abandoned places

These abandoned places in Canada each hold a fascinating history

Abandoned places in Canada have witnessed unbelievable things over the years. Many of these hauntingly beautiful buildings have sat vacant for years and hint at a long forgotten history.

Here are some of the most noteworthy abandoned places in Canada.

Riverview Hospital, B.C.

Riverview Hospital is one of the most-filmed locations in Canada. West Lawn Pavilion was one of the first buildings opened in 1913 and was home to the province's most mentally disturbed male patients. The hospital has treated psychiatric survivors until as recently as 2010.

Boblo Island Amusement Park, Ontario 

This amusement park was opened in 1898 and attracted thousands of people to the little island. For almost 100 years it was only accessible by riverboats. The park also had a dance hall, which was once the second largest in the world and capable of holding 5,000 dancers.

Carbide Willson Mill, Quebec

Thomas Willson is known for inventing the important industrial chemical, calcium carbide, in 1892. He built this summer home to act as his laboratory. Here, he continued to work on further chemical innovations. Now just a hollowed out ruin, it still stands in Gatineau Park. 

Ottawa Jail Hostel, Ontario

This prison was known for its inhuman practices before it closed in 1972. It was terribly overcrowded and up to 150 prisoners would be forced to share about 30-60 tiny cells. After sitting abandoned for a year, it was bought and turned into a hostel. The prison's death row has even been restored and is open to visitors for tours. 

Deertrail Resort, B.C.

The remains of a lavish chateau that never saw completion is found in Sooke Potholes Provincial Park. The land was purchased by a developer in the 1980s, but the prospect of this resort quickly sunk due to a lack of funds. The initial stonework is all that is left of the building. 

The Weyburn Mental Hospital, Saskatchewan

This hospital stood abandoned for 40 years before it was demolished in 2009, but it's far too interesting not to mention. The notorious mental institution was opened in 1921, and is known for being the site of lobotomies, electric shock therapy, and controversial LSD experiments. 

The Martin Inn, B.C.

This deserted hotel sits in the mostly-abandoned town of Ocean Falls, which once thrived due to a successful paper mill company. The Martin Inn was opened in 1958 and was named after the paper mill company's executive, Archie B. Martin. It now only has a population of about 70 people and is so isolated, you have to take a boat or plane to visit. 

Burwash Correctional Center, Ontario

Opened in 1914, an entire community of prison workers and staff was developed around this prison facility that once housed up to 800 inmates. Prisoners built the area's church, post office and tailors. The provincial prison was shuttered in 1975, after being deemed too costly. 

Trinity Loop Amusement Park, Newfoundland

This abandoned amusement park pays homage to Newfoundland's Railway history. It was once a vital transportation link, and later a beloved amusement park. Today, a train car, Ferris wheel, and other attractions lie in ruins. 

Dorea Psychiatric Institute, Quebec

During the 1940s, thousands of orphans were declared mentally ill and put through horrific treatments under Premier Maurice Duplessis’ governing. This orphanage-turned-asylum was abandoned in 1990 and was part of this terrible chapter in Quebec's history. 

Lead photo by

gjohnston at Martin Inn, B.C. 


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