Part of the joy of hanging around in cottage country is the great antique shopping—the beauty of being out in the country is rivalled only by the the thrill of the hunt for that perfect treasure. Mid-century modern dining room set? Check. A box lot of cups-and-saucers to add to your collection? Check? A Sear’s catalogue from 1932? Check and check.
Here are some of the best antique markets to visit in cottage country.
Aberfoyle Antique Market (Sundays, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.)
If you’re heading toward Guelph on a Sunday, Canada’s oldest antique market is a must-stop. Sixty regular vendors and more than 30 visiting dealers gather each week at this outdoor market, which features everything from old farm tools to costume jewellery. There’s a play area for kids who can’t see the appeal of 1930s gas signs, an on-site eatery and ice cream booth, and large fields for strolling. Bring cash or be prepared to line up at the central ATM.
Roadshow Antiques North (Daily, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.)
Just off the 400 in Innisfil, Roadshow Antiques North (also known as the 400 Antiques Mall) is a 32,000 square-foot indoor antique market featuring more than 200 vendors. Along with the usual collectibles, Roadshow Antiques North has many fine antiques, including furniture, china, and glassware, as well as an extensive collection of African tribal art for sale. On weekends, the antique market shares a building with a full-on flea market, so you can get treasures and trinkets, all in one place.
Market Road Antiques (Daily, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.)
Market Road Antiques is open all week, but go on the weekends if you also want to check out the legendary St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market — a multi-building extravaganza of traditional food, crafts and produce. Market Road, located just across the street, has more than 100 dealers in 20,000 square feet. Find hand-made wooden furniture with a pioneer feel, quilts and other housewares are plentiful, but there’s something for everyone. If you’re there on Wednesday between 2 and 6, bring your own treasure and have it appraised in exchange for a canned-food donation.
One of a Kind Antique Mall (Daily, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.)
A little off the cottage country track, perhaps, but One of a Kind Antique Mall is located in a three-storey converted factory in Woodstock, Ontario and is billed as Canada’s largest antiques and collectibles market. With more than 500 vendors and a mind-boggling 80,000 square feet of shopping space, you’re sure to find a ton of stuff you didn’t know you wanted. Check out their website if you’re looking for specific types of antiques—they’ve posted photos of some of the treasures available.
Picker’s World Antique Market (Daily, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., outdoor market on weekends)
Spread across four buildings, Picker’s World is the largest antiques mall in the Kingston area. The pickings expand on weekends, when the mall holds an outdoor market with a variety of vendors. And hey, if you’ve got some collectibles or antiques that are gathering dust at your cottage, the folks from Picker’s World buy antiques as well.
Ottawa Antique Market (Monday, Wednesday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., closed Tuesday)
Centrally located in Old Ottawa South in the heart of Ottawa’s Antiques Row, the Ottawa Antique Market features treasures from 25 vendors, including early Canadiana, antiquarian books, and Persian carpets. There’s also a good assortment of mid-century modern furniture to choose from—just in case your cottage needs that “atomic age” vibe.
New to antiquing? Check out our beginner’s guide.