Hidden Gems

Great Fall Drives – Peterborough & the Kawarthas

Peterborough and the KawarthasFall is the perfect time for a road trip through Ontario’s beautiful countryside and charming towns. Here’s nine of our picks for the perfect fall drive in Peterborough & the Kawarthas. Check out the map below and get ready to go!

Doo Doo’s Bakery

Doo Doo’s is a well known favourite stop for yummy treads, in particular their butter tarts. From traditional plain tarts, to the yummy suprise of Maple Bacon butter tarts, this is the perfect place to pick up a snack for your road trip. Doo Doo’s was also voted an Ontario fan favourite in our recent best butter tarts poll!

Butter TartsZim Art

Zim Art truly is an Ontario Hidden Gem! Tucked away in the rolling hills of the Peterborough countryside is a huge collection of sculpture works beautifully complemented by the natural surroundings.

Zim ArtPhoto Break!

Half the fun of a road trip is the fun surprises along the way! Just outside of Bailieboro you’ll find stunning vistas of rolling countryside and harvest landscapes just waiting to be photographed.

Country RoadsCanadian Canoe Museum

There’s nowhere better explore one of Canadian’s favourite pastimes – canoeing! You’ll see everything from replicas of early dugouts used by the First Nations of the Pacific Northwest, to the boats used in the fur trading era by the Hudson’s Bay Company. Did you know that the Peterborough area had a booming canoe industry? Make sure you check out 20th century boats built by Peterborough, Lakefield and Rice Lake canoe companies.

Canadian Canoe MuseumSilver Bean Cafe

They describe themselves as “Your waterfront cottage in the city”, and the description couldn’t be more perfect! This cafe sits on the bank of the Otonabee river, and is on the Trans Canada Trail, meaning you can boat, bike or walk over to get your coffee and homemade snack.

Bean CafeRiverview Park and Zoo

Where else can you see a Red-Necked Wallaby and beautiful views of the Otonobee River? The Riverview Park & Zoo is the perfect place to introduce kids to some of the furry friends they’ve seen in their favourite picture books, and for grown-ups the park setting is a nice treat. Plus, admission is free!

Riverview ZooWaterway Wonders

The historic Trent-Severn Waterway is one of Ontario’s iconic fall drives, and is a must on any tour through the Peterborough & Kawarthas region. Travel from Peterborough to Lakefield along the River Road Scenic Drive, and plan to stop often for photos of the river.

Trent-Severn WaterwayThe Nuttshell Next Door

It’s a cozy neighbourhood café run by Chef Jay Nutt and wife Jennifer MacKenzie, serving up high-quality food, made with local ingredients when ever possible. Take a peek around their beautiful verandah garden and you might just find some of the herbs and veggies used in their foods!

LakefieldWhetung Ojibwa Centre

Discover the history and culture of the Curve Lake First Nation in the beautiful museum and gallery inside the Whetung Ojibwa Centre, then browse the outstanding collection of leather work, clothing, jewelry, music, and much more from across Canada and from the Curve Lake community.


A little local history: Once known as “Hall’s Bridge”, first postmaster John Hall’s collection of deer antlers, which he displayed on the outside walls of his mills, is where this town got it’s name “Buckhorn”. The community celebrates the name of the town with this sculpture of a buck.

BuckhornKawartha Country Wineries

Round out your trip with a stop at Kawartha Country Wineries to sample their delicious fruit wines, preserves, vinegars and more. Housed in a restored log cabin built in 1866, the property is where much of the fruit used in the wines are grown, including the raspberries, blackberries and apples. Watch for the inukshuk which welcomes visitors, made entirely from rock on the property! Kawartha WineryCheck out the full route here:

What is your favourite stop on a trip to Peterborough & the Kawarthas?

2 replies on “Great Fall Drives – Peterborough & the Kawarthas”

We just came back from visiting the Kawarthas , the colors on the leafs was so beautiful out there.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *