The townships east of Toronto were surveyed in 1792, and were named for towns along England’s northeastern Yorkshire coast, including York, Scarborough, Pickering, Whitby and Darlington (now Oshawa).

Pickering is 40 kilometres east of downtown Toronto, just past the parklands of the Rouge River. Pickering offers a unique blend of the urban and rural spaces. There are picturesque villages of Greenwood, Cherrywood, Claremont and Brougham in north Pickering, and the historically designated village of Whitevale. Today, the community has become a very accessible bedroom community for Toronto.

Pickering - Frenchmans Bay Marina -sliver (Jack Currie)

Pickering History

Pickering was surveyed in 1792 as part of what was then York County, and is named for Pickering in Yorkshire, England. The Rouge River provided both water-power for local mills and was a good harbour, for shipping goods on the Great Lakes. The Kingston Road connected Toronto and Kingston around 1810, and the Grand Trunk Railway was built in 1856, further promoted settlement and development.

During World War II, a munitions plant in the eastern portion of the Picketing Township began the foundation of the community of Ajax. After the war, Pickering grew more following the construction of Highway 401 and again in the early 1960s with the construction of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station. In the 1970s The federal government expropriated land to build a larger airport for Toronto at Pickering, but environmental and community groups shut down that plan. In 1974, Pickering became part of the newly created Regional Municipality of Durham and in 2000 Pickering became a city.

Pickering Attractions

Docville Wild West Park

816 North Street
Newcastle, ON, L1B 1L9
905-987-1131 Fax: 905-987-6927

Halloween Spooky Ghost Town Tours in Newcastle, Oct 12-29

Exotic Animal Ranch

(905) 985-2738 (905) 985-2598
2192 Cookson Lane
R.R. #2
Seagrave, ON, L0C 1G0
Established in 1988. Wild cats.

Greenwood Conservation Area

north on Westney Road, north of Taunton Road
Recreation Services at 427-8811

Greenwood offers you a chance to escape to nature along the banks of Duffins Creek. Hiking trails allow you to explore the forest or the steep-sided river valley. Picnic shelters and washroom facilities are available in the picnic area. nature trails, walking paths for hiking and for witner cross-country skiing. The cold, clear-running creek offers trout fishing in the spring. The park is open to the public daily from May to September from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and October to April 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. No site rental for a picnic or overnight camping is allowed without a permit.

Herongate Barn Dinner Theatre

2885 Altona Road
Pickering, Ontario
905-472-3085 1-866-902-9884
Located in the middle of the Dufferin-Rouge Agricultural Preserve east of Toronto, and housed in a converted dairy barn that is comfortable & cozy year-round. Herongate produces affordable full-length theatrical performances served with delicious home-cooked meals. Performance seasons: September to December and February to July


Oshawa Valley Botanical Gardens

905-436-5636 Ext: 2162
155 Arena St
Oshawa, ON L1H 3Z7
Mailing: c/o 50 Centre St South, Oshawa, ON, L1H 3Z7

The Oshawa Valley Botanical Garden features over 300 Peony varieties and is one of the largest contemporary peony gardens in Canada.

Oshawa Zoo

3441 Grandview St N
R.R. #5
Oshawa, ON, L1H 8L7
(905) 655-5236 Fax: (905) 655-4753

The zoo features 200 animals of 45 species of tame Exotic and Domestic animals that feed from your hand in an open interactive environment. We are situated on Oshawa’s Oak Ridge Moraine. The goal of the Oshawa Zoo is to provide a nice display of quality exotic animals in a park like atmosphere.

Parkwood, The R.S. McLaughlin Estate, Museum & Heritage Garden

270 Simcoe Street North
Oshawa, ONm L1G 4T5
Voice: (905) 433-4311 Fax: (905) 721-4765

Parkwood was the family home of Sam McLaughlin, founder of GM of Canada. One of Canada’s finest and last remaining grand estates, featuring architectural, landscape and interior designs of the 1920’s and 1930’s. Once home to auto baron R. Samuel McLaughlin and his family, mow a National Historic site. Open year round.

Petticoat Creek Conservation Area

1100 Whites Road in Pickering, just off Highway 401.

On the shores of Lake Ontario, you have incredible view of the bluffs with access to the Waterfront Trail. The Area has a 1.5-acre supervised swimming pool, 12 great picnic sites. Park is open June through Labour Day, from 9:00 am to dusk. The pool is open daily from 10 am to 7 pm, subject to adverse weather conditions.
Pickering Museum entrance

Pickering Museum Village

The Esplanade
Pickering ON L1V 6K7

This 19th century historical community with costumed re-enactors demonstrating pioneer crafts in the Village of Greenwood over the summer months. Special events include Walking Through Thyme, Antique and Classic Car Show, and Pastimes of Past Times held throughout the year. Open from June to September (and special events days) Wednesday to Sunday 11 am to 5 pm

Pickering-Frenchmans Bay - Windmill with Power Plant -sliver (Jack Currie)

Pickering-Frenchmans Bay – Windmill with Power Plant -sliver (Jack Currie)

Pickering Nuclear Generating Station (NGS)

Lake Ontario shoreline

This eight-reactor Candu facility, commissioned in the early 1970’and 1980’s, generates 4,120 megawatts, one of the largest nuclear generating stations in North America. When fully operating, Pickering can provide approximately 23% of the electrical energy needs for the Province of Ontario. nformation Centre teaches about nuclear power through exhibits, films, life-size displays and special events. Tours offered to adults over 18 by advance reservation. Open year round. Monday to Friday 9 am to 4:30 pm, Saturday 10 am to 4 pm. Free admission.

Pickering Waterfront Trail

Along Lake Ontario

The Lake Ontario Waterfront Trail runs along Lake Ontario, and when completed it will run 650 kilometres from Niagara-on-the-Lake to Gananoque along the St Lawrence River. At Pickering’s Frenchman’s Bay natural harbour there is a waterfront trail, boardwalk, kiddie water-spray park and sandy play areas, as well as areas for boating and fishing.

Seaton Hiking Trails

South Side of Highway 7 at Green Drive
take the 401 and exit at Brock Rd. and go north, head west on Finch to Valley Farm Rd
approximately 8 km east of Markham Pickering ON.

The Seaton Hiking Trails are about 3 kms in total, comprised of three distinct trails: The Heritage Trail, the Wilderness Trail and the Walking Trail. No biking permitted at Seaton.

Boardwalk Along Pickering Beach, with Wind Turbine

Wind-powered OPG 7 Commemorative Turbine

At the Generating Station site

Opened in 2001 and towering over Pickering’s shoreline is Ontario Power Generation (OPG)’s new wind turbine, which is the tallest free-standing wind generator in North America. Visible all along the Waterfront Trail. Built by Vestas Wind Systems of Denmark (, the world’s largest manufacturer of wind turbines , and the blades rotate at a constant speed of 15.7 r.p.m. geared to turn a generator rotating at 1,915 r.p.m to generate 1.8 MW

York Durham Heritage Railway

6176 Main St Stouffville
PO Box 462
Whitchurch-Stouffville, ON L4A 7Z7

The rail line used was built in the late 1860’s as the Toronto and Nipissing (T&N) Railway, which in 1920 became part of Canadian National Railways. Stouffville station was demolished by CN in the 1980’s and replaced in the mid-1990’s by the present GO Transit station. The original T&N line was progressively abandoned from Coboconk southward beginning in the late 1960’s. The York-Durham Heritage Railway reopened the line between Uxbridge and Stouffville in 1996 and has been running on summer weekends since then. Enjoy a leisurely ride on vintage rail cars over the Oak Ridges Moraine. Depart Stouffville or Uxbridge on Sundays. Special trains can be reserved for Saturdays. Fares vary.

Pickering, Ontario Area Map