Canadian Cottage Life

Growing up in Toronto, most of my summertime memories are of me up at my family cottage on Lake Kamaniskeg in Northern Ontario.  Our family has been going up there my entire life so the cottage has become kind of a second home to me and my sister.  After trekking around the world I can definitely say we have some of the most  beautiful fresh water lakes on Earth with gorgeous boreal forests.

We’re on a side of the lake with only six other cottages with a roller-coaster styled 1km long road which makes our location pretty remote.  At night we like to sit out on the dock and gaze up at the brilliant night sky filled with thousands of stars from the Milky Way, without any light pollution it’s a breathtaking view.  I love kayaking and close by to us is the “Madawaska Kanu Centre” where we get out on the whitewater.  The nearby township of Combermere has Valley Market self-titled “Center of the Universe” (haha) serves huge scoops of Kawartha Dairy ice cream which is totally worth canoeing 7 km down a river to get.  There’s also a few good hiking trails with some nice climbs in the area which also make for some good mountain biking.  About an hours drive is the amazing Algonquin Provincial Park which has over 2400 lakes and 12oo km of streams and rivers within the park which makes it a campers and hikers paradise.   Although, the area (Hastings Highlands)  is relatively pretty quite compared to elsewhere in Ontario cottage country, won’t always be that way as cottages are slowly migrating over from the Muskokas and up from the Kawartha Lakes.  If you’re visiting Central Canada I would definitely recommend renting a cottage or camping in Algonquin for a few nights to experience the amazingness of Canadian cottage country!  Check out these photos below!

Lake Kamaniskeg

Cottage

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Lake Tarewara: Wwoof

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10 seconds to capture this moment... out on a very wet kayak on Lake Tarewara

Working for sleep & food (wwoof) can be a tough bargain especially if the work is dismally boring (cleaning a boat) or borderline dangerous (chainsaw+cliff).  At least it’s different everyday…from building steps and a garden wall to as many odd jobs one can fit into a 4 hr day.  We’ve been living just outside Rotorua for 8 days and have gotten to know the surrounding area well.  There are a number of overpriced tourist activities in and around Rotorua so we mainly go to Blue Lake and chill on the nice beach.  I should say though,  it seems if you have a camera and look like a straight tourist you’re able to get in free to many of these overpriced tourist attractions with ease.  We’ve saved more than $150 by just confidently walking into various attractions these places really only have a few people working at them so it’s quite simple!   Aside from breaking into the tourist stuff we’ve been able to use our hosts kayak (*picture above) so that was a good adventure but let me warn you open kayaks are really no-fun, they are wet and painful for tall people + they’re slow.  Can’t wait for the South Island…we’re leaving here in a couple days!