Simcoe is a beautiful town located in Norfolk County, Ontario, Canada. Nestled in a picturesque landscape, Simcoe offers a mix of cultural attractions, natural beauty, and recreational opportunities. Here are some of the best places and things to do in Simcoe:
1. Norfolk Arts Centre
Located in a historic building, the Norfolk Arts Centre showcases local and regional artists’ work, as well as rotating exhibitions. It’s a great place to immerse yourself in the local arts and culture scene.
2. Backus Heritage Conservation Area
This conservation area is a must-visit for nature enthusiasts. With scenic hiking trails, serene picnic spots, and opportunities for birdwatching, Backus Heritage Conservation Area offers a peaceful retreat into nature.
3. Annaleise Carr Aquatic Centre
If you enjoy swimming, head to this modern aquatic center. It features a large swimming pool, water slides, and other fun water activities for all ages.
4. Norfolk County Fair and Horse Show
Held annually in October, this fair is one of the oldest and largest agricultural fairs in Canada. It offers a wide range of entertainment, including live music, thrilling rides, agricultural displays, and delicious food.
5. Lighthouse Festival Theatre
For those interested in the performing arts, the Lighthouse Festival Theatre hosts a variety of theatrical performances, including plays and musicals, throughout the year.
6. Simcoe Farmers’ Market
If you’re in Simcoe on a Friday morning, don’t miss the chance to visit the local farmers’ market. You’ll find fresh produce, artisanal goods, and a vibrant community atmosphere.
7. Whistling Gardens
This award-winning botanical garden is a paradise for plant lovers. With over 20 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, Whistling Gardens offers a serene and colorful experience.
8. Long Point Provincial Park
Just a short drive from Simcoe, Long Point Provincial Park is a stunning spot for outdoor activities. The park boasts a long sandy beach, opportunities for boating and fishing, and diverse wildlife, making it perfect for nature enthusiasts.
9. Simcoe Panorama
This winter festival held in December offers a delightful display of holiday lights, a Santa Claus parade, and various family-friendly activities, spreading the festive spirit throughout the town.
10. Taste of Norfolk
Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simcoe,_Ontario
Norfolk County is known for its agricultural heritage and culinary delights. Embrace the local flavors by exploring the diverse eateries and restaurants in Simcoe, serving fresh and delicious farm-to-table dishes.
11. Simcoe Rail Trail
Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Simcoe_Railtrail
If you’re an avid cyclist or enjoy leisurely walks, the Simcoe Rail Trail is a fantastic option. This converted railway line provides a peaceful path through nature, passing by beautiful landscapes and allowing you to explore the region at your own pace.
12. Fishing and Boating
Norfolk County is bordered by Lake Erie and several smaller lakes and rivers, making it a great destination for fishing and boating enthusiasts. Whether you’re looking to fish for bass, perch, or other species or want to enjoy a relaxing boat ride, there are plenty of opportunities to indulge in these water activities.
13. Explore Port Dover
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A short drive from Simcoe, Port Dover is a charming lakeside town known for its sandy beach, vibrant pier, and delectable fish and chips. Stroll along the pier, enjoy the lake views, and explore the quaint shops and eateries that line the streets.
Golf enthusiasts will find several golf courses in and around Simcoe. Enjoy a day on the greens, surrounded by scenic landscapes and well-designed courses.
15. Local Festivals and Events
Image Source: https://experience.simcoe.ca/events-directory/
Throughout the year, Simcoe hosts various festivals and events, celebrating everything from food and music to cultural diversity. Keep an eye on the local event calendar to catch some of these exciting happenings.
16. Waterford Heritage and Agricultural Museum
Located a short drive from Simcoe in the nearby town of Waterford, this museum offers a glimpse into the region’s agricultural history. Explore exhibits and artifacts related to farming practices and rural life.
17. Explore Lake Erie Beaches
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Beyond Port Dover, Norfolk County boasts several other sandy beaches along the shores of Lake Erie. Spend a day relaxing on the beach, swimming, and soaking in the sun.
18. Kayaking and Canoeing
With various water bodies in the region, kayaking and canoeing are popular activities. Paddle along peaceful rivers or explore the marshy areas to spot unique wildlife.
19. Horseback Riding
Enjoy the serene countryside on horseback with equestrian facilities and trails available in the area.
20. Simcoe Street Railway Station
History buffs will appreciate a visit to the Simcoe Street Railway Station, a designated National Historic Site. Learn about the significance of rail transportation in the town’s development.
21. Simcoe Rotary Friendship Gardens
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Take a peaceful stroll through the Simcoe Rotary Friendship Gardens, a serene green space featuring beautiful floral displays, walking paths, and tranquil seating areas.
22. Visit Windmill Lake Wake & Eco Park
This eco-friendly park offers a range of activities, including wakeboarding, paddleboarding, and a high ropes course. It’s an excellent place for adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts alike.
23. Visit Local Farms
Norfolk County is known for its agricultural heritage, so why not visit some of the local farms? You can enjoy picking your own fruits and vegetables, tasting fresh farm produce, or learning about sustainable farming practices.
24. Attend Music Festivals
Norfolk County hosts various music festivals and concerts throughout the year, offering a diverse range of musical genres and performances.
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Engage in a modern-day treasure hunt by participating in geocaching around Simcoe and Norfolk County. Use your GPS device or smartphone to find hidden containers and explore interesting locations.
26. Simcoe Street Scapes
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Admire the murals and public art scattered throughout the town. The “Street Scapes” initiative has adorned Simcoe’s buildings with vibrant artwork, adding to its cultural charm.
27. Enjoy Local Cuisine
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Savor the delicious dishes at the town’s eateries, cafes, and restaurants. Try regional specialties and farm-to-table meals to fully experience Norfolk County’s culinary delights.
28. Simcoe Little Theatre
Image Source: https://simcoelittletheatre.org/contact/
If you enjoy live performances and community theater, don’t miss a show at the Simcoe Little Theatre, showcasing local talent and entertaining productions.
29. Take a Winery Tour
Explore the local wineries and vineyards in Norfolk County. Many offer guided tours and wine tastings, providing insight into the winemaking process.
30. Learn about Indigenous Heritage
Norfolk County has a rich Indigenous heritage. Discover the history and culture of the Indigenous peoples of the region by visiting local heritage sites and museums.
Places and Things To Do