Kawarthas Northumberland

Top 10 Dad-Approved Experiences in Kawarthas Northumberland

June 17th is fast approaching – are you prepared? No matter your dad’s style, this shortlist of activities to try in Kawarthas Northumberland is sure to please.

You can absolutely opt for the ever-popular tie/golf club/insert-your-go-to-Father’s-Day-gift-here, or you can switch gears and treat Dad to a memorable experience he’ll want to remember and repeat year after year.

Whether he’s a great outdoorsman, beer connoisseur, food aficionado, or would rather be fishing, we’ve compiled 10 of our favourite options for celebrating the most important man in your life – and they’re all right here in Kawarthas Northumberland.

For the Dad Who Loves the Outdoors

From fishing and hunting to hiking and camping, Kawarthas Northumberland offers no shortage of excursions and destinations worth exploring. Visit the headquarters of the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters (OFAH) in Peterborough between 11 am and 2 pm on Father’s Day for a trifecta of fun that includes access to the fishing pond, the Excalibur Archery Range, and Stoeger Airgun Range. Click here to get details. (All fishing equipment is provided by OFAH, and there’s also a complimentary BBQ happening, with each attending dad receiving a gift.)

Looking for more outdoorsy options? Click here to go to our dedicated fishing & angling webpage. Or explore unique geological landscapes of caves, kettles, rockmills and a disappearing river while hiking to a scenic lookout at the Warsaw Caves Conservation Area and Campground.

Kawarthas Northumberland has some of the best multi-species fishing in Ontario.

For the Antiques-Loving Dad

It’s not every day that you spy authentic vintage farm trucks, tractors, steam engines, and wagons parading through the streets of Lang Pioneer Village, but this Father’s Day, expect to see just that. The largest show of its kind in the Kawarthas, from 10 am to 4 pm, spectators will also be privy to impressive power equipment displays, fun tractor games, and much more as the Smoke & Steam Show celebrates its 22nd successful year. Click here for event info. 

If dad prefers to take in some more modern motors, check out the first classic and exotic car show between 10am – 4pm on Father’s Day in downtown Peterborough. Specimens from Ferrari, Porsche, McLaren, Lamborghini and Mercedes-Benze will be present. Full details here.

For the Foodie Father

Even if dad knows his way around a grill, we bet he

wouldn’t thumb his nose at a celebratory brunch in his honour. Hosted in beautiful Bethany Hills by the incomparable South Pond Farms, this Father’s Day Burgers & Beer Brunch runs from 12 noon to 3 pm, features delicious seasonal, farm-to-table produce and meats, and takes place in a restored century barn with live jazz music as a backdrop. Click here for event details and to get your tickets now.

South Pond Farms

If dad would enjoy learning some culinary tips from a pro, then sign up for a BBQ class with Chef Brian Henry! Click here for details.

For the Water Sports Aficionado

Whether he’s an experienced boater or a novice behind the wheel, there’s a rental for that. Buckeye Marine in Bobcaygeon offers all manner of boats, including fishing, ski/wake, tube/ski, cruise/wake, cruise/ski , and deck options. Click here to learn more. Looking for a more relaxed approach to being on the water?

It may be too late this year, but maybe plan ahead for next year & book a houseboat for the weekend. Let Dad captain the vessel through the scenic Kawartha Lakes (the Houseboat Capital of Ontario) along the Trent-Severn Waterway. That’s how memories are made!

The Kawarthas lakes are the houseboat captial of ontario

For the paddling Dad, check out Peterborough Pedal ‘n Paddle (right under the Silver Bean Cafe in the heart of Peterborough) or Campbellford Paddle. (Click here to check out our Insider Expert Bretton’s blog about touring Campbellford by canoe with his kids.)

For the Trendy Dad

Chances are he’s aware of the Peterborough-based gem that is Providence, but as a one-stop-shop for all things cool – it features an edgy bar, café, barbershop, and menswear boutique – stylish dads will appreciate a reason to stop in. Also worth visiting: Kirkpatrick’s Leather in Port Hope, where there’s an abundance of perfect-for-dad goods to spoil him with, and the Peterborough Axe Club, where he can throw on his best hipster ensemble and toss sharp, metal objects at wooden bulls eyes just for the fun of it!

For the Fixer-Upper Father

If he loves spending time with his wee ones while flexing some DIY muscle, consider this Birdhouse Build a must. Starting at 10 am, families are invited to Headwaters Community Farm and Education Centre in Cobourg where they’ll build and paint a customized, build-it-yourself birdhouse. All supplies are provided, and the cost of the build includes two create-your-own pizzas for participants. Click here for info.

If you can’t make a trip out this weekend, then perhaps gift dad a future Artisan Workshop at the Canadian Canoe Museum: paddle carving, leather-working, hand cane canoe seats, and more! These workshops are amazing experiences in heritage crafting skills. Click here for details.

For the Active Dad

While hitting the gym together may or may not be an option, getting active outdoors is always a treat in Kawarthas Northumberland. This area is home to some of the most popular and most accessible cycling routes in the province. And don’t forget that the Trans-Canada Trail connects this beautiful region and is a pleasure to explore by bike or on foot. Learn more about amazing cycling routes from one of our partners:

For the Craft Beer-Loving Dad

It’s fair to say that most dads enjoy kicking back with a cold brew, but how many have treated themselves to a dedicated craft beer or winery or spirits experience? Make this Father’s Day extra memorable by visiting one of the uber-popular brewmasters throughout Peterborough, Cobourg, Buckhorn, Bobcaygeon, Havelock, Trent Hills, Colborne and Codrington. Click here for details.

For the Dad Who’s All About Sightseeing

You need not fund a trip to the other side of the world to satisfy your father’s wanderlust. Take him to the stunning Ranney Gorge Suspension Bridge. Reserve tickets on Peterborough’s Liftlock Cruises (click here), which offers a two-hour sightseeing ride across Little Lake, past the Peterborough Centennial Fountain, and into the Trent-Severn Waterway, National Historic Site of Canada, where you’ll be an impressive 65 feet by the world’s tallest hydraulic lift lock, built over 110 years ago! Luncheon and dinner rides are also available, and each cruise features is complemented by fun commentary and facts that delve into the area’s rich history.

Take a cruise over the world’s highest lift lock. Photo by Lydia Dotto.

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