Ontario is full of great summer destinations, and if you're looking to soak up the last few rays of summer, this gorgeous beach on Lake Huron should definitely be on your summer bucket list.
There seems to be this prevailing idea of Canada as a place that only offers snow, cold weather and maple syrup. This couldn't be farther from the truth, and there are so many amazing places to bask in the warm weather without planning a pricey trip south.
One Ontario beach that could give our southern neighbours a run for their money is Grand Bend Beach in Grand Bend, Ontario. It's one of Canada's best beaches, being one of only 22 in the country to have received Blue Flag status for its commitment to strict water quality and safety.
Located about an hour from London and just under three hours from Toronto, the beach boasts around 20 acres of sandy Lake Huron shoreline, complete with crystal clear waters and a vibrant surrounding community. The west-facing beach also boasts some of the best sunsets in the area.
The entire town of Grand Bend is walkable from the beach and offers dozens of restaurants and shops for you to refuel at after your day of sun and surf. If you plan to make a weekend of it, nearby Pinery Provincial Park has even more beaches, coastal trails and sand dunes to explore.
In the summer, Grand Bend Beach is open for public access from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., with lifeguards on duty from 11 a.m. to 5 or 6 p.m., depending on the day. The beach house has public washrooms with showers as well as an observation deck with panoramic views of both the harbour and the town. A boardwalk, splash pad and playground are also available.
Grand Bend Beach
Price: Beach access is free, but parking rates vary.
Address: 90 Main St. W., Grand Bend, ON
Why You Need To Go: Milk the most out of the last few weeks of summer at this gorgeous sandy beach with clean blue waters that'll make you feel like you've taken a trip south of the border.
Accessibility: Accessible washrooms, elevator to the viewing deck.
This article has been updated since it was originally published on April 3, 2017.
Before you get going, check out our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.