11 Beach Towns In Ontario With Sandy Shores That Will Make You Forget You're In Canada

Spend your summer in the sand.🏖

Ottawa Staff Writer
Sandy shoreline of Sandbanks beach, Ontario. Right: Food from Mackie's in Port Stanley.

Sandy shoreline of Sandbanks beach, Ontario. Right: Food from Mackie's in Port Stanley.

After a long winter, it's about time to start daydreaming about sandy beaches and days swimming in the sunshine. There are some epic sandy beaches in Ontario, including the top two longest freshwater beaches in the world.

These golden shores are worthy of an Ontario road trip and are located in some cute small towns that shouldn't be overlooked when planning a Canadian vacation. Here are eleven small beach towns in Ontario to start thinking about visiting this summer.

Sauble Beach

Address: Sauble Beach, ON

Why You Need To Go: This is the second-longest freshwater beach in the world and features sandy shores with blue waters. You can jump through the waves and then grab some ice cream as you walk the strip and browse through the shops. If you're looking to beach hop, it's close to some smaller beach towns like Southampton.

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Port Elgin

Address: Port Elgin, ON

Why You Need To Go: If you're wanting a smaller town and a quieter spot, Port Elgin Main Beach is only 25 minutes away from Sauble Beach. On top of the beach areas, there are some small shops and restaurants you can visit and a provincial park nearby where you can camp.

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Port Dover

Address: Port Dover, ON

Why You Need To Go: Along the coast of Lake Erie, this Ontario beach has real palm trees so you'll think you've escaped to the tropics. There's also a wine trail, a picturesque lighthouse and when you're done relaxing in the sand you can play some watersports.

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Grand Bend

Address: Grand Bend, ON

Why You Need To Go: Get ready to party because this beach strip is bumpin', especially on long weekends. After a day of swimming, sunbathing and eating on beachfront patios, you can get dolled up to hit the main strip to check out Grand Bend's nightlife.

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Wasaga Beach

Address: Wasaga Beach, ON

Why You Need To Go: Right on the shores of the crystal blue Georgian Bay, this town boasts the longest freshwater beach in the world at 14-kilometres long. It's also a great place to canoe along the Nottawasaga River.

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Crystal Beach

Address: Crystal Beach, ON

Why You Need To Go: This lakefront community stretches right down to the sandy shores of the beaches. Bay Beach is the main spot to go for a dip, but you can also enjoy a picnic with stunning water views at the Waterfront Park or grab a bite at one of the nearby restaurants.

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Picton

Address: Picton, ON

Why You Need To Go: This town is the largest in Prince Edward County and is home to the stunning sandy shores of Sandbanks Provincial Park. It is a quaint place filled with markets and festivals in the summer that you can explore after checking out the sand dunes.

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Bayfield

Address: Bayfield, ON

Why You Need To Go: This little Ontario village feels like you're exploring a hidden town in Europe with its historic buildings and cute shops. Pier Beach is the most popular among beach lovers, but if you walk to the end of Howard Street you can find a wooden staircase leading to what feels like a secret beach.

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Port Stanley

Address: Port Stanley, ON

Why You Need To Go: You can sunbathe in this quaint harbour village with sandy beaches, patios and local shops. If Main Beach is crowded, Little Beach isn't far and you can grab lunch on the way.

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Southampton

Address: Southampton, ON

Why You Need To Go: This small town is about ten minutes down the road from Port Elgin, so if one beach is busy you're close to another cute spot. There are a few beach areas that line the coast of Lake Huron here, including one with grassy sand dunes.

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Tobermory

Address: Tobermory, ON

Why You Need To Go: While you won't find white sand around this harbour village, the pebble shores help make the surrounding waters some of the bluest you've ever seen. You'll think you're on the Caribbean coast as you float in these crystal clear waters. If you're looking for a sandy beach though, you could check out Singing Sands Beach which is a short drive away from Tobermory's main drag.

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Before you get going, check our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

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