Great Lakes' Great Beaches [Photoblog]

Civic holiday is here!

Before you could easily whisk away to the Caribbean for a tropical vacation, local beach towns were in their hay day with boardwalks, hotels, and tourist amenities of all kinds. Explore your options below before hitting the road with this beaches orthophoto tour around the Great Lakes shoreline.

Some like it cold. The 2 km stretch of pebble beach offers apple opportunity for rock collectors.  The Pic River supplies the sand.
Planet Labs 1-month mosaic, June 2019

1.5m SPOT satellite imagery, 2016

Pancake Bay
3 km of sand and blue water with southern exposure.
Planet Labs 1-month mosaic, July 2018

1.5m SPOT satellite imagery, 2016

Wasaga Beach
The world's longest freshwater beach. Even with 14 km of sandy shoreline, it still gets crowded.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2012
Look closely. You can see para-surfers in the water.

The Grotto
So popular you might need to make a reservation just to park if you want to swim in these caves.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
No diving! The rocky bottom is clear to see through the crystal blue waters.

Sauble Beach
Lots of beach, not all public. With western exposure this beach town claims to have the best sunsets.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
Parking right on the sand.

Take a swim or stroll the pier and boardwalk.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
Just as popular for boating as it is for swimming.

Three places to swim connected by 1.5 km of boardwalk.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
Just around the corner from the beach, a working port.

Grand Bend
The beaches in Grand Bend attract party people from across Southern Ontario.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
No one was brave enough to get in the water this early in the season. The snow fences are still out.

Port Stanley
End of the line. Arrive by car, boat, or train!
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
Beach front hot spots.

Port Dover
This beach town draws bikers from across the land every Friday 13th.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2010
The crowds will gather next September 13th.

Crystal Beach
The Crystal Beach Amusement Park was closed in 1989, but this beach town remains a favourite day trip destination.
10cm orthophoto imagery, 2018
The sheltered location of this beach makes the waves calm.

Hanlan's Point
One of Canada's only two clothing optional beaches. The other is in Vancouver. No high res photo here! Too cheeky to post.
8cm orthophoto imagery, 2018

Sugar Beach
Named for Redpath Sugar, not a beach made of sugar.
8cm orthophoto imagery, 2018
Splash pads replace the waves at this unique downtown beach.

Woodbine Beach
Well known to be the best place in Toronto to watch fireworks.
8cm orthophoto imagery, 2018
Unusual driftwood washes up on shore.

Well groomed sand and the adjacent park make this beach one of the most family friendly.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2008
Playground with a lake view.

Dunes Beach
The world’s largest baymouth barrier dune formation.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2008
Water is warm and shallow thanks to West Lake.

Closest thing to a tropical paradise in Ontario.
20cm orthophoto imagery, 2008
Off the beaten path, this part of the park is rocky and private.

Happy long weekend!


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