Let’s bring to light all the things to do in the Muskoka region, aka Ontario’s Cottage Industry, a region home to some of the finest lakes; Lake Muskoka for one, Algonquin Park, Cross Country Skiing, Muskoka Maple Festival, serene, quaint towns, art galleries, breweries.
Did you know Muskoka aka cottage heaven or cottage country has 1,600 lakes?
The significant towns are Gravenhurst, Bracebridge, Georgian Bay, Huntsville and Baysville.
Approximately, a 3-hour/140-miles drive from Toronto. Trust me, things to do in Muskoka have no bounds. Muskoka is the perfect destination for a weekend getaway whether you are a bachelor, committed, married, or have a family, even more so satisfactory for the nature lovers who have a laid-back attitude; wanderlust.
Why is Muskoka famous?
1. Cross-Country Skiing:
Muskoka is Ontario’s one of the finest beauty spots for Cross Country Skiing. It is a terrific playground for winter sports such as water skiing or snowboarding, romantic sleigh rides at the Equine Center, snow tubing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, ice fishing, and 70 km of impeccable Hiking Trails, but don’t forget to put your snowshoes on!
The Muskoka Ski Club has all the amenities combining the family feel of a private Club with the exciting, fast-paced atmosphere of public recreation.
As for non-skiers, they can seek out from exploring Christmas markets to relaxing in a thermal bath. One of my favourite things to do in Muskoka in a ski resort is simply snuggling up in front of a warm fire with a book and a hot chocolate; one of the most romantic things you could do with your precious one! SWS provides private, customized water ski and wakeboard clinics.
2. Lake Muskoka
Lake Muskoka Muskoka is a cottage country, the perfect little getaway from all the worldly worries and to let your hair down. It’s a quaint lake with a stunning view of the surrounding area, eye-catching shorelines, and many cruise opportunities. One of the epic things to do in Muskoka is to go on a Sunset cruise on Lake Muskoka.
3. Arrowhead Provincial Park
Well known for its large, private campsites, hiking trails, and sandy beaches in the summer months. When you’re heading out on a trail in the spring to check out the spring blooms, make sure you stay on designated trails when you are exploring. Taking off from designated trails could damage the habitats of many incredibly beautiful plants including the Trillium, Ontario’s official flower.
Here’s an unsung fact, this park was the site of the 2013 Canadian Masters Cross-Country Ski Championships.
Local Tip: Even though you’re surrounded by an intimate setting remember that you’re gonna camp in a Bear Country. Keeping your campsite free of wildlife attractants such as dog food dishes, barbecues, camp stoves, dirty dishes, garbage and recycling, toiletries, and bird feeders is of utmost importance. Store all the wildlife attractants in your vehicle when not on the site, or when you’ve gone to bed in the evenings.
4. Algonquin Park
The best day trip from Muskoka in summer and autumn is to Algonquin Park. One of the largest and certainly the first provincial park in Ontario is located amid the territory, between the Ottawa River and the Georgian Bay. One of the unprecedented things to do in Muskoka would be for you to get to know this serene yet daring place.
It has a voluptuous outdoor playground which offers some of the most breathtaking, tranquil and intriguing experiences that involve canoeing; canoe excursions or lodge-based trips with perks such as torch-lit ice skating, full-moon canoe paddles, and lake trout cooked over an open flame.
Don’t forget to rent your equipment from Algonquin Outfitters – they will provide you with all the gear you need ranging from snowshoes to camping and canoeing gear, bikes and accessories. There, you can canoe and camp and hike and all things outdoors.
Prepare yourself to discover the top things to do in Muskoka for a day!
1. Seven Outdoor Gallery
This free and open-air gallery is a phenomenal way to show off the amazing artwork of Canada’s famous artists. Even those not interested in art or visiting art galleries/museums, have no choice but become familiar with the paintings. Grab your lunch, and take a walking tour around this Huntsville downtown area. This outdoor gallery gives you an insight into the things to do in Muskoka. Visit here for a great educational and inspirational experience!
2. Eclipse Night Walk
An interactive walk through the forest that incorporates sound and light that feels magical from the beginning to the end. A terrific setting for you and your loved one! Eclipse “Walk with Light” is an immersive, eccentric and artistic sound to light forest night walk at the Rotary Village Station inside Muskoka Heritage Place in Huntsville, Ontario.
Participants follow a circular route of light, encountering unique heritage buildings and lit soundscapes related to the seasons and the day and moon cycles. There will be music, spoken phrases, and dozens of interactive lights that will respond to sounds made by guests.
3. Let’s Take You Back to The Past
Muskoka Heritage Place is home to Muskoka Museum, Muskoka Pioneer Village, Rotary Village Station and Portage Flyer Train. One of the definite things to do in Muskoka is to check out the Portage Flyer steam train – a favourite for locals and guests alike. There is lots of participation for every age group be it notorious kiddos, parents, or grandparents after all who doesn’t love quality time with fam, right?
Muskoka Heritage Place offers not only one but two museums where guests can find out about Muskoka’s past. The Muskoka Museum takes visitors on a chronological journey through the region’s past Right next door, the Steam Museum is located within a typical train station of the 1920s.
One of the most significant things to do in Muskoka for guests is they can browse exhibits featuring the area’s rich legacy of steamships and locomotives. The Steam Museum is an amazing find, so make sure you carve out some time to admire the legacy of train travel in Muskoka.
4. Watch a Movie While Stargazing
Wanna do a summer night, right? Venture into Muskoka Drive-In, select your feature screen, and load up on popcorn, candy and mosquito repellant. Enjoy the summer movie night along with the night sky!
5. Take a Lovely Flight Over the Lakes
Take an aerial tour of Muskoka to sit back and take the trip as you pass by historical landmarks and natural landscapes. Get your tickets and fly over in one of the many things to do in Muskoka. I’d suggest Georgian Bay Airways’ or Cottage Air Inc.‘s private charter flights.
6. Hit Balls on The Golf Course
From a picture-perfect 9-hole course to challenging 18-hole courses carved out of the Canadian shield, Muskoka golf has something for all skill levels. While you’re at it, you might want to check in at Muskoka Bay Golf Course vacation rentals.
7. Blend In, Eat Local
Get Fresh Produce from the Farmer’s Market in Rosseau and Bala. They have all the essential services for fresh produce, including two traditional butchers and delis with Welsh and international products. If you’re looking to get around via car? This is one of the best day trips you could ever endure while you’re driving up to #Muskoka.
8. Playtime with Your Furry Friend
Go to the North Ridge Ranch in Huntsville for some cute and casual dog sledging or the Wilderness Adventures in Algonquin Park for a serious overnight adventure. It’s such a delightful experience; you get to bond with so many doggos; also one of the special things to do in Muskoka!
9. Lake Muskoka Year Round Cottage
Enjoy this bright ambient concept cottage in Walker’s Point on Lake Muskoka. Comprising 4 bedrooms with a view of the lake from the kitchen, dining room, Master bedroom, and living room with over 200 feet of waterfront for you to enjoy!
A large deck crosses the front of the cottage, where you can relax and enjoy meals or watch children play. A traditional gazebo is situated near the water for your enjoyment. And a play centre, a swing set, and a horseshoe pit along the far side of the cottage.
10. Sugarbush Hill Maple Farm
Sugarbush Hill is a “State Of The Art” maple sugaring operation near the Town of Huntsville. Tom and his wife Eva will show you the exhibit on maple syrup making if you’re in Muskoka around the sugaring seasons, in March and April.
11. Muskoka Maple Trail
The most Canadian culinary trail, the Muskoka Maple Trail, features stops across #Muskoka that have infused locally harvested maple syrup into their culinary offerings. Discover the incredible depth of Canada’s most beloved natural product on the Muskoka Maple Trail, from maple drizzled waffles to smokey-maple ribs.
12. Santa’s Village
Things to do in Muskoka seem to know no bounds. Santa’s Village – Muskoka’s Theme Park – has been a family tradition in Muskoka for over 60 years! It is an ideal family vacation with something for everyone. With kids’ rides and coasters, live entertainers, a splash pad, petting zoos, games, souvenirs, and of course, that magical visit with Santa Claus, this unique amusement park has it all.
13. Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh & Muskoka Lakes Winery
It is one of my favourite things to do in Muskoka because it combines wine tasting with the region’s beautiful scenery. If you’re looking for a relaxing trip with friends or family, a cranberry marsh visit should do the trick. Discover the cranberries that make this area unique!
Taste and learn as you follow cranberries on a guided journey from peat bog to award-winning wine.
Other ‘must dos’ include wine tasting, wine & cheese on the scenic patio, and browsing for local goodies in the one-of-a-kind wine & gift shop.
Hiking and snowshoe trails, GPS and kids’ adventures, and fall harvest activities will be your favourite things to do while you’re in #Muskoka.
14. Bala Cranberry Festival
Another reason to visit Muskoka in the fall – is the Bala Cranberry Festival. The weekend after Thanksgiving! One of the things to do in Muskoka is to be a part of the Bala Cranberry Festival.
Harvest activities at the Farm & Winery include Wagon Tours, Wine Tasting, Cranberry Plunge, Harvesting (happening all weekend), Window Shop from the Wine and Gift store, and fresh Ontario Cranberries, all in beautiful Bala, #Muskoka.
While you’re in Bala, don’t forget to checkout Bala Falls; falls occur where water from Bala Bay on Lake Muskoka drains to the Moon River and Bala’s Museum with Memories of Lucy Maud Montgomery, a family-owned museum that offers costumes and free freckles for children as well as numerous photo opportunities out of the Anne of Green Gables stories.
15. Muskoka Zip Lines & Aerial Park
Looking for enthralling outdoor activities? Take fun things to do in Muskoka to new heights and get your adrenaline pumped up at Muskoka, which features two aerial parks loaded with aerial games and zip line courses. Ascend on the trees in the fresh air away from the city and its sweltering mess!
Make sure you try the zip line courses and experience the amazing rush as you zip from tree to tree through the beautiful forests. Bring your friends, family, and your beloved to this aerial park; this high-altitude voyage is tremendous for anyone looking for outdoor activities.
16. Chasing Waterfalls
One of many unrivalled things to do in Muskoka is to chase waterfalls – a fun way to spend an afternoon getting Instagram-worthy prolific pictures. It is significant to note the danger that subsides near waterfalls. Always be careful near waterfalls, as rocks can be greasy, and a fall could be fatal.
These falls are located in the Downtown area at The Silver Bridge and are one of the trademark sights of the community. It evacuates the water of the North Branch of the Muskoka River to the bottom of Bracebridge Bay. Muskoka is well thought of for its magnificent waterfalls sculpted into the granite rock of the Canadian Shield.
Here’s a list of Waterfalls in Muskoka
- Bala Falls
- Minnehaha Falls
- Ragged Falls
- Oxtongue Rapids
- Hatchery Falls
- Wilson’s Falls, Bracebridge
- Muskoka Falls
- Stubb’s Falls
17. Laurentian Chairs
There’s an interactive Google map showing you where you can find all 10 of the Muskoka chairs strategically placed at the best views Muskoka has to offer. This one is for hike lovers, as it’ll take a few days to cross off every chair on the list! Add them to your list of things to do in Muskoka!
Bring along your family to experience the fall colours. After a day of adventure and sporting activities, often the best thing to do is relax dockside in one of the comfortable Muskoka chairs!
18. Hook, line, and Sinker
With so many lakes to choose from, Muskoka is the perfect destination for any fishing enthusiast. Muskoka is the destination for the Walleye and Northern Pike fishing tournaments.
19. It’s Never Too Cold to Go Ice Skating
One of the most unique things to do in Muskoka is to visit Muskoka Lakes Farm for Night Skating in Bala, Port Sydney Beach, or Bracebridge Bay Park & Beach to watch the fireworks on Canada Day. Explore local restaurants, gaze at the twinkling stars in the night sky.
20. Mountain Biking
Mountain bikers can enjoy up to 19km of trails during the spring, fall, and summer. The area features attractive wooded areas, a variety of flora, fauna, and bird sanctuaries. For Mountain biking, I recommend going up Santa’s Village Road and Golden Beach Road, which runs parallel to the Muskoka river.
21. Georgian Bay
With over 30,000 islands nestled here, Georgian Bay is the world’s largest freshwater archipelago (a stretch of water containing many islands), and it’s known internationally as a genuinely unique place on the planet.
Is Muskoka worth visiting?
I could go on about the things to do in Muskoka; when it comes to the equivalent of elite summer weekend destinations in Toronto, Muskoka is the first pick. The life of luxury in Muskoka hangs around three lakes: Lake Muskoka, Lake Rosseau, and Lake Joseph.
Celebrities such as Tom Hanks, Kate Hudson, Justin Bieber, and others are a few prominent names who own or rent homes in Muskoka.
The natural beauty of the area’s lakes, rivers, forests, and rock formations has made it popular as a place to go for an active and relaxing vacation.
Suggested Read: Arrowhead Provincial Park: 17 Cool And Exiting Things To Explore