Disclaimer: Please note that this stay was complimentary, but all opinions are my own.
Located near the small town of Mattawa, Ontario on 147 acres of waterfront and woodland, lies Mattawa River Resort – a 15 cabin converted summer camp in the hills. This family-owned resort (husband and wife team, Adrian and Nicole) has been operating since 2017 and is a popular spot to unwind for everything from a couple’s getaway to a family reunion.
Exploring the Bay of Quinte
The following trip was sponsored by Bay of Quinte, but all opinions are my own.
I’ve been following more and more tourism accounts for Ontario on social media lately. As you can tell by some of our previous posts, we’ve taken to exploring more of Ontario during the pandemic. We find it to be a great way to support local and stay safer than our usual globetrotting plans that have been put on hold until 2021.
I remember coming across an advertisement on Instagram for a contest to travel around the Bay of Quinte for a weekend. I raised my eyebrows, just where was Bay of Quinte? What could we do there? How far was it from Toronto? After a quick google session – I learned Bay of Quinte is located in Southern Ontario on the northern shore of Lake Ontario. It’s well known for their fishing, golf courses, provincial parks and wineries. It comprises of several communities like Belleville, Brighton, Quinte West, Prince Edward County and greater Napanee. So much to explore and about 1.5-2 hour drive from Toronto – not bad! Bay of Quinte and I decided to team up to showcase what their beautiful area had to offer for a fun road trip.
Escape to Essex with Sunny Beez
I’ve been really taking advantage of the silver lining of no international travel this year (as you may have already seen on the blog!) and have only been taking part in local vacations… the next stop on our list was the Windsor/Essex area.
We were so lucky to have been hosted by Ripple Rental’s (www.instagram.com/ripplerentals) to stay in two bedroom cottage by the name of Sunny Beez (www.sunnybeez.ca) in Essex!
Instead of hopping on a flight I’ve been sticking more and more to local attractions and getaways in Ontario. I have a long ‘must visit’ list of places I’ve had my eye on in Canada and St. Jacob’s, Ontario is definitely near the top. I’ve seen how charming it looks from posts of friends visiting the farmers market or picking up some antiques and being only about an hour and a half away from Toronto, it seemed like the perfect weekend getaway.
I was so excited to be able to partner up with Staybridge Suites Waterloo who offered us a complimentary stay in the heart of St Jacob’s Market District. First off, let me say what a perfect location the hotel is in to fully enjoy St Jacob’s for the weekend as its only steps away from the famous St Jacob’s Farmers Market and Outlet Malls. Staybridge Suites is also a short 5 minute drive away to St. Jacob’s Village area.
Now that some of the COVID-19 travel and stay restrictions have been lifted, Ontarians will be planning more local getaways than ever with their families and friends this summer. I’m trying to use this time as a silver lining and explore some of my own backyard. One of the places I’m excited at the thought of re-visiting is the Cedars of Lake Eugenia Resort.
I’m always down to try a new beauty trend. As I’ve moved into my 30’s I do all I can to keep my skin looking young and firm and I’m no stranger to a good chemical peel or needle poke to help keep me looking fresh and rested.
I’ve heard of PRP facials by their other name ‘Vampire facial’, and those famous pictures of Kim Kardashian’s face covered in blood. Yikes, right? I was a little apprehensive about it, but then again, I’ve heard celebrities sing its praise with their glowing, baby like skin, which is definitely something I strive for. So, why not?
Lighting Up the Night at Terra Lumina
I was given the opportunity to check out the Toronto Zoo’s latest exhibit recently, and this time it wasn’t new exotic animal to admire. Terra Lumina is a new immersive art and light experience on a 1.5km trail inside the zoo. The 11th exhibit in Moment Factory’s night walks, the event begins at sundown, the dark forest comes to life with messages of hope and harmony for the upcoming future.
The Magic of The Dragon’s Song.
Tired of doing the same old thing for date night, group events or family time? How about being a hero? This is where the traditional dinner and a movie take a backseat. It’s time to put YOURSELF in the action!
You and your friends are now a team, working to save the last known dragon egg, preventing their extinction. Okay, now just where would a dragon egg be in Toronto?! In a castle of course! Where else? Join Secret City Adventures for their newest escape room experience, The Dragon’s Song – taking place at Casa Loma. I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek through Travel Massive’s media night event!
Perfect Break with CabinScape.
Fall is by far my favourite season and one of the main reasons why are the beautiful changing leaves. Being a city girl, I usually admire the foliage from the Don Valley Parkway or Evergreen Brickworks. This year, on the long Thanksgiving weekend, my partner and I were treated to 2 night stay at an eco-friendly micro cabin near Frontenac Provincial Park from South Eastern Ontario! (https://thegreatwaterway.com ) We were REALLY going to experience an autumn forest at its peak!
I first found out about CabinScape through South Eastern Ontario. They’re a company that rents out 8 different micro cabins (anywhere from 120 sq feet to 168 sq feet) in the Canadian wilderness. Many of them back out onto picturesque forests, rolling farm acres or private lakes and rivers. What caught my interest the most was that they were all solar powered and eco-friendly. As someone who likes to travel as much as I can, I try to offset my carbon footprint anyway I can. This seemed like a really responsible long weekend getaway.
A Very Underrated Buffalo
I have to admit, everyone I told my weekend plans to sort of looked at me in surprise. “Buffalo, for the WEEKEND? What’s in Buffalo? I haven’t been since I was a kid”. Buffalo, New York sort of has a bad rap here in Toronto, many of us just hop across the border for a day to enjoy sweet, sweet American shopping at Target and Outlets, then drive back home before the sun goes down.
Hey! I'm Sarah! A 30 something living in downtown Toronto with a great guy and an OK dog. I love seeing what my city has to offer and try to hit up as many fun events or attractions as I can! I haven't slept since 2004.