Ontario is beautiful in the summer, and the best way to see (and hear) it is from a canoe slipping silently through the water.
There are several excellent operators that provide guided canoe trips, ranging from two to 17 days, most requiring only a little skill and a great sense of adventure.
For 20 years, this company has been guiding wilderness expeditions and has many packages to choose from. As the name suggests, their adventures focus mainly on the Missinaibi River.
Beginners will want to consider the Lower Missinaibi Expedition:
- July 13-21, 2014; nine-day Lower Missinaibi Trip; $2,075 + HST
Intermediate paddlers have three great options to choose from:
- July 6-13, 2014; eight-day Thunderhouse falls fly out; $1,995 + HST
- July 6-21, 2014; 16 day Lower Missinaibi Trip; $3,250 + HST
- August 6-14, 2014; 9 day, Upper Missinaibi; $1,875 + HST
This operator offers just about any adventure you might want to have in the wild, so you know that their canoe trips are well-organized and will be a blast. Check out the website for information on whitewater canoe courses.
Perfect for beginners, the Algonquin Park trips include a certified canoe instructor to take you through the largest wilderness canoe park in the world. Basic Canoe Skill Level certifications are available on these adventures.
Three-day trips begin late in May and take place nearly every weekend through the middle of October. Price is $425 per person, with a discount for two or more people on a single trip.
A six-day odyssey can be booked starting Mid July and run through the first week in October. Trips begin on a Monday and finish on Friday.
These tours also take full advantage of the 7,653-sq-km of Algonquin Provincial Park. Everything is provided for you and adventurers of all levels are welcome. All trips include one or two days without water travel to explore the surrounding wilderness.
- Three-day trips ($399 + HST) leave every Friday and Monday, May through October.
- Four-day trips ($549 + HST) leave on Monday, May through October.
- Five-day trips ($699 + HST) leave May 23, June 16, July 7, Aug 1, Aug 18, Sept 8 and Sept 29
If there is a gorgeous place to see in northern Ontario, Treks in the Wild have been there. Trips are fully outfitted and they even cook your meals for you. Trips vary in difficulty from introductory to advanced and are two to five days in length.
Trips generally start in the last week of May and run through the end of September. Keep an eye on their website to get the exact dates when they release them.
If you just can’t bear to leave your four-footed companion behind, this is the group for you. Difficulty level ranges from one to three paws, with three-paw trips requiring some skill and longer portages. Everything is provided, including a lifejacket for your pup.
Exact dates for 2014 are not yet available, but prices and preliminary destinations have been announced. (All prices include your dog.)
- A three-day adventure in either Algonquin Provincial Park (one paw) or the Haliburton Highlands (two paws) is $490 + HST.
- Four days in Killarney or Algonquin Park is $610 + HST. Both are two-paw trips.
Keep an eye on the website for more trip announcements.
Quetico Park, in the northern reaches of Ontario, has thousands of canoe routes that would take a determined adventurer months to wander through. Although CCO will help you plan a self-guided trip, if time is tight — book a guided tour. You (and at least two of your friends) schedule your tour for the time that suits you best, choosing from five- or seven-day tour packages. Everything is provided for you and they arrange park passes and transportation.
- Five day adventure, $900 +HST per person.
- Seven-day adventure; $1150 + HST per person.
(Custom trips available.)