The Bruce Peninsula

The Bruce Peninsula is a compelling place to visit.

tobermory ontarioTobermory ~ The Tip of The Bruce Peninsula

Once you have traveled to the Bruce, we guarantee that you will return, again and again! It is a great travel holiday ldestination. You can explore the various communities, the history, and the events that make this region a great place to visit for a month, a week, a weekend or simply a day trip.


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The Great Lakes Raconteur

If you live in the north eastern United States, or the Province of Ontario, it is not difficult to drive to this part of the Niagara Escarpment and the world-famous Bruce Trail, which has been designated as a World Biosphere region by the United Nations.

We have included driving directions to help you find your way a little easier. These driving directions have been divided into sections. First, we have defined maps according to your geographic access point to the region. And, secondly, we have provided a more leisurely route to allow you to explore the region more thoroughly as you travel from the base of the peninsula in Owen Sound to the tip of the peninsula in Tobermory.

Brilliant Sunrises; Romantic Sunsets...

The Bruce Peninsula is more than a haven for those wishing to hike and explore the natural beauty of this region. Its coastal communities boast excellent harbour facilities for marine craft of all shapes and sizes. As well, there are world-class scuba diving amenities ranging from equipment sales and rentals, to guided tours, and diving lessons. The rugged shoreline of Georgian Bay provides excellent opportunities for rock climbing, fishing, sailing, and stunning scenery, not to mention brilliant sunrises to signal the beginning of your day of adventure or simple relaxation. The sandy Lake Huron shoreline also provides great opportunities not only for sailing and fishing but also for swimming. And, of course there are those romantic sunsets to mark the end of your day.

History and Historic Names
of the Bruce Peninsula

The land mass known today as the Bruce Peninsula has had many names throughout its history. It first appeared on a 1775 map created by the French explorer d’Anville. On this map the peninsula was called “Ouendiagui”. Some historians speculate that “Ouendiagui” is the French spelling, and pronunciation, of a word used by the Huron nation to describe the peninsula. The English later changed the spelling to Wendiaghy. The use of this name did not last long. Although the reason for its passing from use is not known, it is speculated that shortly after the appearance of the map the Huron nation disappeared from the area. The term “Ouendiagui” or “Wendiaghy”, aptly describes the peninsula, as its rough translation is “island or peninsula cut off”. In the 1840s, the area was an Ojibwa hunting ground and was called the “Saugink” or “Sauking” Peninsula after the tribal name of the natives who hunted there. Gradually the name evolved to “Saugeen”. Over the course of time the peninsula has also been called the “Indian” Peninsula.

Shipwrecks, Tobermory & Ferry Service

The northern tip of the peninsula marks the confluence of the waters of Georgian Bay and Lake Huron. Canadian maritime history details the dramatic stories of this region and the countless ships and sailors who have lost their lives in this watery graveyard. Today, thousands of divers from around the world come to explore the shipwrecks that rest at the bottom of the lake bed near Tobermory.

The area around Tobermory is dotted with many interesting and scenic islands. There are glass bottom boat tours which will not only take you over the shipwrecks that rest at the bottom of the clear blue water, but they will also transport you to island paradises of natural beauty such as Flowerpot Island. On the island you can walk along the trails enjoying the scenic beauty. 

The Bruce Peninsula is also an important transportation link between northern Ontario and southern Ontario. For almost a century, ferryboats like the MS Chi Cheemaun, also known as “The Big Canoe”, have sailed the passage between Tobermory and Manitoulin Island carrying passengers and freight.

In the pages that follow we will endeavor to lead you on an exploration of this unique part of the Great Lakes and the province of Ontario. You will find interesting travel routes, historical facts and folklore. At the end of the day there are many great bed and breakfasts, motels, and inns offering you quality accommodations. When it is time to eat, Bruce Peninsula restaurants and cafes offer a wide range of local and exotic culinary treats.

But, most of all you will enjoy the amazing natural beauty of the Bruce Peninsula. Don’t forget your camera to record your memories and the stunning scenery.

Enjoy your trip! 

While you explore the Bruce Peninsula don't forget to take along a copy of my latest book about the peninsula Journey the Bruce Peninsula Past & Present makes a great travel companion as you travel this unique part of Canada's Great Lakes region.

Discover More About the Bruce Peninsula

Getting to the Bruce Peninsula is a relatively easy driving trip. Here are driving directions from three regions to the peninsula.

Bruce Peninsula Lumber History details the impact of the forest products industry on the development of the region.

Bruce Peninsula Lumbering provided the stimulus to develop and grow the pioneer economy on the newly settled Bruce Peninsula. 

Bruce Peninsula Municipal Politics: No matter what the venue, or the issue, seldom is a popular decision made that suits everyone. 

Bruce Peninsula Travel Routes were often a matter of debate because in the early years, land travel was virtually unattainable for settlers and lumbermen alike.

Bruce Peninsula winters could be difficult, especially in pioneer times when transportation connections were limited to only a few months each year.

Colpoys Bay Vista - Awesome! A short drive from either Wiarton or Owen Sound is one of the most magnificent views to be found in the province of Ontario!

Forest Products on the Bruce Peninsula contributed greatly to the growth and development of that region of the province of Ontario.

Gillies Lake: aka Ghost Lake has a mysterious past as its original name, Ghost Lake, implies.

Great Grey Owls on the Bruce Peninsula was a surprise discovery for ornithologists and others. Sadly, the story of their visit had an unfortunate conclusion.

Pioneer Campers: Hope Bay mostly considered the peninsula untamed wilderness and some of the locals were not about to disappoint them!

Pioneer Missionary James Atkey arrived on Colpoys Bay to minister to the native community near Oxenden until a treaty uprooted his parishioners.

Pioneer tourists first visited the Bruce Peninsula in the 1800s and the region continues as a great recreational and tourism destination today!

Pioneer Vacations on the Bruce Peninsula got an eerie start in the Hope Bay region of the peninsula.

Lighthouses  Lighthouses were vital to Georgian Bay Sailing.

A Flowerpot Island cruise is not only entertaining, but it is also very educational as you will see things that you have never viewed before!

Travel the Bruce: Owen Sound to Wiarton  A wonderful journey from Owen Sound to Wiarton.

Travel the Bruce: Wiarton to Tobermory  Relaxing and historic journey.

Bruce Peninsula  The Bruce Peninsula is a compelling place, with a rich history, to visit. Once you have traveled there, we guarantee that you will return, again and again!

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