Meaning of 'Central Ontario': Henceforth, Central Ontario refers to Wikipedia`s definition and the reddened area of Wikipedia's map (abridged by me) below, which excludes Manitoulin Island. enter image description here

Central Question: In Central Ontario, are there any national parks or wildlife areas that contain roads or trails on which vehicles can explore the park?

Context: Residents of Toronto, my elderly grandparents desire to behold nature by exploring an 'authentic' national park or wildlife reserve, one situated truly in the wild and not 1 hour outside Toronto, preferably with natural water bodies. Alas, their feeble health and physician's warnings prevent them from hiking, and limit them to walking only around 15 minutes at a time.

To enable them to perceive nature, my grandparents were thinking of renting an off-road vehicle (with all wheel drive), to drive into the inaccessible interiors of parks (instead of walking all the way), and to stop and walk briefly only to access the most beautiful sites (eg: a scenic water body very remote inside a park).


1 Answer 1


I believe the Algonquin (Provincial) Park fits perfectly your expectations. That is a big green area in the middle of Central/South Ontario on maps.

Algonquin in Ontario

It surrounds the Highway 60, which gives access to many sights.

hwy 60

The park has either easily accessible spots (on the map above) for everyone even with disabilities, or deep forest trails or canoe routes accessible to the more trained people. I believe you are looking for the former. Take a (regular) car and go drive-through the park with that map.

The feeling of being "truly in the wild" will come after the last Tim Hortons will disappear in the mirror, 50 km from the park. I think that is the most wild you can find without hiking or canoeing. Many people from Toronto and Ottawa come by car to that park, so it is easily enough accessible, but still offers true wild feeling.

  • 1
    I good answer and the one I would have written. Worth pointing out that an 'off-road' vehicle will not get you anywhere in Algonguin that a normal vehicle won't. Commented Jun 17, 2016 at 13:27
  • Interestingly there is now a wheelchair-friendly trail in Algonquin: twitter.com/acrubenstein/status/889947757477318656 Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 23:03

You must log in to answer this question.