The Best Beaches in South Georgian Bay

Some of the most frequently asked questions we get at South Georgian Bay Tourism relate to what beaches are open to the public and where best to go. When the weather gets hot, there’s no better way to cool down than a quick dip in Georgian Bay. Here we’ve highlighted some of the best beaches in South Georgian Bay and their respective rules and regulations (including parking). As always, please remember to plan ahead, respect nature and wildlife, do not litter, do not trespass, and to observe Covid-19 protocols.  Choosing to park in undesignated parking areas can result in ticketing as these beaches are frequently visited by bylaw officers. Although the coast guard does patrol our shores, the beaches listed here do not have lifeguards and therefore the waterfront is used at your own risk. Please be mindful of offshore winds that can blow floaties, paddleboards, and kayaks far from land quickly. Stay safe and enjoy all that beautiful Georgian Bay has to offer during these hot months of summer.

Wasaga Beach

Wasaga Beach

Wasaga Beach is one of the premier tourist destinations in Ontario! For over a century, tourists have traveled to the sandy shores of Nottawasaga Bay to stroll along the 14 kilometers of white sand beach, swim in Georgian Bay and enjoy the panoramic mountain views across the water. Wasaga Beach is the first provincial park in Canada to be awarded the “Blue Flag” designation for its banks management efforts under the international environmental standards. For more information, visit www.BlueFlag.ca.

There are 8 different areas of Wasaga Beach Provincial Park, each with different amenities and regulations. Please see their official website for maps of the area, parking, and what each area has to offer! Police and Bylaw Officers regularly patrol the beach areas, no lifeguards are on duty.

Sunset Point Beach

Sunset Point Beach is an iconic Collingwood waterfront location. Fresh air, Nottawasaga Bay breezes and absolute beauty make this a special place for all occasions. Vast green space, the nearby Enviro-park, volleyball courts, rocky beach, access to waterfront trails, canteen area and washroom facilities – this park has it all! The Chipper is on-site for snacks, ice cream & the best fries in town! Watch as the windsurfers catch some air, bike or walk along the paths or simply relax and watch the breathtaking sunset.

Please note that BBQs are not permitted at the beach, communal charcoal BBQs are provided. Paid parking and maximum capacity is actively enforced, Parking rates are $10/hour with a daily max of $50. Please see the Town of Collingwood’s website for further information. Click here for parking.

Northwinds Beach in Craigleith

Northwinds Beach

Northwinds Beach Park is by far the most popular beach in The Town of Blue Mountains. There is a playground and washroom facilities onsite as well as several shaded picnic tables throughout the park and beach area. The beach is within walking distance of the Craigleith Heritage Depot Museum and Craigleith Community Centre and only a short drive from Blue Mountain Resort, located off of Highway 26. It is the perfect spot for kayaking, SUP (stand-up paddle boarding), and for lounging on the beach. The Georgian Trail also runs parallel to Highway 26 in this section, which would make for a lovely bike ride to the beach. Be careful and mindful of traffic, as Highway 26 is a busy road. It is recommended to stop biking when you reach the Craigleith Heritage Depot, walk your bike across the intersection at Highway 26 and Grey County Road 19, then proceed to the beach.

Please note that BBQs and any motorized vessels are not permitted at Northwinds Beach. Paid parking and maximum capacity is actively enforced. Please see the Town of Blue Mountains website for further information and parking rates.

Peasemarsh Beach in the Blue Mountains

Pease Marsh

Peasemarsh Beach is a sandy beach that welcomes you as you enter the Nature Preserve located in the Town of Blue Mountains. The park provides a sand and pebble beach waterfront and beautiful views of Georgian Bay. There is a network of trails that run through the Conservation Area and opportunities for fishing both in the Indian Brook and Georgian Bay. The beach and park makes a great place for picnics and a swim in Georgian Bay. The beach and nature preserve is located off of Highway 26, just outside of Thornbury. See the Grey Sauble Conservation site for parking information and to buy a parking pass.

craigleith prov park
Image curtesy of visitgrey.ca

Craigleith Provincial Park 

Craigleith Provincial Park was established in 1967 by Ontario Parks. It is a recreation-class Provincial Park created to help preserve the historic oil shale beach. Craigleith Provincial Park is a small park located between Collingwood and Thornbury on the southern shores of Georgian Bay. Located at the Base of Blue Mountain this is an ideal hub to enjoy what the local area has to offer. Limited day use access is permitted of the beach area to the right of the campsites. Please note that these spaces are actively monitored and that parking is not permitted in undesignated spots. For more information, please visit their website here.

Memorial Park

Memorial Park

Memorial Park is a picturesque area and campground with over 468 metres of beautiful sandy shoreline on Georgian Bay. It features many amenities, including full-service campground facilities, public washrooms, a snack bar, two pavilion shelters, playground areas, mini-golf course, woodland walking trails and ample free parking. The campground is a quick drive from downtown Meaford and the harbour. This is a pet-friendly environment, with a portion of the beach dedicated for dog use in the summer months.

For more information, please click here.

Paid parking for non-residents is in effect at Memorial Park from June 14 to October 31, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m., 7 days a week. Fees: $10 day pass, $100 for a season pass. Contactless payments can be made onsite at Memorial Park by Visa, Mastercard, or Visa debit. Signage is posted in parking areas providing payment instructions, or you can download the Honk App to your mobile device.

Kayaking in the Meaford Harbour by Fred Raper Park

Fred Raper Park

Named after one of Meaford’s founding settlers, Fred Raper Park is a hub of waterfront activity minutes from Meaford’s Downtown Heritage District. Watch the waterfront from a bench, gazebo, or one of the many picnic tables. Dip your toes into the water along the smooth pebble beach, or drop your line in to fish along the shore. The playground amenities include a wooden ship structure, swings and an upgraded play structure. The park is a part of Meaford’s Big Red Chair Tour – keep an eye out for it and snap a picture! It is a great way to remember your visit to Meaford. Please see the Meaford Tourism Directory for further information.

Christie Beach

Christie Beach Conservation Area

A beautiful, quiet, sandy beach, with incredible views of the Georgian Bay’s natural landscape. It is one of the best family-friendly beaches in the area, and you will be sure to leave with fond memories. One of the best sand beaches on this part of Georgian Bay. Located at the end of Christie Beach Road, off Highway 26 west of The Town of The Blue Mountains. Christie Beach has facilities for the public to use, such as change rooms, washrooms, playground equipment and a picnic shelter. It is a great option for families, and is pet friendly! This beach is located between Meaford & Thornbury off of Highway 26.

See the Ontario Conservation website for additional information. See the Grey Sauble Conservation site for parking information and to buy a parking pass.

Ainslie Wood Conservation Area

Ainslie Wood Conservation Area

Located at the far west end of the Municipality of Meaford, Ainslie Wood Conservation Area is on the shores of Georgian Bay, just north of Leith. Boasting 523 metres of beautiful cobble beach. This hidden gem is definitely worth the trip! Access is available from Grey Rd. 35 and Bayshore Drive. Make sure to watch out for poison ivy* 

For more information, please click here. See the Grey Sauble Conservation site for parking information and to buy a parking pass.

 

We hope you have a fun and safe time down by the Bay this summer! Share your memories with us by tagging @SGeorgianBay on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter

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