A Room of Stories, Secrets and Activities for Kids
Step into a world of mystery at the Castle Library, where the walls have eyes, and secret passageways are waiting to be discovered!
Singer Castle, nicknamed “The Castle of Mysteries” over 100 years ago, looms majestically over Dark Island in the St. Lawrence River. This massive fortress was built in 1905 for the millionaire businessman Frederick Bourne, who wanted to surprise his wife and children with a St. Lawrence River summer hunting retreat.
Standing four stories high with 28 rooms, Singer Castle boasts a number of architectural curiosities, including dungeons, underground tunnels along the banks of the St. Lawrence River and even a two-story icehouse: a must-have for entertaining guests at the turn of the century! Bourne was sure to include a network of secret passageways as well, the better to spy on his guests from grates built into the tunnel walls.
One such passageway can be opened from the Aquatarium’s own version of the Castle Library’s bookshelves—although you’ll have to find the entrance for yourself! It’s said it can be opened with a loonie, so be sure to keep one handy. Our comfortable Castle Library is the perfect place for quiet learning, so take a seat by the fireplace and see what you can discover about the St. Lawrence River, Singer Castle and beyond!
Our library provides many explorations and activities for kids, with treasure boxes, blocks and many books to explore. A wonderful break from the Aquatarium’s expansive exhibits, the Castle Library is a great stop for a more introspective voyage of discovery. Computers offer interactive experiences like listening to and identifying native birdcalls, as well as teaching visitors how to make origami using 3-D image technology. The Castle Library is fully stocked with engaging activities for kids and adults alike!
Singer Castle Fast Facts:
- Architect Ernest Flagg was inspired by Sir Walter Scott’s 1832 novel Woodstock when designing Singer Castle on the St. Lawrence River.
- The castle’s landscape was created by hauling 2000 loads of Canadian topsoil to cover eight acres of rock.
- There are still mysteries yet to be uncovered at Singer Castle: just a few years ago, a new trap door was found in the maid’s quarters.
A Library Like No Other!