Once in a while it’s nice to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city, but that’s not always easy to do without a car. Luckily for me, Wolfe Island is just a short ferry ride away.
Wolfe Island is the largest of the Thousand Islands and is located on Lake Ontario, at the entrance of the St. Lawrence river, near Kingston. The island is made up of rural farmlands, but there are a couple of communities as well, the largest being Marysville. There are a number of things to do on Wolfe island, such as biking, going to the beach, bird watching, exploring Marysville, the corn maze, as well as a number of festivals during certain times of the year!
However, since the island is huge, a mode of transportation is required to get around. This time, I chose a tandem bike! Ahoy Rentals located on the Kingston waterfront is an excellent place to go for daily bike rentals. For the more adventurous, they also provide canoe, kayak and sailboat rentals. After getting our bike, we rode a short way to the ferry dock. The ferry leaves approximately every hour, and is free. The ferry schedule is available here. As a pedestrian/bicyclist you can walk on to the ferry easily, so there’s no need to be there super early, but if you plan on taking your car to the island, it’s not a bad idea to be at least half an hour early to make sure you get a spot. The ferry takes about 20 minutes to reach Wolfe Island.
There are 4 cycling routes on Wolfe Island, each of them are of different lengths, allowing you to see a different aspect of the island. A map of all the routes is available here. The route we chose for this trip was the Extension to Big Sandy Bay. Biking from the Marysville dock all the way to Big Sandy Bay was approximately 10km one way.
Big Sandy Bay is a large conservation area, with a 1.3 km trail through wetlands and woodlands, leading to a secluded beach. It is also home to many birds, rare trees and rare species of plants. It is open all year round, and admission fees for the summer are $9 for adults arriving by car and $7 for adults arriving by bike. Just another incentive for biking!
Unfortunately the water level was high and the weather was a bit cold, so it wasn’t possible to go swimming that day. However, it was a very nice place for a picnic. After another 10km bike ride back to Marysville, it was time to treat ourselves with ice cream and take the ferry back to Kingston. Overall, it was the prefect day trip!
As I mentioned earlier, there are many other things to do on Wolfe Island, so hopefully I’ll have a chance to explore it some more in the future and write about it here!