Tummy rumbling and craving something unique? Here’s where to go in Ontario to satisfy your nomadic soul and your taste buds!!
1. St Lawrence Market
It may be called a market but there is a lot more to Toronto’s premier historic market and foodie destination than just buying and selling. St Lawrence Market is a historical gem where generations of merchants have impressed shoppers with their wares. Here you will find everything from fresh fruits and vegetables, unique food preparations to buskers and eye-catching artistic exhibitions.
The complex has three sections: the South Market hosts specialty vendors who sell fresh farm produce as well as non-food items. St. Lawrence Hall’s ground floor is home to retail business and you will find the Saturday Farmers’ Market and antique dealers in the North Market. Website
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2. Butter Tarts and Buggies
Mapleton, Minto, Southgate and Wellington North invite you to their world where a unique selection of cafés and buffets, local artisans and homemade butter tarts create a memorable day out. This tour includes farm visits, dining, numerous shopping opportunities and buggy tours!.
In one farm, watch alpacas being sheared and purchase luxurious mittens or socks that are made from their wool. On another farm, take a guided tour on a horse-drawn buggy. And once you are back in town, have a seat in a cozy café and enjoy coffee, butter tarts or homemade pies. And don’t forget to drop by the local retailers for eye-catching décor. Website
3. The Cheese Trail
For years Oxford County has been synonymous with high quality cheese. The county has been referred to as Canada’s Dairy Capital, which is a befitting title for an area that was once home to 98 cheese factories. While they may not be as many today, Oxford is still the place to sample signature cheeses.
But cheese is not the only reason you should tour Oxford, there is also the Norwich and District Historical Society Museum & Archives where 19th and 20th century rural and town life is showcased. And if you are here to shop then all roads lead to the Farmer’s Market as well as some lovely craft stores. Website
4. Wineries of Niagara
People visit Niagara for a lot of reasons, some want to be amazed by power of The Falls, others are drawn to its beautiful parks while another group is here to taste the region’s famous wines. If you belong to the later, then touring some or all of the Wineries of Niagara on the Lake should be at the top of your list.
This trip brings together more than 20 wineries of varying sizes where you will not only taste signature wines but will also delight in fine dining within the wineries that you visit. Website
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5. Apple Pie Trail
Spend a day or two exploring South Georgian Bay and celebrating all things apples. The Apple Pie Trail leads you to Clearview Township, Collingwood, Blue Mountain Village, Beaver Valley, Thornbury and Meaford where rich history, finger-licking treats and endless shopping adventures await you.
There are about 40 trail stops to be explored and you are the boss of your itinerary. You could shop for fresh farm produce in Creemore before paddling the Beaver River in search of signature wines. Or you could relax at a café as you enjoy fresh organic coffee and savory pastries. The Apple Pie Trail lets you choose. Website
Who doesn't love a good Pie In The Face Event? Pie eating contest, apple-themed scavenger hunt and so much more! Aug. 10th, check out our second themed Apple Pie Trail Market. Hosted by Stayner Music Market and Park It, and in support of the Clearview Food Bank. #apples #applepie #pieintheface #farmersmarket #livemusic #pieeatingcontest 🍎🍎🍎
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6. ByWard Market
Lt-Col. John By had great dreams for ByWard Market when he established it in 1826: it would be big. And true to his vision, this Ottawa market is one of the largest in the country accommodating hundreds of traders and welcoming millions of shoppers to its busy streets.
The market prides itself in bringing authentic Ottawa products to buyers. Take a self guided foodie tour and try the Ottawa products that tout Savour Ottawa logos. ByWard Market is a one-stop shop for specialty foods, salons, escape games among other attractions. Give your”cultured” self a treat, as the market is also a venue for various artistic installations. Website
7. Savour Elgin
We can all agree that having fresh ingredients does a lot for a home-cooked meal. Elgin’s markets pride themselves in offering you products that are fresh from the farm. Fruits and vegetables are hand-picked to bring you the best and recipes are shared to give you a hearty challenge.
You need not wait until you get home to enjoy the tastes of Elgin, you can dine at local restaurants where homemade scones, chicken pot pies and breakfast skillets are on the menu. You are also invited to taste the best of the county’s wines in two of its leading wineries. Website
8. Cranberry Marsh
Experience the magic of the cranberry. The venue is Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh & Muskoka Lakes Winery where cranberry wines as well as other delicious cranberry products are created. Tours are available all year round and include the Bog to Bottle Discovery, an adventure that is part of the Canadian Signature Experiences.
Wine tasting is an integral part of your tour but there is more, so much more. In spring, you can hike, geocache and spot wildlife. Summer is a great time to admire cranberry blossoms while winter is all about snowshoeing. Fall is harvest time and you are invited to take the Cranberry Plunge. Website
9. Chocolate Trail
This is a call to all chocoholics, the Savour Stratford Chocolate Trail will take you on a journey of chocolate tasting and friendly chats with chocolate makers. Discover an assortment of hand-made candies and chocolates as well as gluten-free chocolate brownies and hand-spun, frozen custard milk shakes.
Aside from sweet treats, this trail also features a visit to a tea tasting bar where you will sample a number of specially blended chocolate teas, find out where they came from and learn how to brew them. And if you prefer coffee, you will find fresh roasted Ethiopian coffee beans on this tour. Website
10. Butter Tart Tour
The residents of Kawarthas and Northumberland took butter tarts and made them their own. They created the Canadiana Collection a selection of signature tarts that make use of Canadian ingredients. You will find these and other delectable treats as you traverse the City of Peterborough, Kawartha Lakes Northumberland County and Peterborough County in search of your favourite butter tart.
Better still, you can plan to attend the annual “Taste-Off” competition where the tart experts present their best work. You will not only feast on tarts but also can apply to become a “Taste-Off” judge and help select the winning butter tarts. Website
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11. Prince Edward County’s Taste Trail
Breweries, wineries, ice-creameries and farmer’s markets meet at Prince Edward County’s Taste Trail. This gastronomic adventure features rustic style dishes that make use of the area’s fresh farm produce, artisan cheeses created from goat and water buffalo milk as well as the finest locally-grown wines and ciders.
You can sit at a local café and enjoy a meal that is made to your taste before topping it up with handmade artisan ice cream. And since no tour is complete without a bit of shopping, visit local stores and markets for organic fruits and vegetables as well as antiques and metal works. Website
12. Bacon & Ale Trail
If you are impressed by your menu and would like to see where all the ingredients come from, go ahead and book a tour of a local farm. And as you come to the end of a lovely day, stop by the participating businesses where you will find delectable treats to carry home. Website
13. Brewery Discovery Routes
If you are always looking for exceptional craft beers and ciders then the Brewery Discovery Routes will point you in the right direction. These tours gives you a choice of 9 (at present) self-guided itineraries that feature Ontario’s finest craft brewers, distillers, ciders as well as farmer’s markets and restaurants.
Select a route and learn the art of brewing as you visit a number of participating breweries. Or you could sample Ontario’s cuisine that has been painstakingly prepared using fresh produce from the province. And why not step into the tranquil countryside where quiet trails and picturesque rural landscapes will help you unwind (with a designated driver!)? Website
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