The capital of Ontario, Toronto is Canada’s largest city. It sits along Lake Ontario’s northwestern shore and is known for its skyline, which includes the towering CN Tower. The city offers plenty to do, from checking out the exhibits at the Royal Ontario Museum to buying some souvenirs at St. Lawrence Market to catching a play at the Royal Alexandra Theatre. But sometimes you want to take a trip out of the city you’re visiting. So we’ve created a list of the top 10 road trips from Toronto. Put some petrol in the car and make your best road trip playlist, and read on to check out the options!
1. Prince Edward County
Prince Edward County is an island along the northeastern coast of Lake Ontario. It’s about a two-hour drive from Toronto, or 204 km (127 miles) away. But we’d recommend taking your time getting there because this road trip will take you past some real gems along the northern coast of Lake Ontario. You’ll pass towns like Port Hope, which offers excellent cafes and even a beach with palm trees! You’ll also pass Presqu'ile, a provincial park with a beach and trails to walk.
Once you’ve arrived in Prince Edward County, there’s plenty to explore. If you’re a foodie, we highly recommend planning your road trip to coincide with The Great Canadian Cheese Festival, which features over 100 cheese vendors from across Canada. If you enjoy the outdoors, head to Sandbanks Provincial Park, where you can enjoy the sandy beaches or go for a hike. Or catch a play at the Regent Theatre, an Art Deco performance venue.
Prince Edward County
Address: Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada
Website: Prince Edward County
2. Silver Lake Provincial Park
If you’re an outdoorsy person, you’ll love this next option. Silver Lake Provincial Park offers plenty to do. If you’re travelling in a camper or if you’ve got a camp, you can spend a night or two camping in the park’s campgrounds. The park is located on a lake, so there’s plenty of water-based activities to enjoy. Go for a swim on a nice hot day or take a boat out on to the water.
Silver Lake Provincial Park is located 300 km (186 miles) from Toronto, and you can expect the journey to take about three hours. Much of the journey will take you along the coast of Lake Ontario, so you can stop in towns like Cobourg, which offers a quaint boardwalk and a downtown area with excellent restaurants. If you need to stretch your legs during the journey, stop by the HR Frink Conservation Area and Outdoor Education Centre, where you can enjoy a short hike.
Silver Lake Provincial Park
Address: 22726 ON-7, Maberly, ON K0H 2B0, Canada
Website: Silver Lake Provincial Park
3. Algonquin Park
Algonquin Park is located 289 km (180 miles) from Toronto, or about a 3-hour drive. There’s plenty to see along the way if you’d like to take the scenic route. If you’re a thrill-seeker, stop off at Canada’s Wonderland, located in the city of Vaughn. It’s the nation’s largest amusement park and boasts loads of roller-coasters and a water park. If it’s a hot day, Barrie is an excellent town to stop in. It’s site on the shores of Lake Simcoe, so you can go for a dip in the lake or enjoy a picnic.
Once you reach Algonquin Park, you’ll be rewarded with plenty of activities to enjoy. It’s the oldest park in Canada and offers dense forests, rolling hills, and plenty of lakes and rivers. Go for a hike or bike ride on one of the park’s many trails. Or go fishing or swimming in one of the waterways. You can even camp overnight if you’re not ready to leave after one day!
Address: Ontario 60, Ontario K0J 2M0, Canada
Website: Algonquin Park
4. Bruce Peninsula
The Bruce Peninsula is situated between Georgian Bay and Lake Huron, in Ontario. It’s a popular tourist destination, offering a myriad of outdoor activities to enjoy. It’s located about 255km (158 miles) from Toronto, so the drive should take you just over three hours.
The Peninsula has two national parks: Bruce Peninsula National Park and Fathom Five National Marine Park. There will be plenty of opportunities to hike a trail or two! Surrounded by water, you can also go boating or fishing. And if you’re a bird watcher, you’ll be pleased to know you can visit the Bruce Peninsula Bird Observatory.
Address: Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada
Website: Bruce Peninsula
Collingwood is a town located north of Toronto, about 146km (91 miles) around 2-hour drive. The town is situated on Nottawasaga Bay.
If you’re travelling during the summer, spend some time at Sunset Point Beach. Go for a swim in the bay or enjoy a picnic with a nice view. If it’s winter and you like skiing, you’ll be pleased to know the town is near Blue Mountain Ski Resort, where you can enjoy downhill and cross country trails. You can also visit the Collingwood Museum and learn about the town’s past, particularly its history as a shipbuilding town.
Address: Collingwood, Ontario, Canada
6. La Cloche Mountains
The La Cloche Mountains are a range of hills which can be found in northern Ontario. The range is about 5 hours away from Toronto, or 471 km (292 miles). It’s the perfect road trip if you like spending time outdoors.
Located within the range is Killarney Provincial Park. The park’s trails offer a variety of terrain, from the mountain range to forests to wetlands. You can also enjoy the view along the Willisville Hiking Trail. And when you’re hungry, head into the nearby town of Whitefish Falls and grab dinner at Red Dog Grill, a popular bar and grill in the area.
La Cloche Mountains
Address: La Cloche Mountains, Ontario, Canada
Website: La Cloche Mountains
7. Thousand Islands
Located in the St. Lawrence River, the Thousand Islands are a group of more than 1,800 islands which straddle both Canada and the United States. It will take you about three hours to arrive from Toronto, travelling a distance of about 290km (180 miles). The islands are a popular place to visit if you want to enjoy outdoor activities.
With the St. Lawrence River right there, there’s plenty of wafer-based fun to be had. Go fishing or take a kayak out on the water. There’s plenty of historic sites to enjoy throughout the Islands, including the Homewood Museum. Built in 1800, this two storey house belonged to the Jones family and today features original furnishings. You can also visit Cannamore Orchard where you can pick strawberries in summer and apples in autumn.
Address: Thousand Islands, Ontario, Canada
Website: Thousand Islands
8. Thunder Bay
Located on Lake Superior, Thunder Bay is a city located in northwestern Ontario. You can explore the Fort William Historical Park, which recreates a fur trading post from the early 1800s. If you enjoy the outdoors, head to the Kakabeka Falls and enjoy these stunning waterfalls. You can also head to the Thunder Bay Historical Museum and learn more about the area’s history.
Thunder Bay is located about 1384 km (860 miles) from Toronto, and takes about 15 hours to reach. There are plenty of great places to see along the way, so we recommend taking the scenic route. Stop in the French River Provincial Park, where you can go for a hike or spend some time on the French River. Visit the city of Sault Ste. Marie, which rests near the American border. There, you can take a boat tour of the Sault Locks, which connect Lake Superior to the lower Great Lakes. On the last leg of your journey, stretch your legs on one of the many trails of Lake Superior Provincial Park.
Address: Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
Website: Thunder Bay
9. Dundas Peak
Dundas Peak is a rocky outcropping located in the Spencer Gorge Conservation Area in Hamilton, Ontario. It’s a popular spot located closer to Toronto, offering panoramic views of the Gorge. As a result, plenty of people flock here to take the perfect pic to post on Instagram.
You’ll be walking trails in Spencer Gorge, so do be sure to wear good hiking shoes. The Gorge offers two waterfalls to view as well: Tew Falls and Webster Falls. And Dundas Peak is only 73 km (45 miles) from Toronto, so it will take just under an hour to get there.
Address: Harvest Rd, Dundas, ON L9H 5K7, Canada
Website: Dundas Peak
10. Jordan Village
Let’s finish our list with another spot near Toronto. Jordan Village is a town situated near Niagara Falls, and at 102km (63 miles) from Toronto, it will take you about an hour to drive there. It’s a charming spot, full of independent shops instead of big-box stores. And it offers much more than simply shopping.
Jordan Village is nestled in wine country, so we definitely recommend checking out one of the many iconic wineries in the area. Cave Spring Cellars is one of the most popular in the area. If you like to be outdoors, head to Ball’s Falls Conservation Area, a nature reserve offering plenty of opportunities for a nice hike.
Address: Jordan Village, Ontario, Canada
Website: Jordan Village
There are a myriad of places around Toronto that make great road trip spots. From plenty of provincial parks to charming towns to islands, there’s no shortage of trails to hike and lakes to swim. Pick your favourite, and start planning your road trip from Toronto.
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