Where to Go Camping in Bruce County
Planning to go camping in Ontario? Looking for the best place to go camping near Toronto? Bruce County is one of the best destinations in the province to get outdoors and stay outdoors. Whether you’re camping in a tent, rolling up in a luxury RV, partaking in the trendy van life or glamping in a pod or yurt, a weekend away in the stunning natural surroundings of Bruce County will reset your inner compass.
Imagine yourself breathing in the fresh air, filled with the aromas of eastern white cedar. Listen to the pops and crackles of an open fire as you toast marshmallows for a sweet s’mores treat. Gaze up to a dark sky made brighter by the brilliance of the Milky Way.
In this guide to camping in Bruce County, you’ll learn how to plan the ultimate camping adventure to the Bruce Peninsula, the Lakeshore or the heart of Bruce County.
Bruce County is Ontario’s Favourite Camping Destination
It’s the perfect excuse to turn off the phone, unplug the tablet and soak in the call of the wild. Day hikes, nature tours, beaches, fishing, picnics and sports make camping in Bruce County an opportunity to add much more adventurous fun to your bucket list.
There are five provincial parks in Bruce County, three offer their own campgrounds and unique properties to explore. These spots book up fast, so you’ll need to snag your campsites quickly through the Ontario Parks reservation system. If you aren’t able to camp on-site, these provincial parks are wonderful places to explore by day. Check out MacGregor Point Provincial Park, Sauble Falls Provincial Park and Inverhuron Provincial Park.
For larger, family-friendly campgrounds with loads of amenities, check out Carson’s Camp in Sauble Beach, The Dreamaker Family Campground in Southampton or Fisherman’s Cove Tent and Trailer Park in Huron Kinloss. These campsites offer spacious swimming pools, playgrounds and trails to explore.
On the Peninsula, there are many amazing campgrounds and cabins to call home for your vacation. Mountain Lake Campground in Wiarton offers tent, trailer and RV sites, both serviced and non-serviced, just minutes from hiking trails. Summer House Park on the shores of Miller Lake has both family camping and cottage rentals nestled in 85 acres of tranquil hardwood forest. And for those looking to be close to the Grotto and Indian Cove, the Cyprus Lake Campground at the national park features 232 drive-in campsites facing peaceful Cyprus Lake itself.
For even more recommendations on where to go camping in Bruce County, please take a look at our campgrounds guide with an interactive map.
Camping or Glamping? Ways to Stay Outdoors in Bruce County
If you love to camp but lack the gear, this is your time to enjoy glamping at the Spirit Rock Outpost and Lodge, a yurt at MacGregor Point Provincial Park or the many rental units and cabins available at our campgrounds. Essentially Lavender, a lavender farm in Teeswater, is another wonderful place to go glamping. Enjoy the benefits of having a “fully equipped” site so you can drive right up and immediately enjoy the beautiful nature that surrounds you.
What is a yurt? Traditionally used by nomads in the steppes of central Asia, yurts are circular, semi-permanent, tent-like structures. For instance, the yurts at MacGregor Point are eight-sided, 16 feet in diameter and feature a wooden, plywood floor. Inside you’ll find an electric heater, electric outlets, fluorescent lighting, four chairs, a table and two sets of bunk beds. Outside is a fire pit, a kitchen shelter, picnic tables and a propane barbecue.
While you essentially have everything you need for a weekend away, you will need to pack a few basics for your trip. Remember to bring your own bedding, cookware and any other personal items you think you’ll need. A nearby comfort station provides drinking water, flush toilets and hot showers.
When to Go Camping in Bruce County
Many campgrounds operate seasonally, so you’ll need to take their dates of availability into account when you plan your trip. Camping in Bruce County in the summer is the most popular time with most campgrounds filled to maximum capacity. Most travelers are enjoying their summer holidays and taking advantage of the hot weather to participate in watersports and outdoor activities.
However, you might prefer to experience Bruce County in the spring or fall. Camping during the shoulder seasons means that you’ll have fewer crowds and be able to enjoy some of the most beautiful times of year when it comes to nature. Watch the wildflowers bloom along the trails in the spring and see the stunning fall colours in autumn.
For those feeling a little more adventurous, it is even possible to go winter camping in Bruce County at select campgrounds. Yurt camping (glamping) at MacGregor Provincial Park in the winter provides immediate access to cross-country skiing and snowshoeing trails, as well as the park’s well-maintained skating rink. You can also try winter camping at the Bruce Peninsula National Park, including the yurt camping on Cyprus Lake.
Things to Do While Camping in Bruce County
Looking for things to do when you’re camping in Bruce County? By staying at one of our campgrounds, you’re immersing yourself in nature and have access to many fantastic outdoor activities.
If you plan a hike, pack a day pack, bring your water bottle and download trail maps in advance. Strap on your trail-worthy shoes and head off on your voyage. Return to your site to complete your day’s adventure with a soul-soothing book.
Love canoeing and kayaking? Hit the waters of Lake Huron, Georgian Bay or 102 kilometres of the powerful Saugeen River. If you’re seeking calmer waters, head to Bruce County’s inland lakes which are perfect for gently gliding on your stand-up paddle board.
Other activities that are possible to do while camping in Bruce County include cycling and mountain biking, boating and sailing, fishing, golfing, surfing, kiteboarding, jet skiing, waterskiing, snorkeling and scuba diving.
A Sample 5-Day Itinerary
Here’s a sample 5-day itinerary with the best things to do when camping in Bruce County. For this Bruce County camping travel itinerary, we’ll spend two nights in Port Elgin and two nights in Wiarton.
Day 1 and 2: MacGregor Point Provincial Park
First, you’ll stay overnight for two nights at MacGregor Point Provincial Park, whether it’s at one of their campsites or glamping in one of their yurts. Spend time at the provincial park exploring the hiking trails, swimming at the beach or learning a thing or two about nature at the park’s Discovery Centre.
Take the time to stop for a meal and a coffee in Port Elgin at some favourite local establishments, like Saffron, The Berkshire, Rabbit Dash Coffee House and To the Moon Bakery. Venture into the nearby town of Southampton to explore its darling main street, go for a walk around Fairy Lake and spend some time at the beach.
The next day, head up to Sauble Beach for a day of fun in the sun at this family-friendly beach town or travel down to the cute town of Kincardine with its boardwalk beach trail and peaceful Geddes Park. The Kincardine Lighthouse and Museum is another intriguing point of interest, and there are also great shops, cafes and restaurants in town. If you decide to visit Sauble Beach, be sure to check out the beach shops, the mini golf courses and take a photo with the famous Sauble Beach sign.
No matter where you venture on the shores of Lake Huron, you’ll be treated to some of the most epic sunsets in Canada.
Day 3 and 4: Mountain Lake Camp in Wiarton
For the third and fourth nights of your camping trip to Bruce County, venture up to Wiarton to explore the Bruce Peninsula. Mountain Lake Camp has an outdoor pool, a sandy beach, a games room, recreation hall and horseshoe pits. You aren’t far from hiking trails on the Bruce Trail, Skinners Bluff Management Area, Bruce’s Caves Conservation Area and Spirit Rock Conservation Area.
If you love hiking, be sure to spend the fourth day of this Bruce County camping itinerary exploring Lion’s Head to witness some of the most beautiful views in Ontario. If mountain biking is more your style, head to the Bruce Peninsula Mountain Bike Adventure Park to experience their thrilling trails. It’s also possible to rent a kayak at Seahawk Water Sports in Wiarton for a paddling adventure at Colpoy’s Bay.
Day 5: Paisley
On your final day in Bruce County before heading home, drive down to the village of Paisley to soak up the beautiful views of the Saugeen and Teeswater Rivers. Embark on a self-guided art tour of 20 art exhibits all over town. Elora Soap Company is a gift shop featuring locally made arts and crafts. Stop by the Happy Hive Bakery and Cafe for coffee and a sweet treat at this adorable cafe. If you’re looking to spend another night here, just five minutes north of Paisley is Saugeen Bluffs Conservation Area, which offers camping sites for tent and trailer use along the picturesque Saugeen River.