Since I’ve been in Toronto at the pageant all week, I have really been missing home while I’ve been gone.  So since it’s been on my mind, I wanted to tell you about what I miss most—besides my family, of course!

I think people overlook the Durham Region because well…it’s no Toronto.  It doesn’t look as pretty as some other Canadian regions.  Oshawa is even lovingly referred to as “The Dirty ‘Shwa”.  But those people just don’t know where to look!  So I’m here to show you.

If you were to ask me my favourite place to go in the Durham Region, I would probably give a very flustered mumbling of…not even words.

Because the truth is: My favourite place(s) to go is a little nook or cranny of the beautiful nature that can be found throughout the Durham Region.  I love to go exploring my region, just walking around to find some of the natural beauty that my region has to offer.

This was from a “wanderful” walk that I took literally across the street from my house in Oshawa!

I have always had an interest in photography and have a tendency to see the world “through a lens”.  Even when I don’t have my camera with me, I see the world in pictures.  I see everything in the best light possible, and frame it in my mind how it would look in a picture.

You’d be surprised how good just some trees in a small nature-y area in Whitby can look!

PS. I really like daisies. They’re a very photogenic flower!

I actually used to walk around everywhere with a camera literally around my neck!  Just in case I happened upon something I didn’t want to ever forget.  And I would get up at ungodly hours of the morning to take pictures during the dawn.

My street at 5AM

One place I think everyone can appreciate in the Durham Region is the shores of Lake Ontario.  With the calm, cool waves; the sun shining along the water; the sandy beaches; the piers and lighthouses; the stony pathways; and the rocks leading out to the water.  What’s not to love?


Really, my favourite place in Durham Region is everywhere.  Because I think I could find beauty in just about anything.

But if I had to choose just one place, it would probably have to be the grounds and gardens of Parkwood Estate and gardens in Oshawa.

The Parkwood Mansion

The mansion belonged to Mr. Robert Samuel McLaughlin and his family back in the early 1900’s.  R. S. McLaughlin helped found the McLaughlin Motor Car Company, which joined forces with the General Motors Corporation to help keep the company alive and to keep production in Oshawa.  He and his family had achieved “First Family” status in Oshawa by 1915 when construction of the mansion began.

This absolutely stunning Estate was declared a National Historic Site, and while Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday, Parkwood Estate is celebrating its 100th year of being a National Historic Site! Parkwood is a great place to just look around and relax, and for photoshoots for proms, weddings, and more!

Me and my baby sister at her prom photo shoot at Parkwood

I just LOVE the gardens

The estate is also VERY famous, having been used as a set in MANY movies and TV shows! You may recognize it from…

  • Billy Madison (Film, 1995)
  • X-Men (Film, 1999)
  • Chicago (Film, 2002)
  • Bullet Proof Monk (Film, 2002)
  • A Catered Affair (TV show, 2005)
  • Murdoch Mysteries (TV show, 2009, 2013)
  • Nikita (TV show, 2010-2012)
  • Lost Girl (TV show, 2011)
  • Hemlock Grove (TV series, 2012, 2013, 2015)
  • Hannibal (TV series, 2014-2015)

To name a few… And they actually currently have a disruption for filming until July 23rd!

Parkwood is a place that is not only absolutely beautiful, but it also has a rich and interesting history. I miss going to take photos of the gardens, and even the building itself for the unique architecture. I’m looking forward to going back once I’m home!

Written by: Katie

2 Responses to The Gem(s) of Durham Region

  1. Christa says:

    It takes a special person to find the beauty in everything! And I know the time it can take to take a picture that truly reflects how you see a shot in your mind. Great job!

  2. S. C. says:

    Oshawa can’t wait to have you back either 🙂
    Keep up the great work out there and have a blast!

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