Elliot Lake is surrounded by untamed nature reserves, parks, and rich Indigenous cultural history.
Set around a pristine lake that attracts fishing and watersport enthusiasts in summer, Elliot Lake also features 300 kilometers of looped ATV trails all within 30km of the city. A network of hiking trails also leads visitors to explore the varied terrains—mountains, lakeshore, boreal forest, and marshlands—and the huge variety of flora and fauna that inhabit them. In winter, it's best to hit the popular ski hill, where you'll find plenty of powder for crosscountry skiing and snowmobiling. Expect down-home cooking style restaurants and fast-food joints along with friendly pubs, plus gorgeous swimming beaches and several city parks while you're here.
The world’s largest freshwater island is filled with lakes and abundant boreal forest, serving up both a wealth of recreation opportunities and a number of restaurants and attractions. More than 40 percent of Manitoulin Island’s population is part of the Anishinaabe First Nations that have lived in the area since long before European settlers arrived—as a result, many authentic cultural experiences can be had (such as pow wows, tipi stays, and guided canoe adventures, to name a few).
Hike some of this 182-hectare protected wilderness area to observe dozens of bird species, painted turtles, snowshoe hares, beavers, moose, and maybe even timber wolves if you're lucky. There is also a huge range of flora, including wild orchids.
A completely untamed area, this park offers no facilities but has plenty of appeal for those who love to rough it. Clear lakes teeming with trout meet bedrock uplands and lichen barrens, while the coniferous forest houses moose, deer, and other wildlife. Two canoe routes run through the park.
This historic mining town on the shore of Lake Huron makes a quaint stop on any roadtrip through Northern Ontario. Home to Canada's first copper mine, here you can tour the mine shaft and view artifacts at the town museum, visit the marina, and enjoy the lakeshore.
The best time to camp in Elliot Lake is in summer and fall, when it's warm enough to enjoy lake activities. If you come before July, the blackflies can be brutal (and mosquitoes last into September). Pitching a tent in winter in Northern Ontario is for only the most extreme campers, so many parks (if they even offer services in this remote neck of the woods) are only open from May through October.