As Canada turns 150, deputy editor Alex Laws looks back on having lived a decade in this country — her 10-year Can-niversary — and reflects on seven spots that have stolen her heart. In this instalment, she makes the case that Prince Edward County is the perfect place for a getaway.
I’m not sure there’s anywhere in Canada I feel more comfortable than in Prince Edward County. Camping in Sandbanks Provincial Park, which is closed to the public after 8 p.m., is a luxury — you can literally watch the sun setting over the lake from the soft sand dunes without another soul in sight. (Having only two of us in four-person Mountain Equipment Co-op tent was an upgrade to an already stellar experience.) The real bonus, though, comes with renting bikes from Ideal Bike in Wellington and pedalling nine kilometres to Norman Hardie’s winery for delicious pizza, made more enjoyable by the sumptuous wine and striking scenery.
Navigating the greenery-filled laneways that join a network of wineries and local foodie haunts is my new happy place, each stop rewarding the exertion in between. At Rosehall Run, I pick up a bottle of Pixie, a sparkling rosé named after winemaker Dan Sullivan’s daughter, and at Sandbanks Winery I take advantage of the free tastings and plentiful Muskoka chairs perfectly arranged so that guests can enjoy views of the vineyards and Lake Ontario.
After a girls’ weekend that involves copious dancing at the nearby Hayloft Dancehall, a Caesar at the Drake Devonshire brings me back to life. The chicken and waffles drizzled with maple syrup, help too, and are etched into my mind, as is the view of the stunning pebble beach and expertly curated Canadian sculptures, providing a veritable after-brunch scavenger hunt. And if I ever tire of watching the sunset here, there’s always the Mustang Drive-in. See? Prince Edward County has everything I could possibly need.