As the better weather approaches, we are all looking for places to explore outdoors. There is plenty of natural beauty to discover throughout Ontario, especially in our areas of service. There are so many unique spots you can enjoy, but we have picked a few must-visit spots in Southern Georgian Bay that will highlight your spring and summer.
Sunset Point Park
Sunset Point Park is an iconic Collingwood waterfront location that holds up to its name. This park is the ideal spot to enjoy fresh air from the Nottawasaga Bay breezes as well as unobstructed views of the perfect sunset. With so much green space, this is a great spot for a leisurely walk or a picnic on a sunny day. Sunset Point Park is a beloved area in Collingwood because it showcases not only the area’s beauty, but also some of the community’s history. While standing on the west side of the park, you can see the old Collingwood grain elevators to your left, and to your right lies an inukshuk rock formation that speaks to the area’s long-lasting history.
When you think of Collingwood, the terminals are probably the first image to come to mind. This structure can be seen for miles around Collingwood and symbolizes the twin engines of commerce in the early 1900’s, agriculture and shipping. Grain service was the main production here, but had stopped in 1993, ending 64 years of operation for the cement elevator and 123 years of grain trade in Collingwood. Though, these terminals still hold a huge place in Collingwood. The terminals, now owned by the Town of Collingwood, continue as a landmark and will be an important part of the future redevelopment of Collingwood Harbour.
Spirit Rock Conservation Area
Spirit Rock Conservation Area draws people from afar for its local history and remarkable view of Colpoy’s Bay. It amasses over 87 hectares, and the site features the historical home of Alexander McNeill, a Federal member of Parliament from 1881-1901. It was a 17 room mansion covered with oriental carvings, ancient weapons, tapestries and book-lined walls. Known as the McNeill Estate, there are many things to see – an impressive view from the top of the Niagara Escarpment, a spiral staircase to the water’s edge, and access to the Bruce Trail. This is definitely the perfect spot to explore all of the tiny details that make up this historic spot.
The lighthouse was constructed in the mid 1800s, and is one of the most historic structures of the Great Lakes. Visible from the shores of Collingwood, the island itself is called Nottawasaga Island. The locals call it Lighthouse Island. This limestone lighthouse soars 86 feet high and serves as one of the few reminders of the bold and diverse marine heritage of the area. The light used to be a guide for mariners around Georgian Bay. It has been maintained by 13 men and their families over 124 years of operation, and the island is now home to hundreds of nesting migratory birds. If you’re out on the water this summer, take a paddle past this glorious island to take in some of Collingwood’s rich history.
In 1845, Peter Inglis purchased a small existing grist mill built two years previously by a Mr. Boyd, and 300 acres of deeded Crown land. On this land, you can find Inglis Falls, known as one of the best waterfalls in the area and is the most visited anytime of year! As one of three waterfalls that surround the City of Owen Sound, Inglis Falls is the best known and most visited. Situated in the heart of the 200-hectare Inglis Falls Conservation Area, Inglis Falls is an 18 metre high cascade, created by the Sydenham River meeting the edge of the Niagara Escarpment. On a clear day you can see down the valley into the City of Owen Sound and out to the Owen Sound harbour.