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Southern Georgian Bay Tours

• A WorldWeb.com Travel Guide for Southern Georgian Bay, Ontario.
Whether it is under the warmth of summer’s sun or on top of the glistening white back of winter’s snow, Southern Georgian Bay visitors will find themselves faced with an abundance of activities and adventures to choose from. Located just over an hour north of Toronto, Ontario, this popular holiday destination offers something for people of all ages—from expanding the mind, resting and refreshing the body or seeking the rush of adrenaline.

SUMMER ACTIVITIES & ADVENTURES

A summer paradise, Southern Georgian Bay offers numerous summer activities that make the most of the area's abundant sunshine, sand and water. With plentiful bodies of water in the area such as Georgian Bay, Lake Simcoe and Lake Couchiching, as well as several rivers, it is little wonder that both residents and visitors alike seek out the region's many water activities.

On The Water
Boat tours provide an excellent means of sightseeing for holidaymakers young and old. These tours vary from tours that sail the 30,000 Islands to evening dinner cruises aboard a paddle wheeler.

Fishing trips are also popular and are available in communities such as Barrie, Bradford, Collingwood, Lafontaine, Midland, Orillia and Wasaga Beach. Ranging from part- to full-day excursions, these tours seek out steelhead, lake trout, salmon, bass, walleye and pike and can include guide services, boats and equipment.

Visitors wishing to explore at their own pace can paddle the lakes by kayak or on a canoe tour. Scuba diving provides travellers with an underwater view of the area’s rich history such as the J.C. Morrison Wreckage, located in Lake Simcoe's Kempenfelt Bay. The young and adventurous can try other popular water activities such as kite boarding, wakeboarding and beach volleyball.

On The Greens
Visitors who prefer to spend their summers on lush green fairways will find numerous golf courses in the area. Golfers can play a variety of courses that range from family run nine-hole golf courses to popular, semi-private golf and country clubs such as the Highlands and Valley Courses, which are part of Horseshoe Resort just outside of Barrie. This golf course features a 4-ha (10-acre) driving range, Golf Academy, pro shop and a 743-sq m ( 8,000-sq ft) clubhouse.

Adrenaline Rushes
Adrenaline junkies and thrill seekers will also find a variety of activities and adventures to satisfy their cravings for a rush. On the ground cyclists can join a bicycle tour for an active and guided experience or head to one of the mountain bike parks and trails, such as Hardwood Ski and Bike. Located outside of Oro Station, this bike park features feature 54 km (34 mi) of single track and 27 km (17 mi) of double track trails that are designed for riders of all ages and abilities.

Off the ground and in the tree tops are adventures such as the aerial playground Treetop Trekking that includes tree climbing, aerial courses, a climbing wall, ziplines, night climbs and kids courses. Visitors looking to get even further off the ground will find activities such as skydiving and airplane tours.

WINTER EXPERIENCES

While clothing and gear must be swapped for the coming of snow, the excitement and energy of the area continues with the changing of the seasons from warm to cold. Armed with winter-worthy parkas and the latest snow equipment, visitors can enjoy a variety of popular winter sports.

On The Slopes
The region is home to a number of ski hills and resorts in the Barrie and Collingwood areas including the most popular and well know resort, Blue Mountain. The hill features the largest vertical in the province at 220 m (720 ft) and has great snow coverage provided by Canada's largest snow-making system. With over 30 trails serviced by more than a dozen lifts, four of which are high speed, six-person chairs, skiers will spend more of their days skiing and less time in lines. Come dark, over 20 trails and 10 lifts are kept lit to provide ample night skiing opportunities. Freestyle opportunities also abound with several freestyle zones including a terrain park with everything to beginner rails to super-pipes.

On Snowy Trails
For winter enthusiasts looking to enjoy a variety of terrain, the region offers numerous cross-country ski and snowshoe trails in centres such as Wasaga Beach, Midhurst, Midland, Oro Station and Ravenna. Located mainly in local parks and protected, these trails travel over geography that includes wetlands, marshes, sand dunes and raised ridges as well as hardwood and pine forests, and often feature a variety of facilities including rentals and heated washrooms and change rooms. Trail difficulty varies from beginner to expert with most trails well marked and mapped. Offering some of the most challenging track in the area, the Blueberry Trails Nordic Centre provides visitors with 30 km (19 mi) of groomed and track set trails, ski and snowshoe rentals, washrooms, warm-up shelters and a snack bar.

Visitors can enjoy the rugged winter beauty of the area while riding over the snow on transportation powered by motor or beast in Phelpston, Shanty Bay, Elmvale and Orangeville. An exciting combination of power, speed and scenery, snowmobile tours provide visitors with the opportunity to explore the region while experiencing the exhilaration of riding a snowmobile.

While speeds may be slower, cruising along trails riding behind or mushing on a dog sled is no less invigorating. Dog sled tours offered by tour companies, such as Windrift Kennels in Moonstone, allow travellers the chance to interact with the sled dogs and learn the art of mushing. Couples and families wishing to slow the pace down even farther can take pleasure in the timeless pastime of a horse-drawn sleigh ride through a wintry, white landscape.

CULTURAL & SPECIALTY TOURS

Tours For All Interests
While visiting Southern Georgian Bay, travellers can expand their horizons while on a cultural or agricultural tour in centres such as Mansfield, Clarksburg, Creemore, Elmvale and Tottenham. Holidaymakers can choose from several types of enriching outings that vary from artisan tours and photography tours to local brewery tours such as Creemore Springs Brewery. Visitors can also explore local farms and orchards and whether visiting a guest ranch or a pick-your-own property, orchard and farm tours offer young and old the chance to reconnect with a simpler way of life.

Family Fun
Travellers looking for an evening of fun or to pass a couple of hours will find plenty of urban activities to pass the time including climbing walls, ziplines, mini-golf, go-karting, laser tag and paintball, bowling and billiards.

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