Thunder Bay | The French Period

At / Near :

Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada

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Suggested transport :


Trail :  

155.82 km

Points of interest :  


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Accessibility :

  • Permanently, the whole year

Presented by

Tourism Thunder Bay

Recommend this tour

Thunder Bay | The French Period


Discover the unmissable historical and cultural sites of Thunder Bay, the city nicknamed The Canadian Lakehead, considering its location at the head of the Great Lakes Waterway.

This tour is available both online (streaming) and offline (without the Internet on the ground, cell phone in hand) with the Preload option of the mobile application.


Thunder Bay takes its name from the name that French explorers gave it in the 18th century, Baie du tonnerre. This attribution arguably originated in the mythology of the First Ojibwa Nation, that huge legendary birds, known as thunderbirds, nestled on top of a mountain.

Between 1636-1710 French explorers travelled through Northwestern Ontario establishing alliances with the First Nations of the Thunder Bay area.  This led to European settlement in the region beginning with the establishment of a French fur trading outpost on the banks of the Kaministiquia River.

The interior headquarters of the North West Company, Fort William brought together the native inhabitants of northwestern Ontario as well as French and British explorers and settlers. It is, historically, a strategic transitory place for many explorers and fur traders.

Fort William, Port Arthur, and the townships of Neebing and McIntyre were amalgamated in 1970. They are now all part of Thunder Bay.


Tourism Thunder Bay
Centre Francophone de North BAy
Association Francophone du Nord de l’Ontario
Société Économique de l’Ontario
Destination Northern Ontario
Nothern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation 

Overview of map and points of interest

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    1. Mount McKay


    2. The Mission of the Immaculate Conception


    3. Fort William Historical Park


    4. Kakabeka Falls Provincial Park


    5. Silver Falls


    6. École secondaire de la Vérendrye


    7. Centre Francophone


    8. Thunder Bay Waterfront & Port


    9. Fur Trade Memorial of Thunder Bay


    10. Thunder Bay City Hall

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