Make a splash in the Sunshine City
Summer is already heating up and now, more than ever, the place to be is Orillia with its many lakes and waterways. Whether you’re on your way to Georgian Bay through the Trent-Severn Waterway or just out for a weekend of boating on lakes Simcoe and Couchiching, the Port of Orillia can accommodate it all with a free public boat launch and 220 transient boat slips offering 50- or 30-amp service.
The state-of-the-art facility offers washrooms with showers, laundry amenities and a boater lounge for paying guests, while fuel, pump-out facilities, LCBO, grocery store are nearby.
In order to keep everyone safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Port is abiding by the rules set out by the province, public health authorities, and municipality. Visitors are required to follow all safety measures, including staying at least two metres apart from others who are not with them.
For those who want a more leisurely experience of Lake Couchiching, A Breath of Fresh Air provides rental opportunities at reasonable half or full day rates for kayaks and standup paddleboards at its waterfront kiosk.
Another recent addition to this area is the fishing pier with a post-and-beam covered structure that offers an optimal area to fish, as well as dock space for canoe and kayak access. It’s an awesome spot for people to relax with a line in the water at no cost.
But, the downtown waterfront is not just about boats. The sandy shoreline is one of two popular beaches on the shores of Lake Couchiching in Orillia.
Couchiching Beach Park in downtown Orillia and Moose Beach at J.B. Tudhope Memorial Park on Atherley Road, both have upgraded playground equipment (also a modern splashpad at Moose Beach), and the three-metre-wide Millennium Trail (part of the Trans Canada Trail) running through them. So, also remember your bikes and rollerblades to enjoy some fun in the fresh air. Cycling, rollerblading, running and walking are all popular on this trail that is routed along the water.
When you need a break, both parks have new changeroom/washroom facilities and food stands, including the beloved French’s Stand, downtown, which celebrated an astounding 100 years in business last year.
When at downtown waterfront, a short walk up Mississauga Street will also provide you with an opportunity to enjoy good food with a choice of outdoor patios at exceptional restaurants. And, let’s not forget about shopping! Many boutiques and stores are open and look forward to serving you.
Whether you’re here for a day or a weekend, there is always something to do at Orillia’s waterfront. Orillia is welcoming visitors, but please abide by the physical distancing and other COVID-19 rules in place.
Good to know:
While both Couchiching Beach Park and Tudhope Park have safe beaches that are extremely popular with the kids, much of Tudhope Park is a quieter sanctuary to walk, relax or picnic at one of many picnic tables. It’s also home to an homage to the music of Gordon Lightfoot with a four-metre-high bronze sculpture and several golden leaves monuments.
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