6 Of The Best Sandy Beaches in Ontario

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By Tourism Sault Ste. Marie

Take a Daytrip to some of the most beautiful and relaxing sandy beaches in Ontario

Our beaches are incredible. There, we said it! All around Sault Ste. Marie you’ll find amazing Ontario sandy beaches that are perfect for a swim, a play in the sand or just to relax and soak up the sun. Great beaches are just one reason Sault Ste. Marie is the perfect place for a summer vacation.

Wondering where are the best Ontario sandy beaches? These 6 awesome expanses of sand are just a short drive from Sault Ste. Marie.  

No.1 – Pancake Bay Provincial Park and beach

A leisurely 45 minute drive north on the Trans-Canada Highway along the stunning Lake Superior coast is Pancake Bay Provincial Park Beach – one of the best sandy beaches in Ontario.

This beautiful area is known for its more than 3 km of golden sand beach and crystal clear, Caribbean blue water. The Edmund Fitzgerald Lookout hiking trail gives an incredible panoramic view of the lake if you are looking for some exercise before relaxing on the sand.  

The Park is one of the area’s most popular camping destinations with excellent and comprehensive facilities.

No.2 – Batchewana Bay Provincial Park and beach

Just south of Pancake Bay lies lies Batchawana Bay Provincial Park, another great Ontario beach on Lake Superior. Batchewana Bay’s sun-soaked, 5 km beach is the perfect place to spend a summer’s day with the family. The water here is shallow, warm and perfect for swimming! Facilities include picnic tables and bathrooms.

Passes for this day-use provincial park can be made online or at the visitor center located on Highway 17. 

To complete the day visit Agawa Crafts and the Canadian Carver and eat at the Voyageurs Lodge and Cookhouse

No.3 – Old Woman Bay Beach

Old Woman Bay Beach is one of the most iconic and legendary sandy beaches on the coast of Lake Superior. Framed by spectacular cliffs it ranks among the most beautiful beaches in all of Ontario.

This long sandy beach contains scattered pieces of driftwood and sapphire blue waters that contrast incredibly with the rocky, 200 m high cliffs enclosing the south shore. These towering cliffs give the bay the name because they are said to have the face of an ‘old woman’ on them.  

Old Woman Bay is part of Lake Superior Provincial Park, which is one of the largest provincial parks in Ontario. The park boundaries extend from Agawa Bay to just south of Wawa, bisected by the Trans Canada Highway. Along with numerous beaches the park is home to the famous and culturally significant Pictographs in the sacred Agawa Bay and many great hiking trails.

The nearest camping is at Rabbit Blanket Lake Campground, part of the Provincial Park and a 5 minute drive south of the Old Woman beach. Parking, washrooms and picnic facilities at Old Woman Bay make makes it the perfect place for a day trip from Sault Ste. Marie. 

No.4 – Harmony Beach

Harmony Beach in Haviland Bay is the first beach you will encounter when travelling north on the Trans Canada Highway along the Superior coast from Sault Ste. Marie. This public beach is a local’s favourite, only a half-hour drive from Sault Ste. Marie and featuring 3.2 km of stunning sand and great swimming.

It’s also close to the Haviland Bay Voyageur Trail with stunning views that look out over the lake. So after your hike, take a swim!

No.5 – Point des Chênes Park and beach

Pointe des Chênes is a family-friendly sandy beach in Sault Ste. Marie city limits. This slice of paradise is only a short drive from downtown. It’s the perfect spot for building sandcastles and swimming. Located on Lake Superior at the mouth of the St. Marys River, this great Ontario beach is also an awesome spot to watch the big Great Lakes ships go by.

No.6 – St. Joseph Island Beaches

Peaceful St. Joseph island lies just to the east of Sault Ste. Marie on Lake Huron’s North Channel, off of the Trans Canada Highway. It’s a must-see for visitors, featuring many great Ontario sand beaches. The communities of Hilton Beach and Richards Landing have marinas for boaters, as well as restaurants and shops making it a perfect day trip. Best of all, the island’s wonderful beaches are uncrowded and pristine. 

Hilton Beach is home to Forbes Beach and Community Park. This sandy beach features numerous picnic tables, a buoyed swimming area and a raft that swimmers can jump off. Public washrooms, change rooms and playground equipment make this a pleasant destination for an afternoon getaway. The Hilton Beach boardwalk connects the beach to the picturesque marina.

The community of Richards Landing is located on the west side of St. Joseph Island. Women’s Institute Park has a sandy public beach, safe swimming, playground equipment, picnic pavilions and a tennis court. The area is also home to amazing mountain biking and road cycling. Rentals are available at the Richards Landing Marina for those wishing to explore the numerous groomed trails and natural beauty of the island’s forests.