5 Must-do Experiences at the Muskoka Wharf

Posted On Friday July 03, 2020

Welcome to the Muskoka Wharf! Once a historic port, this beautiful lakeside area in Gravenhurst is the perfect place to explore, shop, dine or just take a leisurely stroll. Located on the shores of Lake Muskoka with views of the iconic Muskoka landscape, there is so much to see and do as you take in the incredible sights and sounds of this destination. Here are the top five things you must experience when you visit the Muskoka Wharf:

  1. 1.     Stroll the Boardwalk – Snap a Selfie and Enjoy!

The Wharf features over 2000 feet of public boardwalk nestled along the shores of Gravenhurst Bay. Follow this scenic path to see shops, restaurants, and historic sites. Need a break? Stop to rest at one of the gazebos and take in the fresh air drifting off the lake. Don’t miss the quaint bridge that crosses a small stream. This area features an expanse of naturalized shoreline which protects fish habitat and is also home to waterfowl, small mammals and birds. Oh, and your boardwalk stroll would not be complete without enjoying a Starbucks from the Wheelhouse Café in the Shipyards Muskoka Marketplace or an ice-cream treat from PolarDip Ice Cream Shoppe!

  1. 2.     Cruise on a Steamship – All Aboard!

If you don’t immediately spot the grand masts of the historic sister ships docked at the Wharf, you’ll soon hear the distinctive steam whistles of the RMS Segwun and the Wenonah II. Built in 1887, the RMS Segwun is the oldest operating steamship in North America and the Wenonah II combines turn-of-the-century charm with modern conveniences. Whether you step back in time to imagine yourself on route to a wild resort vacation during the roaring twenties or fancy a glimpse of today’s extravagant waterfront abodes, nothing compares to gliding over the open waters of Lake Muskoka. With elegant surroundings onboard and breathtaking views in all directions, cruising on a steamship is classic Muskoka. 

The Muskoka Steamships offer lots of cruising options from a family-friendly one-hour sightseeing cruise to the extravagant four-hour Millionaire’s Row signature experience. They’ve also got sunset cruises, dinner & dance nights, craft brewery tastings and a pirate cruise that is always a hit with the little ones. For a special treat book a mid-afternoon cruise narrated by a local historian accompanied by a delectable high tea served by the Blue Willow Tea Shop.

  1. 3.     Check out the Farmers’ Market – Yum!

The Gravenhurst Farmers’ Market is one of the best seasonal markets in Ontario. And guess what? It’s located at the Muskoka Wharf! This is the place to get your fresh produce, specialty meats, vegan cheese, jam, jellies and baking. Want to hear more? You can also stock up on maple syrup, honey, cranberry wine, fresh-cut flowers and take-home meals! So make sure to stop by and pick up some of these delicious products to share with friends and family.

The Farmers’ Market runs every Wednesday from 9am to 2pm. This year the market will feature food vendors only on-site with online listings for arts and crafts vendors. For updates and specific pandemic protocols, make sure to check their website. This season will be a little different, but the good news is that they are open!

  1. 4.     See the Historic Speed Boat Miss Canada IV – History is Cool!

On view at the Murrary Walker Grace and Speed Boathouse at the Discovery Centre, Miss Canada IV set the world water speed record in 1950 at nearly 200 miles per hour. This iconic racing boat is accompanied by an ever-changing collection of beautiful watercrafts. A celebration of the craftsmanship of antique wooden boats, the boathouse is home to the largest in-water collection of antique and classic wooden boats.   

But it’s called the Discovery Centre for a reason, and there’s so much more to see. If these vintage vessels don’t float your boat, wander through the museum to learn about the early settlers and resorts of Muskoka or experience the beauty and wonder of our lakes and rivers in the Watershed Wonders exhibit.

The Discovery Centre is open year-round and features a KidZone, speaker series, and is available for private events. You’ll also get a discount if you purchase a cruise ticket on the Steamships!

  1. 5.     Watch a Spectacular Sunset – Take a Deep Breath and Relax!

You came for the views, so don’t miss the best sunset in Muskoka! The Muskoka Wharf offers lots of vantage points to watch the sun lazily set over Lake Muskoka as it reflects off of the iconic steamships and shimmers on the water. Grab a bench along the boardwalk or stroll out on the docks to take in the view. Even better, dine at one of the lovely restaurants at the Wharf and enjoy the view from their waterfront patios. Boston Pizza is a family restaurant and sports bar with favourites like pizza, pasta and wings, Muskobilly’s Lakeside Tap and Grill serves up breakfast, lunch or dinner with a side of awesome scenery, and for a classy gourmet experience head to Dock of the Bay Steak & Seafood Grille.