Hazel Bird Nature Reserve in fall. Photo by Chelsea Marcantonio.

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve in fall. Photo by Chelsea Marcantonio.

Take in Ontario this summer

Large-flower trillium (Photo by Bernt Solymar)

Large-flower trillium (Photo by Bernt Solymar)

Ontario is home to diverse habitats. From the north shore of Lake Superior to Pelee Island in Lake Erie, the province is teeming with wildlife living in the forests, wetlands and grasslands that the Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is working to protect.

To better connect people to these natural spaces, NCC launched our Nature Destinations program. We invite you to take a journey through some of the greatest examples of Ontario’s wild spaces, and foster your relationship with nature.

Below are three special NCC projects to visit in Ontario. Find your place to grow this summer.

North Bear Alvar in mid-summer (Photo by NCC)

North Bear Alvar in mid-summer (Photo by NCC)

North Bear Alvar

Closest city/town: Orillia

Experience the unique sights, scents and sounds of alvars and wetlands at NCC’s North Bear Alvar, located just 35 kilometres from Orillia. Alvars are globally rare ecosystems characterized by shallow soils on limestone bedrock. From frogs to logs, to turtles to shrikes, the alvar offers a nature walk unlike any other.

Plan your alvar adventure here >

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by Mark Stabb/NCC staff)

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve, ON (Photo by Mark Stabb/NCC staff)

Hazel Bird Nature Reserve

Closest city/town: Cobourg

Exploration awaits you at this property, which is part of the Rice Lake Plains. Don your walking shoes and wander your way along the main loop trail that passes through tall grass prairie, sand barren, oak woodland and black oak savannah.

Signage along the trail helps tell the story of the natural and cultural history of the Rice Lake Plains, including the Indigenous history deeply entwined with the tallgrass ecosystems in the area.

Explore the Rice Lake Plains >

Forest canopy in Backus Woods (Photo by Neil Ever Osnorne)

Forest canopy in Backus Woods (Photo by Neil Ever Osnorne)

Backus Woods

Closest city/town: Woodstock

Backus Woods is a spectacular gem in the heart of the Carolinian life zone, one of Canada’s smallest ecoregions. Comprising less than one per cent of the country's land mass, Carolinian Canada is home to 25 per cent of the country`s population and provides habitat for nearly 25 per cent of its endangered species.

While here, take in the older-growth Carolinian forest and witness a variety of unique Carolinian species, including prothonotary and cerulean warbler, tuliptree and black gum.

Discover Carolinian Canada>

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