This blog post was written before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic when physical distancing and other COVID health and safety protocols were not in effect. The businesses and communities featured in this article may be once again welcoming visitors but please double check as some are only open with limited operations and others have not yet reopened.

The quiet of Northern Ontario is where you will be headed after leaving the bustling streets of Toronto. Drive into the Algonquin region and enjoy a paddling adventure by kayak or canoe with the Algonquin Canoe company. Afterwards, your journey takes you to Manitoulin Island, the world’s largest freshwater island. It is also home to five First Nations communities and offers the ideal marriage of outdoor recreation, First Nations land stewardship and eco-tourism.

Province: Ontario

Length: 7 Nights / 8 Days

Dates: May – October

Route: Toronto – Thorne (Algonquin Region) – Manitoulin Island – Toronto

The province of Ontario offers a vibrant Indigenous history, and many cultural experiences ranging from Indigenous artwork to cuisine powwows to guided tours. Meet contemporary artists, enjoy cultural festivals and learn about Ontario’s Indigenous peoples and their connection to the province’s rich history and geography.


Day 1: Arrive in Toronto

Arrive in Toronto and transfer to your downtown hotel. The remainder of the day is spent at your leisure shopping at the Eaton Centre or perhaps sampling the fine cuisine and nightlife of downtown Toronto.

Overnight in Toronto.


Days 2: Toronto to Thorne [Algonquin Region]

Today, drive north from Toronto through charming rural villages towards Huntsville ending your journey in the Algonquin region and the town of Thorne. Your adventure awaits with the Algonquin Canoe Company, owned and operated by the Algonquin First Nation. Upon arrival, check-in for your equipment rental, as well as to receive your mapped route and locations of camps or campsites.

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Come by and see us!! Open 9/5 Monday to Friday.

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Overnight camp/camping.


Day 3–4: Exploring the Traditional Waterways of the Algonquin People

Enjoy two days exploring the traditional waterways – the heartline of the Algonquin People – on self-guided routes on the vast river network of this region: Dumoine River, Noire River, Coulonge River, Petawawa River, Algonquin Park and Ottawa River. In the evenings stay in the comfort of your cabin or set up your tent at designated campsites.

Overnight camp/camping.


Day 5: Thorne to Manitoulin Island

Today, drive west passing Lake Nipissing towards Lake Huron from where you will venture on to Manitoulin Island. This world’s largest freshwater island is also home to five First Nations communities and offers the ideal marriage of outdoor recreation, First Nations land stewardship and eco-tourism.

The Manitoulin Hotel and Conference Centre is your home for the next two nights. The hotel and centre were designed to inspire guests to learn more about the local First Nations through cultural displays located throughout the property.

Overnight Manitoulin Hotel and Conference Centre.

Day 6–7: Manitoulin Island Exploring

Throughout the next two days, you will embark on Indigenous cultural and eco-tourism experiences with Great Sprit Circle Trail. Experience fascinating art galleries, enthralling nature walks, outdoor adventures and immerse yourself in a timeless and thriving First Nations culture.

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Prepping for bannock, berries and tea. Yummm.

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Overnight Manitoulin Hotel and Conference Centre.


Day 8: Manitoulin Island to Toronto

Drive to Toronto where your adventure ends. You might wish to add a few extra nights to stop at the popular Muskoka cottage country on your way back to Toronto.


Dené Sinclair

Dené Sinclair

Dené Sinclair was ITAC's Director of Marketing. She lives and works in Winnipeg on Treaty 1 Territory and the Homeland of the Métis Nation. She acknowledges her traditional homeland around Selkirk, Manitoba (St. Peter’s Band) as a member of Peguis First Nation and a proud Anishinaabekwe.