Some of the finest beaches in the world are found along the east coast of Lake Huron. With pure sand lake bottoms, still waters and warm shallows perfect for youngsters, Lake Huron beaches are an ideal focal point for a memorable family vacation.
You can follow Highway 21 from Pinery Provincial Park through Grand Bend to Bayfield in less than half an hour, but could easily fill a week with the diverse summer fun accessible along this stretch of Lake Huron shoreline.
Pinery Provincial Park contains most of the remaining oak savannah woodland to be found in North America. Explore this rare and beautiful ecosystem along miles of trails, beaches or quiet reaches of the Old Ausable Channel. Whether you want to quietly tour the woodlands, dip a paddle, ride along extensive bike trails, or enjoy one of the many programs or guided hikes offered, the Pinery is an inviting location to set up camp or visit for a day trip.
Minutes away, the beach town of Grand Bend is southwestern Ontario’s summer hot spot. Along the strip, great restaurants, shopping, mini golf, arcades and batting cages create a bustling atmosphere. A teenager’s paradise, the strip empties onto the main beach, a remarkably wide expanse of sand hosting thousands of sun worshippers and site to national volleyball tournaments each summer. For families, the quieter South Beach is a relaxing spot to splash in the shallows and build sandcastles.
Fifteen minutes further up the road, the picturesque village of Bayfield offers a soothing break from the hubbub of Grand Bend. A quiet, leafy enclave of galleries, shops and parkland, Bayfield is well known as a retreat for artists, writers and musicians. Explore the galleries, browse antiques and savour a gelato. You can drop the kids off at Kryart Studios where a professional artist will mentor them in creating a unique keepsake, be it an original canvas or a customized skateboard.
For those nights not spent around a campfire, you can enjoy one of the last remaining drive-ins in Canada. The StarLite shows first-run movies on two big screens. Or take in a play at the Huron Country playhouse — its production of Annie is a family favourite and runs later this summer.