Whether you’re looking to get away from the city for the day, or are searching for a weekend excursion to fill the memory banks with authentic stories – reconnect by disconnecting in Ontario’s Highlands. Spring is the perfect time to wander our paths and roadways and discover the ultimate escape – with hiking trails along meandering streams, bike paths through groves of evergreens, friendly farmers’ markets in dozens of small towns and villages across the region, the unmistakable scent of sugar bushes cooking up sweet maple treats, and people who are like friends – welcoming you home. Come wander Ontario’s Highlands. It’s a place that’s like nowhere else.
As the warmth of the spring sun beckons you back to Ontario's Highlands, the unmistakably sweet scent wafting through the air confirms you've arrived in a place where maple syrup is celebrated with unimaginable delight. Come celebrate your sugary dreams with us. The Festival of Maples on April 30 overloads your taste buds with everything maple, or step back in time with the 1850's Sugar Bush at O'Hara Mill Homestead, March 19 and 20. If you'd prefer to head straight to the table for some maple syrup delicacies visit Wheelers Maple Syrup Camp or Fortune Farms, grab a fork and spoon, and enjoy the golden nectar as fresh as can be.
You've endured the cool winter long enough. Let the soft touch of a masseuse and the solitude of your mindful thoughts be the spark for you to recharge. A visit to Grail Springs will cleanse your body, provide a sanctuary for your soul, and fill you with fresh energy. If you crave a rejuvenation that allows you to indulge in the fresh outdoors with a peaceful inner spirit, Holness Yoga & Guest Suites is the prescription for you. Or allow yourself to disconnect and feel the weight of your worries wash away at Tay River Reflections, a place where your health and well-being are what matter most.
Spring marks the beginning of longer days, filled with spirit-cleansing sunshine, offering you the perfect excuse to head outside to munch, dance and paddle at outdoor festivals and events. If the smells and sounds of pierogies, sauerkraut and sizzling smoked sausages get your mouth watering, come to Wilno and celebrate Polish history at Kashub Day, May 3. Looking to pick up the pace? The spring run-off means high, fast-flowing, crystal-clear whitewater runs to fuel your own adrenaline. Get your heartbeat racing and embrace the chill of the river at MACKfest (Marmora Area Canoe & Kayak Festival) in Hastings County, April 2 and 3.
For many, the fresh blooms of spring ignite a refreshed outlook on our lives. Let the unique geology of Ontario's Highlands provide that spark, with scents, textures and colours that feed your senses. The collection of small town farmer's markets, from Perth to Haliburton, let you wander far and wide with the wind in your hair, knowing the reward of fresh produce, meats and cheeses are around every corner. Feel the passion behind the sustainable food movement with a visit Abbey Gardens. Get your hands dirty and increase your knowledge with a workshop to make beer, roast coffee beans, or bake bread.
If you've had your head buried deep in your work, hibernating until winter's end, let Ontario's Highlands be the first place you celebrate the arrival of spring. Lace up your hiking boots, snap on a light jacket, and fill your lungs with fresh air at Shaw Woods, a peaceful spot dedicated to responsible environmental stewardship by all. If you'd prefer to burn some energy at a slightly higher speed, grab your "fat tire" and head to Haliburton Forest Centre, where rolling hardwood forests, meandering rivers and wetlands provide a stunning bike ride view that will leave you recharged and ready to head back to the big city life.