- Location: In Ontario in Canada
- Attraction Type: Nature Park
- Significance: A transition of coniferous and deciduous forests with numerous water bodies
- Best Time to Visit: June to September
- Visiting Hours: Daytime
- How to Reach: By Highway 60 from Ottawa
- Nearest International Airport: Ottawa
Algonquin Provincial Park is an ethereal place to be in Canada. Close to Toronto and Ottawa, this nature park forms a transition between the coniferous forests of the north and deciduous forests of the south. With more than 1200 km of rivers and streams, and over 2400 lakes, this maple forest is a dreamland. Its brilliant display of multi-colored foliage particularly in autumn is ‘unbelievable’. Canada Algonquin Provincial Park with its rocky ridges, maple hills and multiple water bodies is best explored on foot or canoes. Its cliffs, beaver ponds, spruce bogs, campgrounds, and road edges make this park a naturalist’s heaven. Its flora comprising more than a thousand species of fungi and an additional thousand species of plants is superlative. Maples of ‘red’, ‘silver’, ‘mountain’, ‘sugar’, and ‘striped’ varieties, oak, American elm, spruce, balsam fir, pines, cedars, birch, ash, and cherry are the trees to be discovered here. Animal life is equally stunning with shrews, beavers, weasels, otter, mink, skunk, raccoon, lynx, chipmunk, fox, wolf, and moose. Bird watchers would be delighted to view broad-winged hawk, ruby-throated humming bird, Downy woodpecker, herring gull, and rose-beaked grosbeak.
Activities in Algonquin Provincial Park
Summer time from June to September is the best period to explore this vast national park. Hiking is engrossing in Canada Algonquin Provincial Park. There are around fourteen trails, varying from easy to strenuous, mostly beginning from Highway 60 Corridor. A local guide along the trails is of great assistance. Whiskey Rapids Trail of about 2 km is of moderate nature and takes approximately 90 minutes. Hardwood Lookout Trail of about 1 km is another moderate but picturesque trail through hardwood forests leading to Smoke Lake. Mizzy Lake Trail is almost a full day hiking tour of at least four hours. Centennial Ridges Trail of 10 km is tough but rewarding. This trail along two high mountain ridges offers the most picturesque view of this nature park. Children might attempt the Spruce Bog Broadwalk easy trail of about 1Â½ km. This path is particularly attractive for bird watchers.
As there are extensive water bodies in the park, swimming, canoeing and fishing are thrilling activities to tempt you. Trout fishing is very encouraging for anglers as concentration of trout in the lakes and rivers is impressive. The vast water bodies ensure endless opportunities for swimming. Similar to walking trails, there are a number of canoe routes in the streams and lakes of Algonquin Park of varying degrees of difficulty. Boating is restricted to a few lakes like La Muir, Tepee, Cedar, Kingscote, and Radiant.
Accommodation and Dining
Camping is a fascination in the campgrounds of Algonquin Provincial Park. Kearney Lake Campground, Coon Lake Campground, Canisbay Lake Campground, Mew Lake Campground, and Lake of Two Rivers Campground are among the famous camping locations. Many of these campgrounds have laundry and flush toilet facilities. Physically challenged travelers can also accommodate themselves in some of these campgrounds. Many of these campsites have electrical hookups. The use of radios and carrying of dogs is restricted in many of these campsites.
Apart from camps, you might accommodate yourself in yurts, cottages and cabins. Yurts are available in MacGregor Point, Pinery, Algonquin, Silent Lake, Killarney, Quetico, Bronte Creek, Pancake Bay and Bon Echo. You might put up in cottages in Awenda, Balsam Lake, Sandbanks Jacques, and Sturgeon Bay. Cabin accommodations might be availed in Sleeping Giant, Bon Echo, and Bonnechere.
To meet your gastronomic demands drop in at Killarney Lodge, Arowhon Pines, Two Rivers Store, Bartlett Lodge, Sunday Creek Cafíé, and The Portage Store all inside Algonquin Park. Outside the park, Fortune’s Madawaska Valley Inn, Ash Grove Inn, The Mad Musher, Spectacle Lake Lodge, and Algonquin Lakeside Inn are the notable eateries.