Nature viewing and birdwatching

Discover new and creative ways to appreciate Ontario’s immense wilderness, diverse ecosystems, natural wonders and magnificent wildlife and plug into the rhythm of the natural world.

Step up your nature photography game, witness the seasonal bird and butterfly migrations, take in drama of a forest ablaze in fall colour or the spectacular aurora borealis - our Northern Lights – dancing across an unblemished dark sky. Marvel at bears, moose, bald eagles and beavers. Explore the vastness of Ontario’s boreal forest, the sub-arctic tundra and the majesty of 100-year old white pine trees. Savour the solitude of a still, shimmering lake where only the haunting call of the loon breaks the silence.

Quick guide to nature viewing and birdwatching in Ontario

Stargazing in Ontario Parks

In addition to several Designated Dark Sky Viewing Areas, Lake Superior and Killarney provincial parks were designated as Dark Sky Preserves by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada in 2018. Both locations offer exceptional star gazing opportunities and Killarney recently opened a new research-grade observatory to support growing astronomy programs. Quetico is the third park in the Ontario Parks system that has received special night sky certification, as of February 2021.

Birdwatching at its best

Southwest Ontario, between Lake Huron and Lake Erie is one of the best birding regions in North America. Close to 400 bird species have been recorded, over half of the species list for all of Canada. Canada’s South Coast Birding Trail links over a dozen significant migratory birding hubs in this zone that offer essential visitor services, interpretation centers, signage and other amenities. Sites include well-known destinations spots like Point Pelee National Park, Rondeau Provincial Park and Long Point Bird Observatory.

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Know before you go

Visiting Indigenous heritage sites

Many sacred Indigenous sites are located in Ontario. Appropriate respect and appreciation are essential as you visit spiritual and culturally significant places.

Indigenous Land Treaties

Ontario represents 46 treaties, use the interactive treaties map to find out which treaty applies to the national park you are visiting.

Travel with The Park Bus

Transportation to select programs and park locations is provided by Parkbus

Last updated: March 21, 2023

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