Stone Wallers

So many rocks, so much history

Amherst Island has the largest known concentration of historic Irish dry stone walls in Canada.

At any time of year, you can take a self-guided tour of Amherst Island to see historic Irish dry stone walls. These dry stone walls are popular on the island because when Irish migrants from Ards Peninsula—now Northern Ireland—settled here they brought their traditions with them: walling the rustic properties with stacked pieces of local stone. You’ll see newer walls built in the traditional way and historic stone walls (circa 1820) that have been restored.

  • See century-old dry stone walls
  • Many preserved in time and protected by practiced traditions
  • Take a 20 minute ferry ride to Amherst Island
  • Pick up a copy of Amherst Island’s Dry Stone Walls Self-Guided Tour Booklet at The Neilson Store Museum & Cultural Centre and read about the walls you see from the roads. The booklet is available in the Museum for a nominal fee.
Stone Waller in L&A
Dry stone walls are sometimes called drystack or, in Scotland, drystane, is a building method by which structures are constructed from stones without any mortar to bind them together.
Stone Waller in L&A
Amherst Island
Plan a day to remember.

Twice a year at sunset (March 14 & September 27) witness a unique solar alignment on the Celtic Cross dry stone structure, built by Dry Stone Canada members and wallers from Ireland, Scotland and the United States at Dry Stone Legacy Site (across from Amherst Island Public School). Come test your Irish, and see if the carved claddagh stone becomes visible to you!

Any time of the year, take your car (or your bike) across the ferry and pick up your Dry Stone Walls Self-Guided Tour Booklet at the Neilson Store Museum. Visit the Sand Beach Wildlife Conservation Area and the Owl Woods. Do some shopping at Topsy Farms or at a number of artist shops along the way. After stopping for a bite to eat at The Back Kitchen, perhaps find a few of the dozens of geocaches on the island, or take in some world class music at the Waterside Summer Series. Don’t worry, if you’re too tired to head home, there are a number of great bed & breakfasts where you can rest up for the night.

Make sure to bring your camera, there are lots of photo opportunities on the island.

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