Like walking along a waterfront? Check. Like small, privately-owned shops with character? Check. Like many choices for delicious dining? Check.
There are many things to do in Port Credit in Mississauga – it’s a favourite for many because it has a little bit of everything for everybody. From Scoops Ice Cream, which during the summer is packed with families, to Port Credit Marina which attracts sailors and boaters alike, Port Credit is one of the top areas in Mississauga to explore.
To understand why Port Credit is as it is, you need to look at its history. Situated by the Credit River, it was originally a trading post in the mid-1700s – with its harbour it was a fishing port and key centre for agricultural trade. Later on, with the railway coming through, other industries flourished with the St. Lawrence Starch Works, and the Port Credit Brickyard (both businesses are no longer in existence, however one building of the St. Lawrence Starch Works remains on Lakeshore Road).
With Lakeshore Highway built along the shoreline, a link between Toronto and Port Credit was created – many saw this area as very attractive for business, tourism and shopping in the early 1900s. It was a community that grew up into a small village, sustained by business and by luring people from neighbouring communities for leisure activities.
Port Credit became part of Mississauga in 1974 when the city was incorporated. What it brings to the city of Mississauga is a very long tradition of community activity – when you visit, you know you are entering a distinct area, where local residents and businesses identify themselves as living in “Port Credit”, rather than just Mississauga. There’s a sense of pride in the community – particularly during various festivals celebrated annually, including the Waterfront Festival (held at the end of June, with always a great musical act headlining – Bedouin Soundclash in 2010; Sam Roberts the year before); the Port Credit In-Water Boat Show (August 26-28, 2011) held at the Port Credit Marina; and Southside Shuffle blues and jazz festival (held in September).
So why visit Port Credit at any time of the year?
There are numerous restaurants and lounges – from pubs such as the Pump House Grill, fast food-type places like Burrito Boyz, to fine-dining venues such as Shore Grill and Aielli. Ten Lounge at Lakeshore Road and Hurontario Streets (a play on Hurontario’s original name as Highway 10) is a hot-spot on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights for food, music, drinks and dancing, while serving delicious lunches and dinners during the day.
In the past few years several new cool venues have moved into the Port Credit area including Spice Lounge and Tapas.
Shopping, People-Watching, Walking & Cycling
Apart from dining, there are many small shops – from specialty gift shops, to bookstores with used books, art shops, women’s fashion and pet shops.
For those who prefer an active lifestyle, the Waterfront Trail that goes along the shore and marina in Port Credit and into the small residential streets, is the ideal spot for cyclists, walking enthusiasts and rollerbladers.
During the hot summer nights, Port Credit Marina and the walk down to where the river meets Lake Ontario are packed with people. It’s a great spot to sit and people-watch, go on a first date and watch the sun set behind the Port Credit lighthouse.
Even during the winter, Port Credit has its appeal – the frozen, empty marina offers photographers with stark visuals, and bars such as Roc ‘n Doc’s make for cozy spots for a pint, pub grub and live music.
Like in the early 1900s, Port Credit remains an escape for Torontonians – away from the hustle and bustle of the big city, with a community atmosphere and so many attractions. Even residents from other parts of Mississauga are lured to the variety of places to visit in this area.
With so many things to do in Port Credit, give yourself at least half a day to walk around, explore, dine and shop.
What’s your favourite place to visit in Port Credit? Favourite restaurant/bar?
Updated July 24, 2015