• eat
  • shop
  • see
  • go
  • stay
  • daytrip
  • map
  • calendar
  • transport
  • weather
  • currency
  • tofrom

Muskoka Wharf

Weekly Planner: July 2 to 8

Real rodeo excitement comes to Muskoka in the Bracebridge Bullnanza (photo courtesy of Double D Rodeo Productions)

Thrill to the real rodeo action of the Bracebridge Bullnanza, taking place on Thursday at the J.D. Lang Activity Park. The show features bull riding, barrel racing, a performance by the Canadian Cowgirls mounted drill squad and more. Yeehaw!

Meet Muskoka artists and craftspeople—and perhaps purchase some of their beautiful ceramics, paintings, jewellery and more—as the Art in the Heart outdoor market opens for its fifth season this Saturday. Running from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., it takes place along Manitoba Street and Chancery Lane in downtown Huntsville.

Craftsmanship of a different kind can be viewed on Saturday in Gravenhurst—the Muskoka Wharf hosts the region’s 32nd annual Antique and Classic Boat Show, with more than 100 exquisite wooden watercraft displayed in-water.

Should you find yourself salivating in Port Carling, it may be due to the aroma of fresh-cooked seafood. The town hosts its summer Lobsterfest on Saturday, so be sure to book your tickets in advance at the Apothecary Shop (86 Joseph St.). Not a fan of crustaceans? There’s a steak dinner, too.

Perk up your ears to some great music. Muskoka venues host three must-hear concerts this weekend. On Saturday, slide guitar virtuoso Sonny Landreth takes the stage at Peter’s Players, while Canadian rockers Big Wreck reunite at The Kee to Bala. On Sunday, head to Deerhurst Resort, where Trooper will try to live up to its reputation as the country’s “greatest party band.”

Weekly Planner: June 25 to July 1

Celebrate the RMS Segwun's 125th anniversary in Gravenhurst!

Celebrate an icon of the Muskoka lakes—this weekend marks the 125th anniversary of North America’s oldest operating steamship, the RMS Segwun. The festivities begin with a parade from Gravenhurst’s Gull Lake Park to Muskoka Wharf on Friday at 1 p.m., followed by free Kawartha Dairy ice cream, face painting, live performances and a fly-past by the Snowbirds. Saturday features an all-day barbecue, more live music, a fishing tournament and one-hour Segwun cruises by donation.

You might want to skip lunch on Thursday, as Flavours of Muskoka is certain to satisfy all your cravings. From 6 to 9 p.m. at The Rosseau, this annual “amazing graze” offers foodies and oenophiles a chance to sample the region’s culinary bounty as prepared by more than 40 chefs, brewers and winemakers. Best of all, proceeds help support Kaleidoscope Arts in Education programs for children.

If you’re not able to make it to Flavours of Muskoka, there’s another way to support Kaleidoscope Arts in Education—the group’s annual Kaleidoscope Children’s Festival rolls into Minett, with all kinds of family-friendly activities on Saturday at Clevelands House and Sunday at The Rosseau.

The weekend also offers the chance to pick up some lovely items for your home and cottage—or gifts for friends and family who might be hosting you—as the Bala Craft and Gift Fair sets up shop Saturday and Sunday at the Bala Community Centre. If you prefer vintage to contemporary wares, you’re in luck! The Bala Antique Show shares space with the craft fair.

Have a rip-roarin’, bronco-bustin’ good time at the Burk’s Falls Rodeo rustles up some old west excitement on Saturday and Sunday. This Ontario Rodeo Association–sanctioned event features bull riding, steer wrestling, barrel racing and much more.

Wear your red and white all Sunday long—it’s Canada Day, and communities throughout the region are offering all sorts of patriotic fun. Parry Sound, in particular, offers a full day of fun with a pancake breakfast, entertainment and fireworks at the town dock. Or if you find yourself in Huntsville, head over to Muskoka Heritage Place for its strawberry social, then watch the evening fireworks display over Hunter’s Bay.

The Muskoka Seven: Things To Do from May 23 to 29, 2011

Visit the Muskoka Boat and Heritage Centre at Muskoka Wharf

1. Spend a sunny day exploring the Muskoka Wharf in Gravenhurst. The waterfront village boasts a handful of shops and restaurants, a lovely lakeside boardwalk, and the Muskoka Boat and Heritage Centre.

2. If on-water activities aren’t your cup of tea, consider buying a road or mountain bike and get pedalling around the Muskoka region. Ecclestone Cycle in Bracebridge and The Bike Shop in Gravenhurst are among the area’s respected purveyors. (more…)

Weekend Roundup: May 28 to 30

The Muskoka region melds the glory of nature with modern convenience and amenities. Experience it all this weekend!

Saturday: Spend time at Muskoka Wharf

Friday, May 28
On your way north, stop in at Bayfield Mall to stock up on necessities. More than 70 stores—including Winners, Canadian Tire, Price Chopper and Pharma Plus—help ensure you’re prepared for any situation.

Take in stunning greens, tall trees and expansive Muskokan vistas while challenging yourself to a round of golf at North Granite Ridge.

Saturday, May 29
Head to Muskoka Wharf in Gravenhurst to stroll along the boardwalk, investigate the the Muskoka Boat and Heritage Centre or indulge in dining and shopping. Kids can frolic in the playground and water-play area.

Enjoy modern artists’ interpretations of works by the Group of Seven and Tom Thompson—more than 40 pieces are displayed at Huntsville’s Group of Seven Outdoor Gallery.

Sunday, May 30
View Ontario wildlife at indoor facilities and while venturing across 50 acres of walking trails. The Muskoka Wildlife Centre is an interactive learning park for all ages where furry woodland creatures make for a memorable trip.

Browse the shelves of The Bookcase, an independent bookstore housed in a Huntsville historic building, and pick up a new tome or an old favourite to read on a quiet cottage-country evening.

Door to Dock

Do it all from the water this boating season—dine, shop, sightsee and more. Landlubbers need not apply. By Meaghan Lamb

The Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts

PARRY SOUND
The summer population quadruples in this town on the eastern shore of Georgian Bay. Culture-seeking boaters can cruise into the world’s deepest natural freshwater port and hop ashore to the Charles W. Stockey Centre for the Performing Arts, while the Bobby Orr Hall of Fame celebrates the region’s favourite hockey legend.

HUNTSVILLE
See outdoor murals inspired by Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven in the town that plays host to the 2010 G8 Summit. Scout out The Finds, Wooden Penny and Nutty Chocolatier. Style the whole family at Big Bear Outfitters (64 Main St. E., 705-788-1351), The Village Shop or Muskoka Jewellery Design.

BOATING FOR BEGINNERS
Take a few paddling lessons and you’ll be skimming the lakes in no time.
>> White Squall is the place for kayak touring. Take both beginner- and advanced-level classes starting at $60 for two and a half hours, or request a private session.
>> Algonquin Outfitters boasts daily canoe and kayak programs at its Huntsville location situated on the water’s edge.

Try a White Squall paddling adventure

BRACEBRIDGE
Water has been an integral part of the area’s history with the North Falls acting as a source of hydraulic power. Tie up at Bracebridge Bay Park in the heart of downtown and get fashionable at Tiggs Clothiers, have Christmas in July at The Gingerbread House and be spoiled for choice selecting cupcakes at Sweet Aroma. For leisurely pursuits, visit Applause! Toy Store, Readers World and the Norwood Theatre (106 Manitoba St., 705-645-2333).

ROSSEAU
Sing your heart out while coming into the Rosseau wharf as holidaymakers did when arriving on the steamships a century ago. Peruse The Craft Room Rosseau or the Farmers’ Market (at Short Street) on Fridays.

FULL SERVICE
>> Port Sandfield Marina offers watercraft rentals, fuel, repairs, servicing and detailing on-site, as well as storage. Shop the Boathouse for clothing, footwear and boating accessories or grab a coffee or ice cream.
>> Pride Marine Group has four marinas under their umbrella here—Pride of Muskoka, Pride of Muskoka West, Pride of Lake of Bays and Pride of Rosseau—each of which provide service seven days a week, gas, as well as new and used boat sales.
>> Skeleton Lake Marina sells new and used boats as well as servicing and repairing many styles of boats. No boat? Rent one and have it delivered to your lake.

Steamships glide through Port Carling

PORT CARLING
Cruise through the locks from lakes Muskoka to Rosseau where you’ll find pleasant respite at the “Hub of the Lakes.” Dock at Turtle Jack’s Muskoka Grill (123 Medora St., 705-765-1753) for a lunch of burgers, salads, beer-battered fish and chips and more. Grab the necessities from Tommy Bahama before rejoining the water world.

MUSKOKA WHARF
The $170 million rebirth of this wharf in Gravenhurst meanders the length of the waterfront. Find docks, marinas, dining, boutiques, lodging, heritage facilities and the homeport of the Muskoka steamships. Berth your own vessel and promenade along the boardwalk.

Weekend Roundup, August 21 to 23

Your Muskoka weekend itinerary is here with lots to see and do. Saturday, in particular, looks like a doozy!

Explore the geology of the Canadian Shield at Killbear Provincial Park (photo by John Vetterli).

Explore the geology of Killbear Provincial Park (photo by John Vetterli).

Friday, August 21
Discover patches of exposed bedrock at Killbear Provincial Park, a boreal oasis located on the southern edge of the Canadian Shield.

Purchase authentic antique Canadiana at the 26th annual Bracebridge Antique Show & Sale from a selection of furniture, jewellery, coins, china, pressed glass, paper, dolls, quilts and more.

Saturday, August 22
Lace up your running shoes, unfold your map and pocket your compass for Muskoka’s First Annual Amazing Race! Over the course of the day, follow clues and test your skills to take you on a challenging trail from Gravenhurst leading to Huntsville.

Hike to the Haliburton Highlands for The Forest Festival in—where else?—the forest. As the sun dips below Bone Lake, listen as former Canadian Brass trumpeter Stuart Laughton lead the Forest Festival Brass in an outdoors-themed concert.

Sunday, August 23
Sip Earl Grey and nibble scones spread with jam and Devonshire cream at Blue Willow Tea Shop’s traditional high tea. What better a way to enjoy the view of the Muskoka Wharf?

At the Muskoka Lakes Museum in Port Carling, take in the region’s wildlife and people through the lens of local photographer Andy Zeltkalns.