Nestled among a serene rural landscape, home to two museums, and boasting a simpler life is a Village-on-the-River: Coldwater.
Located along the Simcoe County Bike Loop Trail and surrounded by quiet country roads, the village has become a popular destination for cyclists looking to take a break and enjoy a lunch or pick up supplies. In the fall the Coldwater river that flows into Georgian Bay attracts many anglers to its salmon and trout rich waters.
But the village has far more to offer.
Some say its charm lies in the historic buildings.
“These pieces of history give you an authentic old town Ontario experience,” says Suzy Burtenshaw, founder of the Steampunk Festival.
Another allure is the eclectic mix of stores downtown.
“We have niche businesses you don’t find in every community,” says Stephanie Kennedy, who owns Copperpot Nuts, a nut roastery.
Local business owners take pride in running their businesses themselves.
And they love to share a piece of the town’s history with visitors, so your shopping isn’t the only piece of Coldwater you will take back.
Washago: Cute and Cozy
Washago, a hamlet at the north end of Lake Couchiching, invites you to soak up the sun, go camping, take a dip in the lake, or walk down the main street as part of the village family.
“It’s kind of cute and quaint, but in summer it’s bustling and busy,” says Ryan McLean, owner of Canoe Fresh Food Market.
On summer weekends, the hubbub comes from the pop-up farmers’ market.
As you stroll the main street after buying fresh produce and fruit, check out art by local artists that adorns the poles. You can talk about it as you enjoy a leisurely meal at a locally owned restaurant such as R Cottage.
“It’s a small quaint village that everybody loves,” says Phil Hooper, owner of Hooper’s, a main street coffee house and gift store. “You may come as a visitor but you will leave as family.”
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