This definitive guide to living in Lucan, Ontario is packed full of relevant information about this unique town. Incorporated in January 1999 by combining the Village of Lucan with Biddulph Township, this charming and rapidly-growing town recently celebrated its 20th birthday.
Whether you’re interested in moving to Lucan or are just planning a quick getaway, this guide provides you with a quick yet comprehensive overview of the geography, history, and one-of-a-kind attractions you’ll find tucked away in this modest southwestern Ontario town.
Where is Lucan Ontario?
In this chapter, we’ll answer some of your biggest questions about Lucan’s location, geography, and proximity to other popular destinations.
Lucan is nestled between Lake Erie and Lake Huron in southwestern Ontario, just a hop, skip, and a jump (or about 22 kilometers) north of London and about 209 kilometers east of Detroit, Michigan. This close proximity to bustling cities gives Lucan the best of both worlds, providing a rural, small-town feel just a short drive away from all the amenities London has to offer.
Lucan’s close proximity to two large freshwater lakes has created especially fertile soil, and many local properties are used as farmland. Fishing is another popular (and lucrative) industry in Lucan.
In the next few chapters, we’ll provide a broad overview of the demographics and population of Lucan, Ontario, as well as some of the most popular restaurants, sites, and things to do in Lucan.
Lucan Ontario Population
If you're thinking of moving to Lucan, you may want to know a bit more about the other residents who call this town home.
As of the 2016 census, there were slightly under 5,000 people living in Lucan (4,700 to be exact). The population is almost equally split between men and women, with approximately 2,360 males and 2,335 females living in Lucan in 2016.
In addition to its equal gender division, Lucan also has a fairly even age distribution among its residents. Around a quarter of the population (or 1,200 people) are age 19 or younger, while another 1,165 residents are between 20 and 39, 1,300 are between 40 and 59, and 900 are over age 60. Most Lucan residents speak English as a first language, and nearly everyone in Lucan is a native-born Canadian.
Lucan Ontario is Rich in History
While Lucan may sometimes seem like a quiet farm town, it has a truly revolutionary—and, at times, controversial—history.
Nearly 200 years ago, in 1829, Lucan became a refuge for fleeing African-Americans from the Cincinnati area, around 500 kilometers south. Although these refugees weren't slaves when they left the U.S., they were being threatened by riots, police overreach, and employment discrimination in their home state of Ohio, and found in Lucan a safe haven from the persecution they had endured.
Almost 40 years later, this route from Cincinnati to Lucan became part of the Underground Railroad, helping ferry U.S. slaves to freedom in Canada. By this time, Lucan had also become home to hundreds of Irish immigrants fleeing the potato famine, many of whom have descendants still living in the area.
In more recent history, Lucan was the recipient of nearly 70 inches of snow over a 4-day period in 2010 in what meteorologists quickly termed "Snowmageddon." But while this volume of snowfall would be enough to cripple even the most well-prepared northern cities, Lucan's officials and residents took this precipitation in stride and with good humor. Snow is a fact of life during Lucan's winter months, but town officials are adept at maintaining clear roads even when precipitation is heavy.
Best Restaurants in Lucan Ontario
Whether you're a meat-lover or a vegan; are watching your weight or ready to indulge; or are interested in an exotic dish or in the mood for a down-home meal, there's a restaurant to fit your tastes in Lucan. Restaurants in Lucan Ontario run the gamut in both price and variety.
For Thai food lovers, Thai Pad is a top-ranked restaurant in the heart of downtown Lucan that consistently earns rave reviews from locals and visitors alike. Thai Pad has vegetarian and vegan options, along with eye-catching sushi arrangements and sumptuous desserts.
The North Star Restaurant offers traditional Canadian and American fare at reasonable prices in a cozy but modern atmosphere. Like Thai Pad, the North Star has plenty of options for non-meat eaters. And the Main Street Diner is another traditional Canadian hotspot that offers diners an incredible value for their money.
Top 5 Restaurants in Lucan Ontario
- Thai Pad Restaurant
- The North Star Restaurant
- Main St. Diner
- Barracuda Grill
- Mammarella's Pizzeria & Eatery
Things to do in Lucan Ontario
There's no shortage of entertainment in Lucan, whether your interests tend more toward history and art museums or motorcycle rallies.
Lucan Baconfest is an annual festival that brings motorcycle fans and bacon lovers together each July. Offering live music, bacon-themed merchandise, a motorcycle show, and a kids zone complete with bouncy castles, Baconfest has plenty of fun for the whole family.
Visit https://www.lucanbaconfest.ca/ for more details!
The Lucan Community Memorial Centre operates as hockey central all year long; you can watch both amateurs and future professionals practice their moves on the ice or tool around the rink yourself.
For Lucan Ontario history buffs, the Lucan Area Heritage and Donnelly Museum, located downtown, offers a rare peek into Canada's first mass murder—the Donnelly feud—complete with grave markers and historic outbuildings. And for a more family-friendly experience, Apple Land Station in nearby Thorndale offers apple picking, hayrides, and other fun summer and fall activities.
Once fall has given way to winter, you won't want to miss Lucan's Santa Claus Parade, where nearly the whole town gathers downtown to welcome St. Nick and his merry crew.
Towns, Sites, and Sights Worth Seeing Near Lucan Ontario
Lucan's Main Street is a can't-miss mix of gift shops and antique stores. Treat yourself to a leisurely stroll down the street to search for one-of-a-kind finds and classic Canadian artifacts—or just enjoy window shopping while admiring Main Street's classic architecture.
Nature lovers living in Lucan Ontario can venture just a few miles west to the rocky shores of Lake Huron at Pinery Provincial Park. Enjoy woods, beaches, and the sense of peace that can come from gazing onto a vast expanse of still water. And if you'd like to venture even further from the beaten path, head southeast to Long Point National Wildlife Area on Lake Erie to truly feel at one with nature.
If you're a fan of the Bard, nearby Stratford offers an immersive Shakespeare experience, with world-class theatre productions of Shakespeare's classics during Stratford Festival's running season each summer. The gorgeous Shakespearean Gardens include all the botanicals mentioned in Shakespeare's many written works, while Lake Victoria offers the opportunity to spot and interact with majestic mute swans and other urban wildlife.
As you can see, living in Lucan Ontario means residing in a vibrant, peaceful town that offers plenty of amenities while maintaining a serious commitment to a laid-back pace of life. No matter your hobbies, interests, or budget, there's something for you waiting in Lucan.