city, Simcoe county, southeastern Ontario, Canada, 60 miles (100 km) north of Toronto, between Lakes Couchiching and Simcoe. The name, probably derived from the Spanish orilla ("border," "shore," or "bank"), was suggested by Sir Peregrine Maitland, lieutenant governor of Upper Canada (1818-28), who had served in Spain. The town site was surveyed in 1839, a few years after an earlier settlement called The Narrows had been established. Orillia Corporation built the first municipally owned hydroelectric plant in Canada on the Severn River in 1902. Lumbering, once important, has given way to light manufacturing. The house of Stephen Leacock, Canadian humorist, who lived in Orillia for many years, is a national literary shrine. A monument commemorating the visit by Samuel de Champlain to the area in 1615 stands in Couchiching Beach Park. Inc. village, 1867; town, 1875. Pop. (2006) 30,259.
Learn more about Orillia with a free trial on Britannica.com.