5 Amazing Places Near Toronto You Have to Visit
Toronto is a beautiful city in itself, however there are also some amazing places you need to visit that are only a short drive away…
1. The Grotto at Bruce Peninsula Park
It’s a 30-minute hike to the Grotto from the Head of Trails parking lot at Cyprus Lake parking lot. Everyone hikes to the Grotto. It’s the most popular attraction in Bruce Peninsula National Park. A big cave on the shore, it was carved out by the waves of Georgian Bay over thousands of years. From the Bruce Trail climb down through the natural chimney in the rock of the Niagara Escarpment. It’s a pristine setting; there are no signs, lights, stairs or handrails here. The cave itself is stunning, with sunlight from the outside revealing a brilliant underwater tunnel on the inside. You can walk along a ledge inside its cavity or swim in its cool, clear, turquoise water.
2. Tews Falls
Tews Falls can be reached from Webster’s falls via a 30 minute hike along the Bruce Trail, or by a 5 minute drive down Harvest Road to the Tews Falls parking area.
Hamilton is referred to as the waterfall capital of Ontario and once you see it, you’ll know exactly why. Tew’s Fall is approximately 135 feet tall and 30 feet wide. The surrounding ‘U’ shaped cliffs make it seem like you’re observing the waterfall from inside a bowl!
3. Cheltenham Badlands
“Badlands” is a geologic term for an area of soft rock devoid of vegetation and soil cover that has become molded into a rolling landscape of rounded hills and gullies.
Such areas are rare in Ontario and this is one of the best examples. They exhibit the reddish hue of the Queenston Shale that forms them; the iron oxide in the shale produces this colour. The narrow greenish bands that can be seen throughout the shale are due to the change of red iron oxide to green iron oxide brought on by the circulating groundwater.
4. Bonnechere Caves
The Bonnechere caves , about 130km west of Ottawa, are one of the finest examples of a solution cave (a cave dissolved out of solid rock by acidic waters) in the world. Formed 500 million years ago from the floor of a tropical sea, the dank passages feature a haunting collection of prehistoric fossils including a well-defined octopus.
Under a hill of limestone, said by geologists to have been the bottom of a tropical sea 500 million years ago, the Caves present a weird and wonderful sight. Stalactites, or rock icicles formed at the rate of one cubic inch in 150 years, hang from the ceiling and the handiwork of nature is enhanced by electric lights.
5. Bon Echo Provincial Park
Bon Echo Provincial Park is one of Eastern Ontario’s most popular parks and that comes as no surprise considering it’s packed with excellent hiking trails, camping experiences and the largest collection of Aboriginal pictographs in North America. Mazinaw Lake and Mazinaw Rock make up the park’s stunning beauty and history.
Bon Echo’s 530 campsites, amphitheatre, beaches, trails, and picnic areas are visited by more than 200,000 people per year.