This Ontario Tour Will Take You On A Magical River Paddle & Sample Sweet Wines

Apple dessert wine, anyone? 🥧🍷

Kayaking on the Beaver River in Ontario. Right: Wine tasting and charcuterie at Georgian Hills Vineyards.
Staff Writer

Kayaking on the Beaver River in Ontario. Right: Wine tasting and charcuterie at Georgian Hills Vineyards.

Did you know that Ontario has a route called the Apple Pie Trail filled with sweet treats and fun adventures? There are so many ways to explore along this driving route, and one tour includes a serene paddle followed up by a wine tasting.

The Paddle and Wine Tasting tour is a sunny day excursion that starts at Free Spirit Tours in Heathcote, Ontario. You can grab your bestie and embark on the self-guided tour, complete with instructions and a map, or you can choose the guided tour if there are at least six of you planning to enjoy this adventure.

You can choose between a kayak, canoe or stand-up paddleboard to cruise along the Beaver River, which you can rent for the hour-long paddle. Keep your eyes peeled for fish and other wildlife, as you glide along the calm waters surrounded by lush trees.

Once your gear is dropped off, you'll head to Georgian Hills Vineyards (or take the shuttle if there's a group of you), for a specialty wine tasting. You can choose four different wines to sip on including their Baked Apple Dessert wine or Frozen to the Core dessert wine, according to Apple Pie Trail, which comes paired with some surprise snacks.

If your group isn't big enough to get the shuttle, you'll need to bring two cars with you for the journey, a spokesperson for Free Spirit Tours told Narcity. This is so one car can be parked at the starting point, and the other can be at the launch spot along the trail.

The shuttle holds six to 14 passengers and comes with a guide who will provide a history of the area, and tell you all about the wildlife you can spot along the river.

There are many other types of self-guided tours to keep the adventures in the Blue Mountain region going.

If you love sweet treats and biking, the Thornbury Sticky Bun Loop leads you on a picturesque ride that stops at some bakeries and a cidery. You can also skip the paddle for a luxury picnic at the winery, or vice versa, and take your time paddling along the river without the tasting stop.

Paddle & Wine Tasting

Price: $75+ self-guided tour per person, $135+ per person guided

When: May to October 2022

Address: 236720 Grey Rd.13, Heathcote, ON (starting point)

Why You Need To Go: You can have a day mixed with water adventures and adult fun, as you go from paddling a river to sampling sweet wines.


Narcity does not condone the overconsumption of alcohol or other substances. If you're going to drink alcohol or consume cannabis, please do so responsibly and only if you're of legal age.

Megan Johnson
Staff Writer
Megan Johnson was a Staff Writer for Narcity Canada's Ontario Desk focused on new netflix shows in Canada and things to do in Ottawa. She is based in Ottawa, Ontario.