Peterborough & the Kawarthas is one of Ontario’s most unique places, with the vibrant City of Peterborough just minutes away from Kawarthas cottage country which this region is famous for. There are so many things to see and do, all year long we thought it would be helpful to provide a list to get you started- here are 10 places you simply must visit while you are here:



The Canadian Canoe Museum

What’s Cool? This Canadian gem boasts the largest collection of its kind, with more than 600 canoes, kayaks and paddled watercraft, as well as thousands of related artifacts. There are also plenty of hands-on areas to enjoy in addition to the impressive list of workshops that are open to the public.

The Canadian Canoe Museum, Peterborough Ontario

The Peterborough Lift Lock

What’s Cool? The Peterborough Lift Lock, known as Lock 21 on the Trent-Severn Waterway is the highest hydraulic lift lock in the world. It’s also a National Historic Site of Canada. It’s really something to be seen, but it’s even more fun to experience it aboard a cruise like the Liftlock & the Riverboat Cruise or on board the Kawartha Voyageur.

liftlock_1238 Lydia Dotto water cruise boat fall web


Warsaw Caves Conservation Area & Campground

What’s Cool? You can go Spelunking! Explore a series of seven caves that were formed thousands of years ago at the end of the last ice age by the rushing melt waters of a glacier that covered Ontario. You should also check out the disappearing river (if you can find it).

Warsaw Caves

Petroglyphs Provincial Park

What’s Cool? This park is home to the largest known collection of aboriginal rock carvings in Canada. In addition to the amazing nature trails and hiking opportunities, you can immerse yourself in First Nations culture in The Learning Place interpretive centre to discover the traditions of the Ojibway people through the teachings of the medicine wheel.

The Learning Place, Petroglyphs Provincial Park, Peterborough & the Kawarthas, Ontario

Peterborough & District Farmers Market

What’s Cool? The Peterborough & District Farmer’s Market runs year round on Saturday mornings from 7am-1pm, and is one of the longest running farmers markets in Canada. The market celebrated its 190th year in 2015.

Peterboroughs Farmer Market, Peterborough & the Kawarthas, Ontario

Zimart, Rice Lake Gallery

What’s Cool? Everything about this gallery is cool…it’s on a five acre rural property overlooking Rice Lake which provides the incredible back drop for the genuine Shona sculptures from Zimbabwe that are found throughout the grounds. The gallery is home to an artist-in-residence from Zimbabwe each summer, who spends much of their time on-site teaching workshops and demonstrating to visitors.

Rice Lake Gallery, Zimart, Shona Sculpture - Together Forever, Galleries in Peterborough & the Kawarthas, Ontario

Lang Pioneer Village Museum

What’s Cool? You can take a trip back to the Peterborough County of yesteryear. This picturesque living history site features more than twenty five restored and furnished buildings, and boasts an incredible variety of events throughout the year. It’s also home to two of only a handful of authentic Jacquard looms that can be viewed in North America.

crossroads sign at Lang Pioneer Village with period homestead in the background

Riverview Park & Zoo

What’s Cool? It’s Canada’s only free-admission CAZA/AZAC Accredited Zoo. It features 27 exhibits with over 48 species on it’s 55.5 acre property. It’s also home to Peterborough’s most diversified playground, which also features equipment for physically-challenged children, and a splash pad. For an added bonus, there is also a miniature train ride, and stunning walking trails and picnic areas as well as a frisbee golf course.

Monkeying Around, Peterborough Riverview Park and Zoo, Peterborough & the Kawarthas, Ontario

Indian River Reptile Zoo

What’s Cool? It’s Canada’s only zoological reptile facility, and is the only accredited, registered not for profit institution of it’s kind in North America. There are more than 200 reptiles at the zoo, and that is in addition to the hiking trail,, Stonehenge replica, crocodile slide, dinosaur bone dig and the NEW Croc Walk!

Indian River Reptile Zoo - Croc Walk

For more great ideas for things to do in Peterborough & the Kawarthas, check out our full list of attractions