• Ankita

Getaway trip to Lake Muskoka and Torrance Barrens!

It was since forever that I could take a trip because of the pandemic. When I returned to Canada from India after 5 months, I had to make the best of the few days of summer left in Toronto. So, I agreed to a spur of the moment plan for a getaway to Lake Muskoka with bunch of my friends.

To get to Lake Muskoka, it takes around 2 hours and 15 minutes drive from Toronto. The drive itself is so beautiful with serene nature and we could see a sunflower field on the way! We booked a boat from SeaDoo Rentals for 6 people in advance. They can be contacted at 705-687-1400 for price enquiries. You can drive the boat yourself and it's fairly easily to navigate once the staff explains how it works; and it requires a valid drivers license to rent and operate the boat.

The best time to do boating is definitely around sunset because the sky becomes so beautiful and you can enjoy your ride without the harsh sunlight.

Later at night we drove to the Torrance Barren Dark Sky Reserve for stargazing. The route had a winding road with lots of blind spots with ups and downs. It's best to drive with caution here since there is minimum lighting on the way.

You can find a quiet spot with a little hike of 5-10 minutes easily. We spread a bed sheet to lie down and glanced up at the sky and what we saw was nothing short of spectacular. Millions of stars and the Milky Way can be seen by the naked eye. You can see satellites orbiting the earth which looks like star from so much distance but you could follow them through their path by focusing on their twinkle. I actually saw 3 shooting stars in a short span of time. The experience was divine. Where to stay?

There are plenty of cottages, hotels and inns in the area to stay. I stayed at the Howard Johnson Inn by Wyndham in Gravenhurst. It was conveniently located with many restaurants, cafes and other amenities nearby. It was clean and all steps were taken to prevent the spread of virus. It was pretty empty, so keeping safe social distance was easy!

The next day we woke up late and got our pizza brunch near the inn in Gravenhurst!

Later we went to the Muskoka Beach Park and got soaked in the sun! It was a perfect day for some sun bathing and just relaxing on the sand. There were many people here- barbecuing, playing in the sand and water, reading. . .

After few hours, we looked for some activities nearby and decided to go to Bracebridge Golf Course. It was so fun and a perfect thing to do for a group of friends which was just a short drive away.

After spending some eventful hours here, we went back to the Torrance Barren to do some more stargazing. There are very few places on the planet where you could see such brilliant sky and it really put a new perspective to your thinking. Watching the vast sky filled with outer space bodies was really calming and exciting at the same time. I could not get any decent pictures here because I was only carrying my iPhone, so I highly recommend taking your cameras if you plan to visit here.

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