Cobourg is a town of 19,000 residents (2018) 110 kilometers east of Toronto along Highway 401 (exits 472 and 474)

Cobourg History

The town was founded by United Empire Loyalists in 1798, who liked its harbour on Lake Ontario. The Town was originally called Amherst, but was renamed Cobourg in 1818, for Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg (who would later become King of Belgium) when he married Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales. In 1835, Egerton Ryerson founded the Upper Canada Academy in Cobourg, which in 1841 changed its name to Victoria College, and in 1892 was moved to Toronto to become part of the University of Toronto.

The Ontario Car Ferry Company was a joint venture between the Grand Trunk Railway (GTR) and the Buffalo, Rochester and Pennsylvania Railroad transported coal from Pennsylvania to Ontario to power GTR trains. The ferries carried about 30 cars of coal and 1000 passengers on a 5 hour trip across the lake. Cobourg became a popular vacation community for wealthy Americans. Slowed by the Depression and then the post-war slowdown, the ferries were cancelled in 1950.

In 1967, the first Cobourg Yacht Club clubhouse was built, to take advantage of the harbour, and a customs station was added in the 1970s. Since the 1980s, the town has beautified its waterfront, focused on being a harbour for small craft, added a boardwalk and lakeside pathways alongside the wide sandy beach. By 1991, the last large oil tanks were removed.

Cobourg Background

Cobourg Attractions

Art Gallery of Northumberland

Victoria Hall, 3rd Floor
55 King Street West
Cobourg K9A 2M2

A variety of exhibitions and programming, with a permanent collection of visual arts. Educational activities include lectures, films, workshops, artist talks and tours. Wheelchair accessible. Open Tuesday-Friday: 10 am – 4 pm; Saturday: 1 pm. to 5 pm; Sunday: Special Events Only; Monday: Closed.

Cobourg Marina & Pier

103 Third Street, Cobourg
905-372-2397, Fax: 905-372-1533

A world-class marina and yacht club with a breathtaking view of the lake, operated by the town, with its 2500 sq, ft. marina building containing scrupulously clean facilities which include large washrooms, showers and a fish cleaning area. A leisurely stroll will bring you to the heritage downtown, and nearby Victoria Park is splendid with its flower gardens and century-old trees. Summer hours 7 am to 10 pm.

Cobourg Yacht Club

(905) 372 3098
Box 561, Cobourg, ON K9A 4L3
longitude 78°.09′.75″ west, and latitude 43°.57′.04″ north

There are 187 slips with 20 or 30 amp power and water at most, as well as a separate check-in dock in the inner harbour,and a launch ramp for smaller boars.The Yacht club has dockage for members of reciprocating yacht clubs on a first night free basis. The second floor licensed dining lounge open Weds 5-11 pm, Fri 5 pm-Midnight, Sat Noon-Midnight, Sun 8 am-8 pm.

Victoria Hall

55 King St. W. (#2 highway )
Cobourg, Ontario K9A 2M2
Highway 401 Exit #472 (Burnham St.) or Exit #474 (Division St.) south to downtown Cobourg.
905-372-2210 – Toll Free: 1-888-COBOURG ext. 4153
Fax: 905-372-0781

The Concert Hall is located on the second floor of Victoria Hall in downtown Cobourg. The Hall is an elegant room elaborately hand painted in “trompe l’oeuil” style and was first opened in 1860 by the Prince of Wales. The Hall became the legal political, and cultural centre of Cobourg and Northumberland County. The Grand Concert Hall was restored to its Victorian grandeur in 1983. Opening hours are 9 am to 5 p.m. weekdays and 11 to 5 p.m. on the weekend

Cobourg Walking tour

Town of Cobourg
55 King Street West
Cobourg, Ontario K9A 2M2
(905) 372-4301

Along Cobourg’s Kings Street heritage district, take a short walk to see Pratt’s Mill, Mackechnie House, Marie Dressler House (movie star from the 1920s & 1930s), the Post Office, the Cobourg Jail, cedar Hedge and 35 King Street East.

Cobourg, Ontario Area Map