A Warm Welcome from The Villages of Almaguin

Head to the Almaguin Highlands of Ontario for equal doses of warmth, charm and unique discoveries.

Drive a short distance north of Muskoka and you’ll encounter a region of unspoiled Canadian wilderness that’s dotted with lakes, rocks and forests. The Almaguin Highlands is a place of adventures, where cycling, paddling, fishing and hiking are found in abundance. It is here in this unique part of Ontario that you’ll also encounter the Villages of Almaguin. Charming, friendly and welcoming, these communities are bursting with creativity and a passion for the stunning landscape that surrounds them.

Walk The Villages

Head to South River to enjoy a leisurely stroll through Tom Thomson Park, so named because the iconic Canadian artist often used the village as a jumping off point for his adventures into Algonquin Park.

The Discovery Routes trails system maintains several hiking trails around the region catering to all fitness levels. Burk’s Falls offers the Heritage River Walk Trail, while Powassan’s Pines Interpretive Trail climbs through towering red pines to end in a spectacular lookout. Explore Magnetawan’s Centennial Park for a perfect for a trip with the kids, or take in the views over Sundridge’s Bernard Lake (North America’s largest lake without an island!) from High Rock Lookout Park. Consider heading just outside of Emsdale where you can find Brooks Falls, with a hiking trail that offers exciting views as the rushing water cascades over twisting outcrops of bare granite.

Paddlers will also want to check out the Magnetawan River for a day trip out to explore this stunning waterway. And if you’re a cyclist looking to hit the roads, you’re in for a treat. Check out a number of cycling routes that tour the local landscape, join a group ride with Almaguin in Motion, or ride like a local with a guided trip hosted by Missing Link Adventure Tours.

Discover The Arts

Just as it did for Tom Thomson a century ago, the rugged landscape and peaceful waters of Almaguin continue to inspire a diverse collection of artists. Explore the Burk’s Falls Art and Crafts Club website to view an assortment of work from artists who specialize in all forms of visual media as well as those working in performing, media and literary arts.

You can also plan your own tour, stopping at places such as the Jill Boschulte Gallery in Sundridge, Brush Point Studio or the Karen Robinson Gallery feat. Mendelson Joe in Burk’s Falls. If you’re passing through South River, you’ll find a collection of unique artistic experiences including Studio By The Lake and The Felting Shop & Fibre Arts Studio. And don’t miss your chance to take part in the art with The Decomposing Piano and other events at New Adventures in Sound Art.

For an unforgettable (and somewhat unreal) outdoor arts experience, visit the Screaming Heads installation in Burk’s Falls, where you will encounter towering concrete monuments that rise out of the earth in strong contrast to the serene park-like grounds surrounding them. Click here for a more detailed account of this one-of-a-kind attraction.


The Villages of Almaguin are also the perfect places to discover a diverse sampling of unique stores and businesses. These villages boast streets that are less travelled, friendly folks who are always willing to share their local knowledge, and diverse restaurant and retail scenes.

Unleash your inner shopper as you explore local favourites like Zak’s and 89 Main in Sundridge, Circling Hawks Centre and The Mag in Burk’s Falls, Nostalgia Antiques in Kearney and Ahmic Lake Apiaries in Magnetawan. And for a truly mythical experience, you won’t want to miss a visit to the Crystal Cave, a popular shop and mineral exhibit that hosts annual events and workshops on site.

Dining & Craft Spirits

At Copperhead Distillery located near Sundridge, they produce unique hand crafted spirits from local organic fruits and grain – think Apple Pie Moonshine, Canadian Maple Cream and Molasses Dark Rum. Their location has a fully stocked retail shop, tasting bar, and outdoor patio in the summer months.

The Almaguin Highlands also boasts an assortment of dining establishments – from casual dining to food trucks, waterfront patios and finer fare. Treat yourself to authentic specialties from The Swiss Country House Restaurant, enjoy live music with your meal at Fork on Main, grab a bite off the trail at Red Canoe Restaurant or DJ’s Bar & Grill, or soak up the lakeside views from the patio at Bernard’s Bistro on the Lake. If you’re looking for a quick bite on the road, don’t miss Curb Your Appetite or Cuba Mia Eatery. To explore other options nearby, click here.

Surrounded by pristine lakes and towering forests, the Villages of Almaguin offer unlimited opportunities for new exploration and new discoveries in Ontario’s cottage country. This season, plan a weekend itinerary rich with adventure, culture and cuisine, or just relax, unwind and enjoy wherever the road may lead you.

To plan your visit to the Villages of Almaguin, click here

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Updated: May 2024