If you’re looking for a weekend getaway from Toronto or even just a day trip, there are many quaint small towns that feel like an entirely different world than the big city.
A perfect example is Elora. Located just north of Guelph, this small town is known for its natural beauty and local charm.
One place you may already have heard of in Elora is the famous Elora Gorge.
Located on the western side of the city, this conservation area covers over 350 acres of natural land. The Grand River flows right through it, and provides countless opportunities for a great photograph or picnic lunch. A campground is also available if you want to stay the weekend.
If you like hiking or spending time on the water, the Gorge is an ideal destination. The limestone cliffs can reach up to 25 metres, and this particular section of the Grand River is perfect for tubing, swimming, and fishing.
Nearby is the former Elora limestone quarry, which is home to one of the province's best watering holes. The spot has become progressively more crowded during summer, but it's also a picturesque place to visit in the fall when it's not overrun by people.
Towering on top of the tall cliffs of the area is the Elora Mill Hotel and Spa. This historic spot is set to open at the beginning of 2018, and should have a lot to offer visitors.
Located inside an old, restored sawmill on the river’s edge, this full package will allow visitors to experience a ton of things in the city and the Gorge.
You can zipline over the river and go rock climbing up the cliffs. Or, stay in at the spa and try some of the cuisine options available.
Although the Mill is set to open after the snow has melted, when winter comes again you can also try your hand at snowshoeing or dog-sledding, both of which would be a ton of fun in the area.
If you’re looking for something different, the Grand River Raceway is also a popular spot. The horse racing track and slots are popular destinations for those who like to gamble a little (or a lot).
And when you get hungry, Elora has a ton of options. The Elora Brewing Company is extremely popular. Try the Elora Borealis, Ladyfriend IPA, or one of their several options. The Shepherd's Pub and The Cellar are also good options.
Downtown, you can spot the seriously beautiful 19th century architecture that still dominates the town. Galleries, shops, and restaurants now call these historic buildings home.
If you’re looking for a getaway idea from Toronto, Elora should be on your list. It offers a great mix of natural attractions and quaint architecture. It's just over an hour from Toronto, but it feels like a different world.
by Michael Ott via blogTO