Manitoulin Island

Manitoulin Island is a very special place. Nestled in the heart of the Great Lakes, Manitoulin Island is the largest freshwater island in the world. Locally known in Ojibway as ‘Spirit Island’, it has four main rivers: the Kagawong, Manitou, Blue Jay Creek and Mindemoya, which provide spawning grounds for trout and salmon. The island is accessible year-round via the Little Current Swing Bridge and by the MS Chi-Cheemaun, a passenger ferry that operates daily from late May to early October. 

To learn more about all there is to see and do on Manitoulin Island, scroll down or visit the region's tourism website.

Where is Manitoulin Island?

Manitoulin Island is approximately a two hour drive from Sudbury via the Little Current Swing Bridge, and a two hour ferry from Bruce Peninsula. It lies east of Mackinac Island and separates the larger part of Lake Huron from Georgian Bay to the east and the North Channel to the north. 

Some things to do may not be available due to COVID-19.

For the most up-to-date information on where and when it is safe to travel please visit: covid-19.ontario.ca

Things to Do in Manitoulin Island

Boating, sightseeing, hiking and fishing are popular activities on Manitoulin Island. Explore the Sheguiandah archaeological site, where artifacts dating to 10,000 BC were discovered in 1952. Hike to Bridal Veil Falls and enjoy the different views of the 11 metre waterfall. Named for the area’s unique rock formations, the popular Cup and Saucer Trail leads to one of the most spectacular lookouts on the island. 

Explore the inland lakes on Manitoulin Island - a great place to start is Lake Manitou. The lake is the largest lake in a freshwater island globally and offers unlimited access to fishing, boating and other outdoor activities. You may also want to visit Treasure Island, which is the largest island in a lake, on an island in a lake, in the world! Although motorboats are a popular mode of transportation on Manitoulin Island, they are not allowed on Nameless Lake.

Home to six Anishinaabe First Nations communities, Manitoulin has a rich Indigenous culture. Learn about Indigenous history and traditions on a guided canoe tour or spirit walk or witness a local Pow Wow. 

Manitoulin Island Neighbourhoods & Districts

Manitoulin Island has two incorporated municipalities (Northeastern Manitoulin & the Islands and Gore Bay) eight townships, and six Anishinaabe communities. 

Little Current

The city of Little Current is the largest community in Manitoulin District in Northern Ontario, home to the Little Current Swing Bridge, which allows road access to Manitoulin Island from Highway 6.

Gore Bay

The city boasts one of the best marinas in the Great Lakes and is home to 900 full-time residents. This friendly small town has a medical centre, school, post office, and lots of shops and restaurants to keep visitors busy. Residents enjoy access to all of the amenities found in larger towns without the hustle and bustle of city life.

Things to Know About Visiting Manitoulin Island

Whether you’re still in the planning stages or you’re already on your trip to Manitoulin Island, it’s nice to learn what the locals know.

Great camping spot

Gordon’s Park offers hammock camping and forest camping.

Favourite local gem

At the Great Spirit Circle Trail, you can immerse yourself in Indigenous culture.

Where to watch the sunset

Located on the south shore of Manitoulin Island, Providence Bay Beach is a beautiful stretch of sandy beach that faces the mighty Lake Huron, renowned for its breathtaking sunsets.

Where to go for a hike

Hike the Cup & Saucer Trail for gorgeous views - remember to bring your hiking boots, this one is a little steep.

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