The Big Apple

As rest stops go, The Big Apple in Colborne is one of the boldest, tastiest and definitely the most unique. The iconic giant apple is the largest construction of an apple anywhere in the world. 

The Big Apple is the iconic roadside attraction you simply cannot pass. Every kid wants to stop here and so does every adult. It is a celebration of all things apple and especially all things apple in Northumberland County. 

Originally, The Big Apple was built as an information centre for the area’s agricultural heritage. Now it has expanded to become a cultural and culinary destination on everyone’s must-see list. There is plenty to keep you entertained with a mini golf course, farm store, a smokehouse and every apple-treat you could possibly think of.

Located just off the 401 Highway on the way to Colborne, it’s easy to spot the 12-metre-tall Mr. Applehead from any direction. The Big Apple is 140 km east from Toronto, on the way to Kingston (125 km). It may look like a simple rest stop on the highway, but it is so much more. 

For up-to-date information and details on The Big Apple, we recommend you visit their website. For information about other places of interest to explore nearby, keep scrolling to see what Destination Ontario recommends.

Accessibility Features

Wheelchair accessible

Unobstructed path through public  hallways that are wide enough to allow  people using wheelchairs and other  mobility devices to move easily through  the building. 

Universal washroom

Separate, individual washroom with  adequate manoeuvring room for mobility  devices. Includes grab bars, transfer  space, accessible door latch, accessible  sink with knee clearance, easy-to-use  faucets and adult change table. 

Service animals welcome

Service animal can be identified by visual  indicators (guide dog or other animal  wearing a vest/harness); or  documentation available from a  regulated health professional to confirm  the animal is required due to a disability. 

Accessible washroom

An accessible washroom stall has  adequate manoeuvring room for mobility  devices. Includes grab bars, transfer  space, accessible door latch, sink with  knee clearance, and lever handles or  automatic sensor faucets. 

Accessible drop-off location

Passenger drop-off is available by an  accessible entrance. 

Accessible seating

Reserved space with a clear view of the  event/activity for someone who is seated,  good sound quality, and adequate  manoeuvring room for a mobility device.

Accessible restaurant

Accessible entrance; adequate  manoeuvring room; accessible washroom  nearby. Tables with removable chairs and  adequate knee clearance.  Cafeteria/buffet counters reachable for  mobility device users. 

Accessible parking

At least one identified, reserved parking  space with a safe, clearly marked  accessible route from the designated  parking area to an accessible building  entrance.

Accessible entrances/exits

A sufficiently wide, hard surfaced,  unobstructed path, no steps or equipped  with ramp connecting to a public  entrance or exit and identified by signage.  Automatic door openers, adequate  manoeuvring room in front of door.

Wheelchair and/or mobility devices available

Wheelchairs and/or mobility devices are  available, free of charge, or for rent. 

More about The Big Apple

The Big Apple has been greeting travellers for over 30 years, offering fresh produce and delicious treats. 

Head inside and make the pie shop your first port of call. The Big Apple Pie Store is renowned for its scrumptious apple pies and mouth-watering offerings of other baked apple goods. Eat a small one now and take a large one home for later. There is also the onsite 401 Brewery, The Smokehouse Restaurant, and sweet desserts at the Chocolate Shop including fudge and frozen yoghurt. 

Need to burn off some energy (or apple pies)? The Big Apple features fun activities for the kids, like mini golf and bocce ball. Or ride the mini train through the park and play ‘Spot the Sculptures.’ And let’s not forget our four-legged friends can stretch their legs in the Dog Run Park. 

A favourite feature of the Big Apple is the top observation deck, with magnificent views across Colborne and Lake Ontario. The surrounding countryside is covered with apple orchards, including those at the Big Apple. It’s a great place to plan out the next leg in the journey and spot the outstanding landmarks. 

On the last weekend of May, Colborne is host to the Annual Apple Blossom Tyme Festival. It is a celebration to welcome everyone to the village and the beautiful apple orchards. Along with the Big Apple, there is a collection of vendors and bakers to showcase their wares with delectable apple treats and fragrant blossoms all around. 

Many visitors for the Apple Blossom Tyme Festival fall in love with Colborne, eager to return again and again. Once you pass the Big Apple, drive into Colborne and immerse yourself in the creative beauty of this quaint village. The walls of downtown Colborne are adorned with colourful murals to brighten the accommodating main street. Pick up a map from the Township Office and take yourself on a walking tour. The stories tell themselves with gorgeous architecture and historic buildings throughout the area. One of the highlights is the Colborne Art Gallery, displayed in a refurbished 19th century registry office. It regularly exhibits artwork of all kinds from local artists. 

Whichever direction you are heading, the Big Apple is the ideal rest and recharge point. 

Last updated: August 18, 2023

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