots of parking. $95-110.
- Cedar Cottage B&B, 146 St James St S, ☏ . $140.