The best spots for boating in Ontario

Ontario, with its vast network of lakes, rivers, and scenic coastlines, is a boater's paradise. From tranquil lakes surrounded by lush forests to the lively waterways of vibrant cities, Ontario offers a diverse range of boating experiences. In this article, we'll explore some of the best spots for boating in Ontario, each promising a unique and unforgettable maritime adventure.

Muskoka Lakes:

Nestled in the heart of Ontario's cottage country, the Muskoka Lakes region is renowned for its pristine waters and rugged landscapes. Boaters can explore Muskoka's "Big Three" lakes – Lake Muskoka, Lake Rosseau, and Lake Joseph – where charming towns, upscale resorts, and hidden coves await. Cruise along the scenic shoreline, anchor in quiet bays, and discover the beauty that inspired the Group of Seven artists.

Thousand Islands – St. Lawrence River:

Embark on a captivating journey through the Thousand Islands archipelago along the St. Lawrence River. Boaters can navigate through the maze of islands, each with its own unique charm. Discover historic Boldt Castle, enjoy waterfront dining in Gananoque, and witness the breathtaking beauty of the islands, which span the border between the United States and Canada.

Georgian Bay – The 30,000 Islands:

Georgian Bay, part of Lake Huron, is dotted with over 30,000 islands, making it one of the largest freshwater archipelagos globally. Boaters can explore the dramatic landscapes, crystal-clear waters, and granite shores. Iconic spots include the windswept beauty of the Bustard Islands and the charming town of Parry Sound.

Trent-Severn Waterway:

For a unique boating experience, cruise the historic Trent-Severn Waterway, connecting Lake Ontario to Georgian Bay. This interconnected system of rivers, lakes, and canals passes through picturesque towns like Peterborough and Bobcaygeon. Boaters can navigate through a series of locks, including the iconic Peterborough Lift Lock, the highest hydraulic lift lock in the world.

Lake Simcoe:

As one of Ontario's largest inland lakes, Lake Simcoe offers boaters a mix of recreational activities and scenic beauty. Explore the lake's islands, such as Georgina Island and Snake Island, or cruise to Kempenfelt Bay for waterfront dining and events in Barrie.

Ottawa River:

For a capital city boating experience, explore the Ottawa River in the shadow of Parliament Hill. Boaters can enjoy a mix of urban and natural scenery, passing under historic bridges, cruising by vibrant neighborhoods, and marveling at the beauty of the Gatineau Hills.

Lake Erie – Pelee Island:

Lake Erie's Pelee Island, the southernmost inhabited point in Canada, offers a tranquil escape for boaters. Discover vineyards, nature reserves, and pristine beaches as you navigate the waters surrounding this peaceful island retreat.

Toronto Harbour – Lake Ontario:

Experience the dynamic energy of Canada's largest city from the water by exploring Toronto Harbour and cruising on Lake Ontario. Catch stunning views of the skyline, visit the Toronto Islands, and enjoy the vibrant waterfront scene.

Lake Huron – Saugeen Shores:

Saugeen Shores on Lake Huron is a boater's haven with sandy beaches, marinas, and picturesque lighthouses. Explore the clear waters, visit Chantry Island, and discover the maritime charm of Southampton and Port Elgin.

Kawartha Lakes:

The Kawartha Lakes region is an interconnected system of lakes, rivers, and canals, offering endless boating opportunities. Navigating through the Kawartha Lakes allows boaters to explore charming communities like Fenelon Falls and Bobcaygeon, known for their lock systems, festivals, and waterfront charm.


Ontario's diverse waterways beckon boating enthusiasts with a promise of adventure, serenity, and natural beauty. Whether you prefer the tranquility of Muskoka's lakes, the historical richness of the Trent-Severn Waterway, or the vibrant energy of Toronto's waterfront, Ontario's best boating spots cater to every preference. So, set sail, embrace the maritime spirit, and discover the wonders that await on Ontario's enchanting waters.