I Visited The Town From 'Gilmore Girls' In Canada & It Was Just Like Being In Stars Hollow

It felt like being in the show. 🤩

A person recreates a scene from 'Gilmore Girls' in Unionville. Right: Katherine Caspersz in Unionville.

A person recreates a scene from 'Gilmore Girls' in Unionville. Right: Katherine Caspersz in Unionville.

This Opinion article is part of a Narcity Media series. The views expressed are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Narcity Media.

Calling all Gilmore Girls fans! If you're looking for things to do in Ontario this summer, why not visit the actual location where the show was filmed and feel like you're walking the streets of Stars Hollow?

In Markham, you'll find Unionville, a tree-lined town with quaint shops and charming houses that look straight out of a movie.

Head over to Main Street Unionville and you'll find yourself in the very spot where Gilmore Girls was initially filmed.

While most of the show ended up being filmed in a studio lot in California, the pilot episode was recorded in this tucked-away part of Canada.


Did you know you Gilmore Girls was filmed here? #gilmoregirls #gilmoregirlstiktok #starshollow #unionville #ontario #fyp

As you wander the streets, you'll likely see some buildings you'll recognize from the show.

One such building is the Old Unionville Congregational Church, which you may recognize from the opening of the series.

The Old Unionville Congregational Church.The Old Unionville Congregational Church.Katherine Caspersz | Narcity

Walking further down the street, you'll also be able to spot Luke's Diner, which is actually a medical spa in real life.

The spa, which can be found on 156 Main St., looks a bit different than in the show — for one thing, it's obviously missing the iconic "Luke's" sign out front.

While the diner changes later on in the show, in the pilot episode, Lorelai can be seen walking into the spa to get her coffee.

Gratie Medical Spa in Unionville, which appeared as Luke's Diner in 'Gilmore Girls.'Gratie Medical Spa in Unionville, which appeared as Luke's Diner in 'Gilmore Girls.'Katherine Caspersz | Narcity

You'll also come across the town gazebo, which is decorated for every season and currently features a stunning vine of bright flowers.

While the gazebo, which is located at 139 Main St., isn't the exact one seen in Gilmore Girls (that gazebo can be found in California) according to Destination Markham, Unionville's gazebo served as the inspiration for the one in the show.

It makes for a cute spot to have a seat and people watching or enjoy a snack.

The gazebo in Unionville. The gazebo in Unionville. Katherine Caspersz | Narcity

Another must-see spot is the Old Firehall Confectionery, a historic building that once housed the town's fire hall and is now a place to stop in for sweets and snacks.

Like the town gazebo, the fire hall (which can be found at 170 Main St.) was also used as inspiration for an iconic spot in the show — Taylor's Olde Fashioned Soda Shoppe.

The Old Firehall Confectionery.The Old Firehall Confectionery.Katherine Caspersz | Narcity

According to Destination Markham, Taylor's shop was influenced by the look and feel of the Old Firehall Confectionery. As in the show, the real-life building is where you can grab sweets like candy, cookies and chocolates or some ice cream.

Be sure to also grab a coffee while you're there, à la Rory and Lorelai! I personally opted for a chai latte from the shop, which was pretty good.

A 'Gilmore Girls' sign in Unionville. A 'Gilmore Girls' sign in Unionville. Katherine Caspersz | Narcity

Beyond the Stars Hollow sights, the village is also full of super cute buildings and stores to explore.

Founded in 1794, it has many original buildings from the 1800s that are charming as ever, as well as quaint boutiques, restaurants and cafes.

The area makes for a perfect day trip from Toronto, with the trip taking about an hour. Be warned — it can get a little busy on a nice day. However, parking is free, as an added bonus, and there seems to be quite a lot of it.

If you're interested in seeing the sights of the village featured in Gilmore Girls, the city of Markham has a handy guide you can use to tour the area, with a list of all the spots from the show and where you can find them.

Before you get going, check out our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

Katherine Caspersz
Katherine Caspersz is a Creator for Narcity Media focused on evergreen travel and things to do, and is based in the Greater Toronto Area in Ontario.