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Wasaga Beach

Wasaga Beach Provincial Park - main photo of the park

What you'll like:

  • Wasaga Beach is the longest freshwater beaches in the world with 14 kilometres of sandy, safe shoreline and outstanding sunsets.
  • Wasaga Beach Provincial Park is the first provincial park in Canada awarded the Blue Flag designation for its efforts to manage Wasaga’s shoreline according to international environmental standards. For more information check www.BlueFlag.ca
  • A natural area of 6.8 hectares that protects habitat for nesting shorebirds and wildlife, including the endangered Piping Plover.
  • The Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre officially opened in 2012 to celebrate the War of 1812 Bicentennial and to highlight the rich natural and cultural resources of the Wasaga Beach area. The Welcome Centre is the gateway to Nancy Island Historic Site which features a theatre, museum, and replica Great Lakes lighthouse.
  • Wasaga Nordic & Trail Centre (Summer) – Starting location for over 50 kilometres of hiking trails, including the Pine Trail (with accompanying trail guide) and sections of the Ganaraska Trail.
  • Wasaga Nordic & Trail Centre (Winter) - Open in the winter for cross-country skiing, skate-skiing, and snowshoeing. Rentals, lessons, light snacks and selected merchandise are available.

Camping

Wasaga Beach Provincial Park is a day-use only park.  Parks that offer camping nearby are Awenda and Craigleith

Highlights of Things to Do

This 14 kilometre, sandy beach on Georgian Bay attracts thousands every summer. Visitors can also enjoy hiking and cross-country ski trails through sand dunes and pine-oak forests; and a historic site that commemorates a War of 1812 naval battle; military re-enactments; natural and cultural history and family programs.


Just the Facts

 
Hiking
Take only pictures, leave only footprints: don't bring any plants, animals or other natural objects with you. Park regulations prohibit this. For more information on Leave No Trace practices, visit www.leavenotrace.ca.

The dunes area of Wasaga Beach Provincial Park offers 30 km of trails. As you enter the trail system you will be passing through an area known as the raised beaches. These are the remnants of a glacial lake that covered the Wasaga Beach area close to 10,000 years ago. As you continue along the trail you will see hills that are the beginning of the foredunes. These are the largest and least disturbed set of parabolic sand dunes in Ontario. Approximately 700 different types of plants and 230 species of birds can be seen in this fragile dune area. Recent improvements to hiking in the Wasaga Beach area include 17 kilometres of the Ganaraska Trail which travel through the dunes area.

 
Canoeing

The Nottawasaga Canoe Route is 32 km in length and can be paddled in one day. Brochures are available at the Chamber of Commerce or the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority.

Canoe rentals are available through private companies in the Wasaga Beach area.

 
Swimming

Wasaga’s 14 kilometer long beach draws thousands of visitors each summer. Families enjoy safe swimming in the warm, shallow waters and playing on the wide sandy beach. The park is divided into eight beach areas each with its own parking lot.

 
Boating

Nottawasaga Bay is suitable for many types of watercraft, especially large motorboats, sailboats and windsurfers. Boats can be rented from one of several marinas in the Town of Wasaga Beach. Beach Area 1 offers a boat launch with ample parking for vehicles and boat trailers.

 
Fishing

Fishing is best from a boat, but you can also try your luck anywhere near the Nottawasaga River bank within park boundaries. A fishing access point is located in the dunes area of the park. You can catch Rainbow Trout, Smallmouth Bass, splake and pickerel - especially in the spring and fall. Boat launch facilities in Beach Area 1 allow easy access to Georgian Bay.

 
Biking

Cycling is permitted on the trail network that runs throughout Beach Areas 1 through 5. Cycling is also permitted along the Waterfront Trail which traverses through both town and park lands.

 
Natural Heritage Education

Park naturalists and historians at Wasaga Beach Provincial Park deliver educational programs that highlight the rich natural and cultural heritage of the park throughout the spring, summer, and fall. All of the programs offered are family oriented and include spirit nights, campfires, children’s programs and guided nature hikes. Please note that children must be accompanied by an adult. 

Nancy Island Historic Site
Nancy Island has served as a historic site since 1928 and is the most viable and related site to the War of 1812 in Simcoe County and the Georgian Bay Region. It represents a major event during the War or 1812 – HMS Nancy’s August 14, 1814 battle against three American Schooners. The island houses the charred hull and artefacts of the HMS Nancy from this pivotal moment in Canadian history. Today, the borders of Canada are a direct result of the valiant struggles of the Nancy and her crew. Join park staff as they bring the story of the HMS Nancy and her crew to life! Watch an award-winning video presentation, tour the site, participate in a musket or cannon demonstration, and interact with historical characters from Wasaga’s past.

 
Birding

In 2005, after a 30 year absence from this area, the endangered Piping Plover returned to nest at Wasaga Beach Provincial Park.  Park staff closely monitor these birds throughout the spring and summer, and nest enclosures are erected around successful breeding sites. Hundreds of volunteers, known as the Piping Plover Guardians, also help to monitor these enclosures on a daily basis, as well as provide outreach to beachgoers. For more information on volunteer opportunities with the Piping Plover Guardian Program, please contact the Park Office.

In the high dunes area warblers, sparrows, owls and the Pileated Woodpecker are commonly spotted.

 
Winter Activities

Cross Country Skiing/Snowshoeing
Wasaga Beach offers some of the most exciting nordic ski terrain (link to trail map) in Central Ontario with over 30 kilometres of groomed trails. Expert skiers can challenge themselves on the High Dunes Trail while beginner skiers can choose the more leisurely Blueberry Trail. The Wasaga Trail Centre offers modern equipment rentals, light refreshments, and warm-up and outback ski shelters to warm up a lunch on a crisp winter day. Quiet skiers will be rewarded with wildlife viewing as White-tailed Deer and winter birds are abundant. Check the Ontario Parks Ski Report or call the Wasaga Trail Centre at (705)429-0943 for trail conditions, rental and ski rates and general winter program information.
Snowshoe rentals and a 10 kilometre snowshoe trail are also available.

Amenities

Enjoy eight different beach areas offering a range of amenities from comfort stations to simple vault privies.  Personal floatation devices (PFDs) and all-terrain wheelchairs are available (free with a deposit) to help you enjoy the world’s longest freshwater beach in comfort and safety.

The new Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre offers a glimpse into the area’s storied past. Boat launches are available in several locations and will lead you to excellent fishing and day-long canoe tripping. The Wasaga Beach Provincial Park Trail Centre is a great starting point for winter and summer trail activities. No equipment? We rent cross-country skis and snowshoes!

Other amenities include boat launches, visitor centre, picnic shelter and day-use area.

Just the Facts

 
Comfort Station(s)

Comfort stations are located in Beach Areas 1 through 6. Vault privies are available at Allenwood and New Wasaga Beaches. No shower or change facilities are available.

 
Flush Toilets

Flush toilets are located at the Beach Areas 1 through 6 comfort stations, the Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre, and at Wasaga Trail Centre during the winter months.

 
Barrier Free Access

Available at all comfort stations, the Park Office, the Wasaga Trail Centre, the Welcome Centre, and specific areas of the Nancy Island Historic site.

 
Day Use Area

Wasaga Beach is a day-use park and many visitors come for the exceptional beaches.

 
Boat Launch

A provincial park boat launch can be found in Beach Area 1 at the far east end of the parking lot, and a municipal boat launch is located adjacent to the Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre parking lot.

Canoe launches are located at Schooner Town Heritage Site (off Oxbow Dr.) and at the Wasaga Sports Park (Klondike Park Road).

 
Rentals

Cross-country ski and snowshoe rentals are available during the winter months.

Personal Floatation Devices (PFDs) are also available for a refundable deposit. PFDs are available at the gatehouses located at Beach Areas 1 through 6. All-terrain wheelchairs are available at the Park Office on a first-come, first-served basis (a refundable deposit is required).

 
Park Store

The Wasaga Beach Welcome Centre has a gift shop that has collectibles, gifts and light snacks.

 
Picnic Shelter

Small picnic shelters are available in Beach Area 1 on a first-come, first-served basis. NO RESERVATIONS.

 
Visitor Centre

As part of the War of 1812 Bicentennial, a new Welcome Centre was built at Nancy Island Historic Site. Nancy Island has served as a historic site since 1928 and is the most viable and related site to the War of 1812 in Simcoe County and the Georgian Bay Region. It represents a major event during the War of 1812 - HMS Nancy’s August 14, 1814 battle against three American schooners. The island houses the charred hull and artefacts of the HMS Nancy from the pivotal moment in Canadian history. Today, the borders of Canada are a direct result of the valiant struggle of the Nancy and her crew.

The Welcome Centre houses a gift shop, tourist information, washrooms and interpretation relating to both Nancy Island and Wasaga Beach’s rich natural and cultural history.

Park Location

Fire Ban

None

There is no fire ban at this time.

Boil Water

No

There is no boil water advisory at this time.

Beach Posting

No

There is no beach posting at this time.

Wasaga Beach Provincial Park

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