6 FREE Southwestern Ontario Beaches You MUST Visit

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Southwestern Ontario Beaches

When I hear summer, I immediately think beach time. Nothing beats sand between your toes and catching some rays on a brilliantly sunny day in July or August! Ontario has some amazing beaches, many of which are only a 2-hour drive from the GTA. With so many to choose from, it can be tough to know where to go. Well, I’ve done the legwork for you! These Southwestern Ontario beaches are perfect for enjoying summer along the Great Lakes.

All of these beaches I have listed are free. Yes, free. No parking or entrance fees, just a whole bunch of fun! Check out that weather forecast and go enjoy these awesome Southwestern Ontario beaches along the Great Lakes!

BAYFIELD MAIN BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Best Southwestern Ontario Beaches

Situated on the shore of Lake Huron, Bayfield’s beach is a great place to enjoy a hot summer day. The beach itself is a mix of sand and rock while featuring a walking path and pier close by. If you walk south away from the pier, you’ll find steps which will take you up to Pioneer Park. While nobody likes taking the stairs upward, you’ll be rewarded with a beautiful view at the top! Heading back to the harbour, you’ll find brick & mortar washrooms as well as a water fountain. Be sure to fill up your water bottles to avoid dehydration! If you forgot yours, don’t worry – the beach is a short walk from the town of Bayfield. Here you’ll find a menagerie of shops and restaurants. If you’re looking for a full day of exploring with some beach time thrown in, this would be my suggestion!


CHRISTIE BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Best Southwestern Ontario Beaches

Heading north to the shores of Georgian Bay, Christie Beach is a quiet little slice of paradise. I visited on a hot summer Saturday and there was one other car… ONE. If you’re looking to have a sandy beach all to yourself? Look no further! There is limited parking, however with my experience, I don’t think you’ll have a problem. The area is also great for groups as there is a shaded pavilion with benches and tables. Oh, and a swing set too! The green space isn’t large, but there’s enough room for kids (young and old) to play some soccer or break out the frisbee.


LITTLE BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Best Southwestern Ontario Beaches

Don’t let the name fool you – it’s not that little! Nestled on the shore of Lake Erie, Little Beach is a beautiful place to spend a day sunbathing. While it can get busy (the parking lot itself can be a little crazy!), there’s plenty of room on the beach. You’ll find lots of families enjoy a sunny day along with the occasional parasailer in the distance. It’s a 5-minute walk into one-half of Port Stanley for some ice cream or a cup of coffee. If you walk another 20 minutes to the other side of Port Stanley you’ll find the main beach, however I’m sure it’ll be much busier than Little Beach!


NORTHWINDS BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Best Southwestern Ontario Beaches

The crystal clear waters of Georgian Bay make Northwinds Beach a perfect beach destination. Extremely popular for standup paddleboarding, you’ll enjoy relaxing along the sandy shoreline. The parking lot isn’t the biggest, so I’d suggest arriving earlier to ensure a parking spot. If you have any four-legged companions however, you’ll have to leave them at home as no dogs are allowed. It is also close to both Collingwood and the Blue Mountains, making it a great stop during a weekend excursion!


POINT CLARK BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Southwestern Ontario Beaches

Last but certainly not least, we return to the shores of Lake Huron and Point Clark Beach. My favourite of theese Southwestern Ontario beaches, Point Clark is also home to a beautiful lighthouse. Learn about the history of the imperial style lighthouse and climb the 100+ steps to get a bird’s eye view of the beach. Take note of the washroom & change room building as it’s easy to miss, then make your way for some beachy fun! The sand can be quite hot and with small stones mixed in, can hurt your feet after a while. I’d suggest some water shoes or flip flops if you’re going to be going in and out of the water a lot. There are also a few volleyball courts close to the parking lot but it’s BYON – bring your own net!


TURKEY POINT BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Best Southwestern Ontario Beaches

What’s probably the busiest of all the Southwestern Ontario beaches on this list, Turkey Point stretches over 2km along Lake Erie’s shoreline. It’s next door to Turkey Point Provincial Park where you can get your hike on before cooling off at the beach. The beautifully soft sandbars and shallow water make it great for families. Although it can be hard to walk through the clay-like patches so be wary. I almost fell a few times, but at least the water would catch me! While most people park in the paid lot, take Cedar Drive to Reserve St and you’ll hit Ordnance Drive. There’s plenty of street parking here – just be sure to obey the signs!


BONUS :: LORA BAY BEACH

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: Southwestern Ontario Beaches

What will be the quietest of all the beaches, Lora Bay is a residential complex in the Blue Mountains. Open to the public, you can drive down and access this beautiful little cove. It can be quite breezy so it’s great for those scorching summer days! While there is what looks like a bathroom, it was locked when I visited and surrounded by hornets. I’d steer clear and if anything hop in the car 2 minutes down the road to Christie Beach and use the facilities there.

One thing to note as well is that all of these Southwestern Ontario beaches have washrooms. It may not be something you immediately think about, but using the facilities is key when you’re staying hydrated on a hot summer day. Also, moist towelettes are always a good idea as many of the beaches only have portable washrooms. Better to be prepared than not!

Now, what are you waiting for? Each of these Southwestern Ontario beaches has its own charm and beauty, so why only choose one? Go out and visit them all – and be sure to use #IveBeenBitTravel on your Instagram photos so I can see your adventures!

I've Been Bit! A Travel Blog :: FREE Southwestern Ontario Beaches You MUST Visit | Canada, Summer, Great Lakes, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, Georgian Bay, Travel |

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10 Comments

  1. Karlie

    July 15, 2017

    Coming from Alberta, I have to say I’m more than a little envious of all of Ontario’s Great Lakes and beaches!

    • Lindz author

      July 17, 2017

      We’re so lucky here in Ontario to have them! Although in Alberta you have the beautiful Rockies, which we’re envious of here in Ontario! :)

  2. Kelly

    July 15, 2017

    These looks like some great lake beaches! We’ve always been a fan of the ocean, but have started enjoying the lakes more. So much nicer for swimming!

    • Lindz author

      July 17, 2017

      In Ontario we don’t have access to the ocean unfortunately, but I agree – I’m a fan of not having salt in my eyes when swimming! :)

  3. Vanessa

    July 15, 2017

    Thanks for the great rundown Lindsay! These look so pretty. Whenever I make it up to Ontario (fingers crossed it’s soon), I’ll definitely check some of these out.

    • Lindz author

      July 17, 2017

      I hope you’ll make it this way soon! I’d definitely down for a beach day when you visit :)

  4. Stephanie

    July 15, 2017

    Wow, now this is a summer beach bucket list for sure!! Great round up! Looks like I may have to check out a few of these to get some sun and sand in my life!

    • Lindz author

      July 17, 2017

      Yes definitely! That’s what summer’s all about. Christie Beach & Northwinds aren’t too far from you either! :)

  5. Emily

    July 16, 2017

    Some great spots. I’ve never been to Canada, but would love to visit. Saving this for when I eventually make it to this part of the world :-)

    • Lindz author

      July 17, 2017

      There’s definitely lots to see and do in Canada – I hope you’re able to visit soon! :)

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