Encompassing an area between Lake Simcoe and Toronto in Southern Ontario, the York Region offers an extensive network of forests and trail to explore. Whether they are paved urban trails by cities or more rugged forest paths a little further away in the wilderness, the diverse landscapes are sure to capture the hearts of hikers.
York Regional Forest
The York Regional Forest is home to 2300 hectares of protected land with over 120 kilometres of public-use trails. This beautiful forest setting offers events and forest walks to discover the flora and fauna.
Explore 5 of Richmond Hill’s parks through Beaufort Trail that connects Beaufort Hills Park, Black Willow Park, Willow Hollow Park, Pine Needle Park, Raccoon Park and Russell Tilt Park.
Thornton Bales Conservation Area
This conservation area is known for its rugged, natural beauty and its steep slopes. Hiking at Thornton Bales is for hikers who are looking for a challenge on authentic woodland trails. On the way, you’ll find white-tailed deer and woodpeckers.
Address: 1260 19th Sideroad, King City (Directions)
This forested area is popular for its old sugar bush, historic buildings, and maple syrup evaporator hut, and its wonderful mature pine plantations. It is part of a network of recreation trails that span across the area.
Address: Industry St, Aurora (Directions)
Hollidge Tract Accessible Trail
Part of the York Regional Forest, this loop trail provides a unique nature experience to all – including those with disabilities who want to get out in nature while remaining comfortable. This short trail passes through a mixed wood forest, a wetland area, and a red pine forest.
Address: 16389 ON-48, Whitchurch-Stouffville
Bruce’s Mill Conservation Park
Bruce’s Mill Conservation Park is a wonderful natural area, home to the Sugarbush Maple Syrup Festival. Visitors enjoy 10 kilometres of trails that are open and forested among traditional park features including sport amenities and picnic area.
Address: 3291 Stouffville Rd, Whitchurch-Stouffville (Directions)
Eldred King Woodlands
The Eldred King Woodlands offers a special hiking area with low hills interspersed with hallows or kettles. This array of terrains as well as different types of forest, streams, and birds make it a great hiking spot for those that are looking for variety.
Address: 16232 ON-48, Whitchurch-Stouffville (Directions)
Rogers Reservoir Conservation Area
The Rogers Reservoir Conservation Area is a serene 84-hectare site famous for fishing, cycling, birdwatching, and hiking. Trails found here are part of the Nokiidaa Trail system, and pass great blue herons and the concrete lock and swing bridge abandoned in the 1900s.
Address: 2nd Concession Rd, East Gwillimbury (Directions)
Oak Ridges Trail
The Oak Ridges Trail is located in the Oak Ridges Corridor Conservation Reserve – a jewel of nature that has tons of ecological significance. It is filled with wetlands, meadows, kettle lakes, and trails that maneuver through mature forests.
Address: Oak Ridges Trail, Richmond Hill (Directions)
Bendor and Graves Tract
Split into the east and west tracts, both trails offer the chance to hike and see wildlife at great vantage points. Because of its variety of trees – eastern cedar, European larch, pine, white spruce, and more, these trails are exciting and memorable.
Address: 17689 Kennedy Rd, Cedar Valley (Directions)
This 3.7-kilometre loop trail is great for hiking and running – a wide and shaded spot that maintains a rugged atmosphere. If you’re looking for a nice, quiet, easy walk in the woods, the Robinson Tract is for you.
Address: 14989 Warden Ave, Whitchurch-Stouffville
This trail is named after the Ojibwa term meaning “walking together”. Linking three communities along the East Holland River, this lovely trail passes parks, towns, green spaces, and historic cultural sites.
Address: 72 Holland River Blvd, Holland Landing (Directions)
This friendly trail runs through a young forest to a couple of man-made ponds in the area. The beginning of the trail is well-market, and the forest includes planted red pine and oak.
Address: 16578 McCowan Rd, Cedar Valley
Maple Nature Reserve
This fantastic hiking experience takes place in the Maple Nature Reserve, an immersive 35 hectares of unique flora and fauna and a variety of down-to-earth terrain. It is an environmentally-rich place that is home to more than 300 species of animals and plants.
Address: 10401 Dufferin St, Maple (Directions)
Boyd Conservation Park
Boyd Conservation Park is the perfect hiking spot to experience nature in the city. As it is located within the headwaters of the Don and Humber Rivers, this quiet refuge is a great place to hike and enjoy the outdoors.
Address: 8739 Islington Ave, Woodbridge (Directions)
Nashville Conservation Reserve
The Nashville Conservation Reserve is huge – a 900+ hectare green space that supports a variety of wildlife and is an important migratory corridor. It has immense ecological value and is an integral part of our region’s natural heritage system.
Address: Humber Valley Heritage Trail, Vaughan (Directions)
Pomona Mills Park
The Pomona Mills Park is a big name in Markham’s nature scene. A place where hikers can wander, observe, and get out in nature. Many trees, shrubs, and wildflowers have been planted here to enhance the beauty of the area.
Address: 244 Henderson Ave, Markham (Directions)
Milne Dam Conservation Park
Located on the Milne Reservoir, this beautiful hiking trail offers opportunities for bird watching, and enjoying a wide range of landscapes like wetlands, forests, and open green space.
Address: 8251 McCowan Rd, Markham (Directions)
Scanlon Creek Conservation Area
Scanlon Creek is known as a year-round nature escape, especially for hiking due to its expansive trail system running through most of the 300-hectare park. It is additionally a preserve for flora and fauna and has plenty of recreational opportunities.
Address: 2490 9th Line, Bradford
Kortright Centre for Conservation
Enjoy stunning nature hikes year round, the forestry marshes and see some wildlife too.
Marita Payne Park
Located right by the Dufferin Clark Community Centre and Library, this city walking spot is a well-groomed paved path that runs through park and neighborhood areas, sports fields, and picnic areas.
Address: 16 Jason St, Vaughan
Whitchurch Conservation Area
This wooded land is a shady hiking area with mature plantation and a lot of forest growth, providing a home for a rich collection of bird species and rustic trails for a successful family hiking trip.
Address: 3329 Aurora Rd, Newmarket (Directions)
Mill Pond Park
Mill Pond Park is a popular entertainment and outdoor recreation area. Apart from being the host of many events, having a playground, and many areas to relax in, the boardwalk and trail is a calming and attractive place to go for a short hike.
Address: 321 Mill St, Richmond Hill (Directions)
Sugarbush Heritage Park
The Sugarbush Heritage Park offers a looped circuit walk with mostly flat terrain set inside a woodlot. The trail also includes the Historic Baker House on site.
Address: 91 Thornhill Woods Dr, Thornhill (Directions)
Bob Hunter Memorial Park Loop
The Bob Hunter Memorial Park Loop is part of the Rouge National Urban Park, and contains a variety of forested areas and fields including partially paved trails. It is a highly-recommended loop which is well-marked.
Address: 7277 14th Ave, Markham (Directions)
Also located in the Rouge National Urban Park, the Monarch Trail takes hikers through a fantastic mix of habitats – rare cedar savannah, white pine, and farm fields. Each visit is almost like a new experience, with tons of wildlife sightings and changing landscapes.
Address: 7277 14th Ave, Markham (Directions)