Situated on the North Shore of the Lake of Woods, Kenora is known for great fishing, hunting and boating. Kenora is at the point where the Trans-Canada highway 17 heads east, but one highway 71 heads south to Fort Frances, the US border, and highway 11, which merges again with the Trans-Canada just west of Thunder Bay. On January 1, 2000 Kenora amalgamated with two other towns to form the City of Kenora.
This community began in 1882 as Rat Portage, named for the abundance of muskrat in the Winnipeg River basin, and was part of Manitoba. In 1884, the Privy Council moved it into Ontario, where it became an incorporated town in 1892. The town was renamed in 1905 as apart of a municipal amalgamation, taking the first two letters of each of Keeewatin, Norman, and Rat Portage. Norman was a community midway between Rat Portage and Keewatin, named for the son of a local lumber company manager.
Dryden and Kenora are the only cities in Ontario located in the Central Time Zone.
In the heart of this 10,100-resident community stands a 12 metre (35 ft) high, 2 ton wood, steel and fiberglass statue of “Husky the Muskie” (a replica fish) as a symbol of the environment as well as the frequent record-breaking catches made in this area.Many Murals and Indian petroglyphs can also be found around the city (as well as the lake) revealing the colorful history of the town. In the summer, you can take tours of Kenora’s biggest employer, the paper mill.
There are many ways to venture out into Lake of the Woods to experience the legends of the lake first hand including boat taxi, shuttle service or the MS Kenora which will carry up to 200 passengers.
To reduce traffic congestion in the community, the Highway 17A Kenora Bypass was built. This is the through-route followed by most truckers, and still has lots of views of Ontario’s Canadian Shield and lakes. Cyclists may consider driving through town to reduce the fast Bypass truck traffic swishing by. This older route meanders through the smaller settlements that make up Kenora.
Husky the Muskie
Mcleod Park, in town (just before bridge westbound)
This enormous replica stands as a symbol for the Lake of the Woods, where you’ll find some of North America’s best Muskie fishing.
Lake of the Woods Museum
300 Main St. S, in Memorial Park;
This museum houses a collection of over 15,000 articles including displays of Indian culture and artifacts of an early Portage. Wide collection of beaded native clothing.
Harbourfront, Kenora, ON P9N 4B5
Departs from the Kenora Harbor Front
Cruise beautiful Lake of the Woods on this 200 passenger boat.