Varley Art Gallery of Markham

Tucked away in the heart of Markham, Ontario, lies a cultural gem—the Varley Art Gallery. Named after the renowned Group of Seven artist Frederick Horsman Varley, the gallery offers a unique window into the world of Canadian art, particularly the works of its namesake.

The best times to visit the Varley Art Gallery are on weekends when you can often find guided tours and workshops. The gallery also hosts several special events throughout the year, so checking their calendar before planning your visit might lead you to a delightful surprise. Summer months bring an influx of visitors, making it a vibrant time to explore, while fall offers a quieter but equally enchanting experience with the changing leaves providing a picturesque backdrop.

Upon entering the gallery, visitors are greeted with a selection of Varley’s works alongside rotating exhibitions that showcase both historical and contemporary artists. The gallery’s commitment to education is evident through its interactive programs for all ages, which include art classes, lectures, and even summer camps for children. For art enthusiasts, the opportunity to dive deep into the techniques and history of Canadian art makes for an enriching visit.

Getting to the Varley Art Gallery from Downtown Toronto is straightforward. A drive would take around 30 minutes via the Don Valley Parkway (DVP) and Highway 404. Public transportation options are available as well, including taking a GO Train from Union Station to Unionville Station, followed by a short bus ride or walk to the gallery.

After absorbing the artistic offerings, many visitors like to extend their cultural exploration to nearby attractions. Reesor’s Farm Market, a short drive away, offers fresh local produce and the chance to connect with Markham’s agricultural heritage. This spot is perfect for those looking to enjoy the countryside charm and perhaps pick up some artisanal treats.

The area around the gallery is also home to a variety of restaurants, cafes, and bars, catering to different tastes and preferences. From cozy coffee shops where you can reflect on your gallery experience to fine dining restaurants serving exquisite meals, there’s something to satisfy every palate. Whether you’re in the mood for a quick bite or a leisurely meal, you’ll find plenty of options within walking distance of the gallery.

A day spent at the Varley Art Gallery is more than just an outing; it’s an immersion into the spirit of Canadian artistry, surrounded by the vibrancy of Markham’s community. Whether you’re a dedicated art lover or simply looking for a pleasant way to spend the day, the Varley Art Gallery promises an experience full of discovery and inspiration.