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Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

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Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 15,509
reviews: 2,456
Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

We are staying at the Carriage Hills Resort for about a week in early fall.

We have lots of fun things planned in the area, but it looks like we should also include a trip to Algonquin Provincial Park?

Is it possible to do as a long day trip from this area - or should we plan on one night away?

We just want to see it, probably see a museum or two, and return later that evening.

We are not planning fun activities such as canoeing, fishing, wolf howl or so forth.

Question: Since we are that close to the park, should we plan to see it?

Question: If so, can you do it as a longer day drive and back to the park?

Question: if not, is it easy to find a place to stay on a midweek night example Monday, Tuesday, W.... night late September in Huntsville? or do we need to book in advance for late September? (i.e. in case we are having so much fun its worth staying one night in the area before returning to Barrie).

Since this is more the drive from Barrie to Algonquin, posting in this forum.

If there is a better forum to post this question in, appreciate that guidance too.

(Note: We are flexible on the day we do it so will pick the best day based on the weather forecast the week we are there - too early to know that yet (smile).

Edited: 7:32 pm, August 22, 2013
7 replies to this topic
Toronto, Canada
posts: 11,733
reviews: 597
1. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

It's about a three hour drive each way, I'd say an overnight stay would allow you to enjoy yourself more...

Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 15,509
reviews: 2,456
2. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

Thanks - appreciate the advise.

Niagara
posts: 1,699
reviews: 22
3. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

You could do it in a day if you're not planning on longer hikes. From Carriage Hills to the west entrance is just over 1.5 hours one way.

Google maps for route:

http://goo.gl/maps/qFxMy

Toronto, Canada
posts: 1,204
reviews: 32
4. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

Late September is a very popular time to go as it is usually prime leaf colours. If you think you will want to spend more time, book a place to stay in advance. There are some nice walking or hiking trails off the highway. These are great to see more of the scenery. They can be as short as 1 km.

Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 15,509
reviews: 2,456
5. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

Thanks....

Toronto
posts: 2,649
6. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

As gpx says it's only 1.5 hours from Carriage Hills to the west gate of Algonquin, meaning about 2 hours to attractions like the Visitor Centre or Logging Museum. (3 hours is the distance to Algonquin all the way from Toronto, plus there can be traffic between Toronto and Barrie, which you'll avoid.)

So yes, you could do it in a long day trip, though I'd try to spend that day doing outdoor stuff, even if just short hikes. Since late September tends to bring better fall colours in Algonquin than around Barrie (where they peak a bit later), try to get to some high view points; several of the park's hiking trails provide this, as does the Visitor Centre. The day before you go you can check the park's fall colours report at http://www.parkreports.com/fall/index.php (ignore what it says right now since many of the parks haven't been updated since last fall).

If you do want to spend a night in the area, best to reserve something for peace of mind, but there should be some vacancy for a weeknight in late September. You can get closer to the park than Huntsville though. Try one of the places at Oxtongue Lake (see oxtonguelake.com/business/accommodations.htm ), if you don't mind staying outside a town.

Fremont, California
Destination Expert
for San Francisco
posts: 15,509
reviews: 2,456
7. Re: Barrie to Algonquin? Possible to do in one day

Great information - very helpful travelwolfscream. Sounds good.

Thanks all.....Short hikes sound great and thanks for the fall color web site.

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