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“Could easily spend a day here.”

Fort William Historical Park
Ranked #2 of 65 things to do in Thunder Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Sault Ste. Marie, Canada
Level Contributor
66 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Could easily spend a day here.”
Reviewed August 1, 2012

While camping in the Thunder Bay area we decided to make Fort William a major stop for our 10 year old son. Although we have been to similar historical sites, this was a first time here. We got information and direction from the tourist office on the highway into town from the east. They suggested spend several hours at the fort. We spent 4 and could easily have made a full day of it.

The reenactment staff stuck to there personas very well, and gave the impression that we were popping in and that life in the fort with all it's back stories was carrying on around us..

The arrival of the voyageurs was exciting and the cannon salutes echo back of the far river shore quite loudly. My son carries one of the bales of supplies into the fort as part of the ceremony.

Later on the was a fire drill using the hand pumped water wagon. Again my son got involved as part of the bucket brigade to fill the water tank from the pump. He then served as the fire and was used for target practice by the fire crew. Given the heat and sun he was happy with this plan. Actually it was one of his top picks for the holiday.

The indian encampment outside the walls of the fort was also very interesting as a birch bark wigwam was being built and hides being scared and dries to be cut into bindings.

Entry was about $40 for the three of us, great value for a day in well a well presented historical site.

Visited July 2012
1 Thank JamesOB523
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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363 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
93 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Fur Trading History”
Reviewed July 30, 2012

Fort William is unique in that it is a fur trading fort rather than a military fort. If you go make sure to take mosquito spray as the walk into the fort through the forest is full of hungry mosquitoes. For those unable to walk there is a shuttle which takes you to the fort. The buildings are manned by period characters who transform the fort back to the fur trading days. There are many activities each day. There is also, during the summer, a cantine which seres very tasty lunches. Pets are welcome on leashes here too. Probably best to go near opeing time which is 10 since there are usually a number of tour groups coming in.

Visited July 2012
Thank acgames
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
89 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 78 helpful votes
“Lots of buildings and things to see”
Reviewed July 28, 2012

We arrived late in the day when the skies looked like it might rain any second. I thought we might check out the visitor's center but not actually see the place thinking it wouldn't be worth the entry fee. Lucky for us, it was a special weekend festival and entry was free! There was a shuttle golf cart that takes you from the visitors center to the fort itself that ran promptly. The Fort itself had a ton of buildings, almost all with interpretive guides who were quite ready to engage you in a conversation. There aren't any real signs or anything describing what you are seeing, but they are more than happy to tell you about it all. We were also able to try spear throwing, tomahawk throwing and paddling a Voyageur canoe. Interesting place. If you aren't 'really' into history, an hour or 2 is plenty to check it out. Mosquitos were bad in some of the buildings, so wear bug spray.

Visited July 2012
Thank a-traveling-I-go
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Huntsville, Alabama
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“A great living history museum”
Reviewed July 27, 2012

We visited here on a hot day, The whole place really gave us a good idea of how hard life was for the Voyageurs and the company workers. You get to sample some unique activities here including ax throwing, eating bear grease (used for frying bread), and going canoeing on a birch bark canoe. Also, it was interesting to see all the different furs. Never felt wolverine fur before.

Visited July 2012
1 Thank Forestlady
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Madrid, Spain
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed July 24, 2012

Great actors and seemingly realistic, but i got eaten alive walking through the forest from the visitor's center to the site. Wasn't impressed with all the animal furs either ( they were real and plentiful).

Visited July 2012
Thank miquixote
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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