Gravenhurst, Ontario: Gateway to the Great Canadian Wilderness North of Toronto

Fly with Porter Airlines to Muskoka, Ontario this summer and discover the historic Canadian town that’s merging the old with the new.

Gravenhurst, Ontario is home to some of cottage country’s most intriguing historical hotspots. From the RMS Segwun steamship that celebrated its 130th birthday in 2017 to the Little Norway Memorial that honours Norwegian pilots from WWII who trained in here, stories of yore still come to life in Muskoka’s southern-most town. But what’s equally interesting are all the unique modern attractions that captivate as well. Here’s just a partial list of things to see and do in Gravenhurst when you plan your getaway here:

The Muskoka Wharf

Head to Gravenhurst’s bustling waterfront and see just how well ‘old and new’ blend together. Take a trip aboard the RMS Segwun or her sister ship, the Wenonah II, and explore iconic Lake Muskoka on a one of daily or themed cruises. Visit the  Muskoka Discovery Centre next door to explore the Murray Walker Grace & Speed Boathouse – the largest in-water museum of antique and classic boats in North America. Inside the centre you can also learn about Muskoka’s famous lakes and rivers, by touring the Watershed Wonders permanent exhibit.

Give yourself plenty of time to walk the wharf, and be sure to enjoy many dining and shopping options, including at the Muskoka Shipyards Marketplace.

Uptown you’ll find the historically-preserved and Victorian-era Bethune Memorial House, birth home of Dr. Norman Bethune, who became a medical pioneer, advocate for Canada’s universal health care system, as well as a revered Chinese cultural icon.

Take a tour of the house to experience life in early 20th-Century Gravenhurst, and then tour the modern Visitor Centre to learn about Bethune’s incredible legacy.

Arts and crafts fans should be sure to visit Arts at the Albion, an eclectic marketplace of artists located in a lovingly-restored historic hotel. For more history, cross the main street to tour the Gravenhurst Opera House, and take in one of the many performances happening on stage this summer. Music lovers will also want to check out Peter’s Players, a one-of-a-kind venue that presents some of the best rock and blues performers in the world in a converted garage.

Gravenhurst is also home to world-class golf, including the Muskoka Bay Club, which recently was named in the Top 10 of the Best Public Courses in Canada by SCOREGolf. Tee off as well at nearby Tabboo Muskoka and enjoy playing through 300 acres of dramatic forest scenery found along this par 71 Ron Garl-designed championship course.

Head back downtown for great shopping and dining, and be sure to stop at the award-winning Sawdust City Brewing Co. Taste amazing beer crafted by a company that named itself after Gravenhurst’s origins as a logging town. While downtown, explore the many wonderful shops, cafes and restaurants. You can also take a break by the within-walking-distance beach at Gull Lake Park (and in summer watch for concert performances aboard the barge music stage).

Off-road cycling fans won’t want to miss the widely popular trails at the Buckwallow Cycling Centre located near town. Need a bike to rent? Check out The Bike Shop in Gravenhurst for details.

Summer 2020 Events in Gravenhurst:

Muskoka Music Festival, July 31-August 1

This summer, fly with Porter Airlines to Muskoka and discover the town where history and modern day Canada meet.

For accommodations information, click here. For shuttle service to and from the Muskoka Airport, click here. (Available when the seasonal flights are announced. Gravenhurst is approximately 10 minutes by shuttle from YQA).

To book your flight with Porter Airlines, click here.

 

Sign Up for the Great Canadian Wilderness Newsletter! 

This article was originally published on our sister site here.