Orillia, located in Ontario, Canada, is a charming city known for its natural beauty, cultural attractions, and recreational opportunities. Nestled between Lake Simcoe and Lake Couchiching, this picturesque city offers a plethora of activities for visitors to enjoy. Here are some of the best places and things to do in Orillia:
1. Tudhope Park
A popular destination for both locals and tourists, Tudhope Park is situated along the shores of Lake Couchiching. The park offers sandy beaches, picnic areas, playgrounds, and walking trails, making it an excellent spot for a day of family fun and relaxation.
2. Mariposa Folk Festival
If you happen to visit Orillia during the summer, make sure to attend the renowned Mariposa Folk Festival. This annual event celebrates folk music, arts, and culture, featuring performances from various musicians and artists from around the world.
3. Stephen Leacock Museum
Literature enthusiasts will delight in a visit to the Stephen Leacock Museum, the former summer residence of the beloved Canadian humorist, Stephen Leacock. The museum offers insight into his life and work and provides a beautiful view of Lake Couchiching.
4. Orillia Opera House
For those interested in the performing arts, the Orillia Opera House is a must-visit. This historic venue hosts a variety of shows, including theater performances, concerts, and dance productions.
5. Lake Simcoe
If you’re a fan of water sports or simply want to enjoy the scenic beauty of Lake Simcoe, there are several opportunities for fishing, boating, and swimming. In the winter, ice fishing and snowmobiling are popular activities.
6. Couchiching Beach Park
Another beautiful beachfront park, Couchiching Beach Park, provides a peaceful environment for relaxation and recreation. The park offers walking paths, a splash pad for children, and scenic views of the lake.
7. Casino Rama Resort
If you’re feeling lucky, head over to Casino Rama Resort, one of the largest casinos in Ontario. This entertainment complex features a wide range of casino games, concerts, and dining options.
8. Scenic Cycling Routes
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Orillia and its surroundings boast numerous cycling trails, making it an ideal destination for cycling enthusiasts. The Millennium Trail is a popular choice, offering picturesque views and a mix of terrains.
9. Hawk Ridge Golf & Country Club
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Golfers will appreciate the Hawk Ridge Golf & Country Club, a well-maintained 18-hole course offering stunning vistas of the surrounding countryside.
10. Coldwater Canadiana Heritage Museum
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Just a short drive from Orillia, the Coldwater Canadiana Heritage Museum provides a glimpse into the region’s history and cultural heritage.
11. The Boat Cruises
Enjoy a scenic boat cruise on Lake Couchiching or Lake Simcoe. Several companies offer boat tours that allow you to take in the beauty of the lakes and surrounding landscapes.
12. Local Dining
Orillia boasts a diverse culinary scene with a range of restaurants and cafes. Be sure to try some delicious Canadian cuisine and locally sourced dishes during your visit.
13. Bass Lake Provincial Park
If you’re looking for a serene escape into nature, Bass Lake Provincial Park is a short drive from Orillia and offers a peaceful retreat. The park features scenic hiking trails, picnic areas, and a sandy beach along the shores of Bass Lake.
14. Orillia Museum of Art & History (OMAH)
Explore the local art scene and immerse yourself in the history of Orillia at the Orillia Museum of Art & History. The museum showcases both contemporary art exhibitions and historical artifacts, providing a fascinating glimpse into the city’s past and creative culture.
15. Boat Rentals
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In addition to boat cruises, you can rent kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards to explore the tranquil waters of Lake Couchiching or Lake Simcoe at your own pace.
16. Horseshoe Valley Resort
If you’re visiting during the winter months, consider spending a day at Horseshoe Valley Resort, located just a short drive from Orillia. This popular winter sports destination offers skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, and snow tubing.
17. Sugar Ridge Retreat Centre
For those seeking relaxation and rejuvenation, Sugar Ridge Retreat Centre is an ideal spot. It offers yoga retreats, meditation workshops, and wellness programs surrounded by the natural beauty of the countryside.
18. Orillia Farmers’ Market
If you’re in town on a Saturday morning, head to the Orillia Farmers’ Market to discover an array of fresh local produce, artisanal crafts, and homemade treats.
19. Brewery Tours
Orillia is home to a couple of breweries, and taking a brewery tour is a great way to sample some craft beers and learn about the brewing process.
20. Cranberry Marsh Tours
Take a unique cranberry marsh tour at Johnston’s Cranberry Marsh & Muskoka Lakes Winery, which offers a fascinating insight into cranberry farming. Don’t miss the chance to taste some cranberry-inspired treats and wines.
21. Treetop Trekking
Get your adrenaline pumping with a visit to Treetop Trekking, an aerial adventure park offering ziplining and treetop obstacle courses.
22. Orillia Public Library
If you’re a book lover or just looking for a quiet place to relax, the Orillia Public Library is a welcoming spot to spend some time with a good read.
23. Festival and Events
Throughout the year, Orillia hosts various festivals and events, such as the Orillia Jazz Festival, Scottish Festival and Highland Games, and the Streets Alive! outdoor art event. Check the local events calendar to see what’s happening during your visit.
24. Railway Museum
History enthusiasts will enjoy a trip to the Orillia Railway Museum, where you can learn about the region’s railway heritage and view vintage locomotives and railway artifacts.
25. Art and Craft Workshops
Orillia has a thriving arts community, and you can get hands-on with your creativity by participating in various art and craft workshops offered by local artists and studios. Whether it’s painting, pottery, or other crafts, these workshops allow you to unleash your artistic side.
26. Lake Country Airways
For a truly unforgettable experience, consider taking a scenic flight over the stunning landscapes of Lake Simcoe and Lake Couchiching with Lake Country Airways. The aerial views offer a unique perspective of the region’s beauty.
27. Take a Stroll through Downtown
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Orillia’s downtown area is rich in historic charm, with quaint shops, cafes, and galleries. Taking a leisurely stroll through the streets will introduce you to the city’s vibrant local culture.
28. Mara Provincial Park
A short drive from Orillia, Mara Provincial Park is a hidden gem offering excellent hiking trails through lush forests and along the shores of Lake Simcoe. It’s a fantastic spot for nature lovers and birdwatchers.
29. Winter Fun at Scout Valley Loop Trail
During the winter months, the Scout Valley Loop Trail becomes a picturesque spot for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing, offering a unique way to explore the snowy landscape.
30. Take a Historical Walking Tour
Grab a self-guided walking tour map from the Orillia Visitor Centre and explore the city’s history and architecture at your own pace. The tour highlights significant landmarks and historical buildings, providing insights into Orillia’s past.
31. Simcoe County Museum
Located just a short drive from Orillia, the Simcoe County Museum is worth a visit for its engaging exhibits on regional history, including Indigenous heritage, pioneer life, and local industries.
32. Horseback Riding
Enjoy a leisurely horseback ride through the picturesque countryside at one of the nearby equestrian centers.
33. Jet Skiing and Water Sports
If you’re an adventure seeker, consider renting a jet ski or trying other water sports on the lakes for an adrenaline-filled day.
34. Biking along the Uhthoff Trail
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The Uhthoff Trail is a scenic multi-use trail that stretches from Orillia to Coldwater, offering a perfect route for biking enthusiasts to explore the countryside and take in the natural beauty.
35. Visit Washago
A short drive from Orillia, the quaint village of Washago is worth a visit, with charming shops, cafes, and the opportunity to relax by the Green River.
Places and Things To Do