If you’re looking for something super chill to do this summer, then strap on your hiking boots and head out to Westminster Ponds. The environmentally significant area (ESA) is teeming with wildlife, winding boardwalk trails, amazing lookout points, and 5 peaceful kettle ponds.

The ponds were formed 13,000 years ago from melted pieces of left-behind glaciers. Located in London, Ontario, roughly 2 hours outside of Toronto, these ponds are the perfect tranquil travel destination to add to your summer bucket list. By hiking along this boardwalk trail near Toronto you can discover these hidden gems you never knew existed! 

There are three main access points to the ESA, each with adequate parking and visitor information kiosks. From there you’ll find a combination of clearly-marked boardwalk and clay trails. While the trails are well-maintained, they tend to get quite muddy in the early spring, making summer and fall the best time to visit. Many choose to visit in the winter as well, but you might need to bring your snowshoes for that.

Remaining mostly flat with only a few up-hill areas, these trails make the perfect hike for beginners. The sounds of traffic and near-by city bustle quickly fade away once you take your first few steps into this hidden gem. You can spend the day feeling like you’ve travelled for days into a remote forest, but once you’ve had enough there are a number of local restaurants and shops nearby.

It is important to remember that this area is an ESA. That means it's exceptionally important to keep the ponds litter-free and to respect all of the posted rules. You can visit Westminster ponds every day of the year from 6 am to 10 pm.

Westminster Ponds

Location: London Ontario

Price: Free

Why you need to go: Every once in a while we all need an escape from our busy every-day lives, and Westminster Ponds is the perfect place to enjoy all of the peaceful beauty that nature has to offer.