Hello #fullmoon Wednesday!! #Openhouse day, #SUP demos, Yoga class, sand sculptures & more! 6-9 tonight! #BurlOn
If you love the beach, are curious about Stand up Paddling or want to take a free beach Yoga class under the full moon…Burlington beach is where you want to be!
A wide swath of creamy sand, calm greenish blue waters framed by rolling sand dunes, big beautiful trees and a waterfront trail that goes forever. As the sun warms the land and a hint of Summer promise touches us, our love of adventure and natural beauty comes back home. We have so many lovely hidden gems in Ontario and our thoughts inevitably return to our own gorgeous little paradise in Burlington, Ontario.
Nestled at the most westernly point of Lake Ontario, Burlington is blessed with a kilometer long, light sand beach tucked among century old trees and connected to a vibrant and friendly downtown area within easy walking distance. To explore the whole area you may park either in the downtown core or as we did at the base of the CN liftbridge and canal. From here you can walk, hike, rollerblade or walk the rest of the area. Burlington has an active & lively community and the path is always in use no matter the season.
Walking is definitely our method of choice as you can really get in to explore all the great nooks that are found along the way. Tiny dirt pathways and wooden promenades veer off the main paved path every so often and they are worth exploring! Shady spots with beautiful views wait for your private family picnic. Catamarans line the beach creating visions of tropical destinations.
Walking up the beach which is a protected natural area, you are greeting by visions of the wide crescent beach winding up to the skyline. Summertime brings hundreds of beach goers to its shores with almost as many boats linked up enjoying the heat in the shallow waters. A large buoyed area and a slow sandy entry to the water makes it a fantastic place for families. You can smell the myriad of BBQ lunches being cooked up in the shady grass areas of the bordering park and hear children’s squeals of laughter as they enjoy the refreshing clear waters.
Near the middle of the beach, is where Burlington Beach Rentals resides. The beach shop is contained in the beautiful historic Pump House and has everything you could ever need to enjoy a day at the beach including towels, sunscreen & beach toys. Whether you’ve come prepared to enjoy the day or not, Burlington beach Rentals is there to make life easy for visitors and locals alike.Just behind the building, on the beach ready for your enjoyment “Beach Spots” consisting of either muskoka chairs, sun loungers and great little SPF50 blue and red colored huts dot the beach and are for rent by the day or hour. Reminiscent of a tropic holiday, they strive to bring the vacation experience home. Complimentary wi-fi is included for all their guests. If you’re feeling a little more adventurous paddleboats and stand up paddleboards are ready and waiting on the shore!
You can’t find a better way to spend an afternoon than by taking out of their water rentals and enjoying the sights and sounds from the water. Bring a picnic lunch and take it with you, the paddle boats have cup holders and space for a small basket!
If you’re staying in the area longer they also have beach yoga classes at sunrise & sunset. Full moon social’s every month along with lots of other fun events and activities! Conveniently right next door a small concession is ready to feed your hunger and even satisfy the sweet tooth with yummy ice cream. Showers, change rooms, bathrooms and a playground round out this busy and fun spot.
Heading farther up the beach, the massive trees start to over hang the water and limestone rocks jut out of clear waters making for picturesque stops. Eventually you round the curve and head back up on the path that leads into Spencer Smith Park. A tiny round protected bay can be found at this junction and if you’re lucky swans can be seen bobbing in its protected waters.
Spencer Smith Park leads into our downtown core and is a gorgeous large park that lines the majority of the downtown area ended with a large curved pier that completes the scene. Here is where the great city holds numerous awesome festivals throughout the summer months. Sound of Music is Canada’s largest, best and free outdoor music festival held yearly in June. Thousands of fans flock to the area to hear well known and local talent fill the park with music. A full listing of summer events can be found here. On quieter days you can enjoy the reflecting pond surrounded by benches and sometimes home to fancy R/C ships that sail on its surface. Right next door a new playground and large splash pad are ready to entertain the kids for the whole afternoon.
Following the boardwalk you eventually find yourself staring at the large delicately curved pier that is now the crowning glory of the park. Beautiful in the daytime but even more so at night. This is one of our favorite places to watch the sunset. As the daylight slips colored beacons light up the night sky from its edges.
No visit to the Burlington waterfront would be complete without a stop in the lovely downtown area. Absolutely full of fine dining, wonderful outdoor patios and great shops all within a few blocks. A small town, friendly feel with big city amenities. One of the things we love most about being here is the awesome vibe of the city and its people. You are always welcome and you will always enjoy your visit!
If you haven’t recently visited this gorgeous city…it’s time to come back and see what you’re missing 😉
As we finalize the details for our epic SUP & Surf trip this November, I thought it would be fitting to cross over and head back into the gorgeous Costa Rica where our adventure will take place. We have already visited a couple of villages and beaches but have yet to take a virtual wander to the sublime Nosara.
Located on the Pacific along a string of stunning coastline, this tiny former fishing village still retains that wild & free vibe along its shores. For generations this area was used mainly as a pasture for cattle but that all changed in the 1970’s. Reforestation and tourism interest has returned it to one of the lushest and loveliest spots in the country. There are quite a few beaches to explore in the area along with a river that winds its way to the ocean. Here are a few of our favorites:
If miles of white beach stretched out in a perfect crescent shape with gentle waves lapping at the shore is your idea of perfection..Playa Guiones is for you. A rare tropical dry forest borders the crescent and is home to an assortment of wildlife. Within this 3 mile stretch there is soo much to see and do. One of our favorite walks in to the South Point, where you can wander on the pink hued sands. Lots of tide pools are a daily occurrence and a perfect spot for snorkelling with an abundance of colorful seashells scattered on the shores.
For those with adventure in mind, this is also THE spot for surfing with perfect breaks with multiple peaks found on the left and right sides.
Very family oriented with lots of shady almond trees and tide pools to play in. One of the memorable scenes of this gorgeous strip is a natural ‘blow hole” that gushes through the rock formations giving a sense of how powerful the ocean really is. The best time to catch the show is when the tides transition. Just behind the rocky reef you will find a beautiful walk toward the river mouth. Pelicans flock to the area and you will be surrounded as they fish for their dinner where the river meets the ocean.
Playa Nosara :
This beach is quite remote and you have to hike up through the river to get there. The hike is well worth the effort though as this is where you will catch a glimpse of local fishermen using time honored methods to catch their dinners. Further upstream you will arrive at the black sanded Playa Nosara bordered with mangroves and surrounded by so much wild and aquatic life you could spend hours just taking it all in. Howler monkeys can easily be spotted on the shores but you won’t hear their famous howls unless it’s morning. Make sure to take everything you need as there are no amenities close by. The surf and waves at the mouth of the river are some of the highest and most dangerous in Costa Rica and reserved only for the most experienced. Swimming is not advised at all but that’s fine as a 15 minute walk brings you to another fabulous and safe area.
Nosara itself is a tiny village without alot of ammenities. It still carries that remote beach feel and calls to the hearts of eco tourists, yoga practitioner and surf enthusiasts. Many world class schools that cater to these passions can be found. Another amazing feature of this area is the abundance of seas turtles that come to nest here. They can be found year round but the greatest numbers congregate between August and November on the days just before a full moon. Put all this together and you can easily surmise why many a traveler has lost his or her heart after stumbling upon this tiny paradise.
This tiny, gorgeous piece of heaven will be the first stop on our EPIC SUP, SURF & YOGA adventure this fall so if you want to experience all of it for yourself…reserve your spot now!