You'veprobably heard of Niagara by now — the towering, touristy falls; the fun-filled wineries of Niagara-on-the-Lake; and the underrated Niagara Benchlands. But there's more just waiting to be discovered along the stunning Niagara Peninsula Watershed this summer.
Within this great region are 41 conservation areas home to an abundance of natural beauty and outdoor activities for all. Even those who prefer sleeping on a mattress that doesn't inflate can appreciate the respite and peace that comes with some good ol' fresh air and forest bathing.
If you're in need of a city break this summer, the hidden gems of this area are an easy drive from Toronto (most destinations are under two-hours away). Stay the night or weekend at one of the hundreds of campsites near the breathtaking waters of Long Beach or Chippawa Creek. Along the shores of the beautiful Lake Erie, Long Beach Conservation Area has swimming, fishing, volleyball and plenty of spots for scenic picnicking with your name on it.
Not too far from Long Beach is a picturesque family campground along the banks of the Welland River, home of Dils Lake, where you can swim or paddle the day away. Just remember, be kind to nature and leave only footprints behind. While these gorgeous natural green spaces have so much to offer, they're also sensitive environmental areas that are home to a variety of wildlife and plants.
For nature lovers, cyclists and outdoor gadabouts alike, the Watershed is an absolute dream. The best way to experience all of its conservation areas is with a NaturePlus Pass, which provides unlimited access to diverse ecosystems, trails and more.
From fishing in Chippawa Creek to bird-watching at Beamer Memorial Conservation Area, there is plenty of wildlife, waterfalls, and adventures to enjoy — take a dip, try your hand at water sports like kayaking, paddle boarding, or immerse yourself in the unique heritage and culture within the NPCA conservation areas. Use your GPS to discover hidden treasures within the parks. Who knows what you'll discover in the Watershed, but something tells us it's going to be spectacular.