Haliburton Highlands

Haliburton Highlands by name and Highlands by nature, mostly because it’s one of the highest regions on the Canadian Shield. Haliburton Highlands raises the standard for all of Ontario in warmth, hospitality and adventure. It’s filled with forests and art, nurtured by local communities who love their home as much as you will. Rising above the surrounding areas, the Haliburton Highland has protected its natural setting for you to come and enjoy. 

Whether you’re exploring in a pack or as a lone traveller, Haliburton Highlands gives you the perfect canvas to showcase your journey. Characterized by the Haliburton Forest and Algonquin Provincial Park, the Highlands have become an outdoor paradise to learn and experience our lush environment. The research and sustainable management of the forests have inspired the neighbouring communities to nurture their homelands. The locals take great pride in their Highlands, and they love to share it with you. 

Adventure awaits in the Haliburton Highlands, where the joy is as much about how you get there as to where you are going. It is all connected by a network of hiking and biking trails, and the spirit of storytelling weaving its way through. Guides are available to teach you the basics and then set you free into the wilderness. As you explore the environment, take inspiration for the colours, textures and heritage. You can see the same inspiration throughout the art community as you travel from town to town. Every season brings a new outlook, and every township gives a new perspective. 

To learn more about all there is to see and do in Haliburton Highlands, scroll down or visit the area’s tourism website.

Where is Haliburton Highlands?

The flagship for the region is Algonquin Provincial Park, located approximately 250 km north of Toronto and 260 km west of Ottawa. There are limited bus services from both Ottawa and Toronto, however, to fully explore the Haliburton Highlands, your best option is to travel by car. Many visitors choose the town of Bancroft as their starting point, almost 230 km from Ottawa and 250 km from Toronto. From there, it is easy to access neighbouring townships and navigate through the forest to any of the magnificent highlights for the region. 

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 Haliburton Highlands

Haliburton Highlands feels like a natural overflow from the Algonquin Provincial Park. As the gorgeous scenery washes over the valley, townships are swept up in the vision of nature and build their unique character from their surroundings. 

Algonquin Provincial Park is the most prominent feature for everything: the Haliburton Highlands, Ontario and all of Canada. It is the first and oldest of all provincial parks, providing a protected reserve for both visitors and environmental researchers. The Park is popular for camping and hiking all year round. Exploring the trails is so easy, Algonquin Provincial Park has been named the top geocaching site in Canada for many years. Nearby Haliburton Forest is equally impressive though it is privately owned and much smaller in the area it covers. The Haliburton Forest is best known for its Wolf Centre and their “Walk in the Clouds” Canopy Tour, part of the longest canopy walkway in the world. These two very different experiences will leave you equally breathless with spectacular views on Nature’s landscape and wildlife. 

Local artists have long been inspired by the environment, with a burgeoning arts scene showcased in almost every town. Live music is offered everywhere, with many open-air festivals celebrated throughout the year. There are also various tours and exhibits coming together to share their fantastic artwork and storytelling with you.

To round out your experience in the Haliburton Highlands, visit Abbey Gardens and share your support for the local community gardening program. You can learn from their sustainability workshops, explore their gardens and hiking trails, or sit back and savour the goods in their onsite restaurant. Wherever you go, the Haliburton Hospitality will surpass even your highest expectations. 

Haliburton Highlands Neighbourhoods & Districts

The Haliburton Highlands is more a collection of forests and parks than townships, which gives the region a warm, earthy feeling. This is where you can reconnect with the people and the places you hold dear. Every town is different, yet connected with the same familiar feeling. Check out a few of our highlights.

Algonquin Provincial Park

The oldest provincial Park in Canada, it is also one of the best parks for camping and wildlife watching.

Haliburton

Home to the stunning Haliburton Sculpture Forest, an ongoing project to support the visual arts community throughout the Highlands. The natural setting provides a beautiful backdrop for local residents and visitors to explore the arts. 

Haliburton Forest

Privately owned and a keystone in sustainable management, Haliburton Forest is famous for its Wolf Centre and Canopy walk. While you’re there, check out the Lake Trout Fishing and picturesque hiking trails.

Minden

Best known for the Minden Wild Water Preserve, used during the 2015 Pan American Games, the venue is open for members and their guests to practice on the professional level courses, which also gives spectators an amazing show.

Sir Sam’s

The name is shared with Sir Sam’s Inn and Spa, and Sir Sam’s Ski and Ride. Both are beloved venues in Haliburton, open year-round and popular with local and visitors alike.

Things to Know About Visiting Haliburton Highlands

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

Hidden gem

The Haliburton Sculpture Forest is a unique collection of 21 sculptures by Canadian and international artists arranged within a series of scenic trails.

Little-known fact

Haliburton County and the village of Haliburton are named after Thomas Chandler Haliburton who was an author, statesman and the first chairman of the Canadian Land and Emigration Company. He was Canada’s first international best-selling author of fiction. 

Great fishing spot

Paudash Lake is famous for its largemouth bass, but is home to several popular fish species and is surrounded by vast conservation areas. 

Where to go for a hike

The Dorset Lookout Tower was built in 1967 as an old fireman’s lookout tower and is surrounded by trails and wildlife.