The northeastern arm of Lake Huron forms one of the best hidden gems in Canada, Georgian Bay. The Bay is separated from the rest of Lake Huron by the Bruce Peninsula to the west and Manitoulin Island to its north. In fact, the Bay does not follow the patterns of Lake Huron; it creates its own weather, waves, and currents. The warm waters in the summer and pine tree-filled forests satisfy anyone craving a nature escape. Georgian Bay is home to a national park that also serves as the world’s largest freshwater archipelago. Enjoy the peaceful shores, forests, and small towns scattered along the Georgian Bay.
Often referred to as the “Sixth Great Lake”, Georgian Bay is home to over 30,000 islands and 1,200+ miles of shoreline. All of the 30,000+ islands in the bay can be reached by water and water alone, so rent a canoe or kayak and paddle out to as many as you can. You’ll find endless beaches and peaceful spots for relaxation when you take a trip to the bay. Head over to Wasaga Beach to grab a sunny spot on the sand along the world’s longest freshwater beach in the world. Sauble Beach is another favorite for its fine, golden sands, while Providence Bay Beach features a boardwalk where visitors can stroll up and down.
Georgian Bay Island National Park was an instrumental location for a collective group of painters called the Group of Seven. Their time spent in the park inspired their paintings which eventually became synonymous with the fabric of the Canadian National Identity. The park’s 63 islands, breathtaking vistas and gorgeous backcountry make it a popular destination for outdoor-lovers. Beausoleil Island is the largest in the park and features 11 well-marked and maintained trails of varying levels of difficulty. Beausoleil Island also houses evidence of what was once a 19th century village, a neat hike to consider.
If you’re interested in doing some sightseeing unique to Georgian Bay, head out to the water and paddle around to the over 30 lighthouses in the Georgian Bay area. A kayak or canoe is best, although you can also take a tour on a motor boat. If you’re visiting in the fall or just feel like going for a drive, take a cruise along the Georgian Bay Coastal Route where you can get a glimpse of some, but not all, of the lighthouses. Check out Cape Croker Lighthouse that was built in 1902 and is still active today. Christian Island Lighthouse was built in 1859, making it the oldest lighthouse in Georgian Bay. Bustard Light Range is a small area composed of three individual light towers and sits three miles out from the French River entrance. At one time, the three lights were considered necessary to help mariners navigate through the French River, but now the collection of lighthouses is simply a unique attraction for locals and visitors to admire.
Algonquin Provincial Park is a great day trip from Georgian Bay, and at a little under 2 hours away, you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the scenery there. The park is beautiful in the fall, boasting fall foliage that will make your jaw drop. There are also 6 different rivers flowing through the park, and whitewater canoeing is a big crowd pleaser in the warmer months. In the winter, skiing, snowshoeing, and dog sledding are all available in the park. Algonquin hosts over 40 mammals, 30 kinds of reptiles and amphibians, and 130+ types of birds. This park makes a great day trip in any season of the year.
With over 2,700 rentals within the Georgian Bay area, Tripping.com is your place to go for your vacation accommodations. Consider booking a large, family-sized cabin that has enough space for everyone. If you’re traveling solo or with a partner, check out the studios and 1-bedroom apartments available. You can save a little money on lodging and have more to spend on activities.
Your trip to Georgian Bay wouldn’t be complete without enjoying some great local food and drink. The Huron Club, located in Collingwood, just southwest of Wasaga Beach, serves up locally sourced, seasonally inspired food inside a cozy atmosphere. The restaurant even hosts live music in their lounge Wednesdays through Sundays. Don’t forget to visit on Mondays when you can BYO drink and the corkage fee is waived. Grab a fresh, local craft beer at Northwinds Brewery. Not only is their beer locally crafted, but their food menu is locally sourced, too. Try their Rad Dog Pale Ale and their house-made Falafel Burger, which comes topped with feta, pickled sweet bell peppers, grilled onion, butter lettuce and smoked tomato aioli. You’ll definitely leave here satisfied.
Getting to Georgian Bay from outside of Canada is best done by flying into Toronto. At just under 2 hours away, depending on where you’re headed to in the Bay, Toronto Pearson International Airport is your closest major airport to Georgian Bay. Rent a a car from the airport and drive to your accommodations in the Bay. You probably won’t need your car too much, considering all the water-based activities in the area, but you will want it to check out some of the towns in the Bay Area, like Collingwood and The Blue Mountains.
Looking for a vacation rental in Georgian Bay? Tripping.com has 180 vacation rental homes available in Georgian Bay. You'll find 1 studios, 14 1-bedroom, 17 2-bedroom and 148 rentals with 3 or more bedrooms ranging from $25 a night. For extra convenience, many of these vacation homes can be booked directly online.
The average price of a nightly rental in Georgian Bay is $466 while the average price of a weekly rental is $1995. For those looking for more than a short term rental such as corporate rentals, extended stays or long term rentals, the average monthly price of a Georgian Bay home is $19534.
Wondering if you can bring your dog or cat along with you? There are 59 pet-friendly vacation rentals available in Georgian Bay. In addition to accommodating pets, Georgian Bay rentals offer a variety of amenities. In particular, 76 rentals have Internet and WiFi, 119 have TV and/or cable and 10 have a pool or hot tub.Search properties from 4 vacation rental sites in Georgian Bay where the top providers in that area are HomeAway, TripAdvisor, and CanadaStays. There are 99 HomeAway rentals, 37 TripAdvisor short term rentals and 35 CanadaStays vacation rentals.