My contribution to August’s issue of ViBrant Magazine
Life can get busy, and time escapes us. Sometimes the days can fly by and before you know it, your first days of summer have slipped into crisp autumn evenings.
I don’t know about you, but I appreciate a break from the busy. A timeout from work, yes, but also a mini escape from those regular days that manage to be full of errands. I’m talking about going on adventures close to home that you normally don’t get around to doing – staycations, if you will.
Recently, my partner and I went out with some friends to an area along Irvine Creek, near Elora Gorge. We were able to traverse the stone-laden terrain down to the water and, equipped with sandals and water shoes, wade through the refreshing creek. We trekked along the ravine, finding a few shallow caves carved from the rocky walls for us to explore.
My favourite part was sitting upon a log that had fallen in the stream, my feet in the water, watching as the minnows swam against the current. In that moment, I was carefree and captivated by the natural beauty around me. Try and picture it: tiny fish darting around by the feet, the sound of trickling water flowing by, green trees along either side of the creek, the warmth of the sun on the skin, and the towering walls of rock encompassing it all.
It could have easily been one of those wilderness scenes from a fantasy novel, except I didn’t need to go to New Zealand to find it. Picturesque retreats are within reach and Ontario is full of them! You just have to look a little.
Whether you have one day or one week, you can get away from it all by planning an inexpensive adventure somewhere in the province. A forested park full of trails is always a great way to escape the city and get lost among the trees. Or perhaps a boat cruise is needed, say, near Tobermory, Gravenhurst, or Bobcaygeon – a few of my favourite places to enjoy gliding along the water. Other, more recurring trips, could involve themes like waterfall hunting in the Hamilton region, picnics in national parks, or even something like the Butter Tart Tour in the Peterborough region. A great place to start looking for ideas is www.ontariotravel.net. Keep in mind, many of those packaged “deals” are really just advertising hotel costs in between day trips.
Whatever it is that you think might be interesting, I encourage you to try something out and enjoy the beauty of nature. Everyone needs to escape; make time for it. Break the routine, have fun exploring, and for the love of god, put that phone away – unless you’re taking some pictures!