Here are few ideas for 10 trips to enjoy glorious Fall season hikes along steep canyons and rushing waters!
1. Whitefish Island
The historic site of Whitefish Island can be found a short walk from the Sault Ste. Marie locks. Once an Aboriginal settlement, and now belonging to the Batchewana Band, this cultural island is filled with rich flora and fauna perfect for a family fall getaway. Whether you wish to hike, run, bike, fish, or kayak, there is an option for everyone. Take a minute to observe the foliage of the area, especially in the fall season, and bring a camera to capture the vivid colours in your surroundings. You’re bound to see birds and other animals in their natural habitats.
2. Algonquin Park
Algonquin Park provides one of the best environments for experiencing a fall getaway in Ontario. Between mid-September and late-October, take in the spectacular colours of foliage in the area. Choose from several side roads, access points and lakes to fully take advantage of the fall views. The park itself offers many trails and hike opportunities, as well as biking, canoeing, fishing, and wildlife watching. Explore Algonquin even further by extending your day trip into a camping one – the park offers a vast landscape for backcountry camping.
3. The Bruce Peninsula
Known for being a place to rejuvenate your soul, the Bruce Peninsula is home to two national parks, several natural reserves, and part of the Niagara Escarpment. On land, you can hike, cycle, go on garden or museum tours, and explore the UNESCO World Biospheres. If you prefer water adventures, boating, kayaking, or canoeing are all an option! For beautiful fall photographs, drive over to Tobermory, where you can find the largest concentration of native orchids and see the oldest trees of Eastern North America. Another great option is Lion’s Head which is a small port village surrounded by limestone cliffs.
4. Long Point Provincial Park
Long Point Provincial Park is more than just a beach – it boasts a 40-kilometre-long sandpit with such a diverse natural landscape that it has been recognized as one of UNESCO’s World Biosphere Reserve. The fall season offers plenty of excursions such as kayak fishing, bike tours, and Long Point eco adventures. If a relaxing drink is more your style, several wine tours are available along the South Coast Wine Trail and with Blueberry Hill Estates. A terrific getaway for people of all ages, the Long Point Peninsula has over 250 camp sites and is a bird-watchers dream.
5. Manitoulin IslandManitoulin Island, the largest freshwater island in the world, is rich in authentic First Nations experiences is glorious during Fall. Plan to spend the day immersed in some of the best experiences the island’s people have to offer like traditional crafts, art tours, museums, drumming, nature hikes and traditional cooking. AND hike the one of the most popular trails in Ontario — The Cup and Saucer Trail!
6. Ouimet Canyon
If you’re looking for a place that offers unaltered landscapes and complete serenity, the Ouimet Canyon is for you. The fall season provides an incredible backdrop of bright coloured leaves, panoramic views of a 150-metre-wide gorge, and sheer cliff drops that lead straight to the canyon floor. The canyon provides an exciting landscape for a full day of adventure, where hiking and bird watching are a must. Keep your eyes open for unique foliage at the bottom of the canyon – some species of plants are usually only found in the Arctic yet thrive at the Ouimet Canyon!
7. 1000 Islands
The 1000 Islands of Ontarioare a group of over 1800 islands located in the St. Lawrence River and is an ideal setting for a fall getaway. Scattered throughout the Islands are glimpses of the rich Canadian history, endless shorelines and unique culture. Whether you are viewing lighthouses, historic castles, maritime museums or hearing stories of pirates and prohibition bootleggers, the 1000 Islands have something for everyone. One of the most popular parts of the 1000 Islands are the scenic boat cruises, so be sure to experience a guided tour of the Islands and admire the fall scenery around you.
8. Kakabeka Falls
Located in the Kakabeka Falls Provincial Park, the Kakabeka Falls is the second highest waterfall in Ontario at 40 meters in height. The boardwalk installed at the top of the falls provides stunning views of the surrounding area and gorge – be sure to bring a camera! This park is the perfect destination for a longer fall getaway as it provides tent and car camping at three campgrounds. Kakabeka Park has several walking trails with various difficulty levels, bird watching, biking, and a natural heritage education. Learn about the historic route of the Voyageurs and 1.6 million year old fossils that can be found at the base of the falls.
9. Niagara Falls
Niagara Falls is not a destination that comes to mind when one thinks of Fall colours. But Niagara Falls is not just the Falls!! Hike the Niagara’s Glen that is awash in numerous hues of red and orange, experience Niagara Falls like you never have before by taking a White Water Walk — witness the wonder of the Class 6 white-water rapids by taking a walk along the river’s edge – the boardwalk extends close to a quarter mile along the Niagara River on one side and tall trees on the other. This self-guided tour along the gorge is sure to bring out a sense of adventure and combine it with the beautiful fall scenery of the Niagara Gorge. More interested in being on the water? Check out the daily boat cruisesthat take you right to the Falls. Want to add more adventure to your trip – zip-line along the Falls!
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Did you know that @UNESCO designated the Niagara Escarpment a World Biosphere Reserve in 1990? 🌿 Visit our team of Naturalists at the Niagara Glen Nature Centre to learn more about the unique geology of the region and the wide range of plants, animals and endangered species that call this special ecosystem home. Photo: @naturally.vanessa #NiagaraParks
Last, but certainly not least, is the Muskoka region of Ontario. Without a doubt, it is the most idyllic spot during the fall season, with acres of trees and changing leaves giving you a background for your photos that will be envied by all. There are many ways to enjoy the fall in Muskoka, whether it is hiking to various lookout points such as Huckleberry Rock, participating in the Bala Cranberry Festival, or exploring the Georgian Bay Island National Park. You can even experience this getaway from the water, from several boat excursions to choose from or a calm kayak or canoe trip on an autumn morning.
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