Marine News from the Great Lakes

Penetanguishene: The Gateway to Georgian Bay

Published: Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Located approximately two hours north of Toronto in Ontario, Canada, Penetanguishene is the “Gateway to Georgian Bay”. Experience beautiful beaches and pristine waterways when you arrive in this friendly destination that will keep you entertained, active, and enlightened. Boating is synonymous with the shores of picturesque Georgian Bay and all that this region has to offer — from a variety of islands, anchorages, and shipwrecks to discover to the many cultural attractions, leisure, and recreation activities that visitors can participate in.

Penetanguishene is deeply rooted in marine heritage, including Discovery Harbour, an 1812 era British Naval and Military Establishment. Discovery Harbour traces its roots back to the original British naval and military base in Penetanguishene, built to safeguard access to Upper Canada after the War of 1812. "His Majesty's Naval Establishment on Lake Huron", as it was first called, kept ships prepared to supply British posts to the northwest. By 1820, it was home to over 70 people, including sailors, officers, shipwrights, and soldiers. Five large ships, 15 smaller vessels, and numerous workshops and dwellings were built. Discovery Harbour offers a rich experience steeped in Canadian history. While you take advantage of the free dockage during your visit, you can also catch a theatre production at King’s Wharf Theatre, dine at Captain Robert’s Table, or rent a Fat Bike from the Admissions and go for a leisurely cycle along Penetanguishene Bay.

During the beautiful fall season, Penetanguishene Bay comes alive through a living canvas created by Mother Nature and the changing colours of the leaves. Take one last journey on the water to truly appreciate the reflection of colours. Be on the lookout for Discovery Harbour’s Ghost Ship lurking near the shore, awaiting Pumpkinferno at Haunted Harbour, a month-long Halloween event highlighted by the “Pumpkinferno experience” — the phenomenon of hauntingly magical and stirring outdoor exhibits of hand-carved pumpkins, all set against the night-time backdrop of Discovery Harbour and a frighteningly scary Terror Zone.

Autumn in Penetanguishene also offers warm days, quiet waters, and amazing sunsets. But as Labour Day weekend approaches, it often marks the unofficial end of boating season. Boats are winterized and dry-docked into storage and the chill of winter settles in. However, as quickly as winter arrives, you will find yourself looking forward to next spring and the opening of boating season. Be sure to make a visit to Penetanguishene a part of your summer boating plans. Penetanguishene boasts a number of flavourful restaurants, grocery stores, transient or more permanent dockage options, museums, and events.

While visiting Penetanguishene take advantage of the many amenities this port has to offer from its host of unique summer events to its beautifully redesigned Champlain Huron-Wendat Rotary Park, where you can swim sanding beaches, cool off the kids at the splash pad, or take a boat cruise on the Serendipity Princess and relax as you journey around Penetanguishene Bay and the 30,000 islands from the Town Dock. Awenda Provincial Park is a short drive and offers camping and outdoor adventure, while Diverse Rentals and Vacations offers marina dockage, boat rentals, and much more.

So, when you are thinking about premiere destinations that will ensure your boating excursion is unforgettable, be sure to make Penetanguishene number one on your list. With amazing facilities and gorgeous destinations, Penetanguishene Bay nestled on the shores of Georgian Bay is a hidden gem. Bring your family and enjoy making memories that will last a lifetime in Ontario’s premiere marine paradise. Visit to plan your adventure today.

tags: Destination, Lake Huron


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