It’s getting hotter by the day, Toronto! One great way to cool off this summer is at one of the many swimming holes in Ontario. Some of these natural destinations are just a short drive from the city, but all of them are well worth the trip. They provide the perfect escape from city living with gorgeous scenery and aqua blue water to match. Any one of these options make for a great day (or weekend) trip, so pick one and hit the road!

Here are 9 swimming holes in Ontario to make a splash this summer.

ELORA QUARRY

 

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This special spot is a staple Ontario swimming hole. The teal-coloured waters and towering limestone cliffs are the ideal atmosphere for a hot summer day. After about a 1.5-hour drive from the city, you’ll be met by a stunning secluded quarry where you can float the day away as well as hiking trails around the conservation area that you can explore.

Elora Quarry is open for the season from June 7 to Labour Day and reservations are required in advance.

Where: 319 Wellington County Rd 18, Elora

TROUT LAKE QUARRY

 

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This Ontario swimming hole is famous for its underground waterpark. Made up of sunken ships, school buses, and planes, there’s plenty to explore with a dive here. You can spend the day or book a campsite and make a whole weekend of it and even book a scuba diving excursion to see the sunken sights up close.

Where: 51 George St, Innerkip

THE BRUCE PENINSULA

With water this clear, who needs the city? The Bruce Peninsula is famous for its gorgeous, glistening lake and beautiful hiking trails. Plan a trip to explore the area and marvel at the amazing views from the Lion’s Head Lookout.

Where: Bruce Trail, Tobermory

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ST MARY’S QUARRY

 

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As Canada’s largest outdoor freshwater swimming pool, St Mary’s Quarry is a must-visit. The place offers great outdoor vibes at their deepwater pool – you’ll literally be swimming with the fishes! If you’d rather float on top instead of interacting with the wildlife, you can use one of the spot’s inflatable rafts. They’ve even got cliff jumping if you’re the adventurous type.

St. Mary’s Quarry officially opens for the season on June 25, 2022, with registration for public swim times open as of June 1.

Where: 425 Water St S, St Marys

ALGONQUIN HIGH FALLS

Speaking of adventures, this next spot offers a thrilling natural water slide. The outdoor attraction will have you gliding down a rocky slide into the swimming hole of the Barren River. It’s great for an outdoor adventure or day trip. Plus, the location has loads of hiking trails, canoeing opportunities, and campsites in case you want to extend your stay. Before you go, just know that this one is a lot more of a hike from Toronto than others on this list.

Where: Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario 60, Ontario

TOPAZ LAKE

 

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This next pick is a hidden gem but sits about 4 hours north of Toronto. The journey is absolutely worth it, with white quartzite cliffs, sapphire waters, and breathtaking forests all around. You’ll find it when you hike the 22.7-kilometre path that is La Cloche Silhouette Trail. Once you’re there you can splash the day away in the beautiful blue waters.

Where: 960 ON-637, Killarney

PARADISE LAGOON

 

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You’ll be in for quite the adventure getting to this special destination. Hidden just outside of the Wanapitei Provincial Park, the swimming hole is part of the Chiniguchi River that runs through the Wolf Lake Forest Reserve. Paradise Lagoon definitely lives up to its name, with aqua blue water, steep rock walls, majestic red pine trees, and a rushing waterfall.

Where: Greater Sudbury

BATHTUB ISLAND

This spot makes our list purely because of its fun name. The natural bathtub is located in Katherine Cove and provides breathtaking “infinity pool-like” waters that are yours to discover. Take a dip any day this summer to enjoy the fresh lake water, surrounding natural rock beds, and gorgeous views.

Where: Trans-Canada Hwy, Algoma, Unorganized, North Part, ON

BALSAM LAKE

Last but not least, we’ve got Balsam Lake. This nearby sandy beach offers much more than just swimming. Although that activity is killer here too. They’ve also got canoeing and fishing available in the water. Plus, loads of trails for biking or hiking. Is there anything more you could ask for?

Where: 2238 Kawartha Lakes County Rd 48, Kirkfield

Whether you plan on spending a day or a whole weekend, these Ontario swimming holes are definitely worth the trip. Let us know which you head to first!