The title of Ontario's best beach
is hotly contested, with varying preferences when it comes to human noise, town amenities, accessibility, colour of water and more. However, for our part, we believe Port Burwell on Lake Erie checks all our boxes, with a long, wide sandy strip allowing for a feeling of having a little space to yourself rather than being surrounded by crowds. Although it is more remote than some in-town beach options, and therefore lacking amenities such as restaurants and shops, Port Burwell offers a quiet sanctuary to enjoy and sun and waves.
So if you're planning a day or weekend escape to Port Burwell Provincial Park, what should you do while you're in the area? There are a few great outdoorsy and casual options - venues that won't be put off by a little sand on your feet.
For adult-only trips, consider the Burning Kiln Winery
is found in perhaps a surprising area for a sommelier experience. Enjoy tasting the wine with a meal at the winery's own restaurant. Blueberry Hill Estates
is another nearby winery with fruit and grape varieties on a working blueberry farm, which is open for tours.
For ornathologists, it doesn't get much better than Long Point Bird Observatory. Over 400 species have been spotted on the trails here, including falcons, eagles and owls. Backus Woods is another local spot for birders, with 12 km of stunning trails (open year round).
If you're looking for some time on the water, try Long Point Boat Tours, which take you on half- and full-day nature and bird explorations around Long Point - which benefits from being on a migratory bird route.
Of course, any trip to this area would be incomplete without a trip to Long Point Eco-Adventures
. There's the observatory, which takes advantage of its location in one of the darkest spots in the province
; there's zip lining; there's mountain biking; there's zodiac boat tours, and much more. If you're looking to stay overnight in the area, you can't do better than the amazing Glamping accommodations here. These swanky suites combine the best of camping - with a prime location in nature - and the indoors - with mini-fridges, beds, a shower, and hardwood floors.
So if you're heading to the beach this summer, think about staking out your own spot at Port Burwell and taking advantage of all the area has to offer.