"Well Signposted For A Place That No Longer Exists!" Top 5 Page for this destination Hull by johngayton
Hull Travel Guide: 85 reviews and 192 photos
The City of Hull, in the province of Quebec, looks across the Ottawa River at the Canadian National Capital Region's Ontario half - the city of Ottawa. The two are separated by a couple of hundred meters of water with the provincial boundary following the river's centre-line across which they are joined by a total of 7 bridges. Not only are the two separated by their shared river but are also separated by history, culture and even language with the predominantly French Hull pre-dating its more famous neighbour by several decades.
This section of the Ottawa river had long been a place of "portage" where the watercourse became impassable due to the Chaudiere Falls and so the canoes of the "voyageurs", with their cargoes of furs and tools, had to be physically hauled overland around the rapids before continuing their upstream journey.
Despite the area's recorded history going back many years (The Gatineau River and The Chaudiere Falls being mentioned, tho' not named, by Samuel de Champlain as early as 1613) the settlement of Hull was only established around 1800 AD by Philemon Wright who developed the town (originally Wrightsville) around the lumber trade which once again needed to be transported overland around the rapids. As the town prospered, mills, factories and hydro-electric plants were built along the rivers and The Chaudiere Falls tamed by damming. In 1875 the town was renamed Hull, when it was granted city status, only for it to burn down almost in its entirety a mere 25 years later! Rising from its ashes Hull quickly re-established itself primarily as an industrial area and then later as part of the The National Capital Region.
Even tho' Ottawa was officially designated the Capital City of Canada in 1857, some crafty diplomatic politics have ensured that Gatineau (as Hull is now part of) shares many of the capital's functions with the establishment of the huge Portage complex of government buildings, which provides employment for well over 20,000 civil servants, plus of course the support staff and local amenities required to service such a Leviathan.
Thus, having started life as a lowly place of portage it is now La Place du Portage which defines the modern city!!
The present-day Hull is no longer administratively its own city, having been amalgamated in 2002 into the greater conurbation of Gatineau, but it does still retain very much a feel of individuality. Even in what remains of La Vieux Ville du Hull, dwarfed by the concrete blocks of the government edifices, there are all sorts of small businesses (OK mostly restaurants and bars!!) tucked away in corners and side-streets, providing interesting little oases, comfortable with their status as part of Gatineau, but certainly not part of Ottawa!!
- Pros:Une Destination Etranger!
- Cons:Une Destination Etranger!
- In a nutshell:Ottawa est OK, mais Hull c'est Hull!!
The Place du Centre is the restaurant and shopping mall for "les petites functionaires" of the Canadian Government's... more travel advice
Heading for the centre of Vieux Hull's Friday party night we found our bus stuck at the Portage/Eddy stop awaiting the... more travel advice
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