Algonquin Provincial Park is located about 300 km north of Toronto, Ontario, and is the province’s largest park. In addition, Algonquin Park is the oldest Park of Ontario and one of Canada’s best known. Algonquin offers 7,725 sq km of semi-wilderness, complete with forests, hundreds of lakes, and rivers. Canoe enthusiasts enjoy more than 1,500 km of canoe routes, many of them interconnected by portage paths. A paradise for all outdoor friends, Algonquin is known for its abundant wildlife, great fishing and of course camping. The Algonquin Logging Museum brings alive the history of logging. Don’t miss the Algonquin Visitor Centre, where you can learn about the park’s human and natural history.
Algonquin Provincial Park is situated in a transition zone between deciduous and coniferous forests. Therefore both forest types are found within the park. The park’s rich wildlife, with 45 species of mammals, 262 species of birds and 30 species of reptiles and amphibians, gives visitors great opportunities to catch a glimpse of a wild animal. Mammals include moose, white-tailed deer, beaver, black bear and wolves. Reptiles include turtles and snakes – all of which are not venomous, while amphibians include salamanders, frogs and toads. If you are out to see wildlife, go either in the early morning or in the evening to enhance your chances to see what you are here for.
Algonquin Park in figures
Algonquin Provincial Park has a total size of 7,725 square kilometres.
The abundant wildlife of Algonquin includes 45 species of mammals. 262 species of birds, 30 different reptiles and amphibians, 50 species of fish, as well as approx. 7,000 species of insects.
The rich flora of Algonquin Park consists out of more than 1,000 species.
There are more than 1,000 species of fungi within the park boundaries.
Algonquin Provincial Park has been founded in 1893.
From Toronto, Highway 11 brings you to the town of Huntsville. Take Highway 60 to the town of Dwight. The West Gate of Algonquin Provincial Park is located just east of Dwight.
Highway 60 runs through the south end of Algonquin Park, linking the West Gate with the East Gate near the town of Whitney.
From Ottawa, the northern part of the park is accessible by Trans-Canada-Highway 17.
For travelers without vehicle, Hammond Transportation offers service from Toronto via Huntsville. For more information call 705-645-5431.
There are two information centres along Highway 60, at the West and East Gate. Both will provide you with valuable information for your stay at Algonquin Provincial Park.
Museums in Algonquin Park
Algonquin Visitor Centre
Location: 43 km from the West Gate on Highway 60. Open every day from May to October. The rest of the year it is open on weekends only.
Opened in 1993, the Algonquin Visitor Centre displays the park’s human and natural history with world-class exhibits. There is an excellent bookstore, as well as a restaurant. The Algonquin Room features exhibitions of Algonquin art.
For more information call 705-633-5572.
Algonquin Logging Museum
Location: 54.5 km from the West Gate on Highway 60. Open May to October.
The Algonquin Logging Museum showcases the interesting history of logging in the Algonquin area. Watch the video presentation and walk the 1.3 km interpretive trail. Learn about Algonquin’s human history and don’t forget to visit the museum’s excellent bookstore.
For more information call 613-637-2828.
Trails in Algonquin Park
There is a trail for everyone in Algonquin Provincial Park, ranging from short leisurely walks to treks of several days’ duration. Algonquin’s beauty can be explored walking, bicycling or skiing. For the very special experience try dog sledding in the winter wonderland of Algonquin. There are two bicycle trails along the Highway 60 corridor - the Minnesing Mountain Bike Trail and the Old Railway Bike Trail.
Day hikers find 14 different trails along Highway 60 corridor. Three more trails can be found at the North and East sides of the park.
Mizzy Lake Trail
Access: At km 15.4
If you decide for this 11 km trail, you should start early and plan a full day of excursions into the beauty and wildlife of Algonquin Provincial Park. On your way you will pass nine ponds and small lakes and have excellent chances of seeing wildlife.
Access: at km 40.3
See about 80 huge, old White Pines, as well as a 1880s logging camp. The 2.9 km loop explains the pine ecology and the park’s logging history. Learn about these magnificent pine trees and how they came to be here.
Access: 11 km past Sand Lake Gate, on the park’s East Side
Witness the park’s most breathtaking river gorge. The 1.4 km loop leads along the gorge’s rim and explains the canyon’s history and ecology.
Algonquin Park offers three backpacking trails ranging from 6 to 88 km in length. Explore the park’s backcountry and spend some days hiking and camping surrounded by breathtaking wilderness.
The Western Uplands Backpacking Trail
Access: At km 3 or at the Rain Lake Access Point, approx. 35 km east from Highway 11 at the village of Emsdale.
This trail offers loops ranging from 32 km to 88 km. Challenging trail for intermediate or expert backpackers.
The Highland Backpacking Trail
Access: At km 29.7
This trail offers 19 and 35 km loops. Enjoy some excellent scenery with a number of lakes and some great lookouts. Some uphill hiking is required!
The Eastern Pines Trail
Access: At the Achray Campground on the Park’s East Side.
This trail offers 6 and 15 km loops. This is the best bet for novice backpackers.
For complete trail maps visit this website.
Camping at Algonquin Provincial Park
There are eight organized campgrounds along Highway 60 where you can stay with your tent or trailer. Reservation is required and can be done by phone at 1-888-ONT-PARK, that's 1-888-668-7275. There are some peripheral campgrounds, if you decide to explore the northern part of Algonquin Park. Even though these peripheral campgrounds feature no modern conveniences they certainly have their old-fashioned charm.
Canoeing at Algonquin Provincial Park
Algonquin is a heaven for all canoeists – beginner to old hands. There are more than 1,500 km of canoe routes in the Park Interior to explore the rugged beauty of Algonquin Provincial Park. If you don’t have your own equipment, a number of outfitters are available to rent canoes and gear. You should plan your trip well in advance. Especially in summer, only a certain number of canoeists are permitted at each canoe route. The Park Interior can only be accessed by canoe or on foot. There is a map brochure Canoe Routes of Algonquin Provincial Park available at any Algonquin Gate or you can order it in advance here.
Winter at Algonquin Provincial Park
Algonquin Park is a four-season playground and being here in winter gives you a different kind of experience. Cross-country skiing is just one of the many activities that await you in the winter wonderland of Algonquin. Three trail networks with a total length of more than 100 km are reserved for cross-country skiing only. Fen Lake Ski Trail and Leaf Lake Ski Trail are packed and groomed on a regular basis. Minnesing Wilderness Ski Trail however is not groomed.
If you are here in winter you should try dog sledding! It is an once-in-a-lifetime kind of experience. Passing silently through the snow-covered woodlands, with the dog’s panting being the only sound, makes you believe you are in a complete different world. Commercial operators are available in three locations within the park, two of which are located along Highway 60.
Another great idea is exploring the park on snowshoes. You may be able to spot some tracks of deer, moose, fox and wolves or even the animals themselves.
Accommodations in the area
Couples Resort - Algonquin Park
Galeairy Lake Road
Arrowhead Motor Inn
210 Arrowhead Park Rd
Doeview Cottages and B & B
572 Ferguson Road
The Roundstone Inn
5017 Hwy 124
211 ArrowheadPark Rd