GANANOQUÉ BOAT TOUR There are a number of boat companies that offer the famous Thousand Islands tour, with durations of either one or three hours. On the shorter tour, you will experience the highlights of everyday life in the region, with a tour of the Canadian and U.S. islands off Gananoque. The more comprehensive three-hour tour travels the Canadian and American sides of the river and sails down the Seaway Channel.
BLACK CREEK PIONEER VILLAGE Experience a day in the life of a 19th-century village at Black Creek Pioneer Village. During your visit, you’ll see demonstrations by entertaining costumed villagers and be able to explore 35 centuries-old buildings, from the shoemaker’s to the cabinet-maker’s, where furniture and household items are created before your eyes. Roblin’s Mill is a focal point. Here, you can watch as the huge water wheel turns to create the power to grind wheat into flour.
DELAWANA INN RESORT A beautiful area to cruise and vacation lies at the edge of the Canadian Shield in Gerogian Bay. The Delawana Inn Resort has occupied a scenic part of it for over a century. Marina facilities and a private sandy beach crown this historic inn and an inviting pool awaits beneath ancient forests.
INTERNATIONAL DRAGONBOAT RACE Center Island hosts the Annual Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival in June. The race now has a track record of attracting over 120,000 spectators and participants. This 2,000-year-old Chinese tradition has captured the attention of the international sporting scene. In Toronto, over 200 Dragon Boat teams battle to be winners, as competitors all move to the beat of the drum to be the first to cross the finish line.
FORT YORK Toronto’s historic Fort York has the largest collection of original War of 1812 buildings in Canada. Over 200 volunteers come from all over North America to provide battle re-enactments, military drills, parades and other colorful activities. The fort itself was an important harbor defense until 1888 and was in military use until World War II. On the grounds are poignant remnants of early military life.
THE GAY PRIDE PARADE A portion of Yonge Street is closed to accommodate the parade that has grown into a large and colorful mainstream celebration. Gay Pride began unofficially in 1971, drawing 100 people. By 1998, crowds of more than 500,000 people were attending the celebrations, making it one of Toronto’s largest cultural festivals and among the three largest Gay Pride events in the world.
GEORGIAN BAY Georgian Bay is part of an area known as Muskoka, which includes a lot of Ontario’s lake country. On the edge of the Canadian Shield, it’s a beautiful area for cruising and vacationing in general and hugely unique shorelines have been the inspiration for numerous Canadian artists. A water taxi takes you through the Georgian Bay Islands National Park, which consists of a scattering of about sixty islands spread between Twelve Mile Bay and Honey Harbor, a distance of about 30 miles.
HONEY HARBOR Honey Harbor is right on Georgian Bay, just 90 minutes north of Toronto. It’s a typical cottage country town, whose main function is to service the area’s vacationers. A short main street offers a few basic shops and services. A monument at the harbor commemorates the landing of Samuel de Champlain in 1615. His precise landing point is nearby on Royal Island, across the water from the Delawana Inn Resort.
KILLBEAR PROVINCIAL PARK The 30,000 islands of Killbear Park are part of the rugged Canadian Shield, created during the last great ice age. The huge expanses of flat rock make for invigorating and aesthetically appealing hiking. This 3,339-acre natural environment park has unmatched views of some of the oldest rocks in the world. One of the best ways to enjoy them is by taking a three-hour cruise on the Island Queen, along the narrow channels and shallow waterways of Georgian Bay’s 30,000 Islands, which departs from the docks in nearby Parry Sound.
THE MCMICHAEL ART GALLERY, KLEINBURG The village of Kleinburg is almost 17 miles northwest of downtown Toronto. One of its star attractions is the McMichael Art Gallery, which presides over 100 acres of beautiful conservation land, overlooking the East Humber River Valley. The collection offers visitors the opportunity to view one of the largest permanent displays of works by Tom Thomson, the Group of Seven and their contemporaries. The Group of Seven is noted for having been inspired by the scenery of Georgian Bay.
MOUNTSBERG CONSERVATION AREA The maple tree is found in Ontario and Québec and a favorite past time for Canadians is to visit sugar shacks to celebrate maple syrup season in early spring. The Mountsberg Wildlife Center near Toronto is one of the main Sugar Shacks in Ontario. Warm sunny days and cold nights draw the sap out of the maple, ready to be collected and turned into the syrup. Buildings on-site house shops and displays to facilitate sampling and learning about maple syrup.
NIAGARA FALLS At the outflow of Lake Erie into Lake Ontario and a 90 minute drive from Toronto, the natural wonder of Niagara Falls is one of the most famous places on earth, and about half of it lies in Canada. With its thunderous curtain of cascading waters that you can see from beside, on top or even from underneath, the incredible uniqueness and panoramic beauty of Niagara Falls are two of the main reasons why most visitors hop aboard the Maid of the Mist boat to ride right up close to the action.
GANANOQUÉ Gananoqué, located midway between Toronto and Montréal, is known as the Gateway to the Thousand Islands. This popular resort town, on a scenic stretch of the St. Lawrence River, began as a Loyalist settlement and today is home to many shops, historic buildings, museums and art galleries that celebrate local culture. All activities seem to center around the river. The population of the picturesque town is small, at just over 5,000 people but it swells enormously in the summertime and the downtown streets bustle with tourists discovering fabulous little shops.
NIAGARA ON THE LAKE The scenic Niagara Parkway continues north of the Falls to Niagara-on-the-Lake, the original capital of Upper Canada. It’s a place of clapboard wooden houses, old inns, and a profound sense of history. Niagara-on-the-Lake has often been referred to as the loveliest town in Ontario, rich with charming inns, tremendous wineries, superb restaurants, and history that dates back to the early 1780s. Today, Niagara-on-the-Lake beckons visitors with historic sites and pretty parks and a flower-lined main street packed with gift shops, boutiques, and cozy teashops.
OTTAWA VIDEO In Canada’s capital city of Ottawa, most tourists find themselves at Parliament Hill and the several blocks that radiate from there, since many of the city’s museums, shops and points of interest are located within that radius. Near the Parliament is Byward Market, which dates back to the 1840s, offering farmer markets and craft stores that you can explore along some pedestrian-only streets.
TORONTO – THE CAPITAL CITY OF ONTARIO Toronto is both the political capital of Ontario, and the commercial capital of the province, as well as being the largest city in Canada. It is to Canada what New York is to the United States, with a population of nearly 4 million people. Designated by the United Nations as “one of the world’s most multicultural cities,” Toronto is a place where you can travel around the world without ever leaving town.
ONTARIO PLACE Ontario Place is downtown Toronto’s waterfront family playground, offering a wide variety of activities and events. Cinesphere features IMAX and large screen format films. Waterplay is an interactive water park attraction, full of wet-and-wild water fun. At Soak City, you can ride waterslides such as the Hydrofuge, which shoots riders down a tube on a thin sheet of water or try some of the other water rides that offer sensational speed and daring drops.
OTTAWA WINTERLUDE Every winter in January, Ottawa becomes a center for celebrating the winter season. For more than two decades, a festival known as Winterlude take place for three consecutive weekends and events and activities are held that help make winter an enjoyable experience. Winterlude is a time to enjoy the snow and all the things that have been created from it! Hundreds of thousands of visitors make it one of the city’s largest attractions, a highlight of which is the ice sculpting competition.
STE. ANNE’S RESORT IN THE HALDIMAND HILLS A relaxing retreat all year round, Ste. Anne’s is an hour’s drive East of Toronto, just off the Transcanada Highway in the Haldimand Hills near Grafton. The stone building offers greeting card scenery, while the spa’s services create a relaxing oasis, complete with classes and seminars on a variety of wellness topics.
ST. JACOBS COUNTRY In Ontario, rural tourism embraces entertainment (such as summer theater. festivals), recreational activities (hiking, bird watching, garden tours) and shopping (antiquing, craft fairs, farmers’ markets), as well as more mainstream agriculture-related pursuits. About an hour’s drive from Toronto, St. Jacobs is characterized by fine artisans, cozy guesthouses and B and Bs, and warm country hospitality. It was first known as “Jakobstettel” which means “Jacob’s Village” and the influence of the Mennonite culture is a distinguishing feature.
ARTISANS OF ST. JACOBS Fine hand-made quilts top the list here, although the little Village is a favorite destination for crafts, fashions, antiques, and more! You’ll find over 100 one-of-a-kind shops, many housed in carefully restored 19th century buildings. The streets themselves are landscaped to resemble works of art. The cornerstones are buildings that include the old Mill, which is today a maze of shops on every floor. Often, the subject matter for the artwork is local history and Mennonite culture.
MENNONITES OF ST. JACOBS Just north of Waterloo, St. Jacobs is the home community of a large number of Old Order Mennonites who come to town via horse and buggy. Visitors keen to learn more about the Mennonites faith and lifestyle can enjoy the visitor centre in the downtown area, and interperetive centre that tells the Mennonite story.
CARIBANA Taking place in the heat of July, Toronto?s Caribana is one of North America’s biggest cultural street festivals. Started in 1967, Caribana now attracts close to one million visitors. It’s officially a two-week-long festival culminating in a massive and colorful four-mile-long parade along Lakeshore Boulevard in Toronto. There is also a large contingent of visitors from the Caribbean. Caribana is based on the Latin-style, 150-year-old carnival of Trinidad and Tobago.
TORONTO WATERFRONT Bordering Lake Ontario, Toronto’s dazzling waterfront is vibrant, with several marinas located right along the downtown harbor. Dominating the skyline is the mighty CN Tower and neighboring SkyDome, and is an area which is one of the most heavily populated with tourists. Directly south of the CN Tower, Harbourfront is part of a waterfront complex that includes boat rentals, sailing clubs, and sailing schools.
TORONTO ISLAND FERRY Within a short distance from the mainland, Toronto has several islands that are ideal for sightseeing and for hosting festivals throughout the year. The Toronto Island Ferry Dock is located at the intersection of Bay Street and Queens Quay West. Seeing the port city of Toronto by boat gives you a panoramic glimpse of the city’s distinctive skyline. Numerous yacht clubs produce a landscape that literally dances with sailboats. There’s always a lot to see during the 15-minute voyage to Center Island.
CENTRE ISLAND Center Island lies between Hanlan’s Point and Ward’s Island and is the home of the Centerville Amusement Park. Well-groomed parklands offer amenities, biking, hiking and picnicking, all so close to downtown Toronto! The amusement park delights both children and adults, with more than 600 acres of green lands surrounded by rides, attractions in the large pond. A cable car gives you an exciting overview of the whole park. It’s a ride in itself, and you can also let your kids choose from more than 30 rides in all.
WILDWATER KINGDOM Canada’s Largest Water Park, Wild Water Kingdom, a little north of Toronto in the Brampton area, has hosted almost 3 million guests since it first opened in 1986. Sprawled over 100 acres of natural parkland, Wild Water Kingdom is a place you can take the whole family and easily spend the entire day! There are waterslides for every range of experience, and you can either wait for a tube to become free, or rent your own tube for the day.