Peterborough & The Kawarthas
Laura Budd Sunday, July 08, 2012
Farley Mowat, Pierre Trudeau and The Royal Family all have canoes on display at The Canadian Canoe Museum in Peterborough – the only canoe museum in North America. And, it's no coincidence that the world's largest collection of paddled watercraft is situated amid an extensive network of interconnected lakes, rivers and streams, many of which are part of the Trent-Severn Waterway. Like so many cottage-country locations, Peter borough and The Kawarthas is now a sought-after destination by boomers looking toward retirement.
One of the hubs of this expansive cottage and retreat area is Peterborough, with an eclectic assortment of retail, restaurants, cafes, and the Art Gallery of Peter - borough. And, avid boaters will appreciate the docking facilities at the downtown marina. You can also examine the highest operational hydraulic lock in the world, a national historic site, at the Peterborough Liftlock.
Historic towns and villages sprinkle the shores of The Kawarthas’ sparkling waterways. You can enjoy boating, canoeing, kayaking, and sailing to your heart's content. Anglers can fish for pleasure or the real sport of competing for a trophy Muskie. Trophy only in the sense of bragging rights, because catch and release is the only way to go. Carp, bass, trout, and walleye also provide reasonable excuses to escape to the great outdoors.
Not a boat owner, but enjoy the water nonetheless? You can cruise The Trent- Severn Waterway aboard one of the tour boats and marvel at the panoramic views while someone else navigates. And, if you're happy to captain your own vessel but don't have one, houseboats, motorboats, canoes, and kayaks are available to rent. And, don’t forget the camera because this is shutterbug heaven — plenty of scenic vistas, plus a variety of architectural styles.
Another popular destination, Ser - pent Mounds Park at Rice Lake, is a birdwatchers’ delight. Picnic under the canopying trees, observe ducks and geese during migration, and participate in native workshops where you can craft your own dreamcatchers, drums and necklaces.
And, don’t forget your golf clubs. You’re never far from one of the dozens of nine- and 18-hole golf courses throughout Peterborough and The Kawarthas.
Less than 50 kilometres northwest of Peterborough, the Town of Lindsay offers big-city services, including Ross Memorial Hospital, while lovingly restored Victorian homes and the wellpreserved downtown architecture bring to mind the town's affluent period of the 1800s.
Ontario's oldest live theatre, the Academy Theatre for the Performing Arts, was built in 1892. With only community- supported funding, the theatre is staffed primarily by dedicated volunteers. Through their year-round efforts and the talented performers who grace the stage, they cater to at least 50,000 patrons, annually.
A walk on the wild side might take you to Ken Reid Conservation Area, just north of Lindsay. It’s only one of many destinations for outdoor enthusiasts. Cyclists are particularly at home in the Kawartha Lakes. Whether you prefer mountain biking, touring or racing, there are a number of places you will want to investigate, such as the Victoria Rail Trail Corridor and Kawartha Trans Canada Trail. Visit the Explore Kawartha Lakes website for a list of trails and maps.
Fashionistas flock to Bigley’s Shoes and Clothing in Bobcaygeon. Women from miles around go out of their way to shop for cutting-edge footwear and apparel here. The original Kawartha Dairy is also in Bobcaygeon on Prince Street West.
Whether you plan to relocate to The Kawarthas or spend a few days exploring, there is no shortage of resorts, hotels, bed and breakfast accommodations, and inns, many situated along the shores of lakes and rivers.
For current listings of events and celebrations this summer, consult the websites in right-hand column.