Nature, Culture, Food Entertainment and a Whole Lot of Style
Vacations are always too short, and we want to make the most of them! So it's important that your vacation destination has something for everyone, from outdoor enthusiasts, to foodies and shopaholics. Sault Ste. Marie and Algoma make it easy to customize your holiday with a diverse array of activities, attractions, and accommodations. Whatever your pleasure, you'll find it here with all you need to create the ultimate bespoke vacation.
Nature + Culture
Algoma is rich in natural beauty, with sweeping views of Lake Superior to the north and rolling hills and pastures to the east. But, what you might not know is that the area also has some of the most spectacular white sand beaches in the province. Local destinations such as Harmony Beach, Pancake Bay and Point des Chênes all have seemingly endless sandbars, where the water is warm and kids can stay safely within their parent's sight while splashing to their heart's content. And there's always lots of room to spread out; even on the busiest summer holidays, the beaches are never so crowded that you can't find your own piece of paradise.
If a day at the beach is too laid back, and you love to explore the natural world, take a hike at Kinsmen Park, a local gem which runs through the Hiawatha Highlands wilderness preserve with over 40 km of hiking, skiing and snowshoeing trails. Or access the John Rowswell Hub Trail, a 26 km paved route that's great for biking, jogging, hiking or just walking.
Not only is the Algoma Region home to the spectacular natural landscapes that inspired the Group of Seven, it also retains a fascinating historical and cultural heritage. Local museums, such as the Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre or the Ermatinger●Clergue National Historic Site tell the story of Algoma's past. The Canadian Bushplane Heritage Centre is great fun for kids and adults alike with interactive displays and presentations and permission to climb aboard many of the aircraft on display. Visitors can take a virtual journey with a bush pilot flying a vintage de Havilland Beaver in the "Wings over the North" exhibit. The thrilling story of bush pilot Ron and his canine co-pilot Charlie is brought to life through an interactive theatre experience. You may even get wet!
To get a sense of what day to day life was like in the early days of Sault Ste. Marie, visit the Ermatinger●Clergue National Historic Site, which proudly preserves two of the oldest stone buildings northwest of Toronto. The on-site staff and volunteers research, collect and display artifacts and documents that reflect life in Sault Ste. Marie from 1808 to 1870. Then, complete your journey into the past with a visit to the newly opened Heritage Discovery Centre, where engaging, interactive exhibits will give a glimpse into the region's rich history.
Roughing It + Urban Entertainment
Algoma Region is the perfect destination if want to get away from the frantic pace of the big city. Here you can truly immerse yourself in nature. Lake Superior Provincial Park, for example, has over 200 backcountry campsites, which are only accessible by hiking trail or canoe. The world-class Coastal Trail follows the rugged shoreline of Lake Superior, challenging even the most experienced hikers. It's worth the effort to experience the solitude and sheer grandeur of the landscapes you'll encounter.
If you'd rather seek adventure on water, sea kayaking on Lake Superior is an experience not to be missed. Outfitters like Naturally Superior Adventures and Caribou Expeditions lead outings for beginners and experienced kayakers alike on Lake Superior and other northern lakes and rivers. Best of all, no need to bring your own gear; you can rent it when you get here at a number of outfitters in the area!
Photo Credit: Joe's Sports & Surplus
After a day filled with adventure, head back in to Sault Ste. Marie for some urban entertainment. Why not start with drinks on Queen Street? Catch some live music at the RockStar Bar before working your way west to the warm, casual atmosphere of Coch's Corner. Next up, maybe join the young crowd for some dancing at Top Hat? Or, for something more sophisticated, try the award-winning wine list at Loplops. Then, cap off your tour with a pint at Reggies, a favourite among locals.
If you're looking for a dinner spot, you'll find a plethora of options—from well-known spots like Boston Pizza or Casey's Grill Bar, to homegrown Italian eateries like Gigi's Bistro & Pizzeria and Fratelli's Kitchen & Pizzeria, to upscale chophouses like Embers or Quattro. In the mood for something a little more spicy? Try Tandoori Gardens, which serves Indian and Canadian food including a number of vegetarian and vegan options. Low and Slow is another restaurant that's new to the Sault scene, but it's quickly becoming a favourite, specializing in delicious smoked fusion BBQ.
Photo Credit: Fratelli's
When it's time to turn in for the night, you have your choice of clean and affordable motels like the Super 8 or the Ambassador, or more luxurious digs, such as the famous Algoma's Water Tower Inn & Suites or the new Delta Sault Ste. Marie Waterfront Hotel and conference centre, situated downtown on the waterfront. It has a spectacular view of the St. Mary's River.
Rustic Charm + Upscale Style
Does your perfect vacation involve shopping 'til you drop? If so, you have lots to choose from in Algoma.
If you're looking for something that captures the natural spirit of the Algoma Region, visit the Canadian Carver, located on Highway 17 North or the Totem Pole at Frontier Village also on Highway 17, just on the outskirts of town. Both specialize in unique hand-made crafts and artwork by Canadian and First Nations artisans. Here you'll find such treasures as locally crafted jewelry, clothing, woolen wear, and custom-carved signs.
The new Mill Market is also a fantastic place to sample freshly grown in-season produce, baked goods, and handicrafts. Located in the old fish hatcheries building in the historic Canal District, it attracts vendors far and wide.
If you're interested in fashion-forward boutiques and upscale furniture and décor Algoma offers much to please. Queen Street, in the city's historic downtown has boutiques such as 49th Apparel, which offer Canadian-made designer fashions and jewelry.
Sault Ste. Marie and the Algoma Region is the ideal destination for a bespoke vacation experience, custom-tailored to the needs and desires of the entire family. Peaceful, exhilarating, fascinating, and friendly, you'll find it all here!