DescriptionEast of Huntsville and west of Pembroke, the park stretches across 7,725 square kilometres (2,983 sq. mi.) of wild and beautiful lakes and forests, bogs and rivers, cliffs and beaches. Established in 1893, it was Ontario's first provincial park.
There are two parts to Algonquin—the vast Park Interior, accessible only by canoe or on foot, and the Parkway Corridor, the 56-kilometre (35-mi.) section of Hwy. 60 running through the southwest corner of the park, where most of the facilities and services are found.
The park's two main entrances, both off Hwy. 60, are the West Gate, just east of Dwight, and the East Gate, just west of Whitney. Other access points also are available—from Hwy. 17 north of the park, off Hwy. 11 from the west and from Hwy. 60 approaching from the east.
The park is a favorite with those wanting to experience Canada's wilderness. In addition to the sparkling, clear waters the park is known for, visitors might see loons, moose, deer, beavers, owls, wolves and the occasional black bear. The park is popular with canoeists, fishermen and campers in summer, and cross-country skiers in winter.
Canoeists can access almost 2,000 kilometres (1,243 mi.) of canoe routes in the Park Interior from 29 different access points around the park. Clearly marked portages connect the routes when waterways are not sufficiently deep for canoeing. Hikers can choose from three different overnight backpacking trails to explore the Interior; the loops range from 6 to 88 kilometres (4 to 55 mi.). Outfitting services and canoe rentals are available in the park. Outfitters also are available on the park's periphery. Algonquin offers three cross-country skiing trails during the winter as well as primitive camping.
The park's two major attractions, the Algonquin Logging Museum and the Algonquin Visitor Centre, are along the Parkway Corridor. Each has a theater and exhibit area depicting park history. Three resorts and eight organized campgrounds are along the Parkway Corridor, as are restaurants and stores, picnic areas, swimming facilities, walking trails and a mountain-bicycling trail. The Algonquin Gallery at kilometre 20 features the work of well-known wildlife and landscape artists.
Camping facilities include year-round car camping, backpacking and canoe sites in season. Reservations are highly recommended although a few sites are available on a first-come-first-served basis. The park maintains controlled-travel zones. Camping reservations and passes for backcountry travel are required.
Naturalist services, such as conducted hikes, wolf howling expeditions, canoe outings, children's programs, special events and lectures, and an information package are available. Contact Visitor Information, Algonquin Provincial Park, Box 219, Whitney, ON, Canada K0J 2M0.
West Gate open daily 8-6, Victoria Day to mid-June; 9-4, Apr. 1-day before Victoria Day and mid-June through the second Mon. in Oct.; 9-6, rest of year. East Gate open daily 8-6, Victoria Day-Labour Day; 8-5, rest of year. Other entrances generally open daily 7-7, Apr. 1-second Mon. in Oct. Schedule may vary; phone ahead.
Admission $15.04 (per private vehicle ); $110.62 (summer pass); $75.22 (winter pass); $154.87 (annual pass). Vehicle campsites $35.25-45.25. Interior primitive camping $11; $5 (ages 6-17). Phone (705) 633-5572 or (519) 826-5290 for information or (888) 668-7275 for camping reservations and backcountry passes.
Things to SeeAlgonquin Art Centre
Nature at her best can be found among the park's lakes, forests, rivers, cliffs and beaches.