Dundurn Castle

I visited the grounds of Dundurn Castle several times in 2012 and then yesterday, I finally made it inside for a guided tour. Wow, what a stunning property this is.

I’ve been wanting to see Dundurn since I was a kid because my Mom would talk about playing there when she was little. Since I moved to Hamilton six years ago, I’ve driven by many times and now I’m delighted to have visited the whole property, inside and out.

If you’re not familiar with Dundurn Castle, here is some background information:

  • built by Sir Allan MacNab in the 1830’s on a high promontory overlooking Hamilton Harbour in the northwest corner of the city
  • restored to reflect the MacNab’s lifestyle in 1855 when MacNab was “at the height of his career as a lawyer, landowner, railway magnate and Premier of the United Canada’s” according to the City of Hamilton’s website
  • the property is a designated national historic site
  • the City took ownership of the property in 1900 and the grounds became more of a public park with a baseball diamond, petting zoo, parking lots and a dance pavilion
  • the beautiful landscaped grounds have since been restored to reflect MacNab’s original vision
  • there are 40 restored rooms that the public can view ranging from the basement’s working areas and servant quarters to the opulent dining room, drawing room and bedrooms of the MacNab family
  • the home was very advanced for it’s time with running water, gas lights, huge basement windows and a flushing toilet

There is so much more background and context to this property but I’ll refer you to the websites of the City of Hamilton, Haunted Hamilton and Wikipedia for more information.

I hope you’ll enjoy the eye candy of these Dundurn Castle pictures – although it is much better to see everything in person. You can find tour times and special events listed on the  City’s website. These pics are presented chronologically from spring to late summer and then a jump to yesterday when the Castle was decked out for the holidays.

(And now as I begin uploading my photos, I realize there is not one to show the whole front of the mansion! Egads.)

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The front of the building, facing York Boulevard

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This is the drawing room, at the far right of the previous picture where it was obscured by the trees

This is the dove cote, located at the far left of the first picture. Behind it is the gift shop and starting point of guided tours

This is the dove cote, located at the far left of the first picture. Behind it is the gift shop and starting point of guided tours

Behind the 'mystery building' you can see Bayfront Park and Hamilton Harbour

Behind the ‘mystery building’ you can see Bayfront Park and Hamilton Harbour

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The mansion's north face looks towards Hamilton Harbour

The mansion’s north face looks towards Hamilton Harbour

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Servant's dining room

Servant’s dining room

 

One of many basement storage rooms

One of many basement storage rooms

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The use of camera flashes is not permitted so no, that is not a ghost but our tour guide turning as I kept the shutter open a long time. Some of the shots are a bit blurry for this reason.

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