15 Best Accommodations to Use Your Ontario Staycation Tax Credit On

Take your pick from cabins, lodges, campgrounds and more.

Planning a getaway in 2022? Ontario residents who opt for a “staycation” in their home province this year can get back up to 20 percent on eligible accommodation expenses with the new, but temporary, Ontario Staycation Tax Credit.

what is the Ontario staycation tax credit?

Check out our complete guide to the Ontario Staycation Tax Credit

The 2022 Ontario Staycation Tax Credit aims to encourage residents of Ontario to explore this beautiful and diverse province, while giving local tourism and hospitality sectors a boost following the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Eligible accommodation expenses must be leisure stays of less than a month taken in Ontario, including resorts, cottages, campgrounds, lodges, bed and breakfasts, hotels, motels, and short-term rentals such as Airbnb. The staycation tax credit does not include mobile accommodations, such as RV, campervan, trailer, or houseboat rentals, or train travel.

How do I get a staycation tax credit?

Ontario residents will be able to apply for the credit when filing their 2022 personal Income Tax and Benefit Return in 2023. You can claim up to 20 percent of eligible accommodation expenses for vacations taken in Ontario between January 1 and December 31, 2022, up to a maximum of $1,000 for an individual and $2,000 for a family. That translates to a maximum savings of $200 or $400, respectively. Learn more at ontario.ca/staycation.

Need Ontario staycation inspiration?

From family resorts to romantic getaways and remote lodges, Ontario’s tremendous diversity of accommodations offers a wide range of vacation options. Here are 15 fantastic places to take advantage of your Ontario Staycation Tax Credit in 2022.

Smoothwater Outfitters and Lodge with three canoes parked on the lawn out front
Stay with the experts on exploring Temagami. Photo: Gary McGuffin

Smoothwater Outfitters & Lodge, Temagami

The Temagami region offers world-class wilderness canoe tripping for experienced backcountry travellers, but with more than 2,400 kilometres of paddling routes, it can be hard to know where to start. Begin and end your adventure at Smoothwater Outfitters & Lodge, located on a peaceful little lake just off Highway 11. Renowned for their tasty cuisine, traditional sauna and variety of cheerful and cozy waterfront accommodations, the folks at Smoothwater are also experts on exploring Temagami. Their complete outfitting service includes canoe and gear rentals, shuttles, trip food packages, and trip planning assistance.

Minaki Yurt Adventures, Minaki (Kenora)

Situated on a pristine and private lake north of Kenora, Minaki Yurt Adventures offers unique glamping accommodations in the heart of the boreal forest. Whether you stay in the two-story tipi or one of the spacious, all-season yurts—traditional round dwellings with high, domed roofs—you’ll have access to the wood-fired sauna, outdoor pizza oven and a fantastic, on-site trail network for hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and snowshoeing.

Wabakimi Wilderness Lodge, Armstrong

Wabakimi Provincial Park is a vast area of boreal forest, sparkling lakes and wild rivers in Northwestern Ontario, known for its dozens of wilderness canoe routes. Stay on the doorstep of this remote park in well-appointed comfort at Wabakimi Wilderness Lodge on Mattice Lake. This bed and breakfast serves up gourmet meals and spectacular lake views alongside fantastic fishing, canoeing, kayaking, hiking, and mountain biking opportunities. A destination in its own right, the lodge also makes for a great start or finish to a self-guided or guided canoe trip in the park with Wabakimi Outfitters.

True North Outposts & Cabins, Emo (International Falls)

If you love fishing wilderness lakes, Northwestern Ontario and its hundreds of enticing, fish-filled lakes offer the ultimate staycation destination. True North Outpost & Cabins makes it easy to plan an authentic northern vacation with family or friends. Take a boat or a floatplane to remote honey holes from your home base in a comfortable cabin overlooking Clearwater (Burditt) Lake. When you’re not stalking trophy-sized walleye, lake trout, bass, northern pike, and muskie, bask in the sauna, paddle canoes and kayaks, or simply take in the sunrise from your front deck.

The Outpost Company, Minaki (Kenora)

To feel truly out there on your next Ontario staycation, board a legendary Canadian bushplane to one of The Outpost Company’s seven different fly-in fishing cabins. Sport anglers can select their lake and cabin stay based on their preferred species of fish, with options for smallmouth bass, walleye, lake trout, and northern pike. Each of these timber chalets and hand-hewn log cabins provides guests with a just-right blend of comfort and rustic ambience, just steps from your very own northern lake.

Lighthouse sits beside a building in evening light
What better way to experience the history of Lake Superior than by spending the night in a lighthouse? Photo: Canadian Lighthouses of Lake Superior

Canadian Lighthouses of Lake Superior (Thunder Bay)

The non-profit Canadian Lighthouses of Lake Superior offers unique accommodations at a remote lighthouse located just east of Thunder Bay. The four-day Weekender package includes a return charter boat ride to access the refurbished historic light station at Porphyry Island, as well as accommodation in the former lightkeeper’s house. Savour the isolation and deserted black sand beaches of this breathtaking island, join a guided tour to learn more about the life of a lightkeeper, enjoy a steamy sauna and bracing lake dip, and explore the trails by foot or bicycle. It’s also a perfect layover for paddlers exploring the Lake Superior National Marine Conservation Area.

Voyageur Island Cabin, Nym Lake (Atikokan)

Day trip into the labyrinth of lakes and pristine boreal forest that is Quetico Provincial Park from this cozy cabin nestled on a private island. Disconnect and listen to the haunting call of loons while stargazing from your lakeside deck. This is the perfect spot if your dream vacation includes plenty of swimming, canoeing, and paddleboarding far from the distractions of everyday life. Voyageur Wilderness Programme can help you combine a guided or self-guided canoe exploration of Quetico Park with your stay.

Mink Mountain Resort, Neebing (Thunder Bay)

Perched on the Canadian Shield shoreline of Lake Superior with the striking Nor’Wester Mountains at its back, Mink Mountain Resort offers year-round waterfront cottage and lodge rentals with breathtaking views of the world’s largest freshwater lake. When the big lake is calm, guests can kayak to a chain of wild boreal islands; during winter or windy days, guests can hike, snowshoe, or ski to panoramic overlooks and watch for wildlife on the resort’s network of scenic trails.

The Willows Inn B&B, Rossport

The picturesque community of Rossport is an off-the-beaten-path gem on the north shore of Lake Superior. Overlooking a peaceful archipelago of scenic islands, The Willows Inn makes a comfortable home base while exploring the area. Guests are a short walk from the harbour and the kayak-filled yard at Superior Outfitters, where paddlers can rent equipment or join a guided day tour of the islands with Such a Nice Day Adventures.

Rock Island Lodge, Wawa

Sunsets don’t get any better in Ontario than at Rock Island Lodge, perched on the shores of Lake Superior near Wawa. The four-room lodge overlooks the endless horizon of Lake Superior to the west, with equally lovely sunrise views from beachfront glamping and camping sites over the placid waters of the Michipicoten River. Sea kayak, canoe, and SUP guided day trips, instruction and rentals are available from the lodge through Naturally Superior Adventures.

Rustic cabins at Sleeping Giant Provincial Park
Stay close to all the outdoor adventure activities at Sleeping Giant by booking one of the Park’s cabins. Photo: Ontario Parks

Rustic Cabins, Sleeping Giant Provincial Park (Thunder Bay)

Ontario’s staycation tax credit applies to camping and roofed accommodation at Ontario provincial parks, making this a great year to experience the hundreds of diverse and beautiful parks scattered across the province. One of the finest is Sleeping Giant Provincial Park, which occupies a dramatic peninsula just east of Thunder Bay. Reserve a campsite or enjoy all the conveniences of home at a rustic cabin at the park’s Mary Louise Lake Campground. Bring your bicycles, hiking boots, snowshoes, or skis to see the park’s namesake formation of 300-metre-tall cliffs and explore the rugged Lake Superior coastline from a 100-kilometre trail network.

Mountainview Lodge, Searchmont (Sault Ste. Marie)

Nestled along the meandering Goulais River, Mountainview Lodge is a cozy, all-season basecamp from which to explore the rugged Canadian Shield landscape of the Algoma region. Stay in one of the lodge’s six rooms or opt for a self-contained log cabin; there’s even a refurbished “Little Red Caboose” for railway lovers. Whether you’re looking for a quiet nature retreat or an adventure-packed weekend, the lodge offers canoe rentals and shuttles for day trips on the Goulais River and guided fishing excursions on the Garden River. In winter, the slopes of Searchmont Resort are just minutes away.

Melwel Lodge, Thessalon (Sault Ste. Marie)

Located on scenic Basswood Lake near Thessalon, Ontario, Melwel Lodge offers private cottage rentals in a sublime setting of pine forest, crystal clear lakes, and craggy granite bluffs. The lodge’s 11 wonderfully restored, historic cottages each have their own unique charm and are scattered along the shoreline, giving Melwel a playful, summer-camp-for-families vibe. Kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards provide plenty of paddling options for exploring this huge lake.

Ten Mile Point Accommodations, Manitoulin Island

With their airy, minimalist design and spectacular views of the island-studded blue waters of Lake Huron, the four light-filled cabins at Ten Mile Point Accommodations evoke a serene, Scandinavian-inspired aesthetic. Perched high on the thickly forested back of Manitoulin Island, these Airbnb cottages offer an idyllic escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Discover the true meaning of “island time” while savouring unbelievable sunrises and sunsets. Wikwemikong Tourism offers a variety of outdoor experiences that reflect the cultural activites and traditions of the Anishinaabek people, including paddling, hiking, fishing and foraging.

Killarney Mountain Lodge, Killarney

For an unforgettable luxury staycation in one of Ontario’s quaintest communities, look no further than Killarney Mountain Lodge. This historic resort boasts waterfront chalets, cabins, and lodge rooms sprinkled across a park-like setting on the edge of Georgian Bay. Between feasting on gourmet meals and lounging by the pool, you can enjoy world-class sea kayaking and hike to lookouts over the sparkling white quartzite La Cloche Mountains in Killarney Provincial Park.

Make the Most of Your Ontario Staycation

Whether you enjoy getting off-grid at a rustic retreat, or want the cozy comfort of a home-away-from-home, Ontario’s best accommodations are all about immersing yourself in the province’s natural beauty. In 2022, take advantage of the Ontario Staycation Tax Credit to discover the outstanding escapes right in your own backyard.

About Virginia Marshall

Virginia Marshall is a freelance outdoor adventure writer, photographer and editor with roots in Muskoka and Lake Superior. Read her work in Adventure Kayak, Canoeroots, Rapid, Paddling Magazine and Backroad Mapbooks.

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