Peterborough is lively university town in the heart of the Kawarthas, a chain of cobalt-blue lakes surrounded by evergreen forests. You can explore scenic nature reserves, relax on sandy beaches and discover the region's rich First Nations heritage.
Things to do in Peterborough
In town, the Peterborough Lift Lock welcomes a constant stream of boats cruising along the Trent-Severn Waterway. You'll find plenty of outfitters renting kayaks, canoes and even houseboats. You can paddle across Little Lake, pass through the lock and explore the canal.
The Canadian Canoe Museum pays tribute to the country's deep relationship with its waterways. It houses the biggest collection of canoes on the planet and covers everything from traditional First Nations dugouts to sleek 21st-century models. You can also partake in a dynamic line-up of workshops and activities.
Peterborough is anchored by a characterful town centre filled with boutique shops, art galleries and restaurants. Stock up on fresh produce at the Peterborough Farmers Market and enjoy artisan ice cream, creamy milkshakes and cookie sandwiches at Kawartha Dairy.
In Petroglyphs Provincial Park you can view one of North America's largest collections of ancient aboriginal rock carvings. The site was discovered in 1954 and features snakes, turtles, birds and other native animals carved into the limestone cliffs fringing McGinnis Lake. The park is also laced with scenic hiking trails.
Getting around Peterborough
Downtown Peterborough is easy to get around on foot, though a rental car is the best way to explore the Kawarthas. The town is a 140-kilometre drive north-east of Toronto. Greyhound buses also make the trip in two hours.