An appreciation of cottage season in Canada

The May long weekend is the unofficial start of summer for Canadians, which means many of our readers will be loading up their cars and heading to the cottage this weekend.

Just how embedded into Canadian culture is the cottage or cabin? Over the years some of our most-loved journalism has touched on this topic. In honor of Queen Victoria and her holiday Monday, here is some light (and heavy) cottage reading.

Contributing columnist Phoebe Maltz Bovy writes that the idea of the cottage has been inescapable. “It’s one of the trappings of Canadianness that eludes even immigrants like me: white, over-educated, from a US state neighbor Canada, and with a (late) Canadian grandmother.”

Open this photo in gallery:

Illustration by Erick M Ramos

Marg Heidebrecht is grateful for the cottage invitation, but won’t accept it. The upsides: Coffee on a dock, kayaking among lily pads. “But the downside? I spend the entire time trying to figure out the rules. Does the day begin at 6, 8 or 10 with everyone helping themselves to granola? Or, is breakfast a sit-down affair at 6, 8 or 10 with fresh blueberries folded into pancakes? Who picks the fruit? And washes the spatula?”

The Miss Manners for Cottaging advice column you didn’t know you needed. When a readers’ cottage weekend with friends was crashed by interlopers, they wondered about a “cottage code of etiquette” they weren’t aware of. David Eddie gives them the rundown.

Three-day weekends mean you can get invited up to someone’s place all the way until Sunday. This list of tips says to be around and available, but not too desperate in order to score a coveted cabin invite.

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Courtney Gray, a physiotherapy assistant in Toronto and her children James and Maysn at the family cottage in Parry Sound.Melissa Tait/The Globe and Mail

Let’s say you’re the one inviting the guests, not waiting around for whatever scraps might appear. Former Globe columnist David Eddie lays out the secrets to achieving that laid-back cottage vibe for both hosts and guests.

What you call your weekend oasis is a giveaway for which part of Canada you live in.

As cottages are passed down through generations of families, sharing the space can become challenging. Tim Cestnick gives tips for who does what – and how much of it – on the property.

Constance A. Barlow writes of a love-hate relationship with the cabin.

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