21 Natural Wonders in Ontario That You Need to See

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21 Natural Wonders in Ontario

No vacation time left, but a strong desire to explore? We’ve all been there. While our vacation time may be limited, we do have 52 weekends a year and a naturally beautiful province that demands to be explored.

Ontario residents (and tourists too) can find a multitude of short getaways within driving distance. We’ve teamed up with our fans and followers to present the top 21 natural wonders in Ontario. Whether your getaway is for a few days or just a few hours, scenic adventures await at each of these natural wonders.

1. Webster’s Falls, Tew’s Falls & Dundas Peak, Dundas

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Distance from Toronto: 1 hour

This area is home to two of Hamilton’s most famous waterfalls – Webster’s Falls and Tew’s Falls. Find some of the best views overlooking Dundas and Hamilton by following the trail leading to Dundas Peak.

2. Ouimet Canyon, Thunder Bay

Ouimet Canyon

Distance from Toronto: 13 ½ hours

Enjoy panoramic views of a stunning gorge at this natural wonder. The gorge is about 490 feet wide and 2 kilometers long with a trail that leads to two overlooks bound to amaze you.

3. Bruce Peninsula National Park & Flower Pot Islands, Tobermory

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Distance from Toronto: 3 ½ hours

Admire some of the clearest water in Ontario at the Bruce Peninsula. Make sure to take a boat ride over to the Flower Pot Islands, famous for its unusual sea stacks.

4. Sandbanks Provincial Park, Prince Edward County

Sandbanks Provincial Park

Distance from Toronto: 2 ½ hours

In Prince Edward County, you’ll find three sandy beaches that are labeled as some of Canada’s finest. After hitting the beach, spend some time exploring the town – famous for its bicycle tours, wineries and antique stops.

5. 1000 Islands, Gananoque

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Distance from Toronto: 3 hours

Located on the Saint Lawrence River, 1000 Islands is said to have once been patrolled by pirates. Take a boat tour through the area and enjoy the view of the 1,864 islands, sandy beaches and ancient castles.

6. Scarborough Bluffs, Scarborough

Scarborough Bluffs

Distance from Toronto: ½ hour

The Scarborough Bluffs span about 15 km along the shore of Lake Ontario. Just a half hour from Toronto, this natural wonder is the perfect place to go for a peaceful walk or hike.

7. Rock Dunder, Kingston

rockdunder

Distance from Toronto: 3 hours

At Rock Dunder, you’ll find three trails: Cabin Trail, Morton Bay Loop and Summit Loop. Hike Rock Dunder for panoramic views of the Rideau Lakes.

8. Elora Quarry & Elora Gorge, Elora

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Distance from Toronto: 1 ½ hours

Elora has been named Ontario’s most picturesque village. The village is known for the Elora Gorge and Elora Quarry Conservation Areas. Adventure-seekers can tube down the Grand River at Elora Gorge or swim in the “old swimming hole” at Elora Quarry.

9. Orphan Lake Trail, Agawa Bay

Orphan Lake Trail

Distance from Toronto: 8 hours

Located in Lake Superior Provincial Park, Orphan Lake Trail has a bit of everything. Enjoy the views of Lake Superior and Orphan Lake, swim at the pebble beach or explore the Baldhead River falls at this natural wonder.

10. Long Sault Parkway, Stormont

 Long Sault Parkway

Distance from Toronto: 4 hours

Long Sault Parkway is a series of 11 islands created after the flooding of the St. Lawrence River. This natural paradise is full of beaches, pristine natural trails, scuba diving, and fishing.

11. Point Pelee National Park & Pelee Island

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Distance from Toronto: 3 ½ hours + 1 ½ hour ferry to Pelee Island

Point Pelee National Park prides itself on being the southernmost tip of Canada. Walk the marsh boardwalk and enjoy exceptional bird watching, then make your way to Pelee Island by ferry. Enjoy a glass of wine or two, go for a swim, or browse the local shops once your reach the island.

12. Bonnechere Caves, Eganville

Bonnechere Caves

Distance from Toronto: 4 hours

Deep underground you’ll find the Bonnechere Caves. The caves are said to have once been the bottom of a tropical sea 500 million years ago. A tour inside the caves reveals limestone walls and rock icicles all around you.

13. Sleeping Giant Provincial Park, Thunder Bay

Thunder Bay

Distance from Toronto: 14 hours

Sleeping Giant Provincial Park is home to over 100 km of hiking trails. The giant cliffs offer unparalleled views of Lake Superior.

14. Rattlesnake Point, Milton

Rattlesnake

Distance from Toronto: ¾ hour

Rattlesnake Point has five breathtaking lookout points. Hikers can access the Bruce Trail from Rattlesnake Point.  With three designated sites for rock climbing, Rattlesnake Point is sure to impress thrill-seekers.

15. Bon Echo Provincial Park, Addington Highlands

Bon Echo Provincial Park

Distance from Toronto: 3 ½ hours

Bon Echo features lakes and massive rocks, about 330 feet tall. This provincial park is great for hiking. Trails range from 1 km to 17 km in length.

16.  Kariya Park, Mississauga

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Distance from Toronto: ½ hour

At the heart of Mississauga’s city center sits Kariya Park, a tranquil lake surrounded by greenery. The park attracts many visitors in early spring when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom.

17. Greig’s Caves, Lion’s Head

Greig’s Caves

Distance from Toronto: 3 hours

Explore natural limestone caves at this hidden gem. Be prepared with good hiking shoes and comfortable clothing and use caution for the steep and uphill climb.

18. Albion Falls, Hamilton

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Distance from Toronto: 1 hour

Albion Falls is a 19 meter tall waterfall at the tip of King’s Forest Park in Hamilton and enjoys year-round flow. Bring your hiking shoes for this hidden gem – it’s a fairly steep hike.

19. Lake Muskoka, Muskoka

Muskoka

Distance from Toronto: 2 hours

Muskoka has been recognized as one of the top places in the world by National Geographic. This natural wonder has an abundance of things to do, including hiking pristine trails, stargazing, enjoying a bonfire, and swimming in sparkling waters.

20. Algonquin Park

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Distance from Toronto: 3 hours

Algonquin, Ontario’s first provincial park, boasts hundreds of lakes and hiking trails. Spot some moose or go canoeing at one of Ontario’s largest parks.

21. Scenic Caves, Collingwood

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Distance from Toronto: 2 hours

20 minutes from Wasaga Beach you’ll find the Scenic Caves. Here you can hike through caves carved by glacial ice millions of years ago, venture across the 420 foot suspension bridge, or zipline through the forest.

Did your favourite natural wonder make the list? Share yours in the comments below.

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Comments:

  • These areas are beautiful and worthy of being the top 21 natural sites/areas in Ontario, but, The Kawartha Lakes and the Kawartha Highlands need mention too. Not only is this region beautiful but it is also the home of many pioneer families who, not being able to afford travel costs, made the area home to city and country dwellers alike all summer long. It is a region of natural beauty including fishing, hiking, boating, swimming and home to one of the largest pow-wows held by The First Nations People. Also summer regattas and winter activities are everywhere in this region.

  • How wonderful! Fantastic photography. I live in Harrow, Ontario and didn’t realize some of these places existed. My very favourite is Algonquin Park. My husband and I have interior camped for over 20 years in this spectacular park and still can’t get enough. It’s like a second home to us. Maybe now we will explore some of these other options. Thanks for the great information and pictures. Happy camping :)

  • All great places!! Where’s the mention of Long Point Ontario? It’s an UNESCO World Biosphere, same designation as the great barrier reef, sahara desert, Brazilian rain forest, etc!

  • Long Point should be on this list too! It’s actually an UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. It’s a natural wonder of the world, not just Ontario!

  • Also the Sand Hills that are midway between Long Point and Port Burwell on Lake Erie.

    Last time I was there, one hill went up from the beach to 480 feet high.

    When the lake was surveyed they put a lime light on the hill, two others at the east and west ends of Lake Erie.

  • Magnificent St. Lawrence River with it’s beautiful Thousand Islands locks – canals.

    Visit the City of the 1000 Islands BROCKVILLE- explore the oldest Gated Railway Tunnel visit the otters at the Aqutarium – take a ride on your bike or walk th Brock Trail

    Enjoy a boat cruse on the St Lawrence River and visit Bolt Castle – th castle that love built.

    Only 85kms or 1 1/2 hrs from the Nations Capital – 2hrs from old Montreal
    VISIT HISTORIC EASTERN ONTARIO

  • The Rideau waterway is a Unesco world heritage site. Voted second most desirable place to visit by National Geographic (2009). It should certainly be on the list

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