Looking for epic road trips from Toronto Ontario? Keep reading!
There are few things better than hopping in your car and taking to the open roads for an adventure. It doesn’t matter if it’s a two-hour road trip or a week-long journey.
Toronto is in a prime location, located in the heart of the great lakes, it is the perfect base to explore. You don’t even need to go far because there are so many awesome things to do and places to visit in Ontario.
We’ve compiled a guide to road trips from Toronto to suit all time frames. And spoiler alert, expect a lot of lakes, jaw-dropping scenery, and outdoor activities.
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Table of Contents
Road Trips from Toronto
One-Day Road Trips
Who said road trips have to be overnight? Ontario is such a spectacular province and a lot of stunning road trip destinations sit on Toronto’s doorstep.
Sometimes you simply don’t have a few nights to spare. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t jump into your car and head on a road-tripping adventure.
Check out some of our favorite day trips from Toronto to give you that well-deserved break.
Distance from Toronto: 120 miles | 193 km
No guide to Toronto or Ontario would be complete without a mention of the renowned falls. It is one of the most popular road trip destinations from almost anywhere in Canada and many American states.
Three waterfalls make up the Niagara Falls with the Horseshoe Falls sitting right on the border between the USA and Canada. Offering spectacular views and amazing hiking opportunities, it’s no wonder that the falls get around 30 million visitors per year.
Driving from Toronto, you can make a detour past Niagara-On-The-Lake sitting on Lake Ontario. It is a scenic town, perfect for a mid-journey stroll and snack break.
For the keen hikers, or those hunting for beautiful views, Dundas Peak is en route to the falls. This short trail leads you up to a plateau atop a sheer cliff. The hike passes by small waterfalls and ends at an incredible viewpoint.
Only two hours drive from Toronto and a couple of great pit-stops along the way, Niagara falls is a perfect road trip option. And if you’re looking for a unique and exciting experience, book your Niagara Falls boat tour here.
Distance from Toronto: 129 miles | 207.6 km
This is a day trip option because of its close proximity to Toronto. But really, it makes for a perfect weekend away packed with exciting outdoor activities. The rugged landscape is home to the sparkling waters of Georgian Bay, freshwater lakes, and a plethora of wildlife.
This list of outdoor activities is endless. Adventure through the pine forests and rocky shores on a mountain bike, by foot on the many hiking trails or on horseback. Or spend the day exploring the coves, islands, and waterways with a rented boat.
Of course, Lake Muskoka offers almost every water sport imaginable. And if a day isn’t enough to soak up the natural splendor, spend the night in one of the many cottages dotted around the lake.
Distance from Toronto: 98 miles | 158 km
Blue Mountain is packed with thrilling activities for adventure seekers all year round. Keen skiers flock to the resort in winter, with some of the best weather conditions and guaranteed snow-blanketed slopes. If you’re visiting in winter, don’t forget to prepare with essential Canadian winter clothes.
But sunny skies and autumn colors are just as lovely at the resort. You can soak in Scandinavian baths, go zip lining, or river kayaking.
Of course, the star of the show is the Ridge Runner Mountain Coaster. A self-drive roller coaster that reaches a speed of up to 42 km/h and glides through the stunning Blue Mountain terrain.
If you’re looking for a relaxing day trip without too many adrenaline-inducing activities, Blue Mountain has a ton of treats for foodies. There are so many fun things to do, to suit every person, you’re sure to have a great day at the resort.
Overnight Road Trips
Are you looking for a weekend getaway? Or maybe you’ve got a day off work and you want to maximize your free time. We’re always trying to squeeze in a night or two away and an overnight road trip is one of the best ways to do that.
By giving yourself a bit more time, you can reach destinations that are a bit further away and fully relax.
These are our top picks for overnight road trips based on distance, activities and scenic routes.
Algonquin Provincial Park
Distance from Toronto: 170 miles | 273 km
If you’re looking for somewhere remote, with stunning scenery and thousands of lakes, then this is for you. The park has 2400 lakes, islands, dense forests, and waterfalls. A wonderland of natural landscapes that is a paradise for hikers, campers and canoers.
This park has so many beautiful, activity-packed areas to keep you busy. There is a range of hiking trails to suit every visitor. You can take a 4-mile stroll or head off on a 50-mile weekend slog, camping along the way.
Slip and slide down the exhilarating natural water slide at High Falls and Barron Canyon. Or explore the hidden areas of the park by canoe, visiting spots that are not accessible by road.
Look out for moose and bears, and of course a ton of colorful birds! Nature lovers will find it difficult to exhaust all the outdoor fun to be had at Algonquin Park.
Route 60 is the easiest way to get from Toronto into the park. However, if you want to get deeper into the park then you should go by way of the Trans-Canada highway.
Book a night at Arowhon Pines to fully experience the park. It sits on the shores of Little Joe Lake and offers free use of kayaks and canoes!
Prince Edward County and Kingston
Distance from Toronto: 110 miles | 177 km to Prince Edward County. 162 miles | 261 km to Kingston
This is the epitome of a classy road trip, with all the essential road trip requirements for those who enjoy the finer things in life. It is a beautiful drive along the north shore of Lake Ontario, passing through vineyards and scenic towns. We recommend visiting both Prince Edwards County and Kingston, and staying a night in both if possible!
Prince Edward County would be your first stop on the way from Toronto. The county is located on an island which can be accessed by one of four bridges, or by ferry. The county boasts a lot of amazing restaurants and, of course, wine! Follow The Taste Trail for a food and wine experience. And don’t forget to stop by Sandbanks Provincial Park.
From Prince Edward County, you can jump back on the road to carry on to Kingston. Or, you can take the ferry, which is a fun way to break up your driving and add some road trip flavor.
Kingston is known as ‘the Limestone City’ for its elaborate and opulent 19th-century buildings. It is a picturesque riverside town with a touch of European ambiance because of the architecture. It is also home to a UNESCO World Heritage Site – Fort Henry in Kingston.
You can continue your road trip up to Gananoque if you have enough time or dedicate an entire road trip to the thousand islands.
For beautiful views of the lake and everything you need for a night or two away, book the Drake Devonshire in Prince Edward County.
Thousand Islands and Gananoque
Distance from Toronto: 178 miles | 286 km
There are a thousand and one reasons you should embark on this road trip, and a thousand of those reasons are islands. Whether you’ve continued along St Lawrence River from Kingston, or have missioned up directly from Toronto, this is an ideal road trip destination.
The area has no shortage of stunning scenery, quaint towns, world-class restaurants, and fishing spots. There are also some quirky museums about the history of the area. You can visit the unfinished Boldt Castle or explore the hidden wine cellars of the lesser-known Singer Castle.
Many of the islands have pretty shallow sand beaches, perfect for a day of lazing in the sun and wallowing in the water. Or prepare yourself for a brutal fishing fight to reel in a pike at some of the fishing hot spots. Book a boat cruise of Thousand Islands here.
Gananoque is the gateway to the Thousand Islands and a great place to set your base and spend the night.
Bruce Peninsula National Park
Distance from Toronto: 179 miles | 288 km
A wildlife haven, you have a good chance of coming across some of the animals which call this park home on a hiking trail. From black bears to coyotes, and smaller residents such as chipmunks and porcupines, this national park feels wild and untamed.
The park sits on a rocky outcrop separating Lake Huron and Georgian Bay and has a number of famous trails and popular Instagram hot-spots. The Bruce trail is extremely popular and will lead you to the Overhanging Point. The rock, which juts out from a cliff, is an awesome photo opportunity with a backdrop of magnificent views.
Another popular photo spot is the large archway Grotto formation along the peninsula’s coast. It is a stunning rock formation leading into a cave which is a very popular (and busy) site.
This is an amazing group road trip destination from Toronto and is a fun spot to visit with friends. Choosing a holiday house with lake views and a barbecue area is perfect for hanging out with friends.
Destinations for More Than One Night
Oh, how sweet it is to have the luxury of a few days, or even a week, to leisurely drive from one spot to the next. Most of the time we’re eager to jump on flights to maximize our time in the destination.
But you know how the saying goes. It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. Check out our favorite picks for road trips that deserve more than a night.
Distance from Toronto: 370 miles | 595 km
Sitting between Lake Huron and Georgian Bay to the north of Bruce Peninsula is the largest freshwater island in the world. Manitoulin Island is an astounding 1000 square miles and the island has four rivers and over 100 lakes. So it’s an island in a lake, which has its own lakes. Pretty amazing, right?
Besides the island being a freshwater paradise of natural landscapes, it is also home to a large Anishinaabe population. Visitors can learn about the unique indigenous culture by visiting dedicated reserves or the villages dotted around the island.
There are a few routes you can take to get to Manitoulin Island. And it might be worth it to maximize your road-trip sights by taking different roads in and out.
You can take a ferry from Tobermory on the Bruce Peninsula. Or you can drive around the lake via Greater Sudbury, which is a worthwhile stop to break up the long drive. Look out for the Little Current Swing Bridge on route 6 from the north. This is a unique bridge that can turn sideways to let boats pass.
Detroit United States
Distance from Toronto: 233 miles | 375 km
Toronto is just a whisker away from the USA in almost every direction. So it’s fitting that there is at least one destination on this list that you’ll need your passport for.
A vibrant city bursting with culture and history, Detroit is a unique city road-trip destination from Toronto. The art and music scene is booming and has become an intrinsic part of the city’s culture.
You can visit the awesome Motown Museum to see a glimpse into the history of some of America’s R&B legends.
There is almost something exciting happening in Detroit, so planning your trip to coincide with a local event is the best way to get the full experience.
The city’s poignant history is tangible in its architecture and atmosphere. Book a walking tour of Detroit to journey through the rise, fall, and renewal of the city.
Ready, Set, Go!
What are you waiting for? With so many amazing road tripping options from Toronto in every direction, you must be itching to get going.
A complete escape into nature, treating yourself to a wine tour, or jumping the border into the USA is all within driving distance of Toronto.
Whether you only have a day to spare, or you want to take a leisurely trip, this guide has got you covered.
READ: More Road trips in Canada