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Discover the heritage, scenery, and happening events of northwestern Ontario in areas like the Thunder Bay District and the Kenora District. We’ll explore the spots like Thunder Bay, Dryden, and Sioux Lookout.
Known as Canada’s Gateway to the West, Thunder Bay is the epicenter of the Thunder Bay District and northwestern Ontario’s largest metro area. An incredibly historic city, T-Bay is also known as The Lakehead thanks to its position on Lake Superior.
Whether you’re driving in or landing at Thunder Bay International Airport, Thunder Bay is where history, outdoor adventure, and plenty of attractions come together.
Previously dubbed the Cultural Capital of Canada, Thunder Bay yields a plethora of museums, galleries, and historic sites. Be sure to explore the Thunder Bay Art Gallery, the Thunder Bay Historical Museum, and the famed Fort William Historical Park.
This being scenic northwest Ontario, Thunder Bay is busting with lookouts. Check out the Bluffs Scenic Lookout, the Terry Fox Memorial & Lookout, and the Heart of the Harbour (downtown Port Arthur’s marina area) for an awesome view of the Sleeping Giant Provincial Park.
Covering over 240 square kilometres, Sleeping Giant Provincial Park is a major attraction found just east of Thunder Bay on the Sibley Peninsula. This iconic park features more than 100 kilometres of trail (including the 40-kilometre Kabeyun Trail), cycling, fishing, and cross-country skiing.
To further explore northwest Ontario, hop on the Trans-Canada Highway (ON-17) and head roughly 350 miles to Dryden. You’ll pass through beautiful, lake-spattered countryside, moving through cities like English River, Ignace, and Borups Corner.
Found in the Kenora District, Dryden is known for hosting Max the Moose – a Canadian roadside attraction if ever there was one. Standing at 5.6 metres, Max is an icon of the city and yields the best photo backdrop in town.
Dryden also knows how to get the party started. Check for your travel dates with Dryden events like Moosefest Festival, Come Together (music festival), Kickin' Country (country music festival), and the Blue Moon Festival – plus regular performances from the Dryden Community Band.
Dryden is found right on Wabigoon Lake, which is ideal for fishing and boating, and offers 114 miles of shoreline for picnics, sun bathing, summer reading, and just plain lounging.
Back on the Trans-Canada Highway for a spell, then on ON-72 N, you’ll be in Sioux Lookout in under 100 kilometres. Nicknamed the Hub of the North, Sioux Lookout features even more to see and do in northwest Ontario.
Get to know the Hub at the Sioux Lookout Museum, found on the second floor of the Sioux Lookout Heritage Railway Station. Check out the Sioux Lookout heritage collection, and look forward to community events like Craft Days, the annual Cultural Festival, and outdoor movies.
Speaking of events, the Hub maintains a pretty full event calendar throughout the year. Annual festivals include the Blueberry Festival, the Literacy Festival, and Walleye Weekend – while reoccurring events include the Northwest Famers Market.
Sioux Lookout is also teeming with parkland. Be sure to visit the beautiful Ojibway Provincial Park, head down the four-kilometre Umfreville Trail, or check out all the rinks, fields, courts, and diamonds at the Cedar Bay Outdoor Rec Complex.