Bordering on four of the five Great Lakes, Ontario has the longest freshwater coastline in the entire world. Along this coastline lie many beautiful beaches ranging from sprawling provincial parks to white sand beaches in Ontario. Looking for the best beach in Ontario? Here are some great spots to begin your search.

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Sandbanks Provincial Park on Lake Ontario

Featuring the best beaches in Ontario provincial parks, Sandbanks Provincial Park is the largest freshwater sand bar and dune network in the world. 

Sandbanks Provincial Park is actually composed of three separate sandy beaches: Outlet Beach, Dunes Beach and Lakeshore Beach. Outlet Beach is the best for families, as it has shallow waters and a gentle drop off making it perfect for kids. 

It’s also one of the most popular locations for camping in Ontario, with 500 campsites across five campgrounds and a variety of amenities. In addition to housing some of the best beaches in Ontario provincial parks, Sandbanks is also a popular filming destination and has starred in films like Fly Away Home and Resident Evil: Afterlife.

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Long Point Provincial Park on Lake Erie

Among the best beaches in Ontario provincial parks for true nature lovers, Long Point is a long narrow strip of land jutting into Lake Erie giving it a very unique ecology. This ecology includes a 1.5km long sandy beach perfect for quiet, beachside escapes and primeval Carolinian forests, the last of their kind in Canada. There are a number of campsites located near the beach and Long Point welcomes some 300,000 eco-tourists each year. 

The best beach in Ontario for bird watchers, thousands of migrating birds pass over Long Point every spring and fall attracting almost as many birdwatching enthusiasts eager to see the wide variety of different species. Because of its important to the local ecology, Long Point Provincial Park is home to a designated UNESCO Biosphere Reserve as well as the oldest continually operated bird observatory in Canada. 

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Wasaga Beach on Georgian Bay

Ontario’s number one party destination, Wasaga Beach on Georgian Bay might be the best beach in Ontario to visit for university students looking to let off some steam after exams. Located on Nottawasaga Bay a short distance from Collingwood, Wasaga Beach Provincial Park contains eight beach areas across 14km. 

Beach 1 is the most popular for visitors and probably the one you think of when you imagine Wasage Beach.” It contains the famous Wasaga Beach boardwalk and shopping promenade with bars, restaurants, shops and arcades just a short walk from the water. The western beaches tend to be less crowded in the busy months with more shade making them perfect for family picnics by the water. 

With warm, shallow water and views of the Niagara escarpment across the bay as well as a large number of rental cottages, Wasaga is perhaps the best sand beach Ontario has to offer for a weekend getaway from Ontario. Its close proximity to Collingwood and Blue Mountain also offers a chance to enjoy vigorous hikes and mountain biking as well as the shops and restaurants in Blue Mountain Village. 

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Sauble Beach on Lake Huron 

There aren’t many white sand beaches in Ontario, which makes Sauble Beach on Lake Huron that much more special. Widely regarded as the best white sand beach Ontario has to offer, Sauble Beach is also the second longest freshwater beach in the world. Located on the western side of the Bruce Peninsula by Owen Sound, the area was named La Riviere au Sable” by French explorers, meaning River to the Sand.” 

Stretching a full 11km long, Sauble Beach is a popular location for water sports like windsurfing, water-skiing and beach volleyball. In fact, the beach has hosted the Canadian National Volleyball Championships in the past, and the local Sauble Speedway hosts a number of automotive events. However, the beach’s most competitive event might be SandFest, the annual sandcastle building competition and classic car show. 

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Centennial Beach on Kempenfelt Bay

Located in the heart of Barrie, Ontario, Centennial Beach stretches 400m along the shores of Kempenfelt Bay. Perhaps the best beach in Ontario for ardent fishers, fat catfish and bass can be found in the designated fishing pond. 

The beach is also home to SplashOn, a sprawling floating playground made up of inflatable platforms called Wibits. With inflatable climbing walls, monkey bars, slides, and more, kids can frolic to their heart’s content before diving into the water. Nearby Centennial Park also offers a number of walking trails and a physical playground. 

The Best Beaches in Ontario: Crystal Beach on Lake Erie

True to its name, Crystal Beach by Fort Erie is famed as one of the best white sand beaches in Ontario for its crystal-clear blue water and peaceful seclusion. Once the most popular white sand beach Ontario has ever known thanks the presence of the Crystal Beach Park amusement zone, its closing in 1989 changed the character of the area greatly. Now more of a hidden spot than a must-visit getaway destination, Crystal Beach offers a relaxed escape south of Niagara with plenty of restaurants and artisan shops. 

The main street features many colourful, historic buildings and the waterfront offers a playground and eatery by the water. Though long closed, Crystal Beach Park left a lasting legacy on the town and a number of books and documentaries have been made to record its history and efforts to revitalize the area. This includes 1999’s Laugh in the Dark, an award-winning documentary about the town’s queer community in the 80s.

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