Camping Season is Here
Now that the weather is warming up I can finally think about some weekend getaways this summer. I've been thinking about a camping trip here and there in April but with the bad weather it kept leaving my head before I could do anything about it I guess. I thought I'd share a few of the trips we had last year to inspire any of you with the same issue.
My In-Laws have bought a great trailer last year and we are very lucky and greatful to have borrowed it a few times. It works out good because they like to go away during week for few days when less busy and we can only go on the weekends.
We first went to a spot by Point Pelee in Leamington Ontario for 2 nights during the Aug long weekend. It was a little last minute and there wasn't much available especially for the long weekend but I always wanted to visit this area. I wanted to visit some National Parks because we enjoy nature and last year they were offering free entry so it was a good mix. We found this place Lakeside Village Motel and Campground. it was right on the water and everything. It was actually a hidden gem really. It wasn't over the top with amenities but it had the services we needed and close to the park we wanted to visit in a new area to explore. There wasn't too much to do onsite except your normal on campsite activities. It was on the water but it was a good 30 steep steps down and rough water not beach worthy.
Point Pelee National Park is a beautiful park to visit. If you are interested in bird species, they claim to have all sorts of bird watching opportunities and have a yearly festival. It is southernmost point of the Canadian mainland, warmer then the north and traffic not an issue on a long weekend! That was a massive bonus. So if you are ever in need of a long weekend getaway from the GTA don't underestimate this area. There was also a cute food truck restaurant Berdie's Perch that was on the road to the park that had great perch fingers.
We enjoyed ourselves in the trailer style camping that we were eager to try again even for a night. It is hard with only so many weekends in the summer and all the sports and other things crammed in so we had a night and we went 30 min away. Well it was a fantastic idea and great time. No travel stress. Spot was great it was Valens Lake Conservation area. Such a beautiful padded treed site with Electric and Water. You dispose of waste at a station when you leave. Which was actually better for just the night. Probably harder to deal with for longer stays though. Lots of boardwalks, trails to walk, picnic areas and there was a beach too. Although we didn't make it to the beach portion. There was always time for s'mores though. I think we will do a night here again this year it's just so easy and close by to friends who came by for dinner and treats.
Summer was already almost over and school was about to being for the first time for some so our last trip ended up being in October for Thanksgiving. We were very lucky for the weather. I mean, no swimming in the beach or anything but perfect for hiking and exploring.
Thanksgiving weekend we went to Tobermory and stayed at Land's End Park. This was a nice park with a bit of everything. Beautiful treed sites, flat grassed and all sorts of hook up options. You can look through every site online and pick before going. There is even some cabins. It was quiet on this weekend before they closed for the season but I hear the summer is hard to book so look ahead.
They had a great playground that was a pirate ship that the kids could go to off the site could see and hear them. There was a shallow beach there as well with some rentals, though too cold for us to use but we did stroll there and all the boys tried some fishing while I was preparing meals.
We spent first night at the site, plenty of walking around and stuff to see there and spaces for kids to enjoy. The next day we explored the parks. In the morning we went to Bruce Peninsula National Park where there is some grotto's and lots of rocky cliffs and trails. First we spotted this wood pecker.
The grotto's were pretty cool looking. I was a bit nervous with the kids. There is plenty of trails all around and different angles to see things. Some people were climbing way up, some were down so you didn't have to choose anything too difficult. You could stick to safer spots though my kids could of climbed, climbed, climbed!
When we were done at Bruce we went into town to purchase tickets on the glass bottom boat and take a trip to Fathom Five National Marine Park. While where we waiting for our boarding time we went into town, which was very small but cute, walkable with a variety of stores and restaurants. We had a bite to eat, a walk around and even stopped for ice cream. There was the fairy that goes to Manitoulin there which was interesting to watch too.
The glass bottom boat tour was neat. The lake is so clear, pretty shallow and there is lots of shipwrecks there. There is lots of scuba diving in the area so if you are interested in that it is worth looking into. It was very busy in town for the different activities offered like the scuba diving and boat tours. Lots of tourist that sound foreign. It surprised me because I was just experiencing this area for first time and it's not too far to travel and yet I can hear a group of Australian's there!
Flower pot Island was great. So much rock. The limestone pots were pretty neat and the trails around were pretty amazing too. It was worth the visit. It was a huge long day and all of us were pretty exhausted. We had a great time though. We could easily have split into two days but with only a two night stay a long drive and a Thanksgiving dinner to attend the next day we crammed a bit in. We really enjoyed this area it was very beautiful. If you plan on travelling here there is lots to see and do and plenty to eat in town but not much of the chain restaurants and stores you may be used to which adds to the adventure. It was a nice drive back and forth with the fall colours.
Do you have any spots you enjoy? I'd love some suggestions for exploring this year. I was thinking to travel north this time but open to suggestion.