Waterfront Regeneration Trust
Winding along the Great Lakes and linking scenic countryside, quaint towns and big cities, Ontario's Waterfront Trail is a 1,400-kilometre-long celebration of nature and culture.
The trail stretched from Niagara-on-the-Lake along Lake Eerie, Lake Ontario and the St Lawrence River, until it finally ends on the Quebec border.
The trail includes walks through 41 communities, 182 parks and nature areas, 152 arts and culture attractions, and 170 marinas and yacht clubs. And depending on the time of year, trail-trekkers may find themselves walking through any of 57 different waterfront festivals.
A prize jewel to Ontario residents and a sight to behold to curious visitors, the trail showcases some of the best scenery and culture that the province has to offer, providing both day-long recreation and summer-long adventures alike.
If you are concerned about hard walking, there is a little bit. However, only 30 per cent of the trail is off-road, while the other 70 per cent is made up of residential streets or paved road shoulders.
There are numerous tour groups that make the trek along the Waterfront Trail, but there are also plenty of maps available for those who want to do it alone.
Originally, the trail only spanned from Hamilton to Trenton. However, since its opening in 1995, the communities all along the Great Lakes and the St Lawrence River have been working to fund the project to connect their communities together through the expansive Waterfront Trail. Even now, the Waterfront Regeneration Trust accepts donations to help maintain and expand it.
Attractions along the trail include Toronto’s CN Tower with its panoramic scenic views of the city. However, if Toronto is simply too huge to explore, why not try something smaller like the quaint Port Hope? This historic small town displays the best of modern culture while still managing to preserve its beautiful landscape and architecture. And for hikers who need a pit stop, check out the apple-themed treats in Apple County, Comanche.
Whether it’s living it up in the big cities or experiencing the marvel of nature in the back country, Ontario's Waterfront Trail truly is a wonder for any hiking enthusiast, leisurely wanderer or cyclist. While it seems like a daunting task, there is so much to see and do that all that walking or biking will be well worth it when you turn a corner and the next leg of your trip opens up a whole new adventure.