Do you enjoy the idyllic and rustic lakefront charm of Keswick, Ontario? Well, we’ve found another 20 towns in the 415,600 square mile region with a similar atmosphere and characteristics to Keswick that we’re sure you’ll enjoy exploring. They all offer water sports, hockey, hiking, year-round entertainment, and picturesque main streets.
Unique dining you’ll find in each of these towns as well, which all have tourism as a major economic booster. Where they differ is in the population, salaries, and housing costs.
Keswick, formerly known as Medina, was formerly part of the North Gwillimbury Municipality. Torontonians used to refer to the area as “cottage country.” Keswick now has a population of slightly more than 26,000 people and is a component of the Municipality of Georgina. Agriculture and tourism have been driving the growth of Keswick. Activities are abundant, from riding snowmobiles to boating, fishing, and swimming.
While there are options for affordable housing, Keswick’s housing averages $989,000 while residents’ average earning is $49,688. Keswick offers the most affordable options, whether you’re looking to buy or rent. First and foremost, there is a greater sense of belonging among the students.
If you’re looking for a spot where you’ll be able to form close relationships with neighbors, Keswick is the best option.
With a population of over 45,000, you’d be surprised to know that Georgina began as a little community. However, its accessibility to larger cities and recreational offerings have led to its rapid growth. Because of the stunning Lake Simcoe backdrop, this small village is very popular among cottage enthusiasts.
The Georgina Pioneer Village is an excellent choice for families. History and hands-on activities from the past will be available for children to participate in. It’s worth noting that the town’s Stephen Leacock Theatre is home to a thriving live-theatre culture that’s geared at adults.
After the show, grab a bite to eat at the Lake Simcoe Arms and one of the pub’s 15 rotating taps of draught beer. Residents earn an average of $71,435 in Georgina while paying a median price of $1,269,000 for their homes.
Located in Ontario, Goderich is a haven for nature lovers. It is famous for its stunning coastline, which is a draw for watersports enthusiasts. Swimming in saltwater with beautiful scenery in the backdrop, or soaking up the sun with a drink in hand, is an ideal vacation experience.
It boasts a small population of 7,628 earning an average of $60,103 and paying a median price of $253,950 for their homes. It is the health care, retail, creative economy, tourism, plus its strong manufacturing & industry sectors that hold Goderich’s economy together.
Goderich has some beautiful beaches and Queen Elizabeth referred to this town as the “prettiest town in Canada” because of its stunning beauty and appeal. The world’s largest salt mine is also located here, which adds to its allure.
If you’re looking for a quaint historic downtown area in Ontario, look no farther than the Village of Erin. If you’ve never been there, you should go see the well-preserved Victorian buildings in the village on the west branch of the Credit River.
In addition to exploring this industrialized town with many one-of-a-kind stores, tourists may also go horseback riding, biking, and hiking in the surrounding rolling hills.
Erin is also growing steadily. Erin had a population of about 11,981 earning an average of $32,422 and paying a median home price of $859,900.
In comparison to Niagara Falls, Niagara-on-the-Lake offers a more refined experience with a population of over 17,500. Gentle residences on leafy streets, ancient structures on the main street, and a seaside area that looks back into Toronto are all found in this area. It’s just a short walk from downtown to the Fort George National Historic Site, where you may journey back in time to 1812.
The economy is driven by tourism, with the Shaw Festival taking place here yearly. The plays of George Bernard Shaw and others are performed all summer long on three different stages around town.
Staying in a bed and breakfast or historical inn, eating a leisurely first-class supper, and going to a theater each night can make for a wonderful romantic weekend. The median home price here is $799,000 while residents have a high average household, meaning $85,466.
Since Unionville was founded in 1794, the city’s streets have a lot of history to tell and the population has grown to 34,934. The city’s beautiful buildings, boutiques, restaurants, and coffee shops have made it a popular tourist destination. There are many company headquarters in Markham, where Unionville is, but tourism is still a driving economic force for its very diverse population.
Main Street has been used to film sequences from the hit television series “Gilmore Girls” because of its beauty. The Old Firehall Confectionery, which sells freshly made fudge, is just one of many sweet stops for shoppers in this bustling shopping district. The average house costs $1.3M in Unionville while the average household income is $127,900.
Unionville has always been popular with families who value its quaintness and charm, excellent selection of schools, and outstanding parks and recreational amenities. There is a tremendous selection of detached homes of varying sizes as well as townhomes.
6. Port Perry
Dating back to the 1800s, this aesthetically pleasing town has numerous wonderfully maintained homes and structures that have been converted into various types of bed and breakfasts, boutiques, restaurants, galleries, and businesses.
All year long, the calendar is jam-packed with exciting activities, from dragon boat races and bass fishing tournaments on Lake Scugog to a wide range of cuisine and arts festivals in the city’s historical core. The Performing Arts Center, boutique shopping, fishing, or kayaking on Lake Scugog are just a few of the options available to visitors.
Prince Edward County, or “The County,” has been a popular tourist destination in recent years. The neighborhood provides a little something for everyone, making it a great place to visit. Median household incomes total $101,293 while the median house price is $975,000.
The family-friendly historic town of slightly over 25,000 people is ideally situated for exploring the surrounding areas because of its central location.
7. Blue Mountain
When Ontario’s best ski resort, Blue Mountain Ski Resort, is in full operation, some claim that the community of Blue Mountain is at its best. Summer, according to some, is the greatest season to visit because the trails for hiking and mountain biking are open and the outdoor dining patios are packed with people.
Rent water trikes and paddle boats on a tiny mill pond in the summer, or bring your own. If you’re looking for something a little more exhilarating, you might want to check out the climbing wall and rope courses or the Ridge Runner Mountain Coaster.
Open-air gondola rides and putting greens are available for those who prefer a more relaxed pace. The average home price is $242,500 while the median home income is $78,490.
Most weekends in the winter, the ski resort is a hive of activity with people sledding down the slopes. After the slopes have closed, the hamlet transforms into a vibrant après-ski destination. It doesn’t matter what time of year you visit; this small town is likely to please with accommodations averaging $151/night.
With a population of about 66,502, Caledon’s picturesque countryside offers numerous opportunities to capture the perfect photo for your Instagram feed.
Visit the Alton Mills Arts Centre, where the work of artists and craftspeople can be found in a setting that is itself a work of art. Spirit Tree Estate Cidery’s award-winning cider and baked goodies make it virtually impossible to leave empty-handed.
Plant Paradise Country Gardens, with its abundance of blooms and things for sale, is a short trip for green thumbs. Caledon is among the richest and fastest-growing Canadian communities. Caledon is a vibrant and safe community that benefits from a strategic location in the Greater Toronto Region.
Access to transportation systems, a labor force, and unparalleled quality of life make Caledon the choice to locate or expand make your business. Houses cost $957,394 on average and residents have an average household income of $133,899.
The town of Stratford has long been recognized as a cultural and artistic hub in the province. The Stratford Festival was born here in 1953 when William Shakespeare’s plays were first played live on stage.
The season now comprises a dozen or more events spread over four different locations throughout the city. Musicals, current plays, and dramas are also performed, in addition to Shakespeare. The median house price is $319,900 while the average household earning is $64,772.
Stratford, with a population of about 31,465, has a lot more to offer than just the performing arts. The city’s central thoroughfare is packed with restaurants, shops, and unique boutiques, making it a joy to explore on foot. Upper and Lower Queen’s Park, as well as Shakespeare Gardens, are just a few of the city’s parks that line the Avon River.
Because of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, this small town plays a major role in the art world. First Nations and Inuit art can also be found here, along with the work of Canada’s most recognized artists, the Group of Seven. Planning to live here? $105,000 is the median household earning, while houses cost an average of $818,000.
For superb dining, you can head over to Villagio Ristorante or Avenue Cibi E Vini, which are two outstanding examples of Italian cuisine in Kleinburg. A stroll through the charming downtown to take in the well-restored historic buildings is a great way to wind down after supper.
11. Grand Bend
Grand Bend is one of Ontario’s best-known summer beach villages and has been attracting visitors since the early 1900s. A long stretch of sand that begins at the Ausable River’s confluence with Lake Ontario now serves as one of Ontario’s premier beaches.
It’s the place to go if you want to be a tourist attraction. You may lounge on your towel, read a book in your beach chair, or take a stroll along the sand and take in the sights and sounds of the area. Back from the beach, you’ll find a hip main street lined with fast food joints and ice-cream parlors vying for your hard-earned cash with souvenir shops and mini-golf courses.
Pinery Provincial Park, one of Ontario’s most popular parks, is just a short drive from Grand Bend. It is possible to make the most of your Grand Bend visit by camping in the park and then driving to town, which will save you money. The campground in Pinery is one of the greatest in Ontario.
Elora, a little village on the banks of the Grand River, has one of the most attractive settings in the region. You can take a walk on one of the bridges that cross the river to see the Elora Gorge Falls.
Restored buildings from the early nineteenth century dot the downtown area. There are numerous art galleries, boutiques, and independent shops along the main street.
Elora is home to a wide range of dining establishments, many of which include outdoor patios where you can enjoy the weather while dining on cuisine from across the world. Elora is an easy day trip from either Toronto or Hamilton, but it’s also an excellent place to spend the night when visiting the area. B&Bs and boutique hotels can be found throughout the city, as well as in historic homes.
The Elora Gorge Conservation Area is just a short drive from town for those who prefer water sports to dining and shop. You can hire inner tubes here and float down the Grand River on your own. A total of 400 campsites are available at this campground, making it one of the most convenient for Toronto residents.
13. Port Hope
The town of Port Hope, located in the province of Ontario, is quite lovely. The Ganaraska River runs through the property. For this reason, it has become a popular vacation spot for those who enjoy the sea. Visitors to Port Hope can enjoy a variety of winter activities despite its reputation as a popular tourist destination during the summer months.
Mountain biking and equestrian activities are also available at the Ganaraska Forest Centre. For thrill-seekers, Treetop Trekking Ganaraska can take you on an exhilarating zipline ride. In Haute Goat, you’ll get the chance to feed goats. Corbett’s Dam is a great place to go salmon fishing if you enjoy the sport.
14. Fort Frances
According to its website, Fort Frances claims to be a destination where you can experience “Boundless Adventures” because of its location right across from International Falls, MN. The town’s location on Rainy Lake provides convenient access to world-class fishing, boating, and snowmobiling in the winter, making its nickname an excellent one.
In addition to new sidewalks and a brand-new central park, Scott Street, the town’s major street, has undergone a significant facelift. Every summer, markets, and live music may be found here.
La Verendrye Parkway is a beautiful stretch of road just south of downtown. As you travel along the coast of the Rainy River, you’ll ultimately come across a trail that connects to a park in the area. Stop for ice cream at the Sorting Gap Marina, take a look at the 100-foot-tall viewing tower, and board the 60-foot-long Hallett Tugboat while you’re there.
15. Parry Sound
As the jewel of Georgian Bay, Parry Sound proclaims itself. Iconic beauty may be found in the town’s lush woodlands and stunning waterscapes. The town’s primary attractions are hiking trails, beaches, as well as large green spaces. In Parry Sound, you’ll never run short of activities if you’re a fan of the great outdoors.
The town of Parry Sound, which has a population of 6,408, is noted for its tourism entities. Salaries average $51,153 and the median home price is $255,000 here. Hotels, full-service resorts, and campgrounds all fall under the category of lodging establishments. A variety of watersports equipment, including kayaks, canoes, and skis, can be rented and toured in the summer and winter, respectively.
There is an annual ATV Jamboree along with guided ATV trips all year. In and around the town, you’ll find several golf courses, as well as softball, fishing, and ice hockey.
With a population of close to 20,000, Huntsville, Ontario sits in the mountainous Canadian Shield region. Regarded as a very safe community, the town boasts huge white pine forests, crystal-clear lakes, and exposed granite. This picturesque municipality in Ontario’s north is just over two hours drive from Toronto and is ideal for a weekend escape.
The average household earns $69,332 while the median house price is $334,900.
Just visiting? Shop around as you meander down the main street. Algonquin Outfitters is one of the best places to shop for camping, canoeing, and hiking supplies.
At Hidden Valley Highlands Ski Area, visitors can enjoy downhill skiing as well as other winter sports like ice fishing and dog sledding. The town also hosts a variety of winter holiday events. Enjoy mouthwatering meals at several excellent restaurants in the heart of town with expansive riverside patios.
Perth, Ontario’s easternmost city, sits on the Tay River and is a popular tourist destination. Both the historic fight that took place there and the gigantic cheese known as Mammoth Cheese that was on display at the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893 has made it famous in Canada.
Perth is also known for its magnificent parks, which are a big draw for visitors. Perth Wildlife Reserve and Rideau Ferry Yacht Club Conservation Area are both great places to see wildlife.
Visit McMartin House and the Perth Museum if you’re a museum aficionado. Both of these fascinating museums provide tours led by knowledgeable docents. To live here, you’ll find that home prices average $310,000 while many of its 5,930 residents have a median earning of $52,429.
Cobourg, Ontario, is a must-see destination for travelers who want to visit the gorgeous regions of Southern Ontario. The Lighthouse, Conservation area, and Beach are nature lovers’ dreams come true, and they are not to be missed while visiting the city.
The famous Victoria Hall Concert Hall and the Marie Dressler Museum are also worth a visit. The Neoclassical architecture and rich history of the Barnum House Museum will take your breath away. Coburg has about 19,440 residents who earn an average household income of $64,328. The median home price is $399,900.
Crime-free Wawa is a small village in far northern Ontario, just a short distance from Lake Superior on the opposite shore. On the hillside immediately off the Trans-Canada Highway, there’s a huge Canada Goose statue. Want to buy a home here. They are quite affordable at a median of $79,900 while residents earn a household median of $66,752 for its small 2902 population.
Main Street in this sleepy hamlet has just undergone a revival, thanks to a series of infrastructure upgrades. Wawa Lake, a must-see attraction in town, is largely overlooked. Both sides of this enormous lake are heavily forested, and Wawa’s shoreline has a lovely golden sand beach.
Wawa is a good choice for those who enjoy snowmobiling, fishing, or riding ATVs in the wilderness. It’s also less than 20 minutes away from Lake Superior Provincial Park, where you can kayak, camp, and hike on lovely beaches.
The city of Paris, which has been dubbed “Canada’s Prettiest Little Town,” is located in the Nith Valley, where the Grand and Nith Rivers meet. Charming historic structures may be found all across town as you make your way around.
Additionally, Paris is recognized for its beautiful waterfalls and gorgeous views. Check out Penman’s Dam, which was built a century ago and is a fantastic tourist destination. On the Grand River, you can take a rafting trip for those who enjoy extreme sports. About 12,310 people live here, with their homes costing an average of $357,445, residents earn about $44,209 yearly.