Things to do & Places to stay in Ontario

MAY 31, 2018

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What are YOU going to do this weekend?

See Ontario from the rails or waters.

There are loads of ways to see our wonderful province – by car, on foot, by plane…but 2 great ways are by boat and by train. Both move quickly enough that you get to see a fair amount, but slowly enough that you REALLY get to see and enjoy (and also, someone else is driving so you can look around). Both also let you see the province from a slightly different vantage point and let you go places that cars and feet can’t take you. We recommend both highly! Check out our online Boat & Train excursions list too.


article1_may312018.jpgWith all of the gorgeous lakes in Central & Northern Ontario, you can cruise to your heart’s content! Boat Cruises on Georgian Bay offers cruises from Midland, Penetanguishine & Port Severn to discover Georgian Bay. SS Bigwin Steamship Cruises explores Lake of Bays on a majestic wooden hybrid vessel. Sunset Cruises offers the "Muskoka Experience" - a cruise on the big 3 Muskoka Lakes. Muskoka Steamships & Discovery Centre offers tours of Muskoka’s lakes aboard RMS Segwun or Wenonah II steam ships – visit the Discovery Centre to learn the history of ships/ boats, aboriginal and early settlers too. Island Queen Cruise has daily tours of Georgian Bay’s 30,000 Islands. Most offer scheduled tours and private charters and many have sunset or dinner cruises too.


article2_may312018.jpgThe 1000 Islands region is spectacular from the water, with views of Boldt Castle and luxurious cottages on many routes. Early owners of some of those “cottages” were people like the Pullmans, the inventor of the railway Pullman car, John Jacob Astor, a NYC financier, and Helena Rubenstein, from the cosmetic company. The first sightseeing tours were by a mail boat owner who took people on tours as a sideline to delivering mail to the islands. 1000 Islands & Seaway Cruises – Brockville passes by both Boldt & Singer Castles and has both a fast tour boat and a traditional one. Gananoque Boat Line Ltd. lets you discover legends & lore on a "Lost Ships" cruise in addition to its regular sightseeing tours. 1000 Islands Rockport Cruises has Sightseeing, Castle Tours or Dining Cruises to choose from.


article3_may312018.jpgThe GTA region has more trains than boats, although there are excellent tours of Lake Ontario operating out of the Harbourfront area. Mariposa Cruises lets you enjoy Toronto’s iconic skyline & harbour with both its sightseeing and dining/event cruises. If you like to ride the rails, York Durham Heritage Railway offers heritage train rides through the Oak Ridges Moraine. They also have a Day Out with Thomas in August. So fun! Halton County Radial Railway & Streetcar Museum in Milton is a museum with a full-size operating electric railway. They offer unlimited rides, and have a historic Railway Station.


article4_may312018.jpgSouthwestern Ontario has a variety of options – both on the rails and on the waters. South Simcoe Railway in Tottenham, is Ontario’s First Steam Heritage Railway & offers scenic, narrated excursions. Grand River Dinner Cruises, Caledonia is known for its scenic boat cruise on the Grand River with food, entertainment & fascinating narrative. Waterloo Central Railway (St Jacob, Woolwich)  has both Day Trains & Themed Trains, like Easter Trains, Great Train Robberies, Pizza Trains and more! Chi-Cheemaun Ferry (Owen Sound Transportation Company) in Tobermory travels to Manitoulin Island to experience Aboriginal heritage & natural beauty. Windsor River Cruises Limited cruises down the historic Detroit River with historical commentated Sightseeing, Day Trips to Amherstburg, & other cruises and events.


Featured Events

Bread & Honey Festival

June 1-3, 2018
Memorial Park, 335 Church St, in the Village of Streetsville, Mississauga (GTA)

featured_events_1_may312018.jpgThe 46th Annual Bread & Honey Festival is a great outing for the whole family! Enjoy live performances for kids and adults, carnival rides, games, educational demonstrations, beer garden, hands-on interactive activities & of course, FREE Bread & Honey! Highlights include the kick off parade Sat. June at 10am and the Pancake Breakfast on Sunday.

Dunnville Mudcat Festival

June 7-10, 2018
Dunnville (SW Ontario)

featured_events_2_may312018.jpgThe Dunnville Mudcat Festival, named after Dunnville’s popular fish found in the Grand River, is an event that’s fun for everyone and a great way to kick off summer! Some of the many attractions include a midway,  parade, vendors, fireworks, kids’ entertainment, strongman/strongwoman competition, Bavarian gardens, car show, live music, food trucks and so much more! Not far from Hamilton, Toronto or Niagara Falls. Go for the day or stay for the weekend. It’s a great family outing.

Orangeville Blues and Jazz Festival

June 1-3, 2018
Downtown Orangeville

featured_events_3_may312018.jpgThis is a hugely popular music festival in Orangeville, about 30 minutes north of Brampton in South-central Ontario. This year it is celebrating its 15th anniversary and features 90 professional music acts performing on the main stage in various venues, clubs and restaurants. The festival also features street performances, a vintage car show, and activities throughout downtown Orangeville.

Featured: Explore Stormont, Dundas & Glengarry

featured_may312018.jpgOver 2 centuries ago, United Empire Loyalists and other European immigrants settled in this area. Then, in the 1780s, Scottish immigrants followed. All these settlers brought the rich traditions and cultures that shape the region today. Not only is this region lucky enough to have stunning parks & beaches, beautiful trails, and fascinating museums & historical sites but it also offers many fun festivals, great restaurants, a Historic Jail and Prehistoric World! It’s a region worth exploring this summer.



onlyinont_may312018.jpgSt. Jacobs & Aberfoyle Model Railway
Did you know that North America’s finest “O” Scale model railway is located right here in Ontario? Covering over 3000 sq ft, it depicts Southern Ontario in the late 1950s. Hand-built CN & CP models run through countryside, beaches, towns, a large city & even part of the Niagara Escarpment! This world renowned display includes lighted passenger cars, freight trains, steam locomotives, scenic countryside and more. It’s a great family activity. Allow 1 hour for the Railway and then spend some time strolling the quaint village of St. Jacobs.

Print Edition

img19.jpgPick up your FREE copy of the NEW & updated edition of Summer Fun Guide at ONroute Centres & other locations around Ontario while supplies last or email to have one mailed to you. View a digital version of the print edition online here:

CHECK OUT the next issue

Discover Eastern Ontario

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