Hidden Gems for Summer Travel in Ontario
June 16, 2022
Ontario is an adventurous tourist location with something fun and unique for everyone to enjoy. Whether you are exploring the Niagara Region or staying in Southwestern Ontario this summer, there are plenty of restaurants, shopping opportunities, and family attractions for you to experience.
While visiting the most popular tourist sites in Ontario is always exciting, many people, especially those who have been to the area before or those who live there, like to check out the hidden gems scattered throughout the vicinity. These locations can offer the same level of fun and entertainment, but typically with a smaller crowd.
If you are heading to Ontario for vacation or want to find something new to do in the area, here are a few of the hidden gems for travel in Ontario for you to discover this year.
The Best Hidden Gems for Ontario Tourists to Discover in 2022
There are many fantastic attractions for tourists to check out while visiting Ontario. Perhaps the best locations are these hidden gems that are practically unknown to others. Here are a few of our favorite places we highly recommend.
Huron Natural Area
Located in Kitchener, ON, Huron Natural Area is the largest natural space in Ontario, offering plenty of natural beauty. It features scenic hiking trails, access to wetlands, meadows, and a forest filled with various species. There are also lookout areas and boardwalks to enjoy this natural and cultural-historic attraction.
On average, exploring the entire area takes around two to three hours. Recent additions to the park include an outdoor education building ideal for school trips, new washrooms, and a large EarthScape playground for children.
Cup and Saucer Trail
Located on Manitoulin Island, the Cup and Saucer trail is a moderate hiking trail offering amazing views along the way to the top. It is an excellent location for experienced hikers, as some parts of the trail could require additional climbing due to the rocky terrain. The Red trail is the main hiking trail and offers beautiful panoramic views. The Blue trail is longer and loops back into the Red trail. The Adventure trail is also 500km, but it is the most difficult to hike.
Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre
Located in Sault Ste. Marie, ON, this hands-on museum is home to a collection of 29 bush planes, including the very first Beaver Float Plane ever produced. Visitors to the museum enjoy taking a ride on the flight simulator, watching a 3-D firefighting adventure, or climbing atop an actual fire tower.
The Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre is an excellent place for aspiring aviators of all ages. There is a children’s learning centre that features arcade-style games and interactive displays to help your little one’s imagination take flight.
It takes around two to three hours to explore the Bushplane Heritage Centre. Be sure to check their website for the most current hours of operation.
Lion’s Valley Park
In Oakville, Lion’s Valley Park is a beautiful and serene area with a Sixteen Mile Creek running throughout. There are plenty of long trails ideal for hiking, cycling, or jogging. There are also several playgrounds and covered areas for picnics.
While it may seem crowded at times, Lion’s Valley Park is a large area, and you can easily find a quiet place away from the crowd to sit and enjoy nature. This park is just minutes away from the busy city, providing easy access to local restaurants and shopping opportunities after spending your day surrounded by nature.
Hilton Falls Conservation Area
Located in Milton, Hilton Falls Conservation Area features beautiful walking trails, waterfalls, and other scenic masterpieces to enjoy. It is especially enjoyable to visit during autumn when the leaves change colors.
The trails take around two hours to complete and are easy to walk, making this a terrific outdoor location for everyone. Before making plans to visit, a reservation is required to enter the park. But once you are there, you will have full access to attractions such as The Mill Ruins, Reservoir, and the enchanting natural waterfalls.
Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory
Located in Cambridge, this nature and wildlife museum features thousands of butterflies flying around a 10,000-square-foot indoor space. The conservatory features a natural home for butterflies with various tropical plants, birds, and animals inside.
The conservatory takes around one to two hours to explore. It offers an excellent educational experience and a great way to explore nature’s beauty while inside a safe environment.
Lakeside Park Carousel
The Lakeside Park Carousel is an enjoyable attraction and historic landmark located in St. Catharines. This beautifully designed carousel has been around for generations, and still only costs five cents to ride. The carousel animals have been kept in pristine shape over the years, thanks to the dedication of the founders and the city.
Sugarbush Hill Maple Farm
Located in Huntsville, the Sugarbush Hill Maple Farm is a maple sugaring operation and the largest sugarhouse open to the public all year. Visitors can enjoy maple-flavored ice cream and purchase Sugarbush Maple Syrup and other items at the end of their tour. This state-of-the-art maple sugaring operation takes less than an hour to tour.
The owners are very cordial and willing to answer any questions guests have about their operations. They also have their family pets, a friendly dog and cat, who work as the welcoming committee for visitors.
Chateau des Charmes Winery
Located in Niagara-on-the-Lake, this winery features wine tasting inside a beautiful estate. It is a great place to try new and different wine varieties while learning more about winemaking and the history of the captivating Chateau des Charmes. The winery has an excellent staff who are happy to answer any questions about the wine-making process.
These are just a few of the beautiful attractions Ontario has to offer its residents and guests. When staying in the area, be sure to explore these and other local favorites so you can make long-lasting memories with family and friends.