By: Jim Bamboulis
It’s a retreat. A place to let your eyes gaze out onto an endless sky, an endless lake. To get inspired, to breathe. And it’s all within driving distance of Toronto. I’m talking about beautiful and serene Bayfield, Ontario (map).
Bayfield sits on the edge of Lake Huron. It’s only about 2 1/2 hours west of Toronto and yet, often overlooked by the bigger, glitzy coastal towns along Huron. Sauble Beach for example is a couple of hours north and attracts so many people that it’s often hard to even find a space to lay your towel down on the sand (or even space in the water) without violating someone else’s personal space.
Grand Bend is about 30 minutes south and again, it’s so crowded you may not get that beach space you want.
Don’t get me wrong, Sauble and Grand Bend are amazing places with so much to do and see. But if you want serenity and space, a place where you can feel time slow right down for you, then hit Bayfield. Great for young and old, couples, families or even solo. It’s between the two giants and in my opinion, better!
Look out into the lake you’ll see something sticking 12 feet up above the surface. It’s part of a vessel, the Lynda Hindman, which was hauled from Goderich to Bayfield about 30 years ago to use as a break wall and prevent further erosion of the beach. Apparently, the brigadier decided to leave it out there. That and nasty storms over the past three decades have reportedly broken up the vessel. What remains sticking up is the stern. With the water level so low, it allows for it to be seen and climbed on. Swimmers often head out and stand on it.
Love cute, charming and intimate historic centres? Yup, you know where I’m going with this. Bayfield’s got that too. Founded in the early 1830s, Bayfield has a stroll-worthy downtown, complete with green space, inn’s, rustic restaurants and shops. But if you want to get beyond the surface, consider a walking tour. There’s plenty to choose from.
And finally, you can’t talk about Lake Huron and Bayfield without mentioning the sunsets. They’re epic and people set up camp early in the evening at Pioneer Park for the best seat in the house. It’s a beauty park during the day and offers an amazing view at dusk. Bring a picnic and take your time.
There you have it! Bayfield, Ontario. Peaceful, beautiful, historic with an awesome beach and a surreal sunset. Perfect for everyone. Come early and leave late. Definitely go while the weather is amazing. You’ll love it!
Been to Bayfield? Have something to share that we missed? Let us know below.
Thanks everyone and happy travels!