That sticky summer air has settled in and Muskoka’s easy, breezy cottage season is in full force.
And thanks to Ontario’s recent entry into Stage Two of the province’s COVID-19 recovery plan, so is the region’s patio season.
Canada Day could be the perfect excuse to enjoy a meal and cold beer or cocktail from the socially distanced comfort of one of Muskoka’s beloved patios. Here are seven Muskoka patios to cheers our home and native land this Canada Day.
Location: 123 Medora St., Port Carling
Hours: 10 am – 10 pm daily (weather permitting)
A seat on the sprawling patio of Port Carling’s Turtle Jacks is more coveted than ever this year. Located right on the water of Lake Muskoka, the bustling patio is a go-to for ‘dock and diners,’ and offers a variety of upscale, cottage-inspired comfort food and cocktails. Menu highlights here include everything from fish tacos and a selection of burgers, to blackened Basa or chicken, and shrimp and sea scallop fettuccine. Seating is available on a first come, first serve basis.
Location: 397 Muskoka Rd.N, Gravenhurst
Hours: 11 am – 9 pm daily (weather permitting)
Celebrate Canada’s birthday with a quality cold one at Gravenhurst’s Sawdust Brewing Company. Offering traditional, all-natural ales and lagers in a variety of styles, Sawdust is a favourite among those with a love for craft beer. The brewery’s patio has opened for the season, with social distancing measures in place, as well as safety measures like the elimination of flights, caesars, or growlers. Seating is available on a first come, first serve basis.
Location: 1072 Elgin House Rd., Port Carling
Hours: Tuesday-Sunday, 11:30 am – 11:30 pm (weather permitting)
Lovers of wine and a see-and-be-seen vibe can celebrate the fact that The Lake Joseph Club’s Water’s Edge restaurant has finally opened its lakeside patio for the season – social distanced-style, of course. Here, you’ll find a comforting but elevated cuisine that’s hyper focused on local ingredients. In addition to a naturally vast and well-curated wine list, this spot also serves specialty craft cocktails that complete the dockside sipping experience, including Kenny’s Blueberry Mojito and cold brew coffee cocktails. Seating is available on a first come, first serve basis.
Location: 1110 Bay St, Gravenhurst
Hours: Wednesday to Sunday, 11:00 am – 10:00 pm (weather permitting)
If Canada Day and a juicy steak or exquisite glass of wine go hand-in-hand, make a reservation at the freshly re-opened Dock of the Bay. Located on the stunning Lake Muskoka, this picturesque spot offers a comforting selection of gourmet seafood, steak, and pasta from their charming lakeside deck. The restaurant was voted one of Canada’s top outdoor restaurants in 2019 by OpenTable diners. Call 705-687-7723 to make a reservation.
Location: 90 Main St. E., Huntsville
Hours: 11 am – 12:00 am daily (weather permitting)
Local watering hole On the Docks has been a staple among Huntsville’s locals and cottagers alike for decades. Located right in the heart of Huntsville on the Muskoka River, the pub features three lively patios that will be a hot ticket in town to enjoy some socially distanced pub grub and bevies this Canada Day. Seating is available on a first come, first serve basis.
Location: 3068 Muskoka District Rd.
Hours: 11:30 am – 8:00 pm daily (weather permitting)
If you’re looking to take the Canada Day experience a step above the typical burgers and beers (though they have both), hop in the boat or car and hit Lakeside Bala. The fine dining spot offers fresh steak, risotto, gourmet sandwiches, and salads for guests to enjoy from their lakeside terrace on Lake Muskoka – often complete with live jazz (even in COVID times). Despite the elevated cuisine, the vibe here avoids venturing down a stuffy route. Call for reservations.
Location: 88 Manitoba St., Bracebridge
Hours: Daily, 12pm-close (weather permitting)
A Muskoka staple since 1985, Bracebridge’s The Old Station – located in a former service station – is a reliable spot for Canadian cooking at reasonable prices. Hit their patio this Canada Day to enjoy an extensive menu that’s filled with creative takes on summer patio staples and refreshing signature cocktails. Word of advice: say yes to the truffle frites. Seating is available on a first come, first serve basis.