Point Pelee National Park

Description

About 31 miles (50 km) southeast of Detroit and Windsor, the Point Pelee peninsula noses its way into Lake Erie. Occupying the same latitude as northern California, it is the Canadian mainland's southernmost point. Despite its relatively small area, Point Pelee National Park boasts an impressive variety of terrain, including Lake Erie beaches, forest walks through Carolinian vegetation, and cattail swamps. Birds flock here, too -- because it lies closest to the land mass of the rest of North America, the peninsula serves as a funnel for migrants flying across Lake Erie. In autumn, orange and black fluttering wings signal the monarch butterfly migration. Point Pelee is one of the few places to see clusters of these magnificent butterflies up close as they make their epic journey to the mountains of central Mexico. What to see and do: When planning your trip to Point Pelee National Park, call ahead for hours as they vary throughout the year. Hours are longest during the birding season (month of May), when the park opens at 5 AM and closes at 10 PM. Visitors can take trails that wind through a variety of natural settings. Handicapped-accessible facilities are available throughout the park. A little under two miles (3 km) into the park, you'll find the Boardwalk Marsh Trail. Don't miss a chance to walk this elevated passageway over marshland that is often alive with waterfowl. At the entrance to the boardwalk, stop by the concession, where you can get light snacks and rent a bike or canoe for the day. Continuing along the main road, your next stop should be the Point Pelee visitor center. Open year-round with variable hours, the center offers a multitude of exhibits with detailed information about the park's ecology. Pick up a copy of the trail guides before walking along the Tilden's Wood Trail and Woodland Nature Trail close by the center. Walking these trails is the best way to appreciate the complexity of this unique combination of hardwood trees. The trail guides help you identify the different types of vegetation. From the center, you can take the free transit service out to the tip of the peninsula. Here you can explore the very southernmost tip of Canada. The shuttle operates from April to October. The park has 12 miles of sand beaches, with three beaches for swimming. There are no lifeguards. Swimming is not permitted at the tip. Other activities for visitors include a seasonal catch-and-release fishing (with a National Parks Fishing Permit), canoeing, cycling, and picnicking. Winter activities include ice skating and cross-country skiing. Fees: Point Pelee National Park charges a daily entrance fee. Fees are also charged for fishing permits, and guided hikes.

Address

407 Monarch Lane
Ontario, Canada N8H 3V4

Lat/Long

41.98513600, -82.54732900
Visit Website
(519) 322-2365

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