Sandwiched between two lakes, the gridiron streets of downtown GRAVENHURST, some 170km north of Toronto, are surprisingly leafy, but the busiest part of town is down by the harbour, where cottagers whizz in and out to collect supplies. In its early days, the town prospered from logging and for a while it was even called “Sawdust City”, until the local council had second thoughts.

Bethune Memorial House National Historic Site

Gravenhurst’s prime historical attraction is the recently upgraded Bethune Memorial House National Historic Site, the birthplace of the remarkable Norman Bethune (1890–1939), a doctor who introduced Western medicine to the Chinese in the 1930s and invented mobile blood-transfusion units. The house has been restored to its appearance in 1890 and has displays on Bethune’s considerable accomplishments – he was even praised by Chairman Mao – all detailed in English, French and Chinese.

Travel offers; book through Rough Guides

Canada features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

The best places to go in spring

The best places to go in spring

Springtime is beautiful, with its big blue skies and flowers in bloom, so there may be no better time to travel. If you're thinking about getting away, here are…

14 Feb 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
26 awe-inspiring architectural wonders

26 awe-inspiring architectural wonders

From ancient temples to hyper-modern skyscrapers, these are just a few of the world's most incredible architectural wonders. Whether you're looking to wander l…

01 Feb 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
Road trip Canada: 5 of the best routes

Road trip Canada: 5 of the best routes

Rugged and vast, Canada is a road-trippers dream. Driving gives you the freedom to travel at your own pace – pull over and drink in the scenery along the wa…

05 Dec 2016 • Stuart Forster insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month

Join over 60,000 subscribers and get travel tips, competitions and more every month