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Manitoulin Island in One Afternoon

Updated: Dec 23, 2022

We took a three week road trip this past summer - during our drive between two campsites Halfway Lake Provincial Park and Sturgeon Bay Provincial we knew we had to jot well out of the way to explore Manitoulin Island.

Manitoulin is the largest freshwater island in the world, located on Lake Huron - it was a bucket list destination for both myself and my husband and it did not disappoint! We left Halfway Lake early in the morning and started our drive, we arrived in Espanola for a quick picnic lunch stop just before 12 then we really started our journey to the island. Crossing the bridge you are immediately welcomed by the quaint town of Little Current bursting with quaint little shops, ice cream parlours and beautiful walking trails. Sadly we didn't have time to explore here as we were pushing on to the Cup and Saucer trail.

This trail was the highlight as well as the focus of our Manitoulin afternoon! 5kms, moderate, 146m of elevation gain and perfect for kids! We saw plenty of little explorers on the trail finding their trail legs and boosting their confidence!

The best part of this trail for us was definitely the Adventure side trail. Filled with ladders, obstacles, caves, rocks to climb over and under.. this 500m addition is in my opinion better than the views!

My husband completed all obstacles while baby-wearing our 7 month old son so don't get too intimidated by that first large ladder obstacle. It is best to attempt the Adventure trail after viewing the lookout points rather than when you first stumble upon it - take your time with each obstacle and remember to have fun! Check out some pictures of our adventure below!

After our hike we took a 15 minute drive to the famous Bridal veil falls - here there are plenty of parking options - we parked the van and walked to the falls.

A set of stairs takes you down to a cascading falls with a swimming area directly in front of it! This area can get really busy so try to visit during a weekday or early morning and you will have the falls basically to yourself! After a quick swim we left Manitoulin and headed to camp - we will definitely be back in the near future to explore more as I know we missed a lot! If you are pressed on time I highly recommend the Cup and Saucer trail, an ice cream stop and a breathtaking view of Bridal Veil falls!

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