Sometimes it’s nice to get out of the city and enjoy a new piece of scenery. There are a number of daytrips in the London, Ontario area where you can pack a lunch, hop in the car and immerse yourself in a completely different setting, all within an hour’s drive.
Here are a few spots for nature lovers, beach combers and everyone in between:
Rock Glen Conservation Area
Just north of London, Ontario near Arkona, Ontario, you’ll find Rock Glen Conservation Area. One of the main attractions to this area is the 10.7 metre high waterfall. The area will bring out the archeologist in you, and best of all, it’s open year-round (weather permitting, of course) which means you can enjoy the hiking trails and scenery all year long. There’s even the Arkona Lions Museum and Information Centre, a museum that displays First Nations artifacts and a collection of fossils for you to explore.
The Pinery Provincial Park
The Pinery offers another nature getaway and is accessible in under an hour from London, Ontario. With beautiful stretches of beaches, you can look out onto the water and almost imagine it’s the ocean. It tends to get a little crowded on the weekends during the summer, but you can sometimes score the beach all to yourself if you go mid-week. One of the beaches even allows for dogs (on leash) so you can bring your furry friend along for the fun. If the beach isn’t your thing, check out the many hiking trails.
Port Burwell (1 hour, 4 min drive from London, Ontario) offers 2.5 km of sandy beach. It’s a beautiful drive through the Southwestern Ontario countryside, and you can even stop in St. Thomas along the way. Similar to the Pinery, if a day isn’t enough, there’s also camping (with group sites) available. There are some fish n’ chip spots and rumour has it the Taco food truck is pretty popular.
Port Stanley is another beautiful beach on Lake Erie that’s only a 45 min drive from London, Ontario.
GT’s on the Beach is a favorite hot spots that’s enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. With a 400 square foot patio that’s right on the beach, you can grab some food and enjoy live music without missing out on the scenery. While summer is definitely the most rockin’ time in Port Stanley, the little harbour village is steadily gaining a year-round crowd with all the little shops and eateries.
If you’re looking for a lively beach scene, Grand Bend is it. With small, specialty stores and surf-style shops, Grand Bend’s Main Street offer a wide range of shopping and dining options. Take in the streetscape and chill out on the beach. Either way, there’s lots to see, even if you just want to take in some quality “people watching” for the afternoon.
The list goes on! These are just a few ideas that come to mind. And remember, Toronto is only around a 2 hour drive from London, an easy day trip. Simply put, if you’re looking for an escape from London for the day, there’s a whole world to discover just outside the city limits.
Get out and enjoy!