My family loves to get away for a few days or more, and we want to do it as often as we can! While we definitely have our favourite spots to visit, we also love to discover new places that we haven’t visited before. When you have a large family it can be a bit of a challenge to find that perfect spot that will have something for everyone to enjoy.


The Kawarthas is the perfect place for my family because it has so many fun things to do! There is definitely something here for each of us. The Kawarthas Northumberland includes the counties of Northumberland and the Kawarthas, the city of Peterborough and the city of Kawartha Lakes. The region is located just east and northeast of Toronto with car access along east highway 401 and north up highways 35 and 115. The biggest geographic feature are the many lakes, rivers and canals that makeup the Trent Severn Waterway (including the world’s highest hydraulic locks in Peterborough and Kirkfield). The region has a history in the fur trade, logging and mining and it’s ports play an important role in the shipping industry.

If you ever bore of watching the locks in the area (I can’t imagine you would…I love to see them), you will have a variety of other outdoor activities to keep you busy. Popular activities include boating, fishing, hunting, hiking, cycling, golfing, bird watching, horseback riding and water sports. It’s a hub of activity!IMG_6285

One of the really unique activities I noticed in Kawarthas Northumberland is the Butter Tart Tour. Did you know that they don’t have butter tarts in the US? I just recently learned this and I was shocked! I feel really badly for them, and I hope that my US friends can make it to the Kawarthas to take part in the Butter Tart Tour. There are over thirty bakeries in the area who make and sell butter tarts, and you can try them all! Now I love a butter tart so I would be thrilled to take this tour. If food is your thing, you will want to visit for more than the butter tarts. Farmer’s Markets, restaurants and beer and wine are all waiting for you there.

off-roadCycling isn’t something we do as an entire family very often, since my youngest son isn’t riding a two wheeler yet, but bike riding is a fun family activity and my kids bigger kids really enjoy getting out for a ride. I appreciate the trails and safety of cycling in the Kawarthas. It’s a great way to explore the area and discover treasures too!

WhetungAfter some great food and exercise you will want to find some quiet and relaxation. The area’s many galleries are the perfect option. As a former sculptor, I have a keen interest in art and I could spend hours looking at other people’s work. The masks shown to the left are particularly interesting and I would love to see them in real life. Live theatre is another popular attraction in the Kawarthas.

pioneer village

A great family activity in the Kawarthas is the Lang Pioneer Village Museum. It’s a great way for everyone in the family to learn about history and to experience it all first hand.

Nestled along the banks of the historic Indian River, Lang Pioneer Village Museum features over twenty-five restored and furnished buildings constructed between 1825 and 1899. Many of the buildings were donated by townships within the County of Peterborough and moved to their present site when the Museum was founded.

On previous visits my family has simply enjoyed watching the ships pass through the locks while getting some fishing in, but I definitely plan to broaden our horizons on a future visit and check out some of the rich heritage the Kawarthas has to offer.

23 Replies to “Food, Heritage and Adventure in Kawarthas Northumberland #perfectwknds”

  1. I love that there are cycling trails. I’m adding this to my travel bucket list.

  2. I’ve never heard of this area before, but my gosh, you are making it sound so appealing. Now I’m going to have to put butter tarts on my must try list in life!

  3. Initially clicked on the post because I thought you meant Northumberland England but you got me with the thirty bakeries and cycling. We don’t have even one bakery in the area I live

  4. Love the Kawarthas! Never heard about the butter tart tour,I better not tell my hubby about that….lol

  5. This looks like a wonderful place to vacation with your family! So many things and activities to keep you all busy and engaged! Thanks for sharing

  6. What a fun place for families! It would make a nice little deviation from the hustle and bustle of a Toronto vacation.

  7. What a fun looking place! There are SO many hidden gems in Canada!~

    I also had NO idea butter tarts are a Canadian thing only! Our neighbours are really missing out! hah but how fun would a buttertart tour be? 😀

    1. I just learned this myself! I was enjoying lunch with some US and Canadian friends when one of them said she wondered what she was eating (a butter tart). I will be seeing her in Florida in the fall and I plan to take some butter tarts with me!

  8. When I first started reading your post, i thought you were writing about somewhere in England, not Canada. (It was all because of the names.) I will have to figure out how to make some butter tarts. I live in the US and I have not heard of them.

Leave a Reply