Imagine a place where local is a way of life, food and drink meld naturally and lead to unique gastronomic adventures. The relaxed pace of life in the county makes vacationing here effortless. Prince Edward County has a reputation for capturing hearts and imaginations and it’s easy to see why! There are renowned beaches, wineries around every corner, and local culinary creativity at every meal. Read on to discover 9 ways to enjoy the best of The County this season!
1. Explore Beaches And Trails
With more than 800 km of shoreline in the County, the water is a way of life that stretches past the shores into the relaxed atmosphere. Embrace the island culture and spend the day wandering the white dune beaches at Sandbanks Provincial Park* and North Beach Provincial. Feel the warm sand between your toes while turquoise water stretches towards the horizon. Roll in the waves and experience sandbars underwater as the water carries your cares away with every wave. Another day-trip option, as is Wellington Rotary Public Beach* which has neat boardwalk lining the beach!
*The high water levels of Lake Ontario have been challenging for our shorelines. If you’re planning to visit Sandbanks Provincial Park or Wellington Rotary Beach, please inquire before you arrive about the state of the shoreline and any road closures. For further information please call the park directly. 613-393-3319
READ ALSO: 14 Perfect Beaches In South Eastern Ontario
2. Discover The Bounty Of The County
Local food brings unparalleled freshness paired with satisfaction. Savour life in Prince Edward County with home-grown goodness and culinary creativity. Local bakeries, restaurants and pubs are not limited to traditional fare, often offering culturally-infused food complimenting county-inspired menus. A buffet for the senses with wineries, to waterfront restaurants, farmers markets and even artist spaces. Food grown close to home plays a big part in creating the authentic foodie experience here.
3. Cruise Through The County
With its gently rolling hills, wineries, parks and uncrowded roads, The County is a great cycling destination. The distances between villages and attractions are short, allowing for rest stops. Rentals and friendly bike-savvy staff in Bloomfield and Wellington are there to get you road ready.
The Millennium Trail is a former railway that’s been converted into a 49 km multipurpose trail. This is a wonderful nature trail where you’ll pass by forests and creeks ripe with wildlife like frogs, turtles, beavers and birds.
4. Let Your Creativity Run Wild
Artistic flare is diverse in The County. You’ll find artist creations and spaces in galleries, rustic barn studios and even in outdoor exhibitions. Visit these spaces to discover everything from paintings to pottery and glasswork to silk art. But the artistic experiences don’t stop there, dive into the arts scene head first and create your own piece inspired by The County! Get your hands dirty in an in-studio workshop to create the ultimate keepsake. Drive the countryside to chat with the artists and gallery owners who make the county a beautiful place to explore and unwind.
The arts meet history at the Regent Theatre in Picton. This beloved arts centre in Prince Edward County holds a special place in the community: it’s a rare example of a still intact Edwardian opera house. Construction began in 1918 using the 80-year old foundation of a former warehouse.
6. Sip Your Way Through The County
The County has the welcome mat out for wine lovers, with more than 40 wineries, and a growing craft-beer scene enticing visitors to sip and savour while indulging in a winery tour. This is the perfect place to leave the city bustle behind and relax while enjoying award-winning wines in rustic barns, on patios or overlooking vineyards. The County’s limestone-rich soil and cool climate provide a terroir that is prime for producing scores of award-winning wines. The County produces world-class Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Riesling, among others.
Even cider, mead, spirits, cordials and kombucha are being nurtured in The County.
7. Have A Retro Night Out At Mustang Drive-In
It’s not just daytime that is ripe for memory making – nighttime sparks another chance to make hearts glow! Seeing a movie at the Mustang Drive-In can make you feel nostalgic and be a one-of-a-kind experience. The big screen lights up at dusk – and the horns blare! Join in this local tradition: before the first feature, all the vehicles at the drive-in honk their horns.
8. Unlock The Past
The County is steeped in history and the 5 local museums here are the keys to unlocking a fascinating story. Prince Edward County has a rich heritage with contributions from Indigenous, British, French Dutch, German and many others who have called the County home.
With deep farming roots stretching back to the late 18th century, the Museums of Prince Edward County interpret that dynamic heritage. Visit a pioneer village, complete with a log cabin and blacksmith shop at Ameliasburgh Heritage Village; or head to Rose House Museum to get a sneak peek into life for the first Marysburgh settlers. Housed in an 1885 Quaker Meeting House, Wellington Heritage Museum brings local history to life. Visitors to Macaulay Heritage Park can tour the gardens and former parish of Reverend William Macaulay. Or try to ‘ escape’ from
Macaulay House with their escape room. Lastly, feel like a pirate by visiting the Mariner Park Museum to see treasures surfaced from shipwrecks in the waters around Prince Edward County.
9. Experience True Farm-To-Table Initiatives
Prince Edward County is where it’s at this summer for authentic farm-to-table experiences.
Carson’s Garden & Market is newly opened, run by one of Canada’s gardening experts, Carson Arthur. This unique garden centre not only provides a retail store but goes much deeper to offer a space to learn about gardening from farm-to-table. Growing and conserving heirloom varieties of veggies and flowers in partnership with Edible Antiques, Carson’s Garden & Market offers them for sale as plants or seeds essentially bringing back lost flavours and even rare herbs. Flossies Sandwiches Food Truck is on site which is quickly becoming a local favourite, where hand-crafted menu items meet made-to-order with ingredients from local farms and artisan cured meats.
Littlejohn Farm is fueled by a passion for farming and healthy eating. Offering culinary-based workshops, wine tours, a unique farm stay, corporate team building and much more, this educational farm and sustainability learning centre incorporates two veggie patches, herb gardens and an orchard. With poultry, honey bees, milking goats and heritage breed pigs, this authentic farm is the ultimate farm-to-table retreat. Littlejohn Farm guests are encouraged to partake is culinary and gardening-based workshops, such as charcuterie, sourdough, cheese and pickling.
Table-at-the-Farm harvest dinners accent Quinta do Conde, a centuries-old farm in Prince Edward County which is being returned to production while preserving the property’s heritage and character. This experience offers mouth-watering slow, multiple-course dinners, which celebrate food and sustainability. All food served is raised at the farm and grown organically. Quinta do Conde also offers unique summer camps focusing on connecting kids with agriculture, workshops, a farm stand and more.