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Penetanguishene

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Simcoe

Warm weather fun starts in stunning Simcoe County!    Its natural assets are a perfect fit with your favourite outdoor activities.  Cycle, hike, swim, sun, tour, golf, fish, boat and take time out of your busy schedule to kick back and relax.   The list of awesome things to do is endless – festivals, boat tours, history to explore and experience, guided mountain bike tours, farmers’ markets, live concerts & much much more!
 
Cycling – road, trail and recreational – is big in Simcoe!  Pick up your Cycle Simcoe map for routes and trails along picturesque back roads, rail trails and waterfronts.  Routes include the Heart of Georgian Bay, Ontario’s Lake Country and South Georgian Bay.   Outdoor bike repair stations are dotted throughout the county for easy fixes while on the road.   Ontario By Bike makes it easy to find cycle-friendly accommodations, restaurants and business and has helpful route suggestions, too, for those longer tours.  Make it an extended cycling tour with a package from Cycle and Stay Simcoe County Bed & Breakfasts, and leave the route planning and luggage transportation in their capable hands. 
 
Both Horseshoe Resort and Hardwood Ski & Bike have dedicated mountain biking trails, with bike and helmet rentals available. Sign up for guided mountain biking and fat biking with Ride Guides.
 
If exploring by foot is more your thing, try the minimum impact Ganaraska Trail, which meets up with the Bruce Trail’s Mad River Side Trail at Glen Huron.  Simcoe County has trails galore from easy to challenging with community trails, rail trails and wilderness areas such as the Wye Marsh.   For those with mobility issues, Awenda Provincial Park’s Beaver Pond Trail has barrier-free access.
 
Anglers can drop a line in Lake Simcoe, Kempenfelt Bay, Lake Couchiching or one of many inland lakes or waterways.  Trout, whitefish, small and largemouth bass, pike, perch and more are just some of the species dwelling in Lake Simcoe. 
 
The waters of Simcoe County are great for watersports too – canoe, kayak and SUP (stand up paddleboard) the rivers and shorelines.  Or, if you prefer a less physical form of water transportation, book a boat tour on the Miss Midland, the Serendipity Princess in Penetanguishene or the Island Princess in Orillia.  In Collingwood, Collingwood Adventure Voyages, Collingwood Charters and SummerBound offer a variety of options for cruising the waters of Georgian Bay. 
 
The wide-open waters of Georgian Bay and Lake Simcoe with their welcoming harbours make memorable boating and sailing destinations, with the Trent Severn Waterway weaving its way through Lake Simcoe, Lake Couchiching and the Severn River on its way to Georgian Bay.  Bonus:  in honour of Canada’s 150th in 2017, Parks Canada is offering free Seasonal Lockage Permits, which can be picked up at various locations in Canada and are also available online.
 
Dwelling in the past is a good thing!  Both Discovery Harbour* and Sainte-Marie among the Hurons* feature hands-on activities and storytelling costumed interpreters all ages can 

 
enjoy.  Tour the beautifully restored S.S. Keewatin* in Port McNicoll and take a ride on the vintage South Simcoe Railway through the Beeton Creek Valley– both of these have been featured on episodes of CBC’s popular TV series, Murdoch Mysteries.   

The Leacock Museum on the shore of Old Brewery Bay in Orillia, which stands as a lasting tribute to its former owner, Canadian humourist Stephen Leacock, is open for tours and hosts the Leacock Summer Festival in July.  The Simcoe County Museum traces the history of the region while smaller museums like the Huronia Museum* in Midland and the Penetanguishene Centennial Museum & Archives* focus on their local history with events and programs. 
 
Order or pick up your Discovery Tour ticket package which bundles up the admission fees to seven attractions in the Heart of Georgian Bay (for a savings of 15%).  The pass also entitles the bearer to other discounts and promotions, including free admission to children 15 and under when accompanied by an adult.   In addition to those marked with an * above, the attractions include the Martyrs’ Shrine and the Wye Marsh Wildlife Centre.
 
Venture into the arts at the Orillia Museum of Art & History (OMAH), the Mady Centre for the Performing Arts and the McLaren Art Centre, both in Barrie.  Tis the season of music festivals in Simcoe County.  From the venerable, long running Kempenfest in Barrie and Orillia’s Mariposa Folk Festival to the Barrie Jazz & Blues Festival, Boots and Hearts and WayHome, there’s music for all tastes and all ages.  Year round, Casino Rama offers a great lineup of live, world-class entertainment.
 
Until May 30th, savour everything maple on Ontario’s Lake Country’s annual “Tap into Maple” tour, with yummy choices of maple syrup, maple-related edibles and meals. Pick up a maple-themed gift or piece of art, attend a festival or book a fun getaway package at a resort or B&B.
 
And, be sure to schedule some R&R while visiting – laze away a day at the beach in Wasaga, book into a spa or try a little “retail therapy” in the fun and unique stores and shops.  Sample delicious local wares at restaurants, cafes and pubs and at the farmers’ markets and farm stores.  Use the compact “Saints & Sinners: Bootleggers’ Run” trail map to discover the wine, beer and cider of the region.  Cap off a summer’s day by toasting the sunset with a Georgian Bay Gin cocktail (made with the pure waters of Springwater Township). 
           
Start planning today to come play in Simcoe County!
 
Looking for more info on Simcoe?  Check out the links below: