Feeling the urge for a fall drive, but not quite sure where to point your car? Hamilton Halton Brant’s fall studio tours offer a different way to cruise the day away and enjoy the region’s vibrant arts scene as well as the stunning fall colours.

Dundas Studio Tour

The Dundas Studio Tour, usually held at the beginning of October, showcases the work of over 30 artists including potters, wood turners, jewellers, fine artists, clothing designers and metalwork artists. The artists are stationed at multiple studio locations, all within walking distance or a quick drive of each other in and around the charming community of Dundas. Visit all of the studios for a chance to win handmade prizes donated by the artists.

While you’re in Dundas, plan a stop at The Carnegie Gallery, a cornerstone of the town’s arts community. Its Gallery Shop offers a collection of contemporary fine art and crafts created by local and regional artists including jewellery, pottery, paper goods, art prints, paintings and photography.

A trip to Dundas wouldn’t be complete with some time visiting the unique retailers there. Adventure Attic has great travel and casual clothing. The Feathering Quilt Shop is a haven for crafters. The Kitchen Witch offers beautiful home décor, linens and antiques. Body Sense has a great selection of natural and organic beauty items and gifts.

If you’d like to slow down and enjoy a more leisurely pace, spending the night at an area bed and breakfast is a great idea. The Homestead 1867 and Osler House are both excellent choices.

Brant Studio Tour

The early October Brant Studio Tour highlights the talents of over a dozen different artists and artisans including painters, sculptors, photographers, fibre artists and more. From traditional to contemporary, classical to quirky, visitors have the opportunity to enjoy a wide range of works-in-progress as well as finished art on display. The tour route takes visitors through the scenic Brant County countryside to galleries in Brantford, Paris and St. George. Download the Brant Studio Tour brochure.

While you’re in the area, stop by the historic Glenhyrst Art Gallery and take in the current exhibition showcasing the work of local artists Arlene Laskey and Daniel Cairo. There’s also a fascinating exhibit at the Woodland Cultural Centre’s Art Gallery. Tyonatyerenhtòn:ne – They Were The First reflects on Onkwehon:we matrilineal society, while presenting the impact and contributions Onkwehon:we women have had from Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte, Six Nations of the Grand River and Wahta Mohawks.

Leave plenty of time for a leisurely lunch in the area. The Golden Teapot in Brantford offers high and low tea sittings. Camp 31 in Paris is a great choice if you’re craving delicious Southern-style barbecue.

If you’d like to take your time and turn your studio tour into a true weekend escape, consider booking a room at the historic Arlington Hotel. Situated right across from the Grand River in Paris, the hotel’s boutique-style rooms feature décor inspired by great writers and the onsite spa also offers writer-themed packages.

Art in Action Burlington Studio Tour

Similar to the Dundas Studio Tour, the Art in Action Burlington Studio Tour groups a collection of artists at a variety of studios in and around the city of Burlington. Held in early November, you can expect to see work from photographers, fine artists, fibre artists, jewellers and more. According to Don Graves, one of the artists featured on the tour, studio tours like this one are a great way to save on your next piece of art: “For an artist to recover $500.00, a gallery price needs to hit at least $1000.00. Art shows and studio tours charge a contained rental fee.  Like most artists, I want to see my work on your walls, and art shows make that affordable for the artist and the buyer.” Get artists’ details and studio locations for the Art in Action Burlington Studio Tour.

While you’re touring studios in Burlington, treat yourself to an overnight stay at the beautiful Waterfront Hotel in downtown Burlington for central access and stunning Lake Ontario views.

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