County of Brant
The vibrant County of Brant welcomes visitors with exciting events, a burgeoning musical scene, stunning landscapes and more. Discover rich cultural history, beautiful architecture, locally owned boutiques and eateries.
This mainly rural municipality in Southern Ontario is home to several communities, the largest of which is Paris, located up stream on the Heritage Grand River from Brantford and the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory which is in one of North America’s last pristine Carolinian Forests.
The County of Brant is named after Joseph Brant (Thayendanegea), the famed Mohawk Chief of Chiefs. In 1784, Brant negotiated for his people with the Crown to secure land 6 miles all along the Grand River. Bought from the Mississaugas, this land was granted to the Haudenosaunee in compensation for the land south of the Great lakes that the British ceded to the Americans after the American Revolution.
Brant established the Mohawk Village (also called “Brant’s Town”) at a fording location on the river, later known as Brant’s Ford (now Brantford). The Royal Chapel of the Mohawks, built in 1785, still stands today, across from the Mohawk Institute, established in 1831. Visit the oldest surviving church in Ontario, featuring eight stained glass windows that tell the unique history of the Six Nations and of the chapel itself. The church is also the first Protestant church in Upper Canada.
Come play, explore and learn about a unique chapter of Canadian history in this culturally rich county of beautiful rural communities.
To learn more about all there is to see and do in the County of Brant, scroll down or visit the region's tourism website.
Where is the County of Brant?
The County of Brant is located just half an hour’s drive west of Hamilton, and approximately one hour southwest of Toronto via route 403 (Queen Elizabeth Way). The closest airport is John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport (IATA: YHM, ICAO: CYHM), a 25 minute drive away via Butter Road, Route 8 and Route 2.
Things to Do in the County of Brant
The County of Brant offers a plethora of activities from shopping and dining to outdoor recreation. Curious minds are invited to uncover stories from the past at historical museums and sites. Artists and artisans keep shops and studios in many of the communities along the main thoroughfares and driving routes throughout the county.
Look for the Barn Quilt Trails along your route. Barn quilts are colourful, decorative murals based around quilt block designs that are painted on large square wooden frames hung on the sides of barns and farm buildings or hung from posts. There are more than 30 barn quilts to spot throughout the County of Brant and more in the other surrounding counties of Middlesex, Elgin, Norfolk and Oxford.
The County of Brant hosts music festivals and events throughout the year, including the DT Concert Series, the Nelson Family Bluegrass Jamboree and the Burford Agricultural Society and Fall Fair, featuring local artists and exhibitions.
History buffs will appreciate significant sites like downtown Paris, where the world’s first long-distance telephone call was made between Alexander Graham Bell and his father. Or the Adelaide Hoodless Homestead in St. George, the former home of the founder of the YWCA. You’ll also find Loyalist cemeteries, historic barns, mills, bridges and train stations throughout the towns and rural communities.
Visit archaeological sites from Indigenous settlements dating back for centuries in neighbouring Brantford. Some have been covered over by newer architecture, unfortunately, but there are still sites you can visit and learn about the culture and history of the area. The Mohawk Chapel in Brantford is one location where you can explore more recent Indigenous history. Additionally, Brantford is home to several great museums like the Bell Homestead National Historic Site.
A plethora of outdoor activities and adventures await from camping, paddling, fishing, golf and tennis to various forms of winter sports. And over 400 km of trails await keen hikers and cyclists.
County of Brant Neighbourhoods & Districts
The County of Brant is home to charming small towns and communities that welcome visitors.
The largest town in the County of Brant looks and feels like the perfect postcard destination and welcomes guests with quaint shops, two stunning rivers, and delicious locally made cheese, baked goods and candy shops.
Burford and Harley
This community boasts fantastic eateries, baked goods, historical sites and beautiful parks with an agricultural backdrop.
The County of Brant surrounds the city of Brantford, making it super easy to visit.
Glen Morris is the perfect spot for a hike, bike or bird watching excursion.
Onondaga and Middleport
A British-esque village filled with cafes, antique shops, eateries and more.
Scotland and Oakland
Things to Know About Visiting County Of Brant
Whether you’re still in the planning stages or you’re already on your trip to County of Brant, it’s nice to learn what the locals know.
Where to take a romantic stroll
Favourite local gem
Where to get great city views
Where to go for local shopping
Last updated: November 18, 2022