Bruce Peninsula National Park and Provincial Parks
Bruce Peninsula National Park Parks - Nature Reserves of the Bruce Peninsula
There are 2 National Parks, 8 Ontario Parks and 4 Federation of Ontario Naturalists Parks located in the Bruce Peninsula. Nature is all around you in the Bruce Peninsula!
Visit the Bruce Peninsula National Park Visitors Centre on your trip the the Bruce Peninsula!
- National Parks
- Provincial Nature Reserves
- Federation of Ontario Naturalists
The Bruce Peninsula National Park is situated on the northern tip of the Bruce Peninsula, between Georgian Bay and Lake Huron. The beautiful park, with a size of 155 square kilometers at the tip of the Niagara Escarpment, consists out of limestone cliffs, caves and underground streams, and ancient forests with some of the oldest trees in Canada. The Bruce Peninsula National Park is comprised of an incredible array of habitats from rare alvars to dense forests and clean lakes. Together these form a greater ecosystem - the largest remaining chunk of natural habitat in southern Ontario.
History of the Bruce Peninsula National Park
In 1987 the Park came into existence. The federal and provincial governments established an agreement – which was not greeted with open arms by some of the residents in the Northern Bruce Peninsula. Today – both local residents and visitors have increasingly embraced the park. A park survey of Bruce County residents found, for example, that 73% of respondents felt that the most important role of the park was protecting the natural environment. Sixty percent of the local residents surveyed had visited the park in the previous year. Meanwhile, it is estimated that close to 10 million people now live within a four-hour drive of the park.
The final park boundaries encompass an area of approximately 156 square kilometers, with significant private land holdings within these boundaries (covering about one-fifth of the park’s area).
As a park established within a settled 20 years after its establishment, Bruce Peninsula National Park is still a work in progress.
Cimb the 20m (65') tower for a bird's-eye view of the Bruce!
Chill out in the high-definition theatre, for a virtual adventure to the best spots in the park!
Experience the exhibit gallery, with everything from a full-size lighthouse, flowerpot and cliff to black bear, rattlesnake and shipwreck exhibits.
Drop in on a special demo by a park naturalist.
Shop for national park souvenirs in the gift shop.
Hike the world-famous Bruce Trail, which runs right past the visitor centre, to scenic coves on Georgian Bay.
The unique geological formations of Flowerpot Island and the coastal cliffs are features that attract visitors from around the world. Tobermory is the core area of the UNESCO Niagara Escarpment World Biosphere Reserve. A perfect getaway spot for naturalists, photographers, divers, hikers, kayakers looking for that special place. Fathom Five National Marine Park is situated just off Tobermory, at the northern tip of the Bruce Peninsula .
The Fathom Five National Marine Park has a size of 112 square kilometers and is the oldest national marine parks in Canada. There are 20 islands in the park, where rare ferns and orchids can be found, aswell as some of the oldest forests in eastern Canada.There are 22 historic shipwrecks protected in the area, which makes it a world famous scuba-diving site.
PROVINCIAL PARKS / NATURE RESERVE - BRUCE PENINSULA
The features preserved in this small tract of land, clearly demonstrate the progression of natural succession from the open shallow waters of Ira Lake to deciduous forest.
The area has an extensive jack pine forest that shelters deer in the winter.
One of many protected areas along the Bruce Peninsula, Little Cove is distinguished by an exceptionally rugged Lake Huron shoreline.
Situated near the top of the Bruce Peninsula, Cabot Head is a geologically significant area, featuring many interesting landforms.
The rugged shoreline rises some 50 meters above the crashing waves, exposing various gradations of the Silurian-age dolomite, roughly 400 to 425 million years old.
This area of the Niagara Escarpment is well-known for its rock formation that from a distance resembles the profile of a lion.
Found on the Niagara Escarpment, this nature reserve contains outcroppings of exposed bedrock that are 500 million to 435 million years old, making it of keen interest to geologists.
Every spring and fall, rainbow trout and chinook salmon struggle over each ledge of this cascading waterfall to spawn upstream. Flanked by immature forest, the falls used to power a timber mill and generating station. Now they are the terminus of the Rankin River canoe route, ideal for novice canoeists.
A complex ecosystem unfolds at this all-season park on a seven-kilometer stretch of coast on Lake Huron. Guided walks by the shore and through silver maple swamps, cattail marshes, ponds, fens and bogs reveal unusual inhabitants. Carnivorous (meat-eating) plants make this their home. Rare dwarf lake iris and the elusive spotted turtle appear in the spring. Migrating birds, including the black-crowned night heron and the American egret, stop here to snack. Winter visitors can camp in yurts and cross-country ski.
FEDERATION OF ONTARIO NATURALIST NATURE RESERVESBaptist Harbour Nature Reserve, acquired by the Federation in 2000, is an important ecological area on the Bruce Peninsula. Located on the shores of Lake Huron, this nature reserve is 6.5 hectares (16 acres) in size and boasts stunning and diverse scenery - from an open jack pine forest to globally significant limestone barrens (alvars).
Lyal Island Nature Reserve. Imagine your favourite sections of the upper Bruce Peninsula without any roads or buildings and you will have a good picture of Lyal Island. The island, the Federation's second largest nature reserve, covers 305-hectares and is located roughly 2 km off the west shore of the Bruce Peninsula at Stokes Bay.Bruce Alvar Nature Reserve. You will discover one of nature's most spectacular rock gardens at the Bruce Alvar Nature Reserve.
Petrel Point Nature Reserve. "A garden of wildflowers" - this turn of phrase recurs again and again in descriptions of Petrel Point. The wonderful sprinklings of pink, mauve, red, blue and yellow that fill the fen through the seasons can only inspire a passion for nature.