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Bobcaygeon is a community of about 3,500 people (2016) in the Kawarthas region of Central Ontario. Built on three islands, it was settled in 1832. It is a popular place for shopping and sport fishing.


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Its lock was the first built on the Trent-Severn Waterway. It has about 3,000 permanent residents and another 12,000 in the surrounding areas. It is one of the country's primary retirement communities. Taken from the Algonquin language, the name Bobcaygeon means "shallow rapids".

It is well-known in Canada because in 1998, the Canadian rock band The Tragically Hip immortalized Bobcaygeon in their hit single that takes its name from the village.

Get in[edit]

It is 36 km north of Lindsay along Highway 36. The nearest public transportation is a TOK Coach (formerly Can-Ar Coach) bus from Toronto that stops 17 km away in Fenelon Falls. Kawartha Lakes Taxi in Fenelon Falls may take you to Bobcaygeon, +1 705 928-1413, but call to confirm (Sept 2017).

Get around[edit]


  • 1 Boyd Heritage Museum, 21 Canal St E, +1 705-738-9482. Jul-Aug: W-Su 11AM-4PM; May-Jun & Sep: Sa 11AM-3PM, Su 1PM-3PM. Located in the Boyd Lumber Office built in 1889, this community museum explores the history of one of the area's founding families. The Boyd family's influence on the community and their lumbering and agricultural interests across Canada as examined. $5, under 12 free.
  • 2 Kawartha Settlers Village, 85 Dunn St (north of the commercial district just off the road to Fenelon Falls), +1 705-738-6163. May-September daily 10AM-4PM. A collection of over 20 historic homes and buildings from 1830 – 1935.
  • 3 Lock 32 - Bobcaygeon, 3 Main St (just over the swing bridge from Canal & Bolton). The first lock built on the Trent-Severn Waterway, in the 1830s. The area around the lock has a large grassy area for taking in views, a historic house and the oldest swing bridge on the waterway. There's also a small war memorial in the northeast corner near Main St. Free.



Store Fronts (1034877448).jpg

Bobcaygeon has become a shopping destination because of Bigley, and many independent shops.

  • 1 Bigley Shoes & Clothing, 39 Bolton St, +1 705-738-2522. M-Sa 9AM-6PM, Su 10AM-5PM. Bigley has made Bobcaygeon a destination for shoppers with 7 locations on Bolton Street and Canal Street West selling shoes, clothing and housewares.


  • 1 Just for the Halibut, 17 King St E, +1 705-738-4545. W-Su 11AM-8PM; F Sa 11AM-9PM. A popular restaurant for fish and chips, steaks, etc. 15 beers from local craft breweries on tap. Take-out available. 2-piece haddock & chips $19, Halibut - market price, burgers $12-18, steaks $21-40.
  • 2 Kawartha Dairy, 89 Prince St W, +1 705-738-5123 x276. Jul-Aug: daily 9AM-10PM; May-Jun Sep: Su-Th 9AM-8PM, F-Sa 9AM-9PM; generally 9AM-6PM other times of the year. The factory and ice cream shop of a local dairy company. Plenty of flavours to choose from and the portions are good. "Baby" size is a generous single scoop, while "Huge" is just as big as the name implies. $3-7.
  • 3 Water's Edge Restaurant, 50 Canal St E, +1 705-738-1802. Pretty setting beside the river. Free parking for cars and boats. Open April-October. Lunch: main dishes $14-16. Dinner: mains from $20.


  • Old Dog Brewing Company, 30 King Street East, +1 705 731-1123. M-Sa 11AM-9PM, Su noon-6PM. Bobcaygeon's own independent microbrewery, with a small pub and a patio. Several small-batch beers on tap, and a few for takeaway.


  • 1 Bobcaygeon Inn, 31 Main St (a short walk north of the main part of the village across the channel and the river), +1 705-738-5433, toll-free: +1 800-900-4248. The Inn offers a full service menu in its restaurant, or sit on the patio for refreshment in the summer. $90-145.
  • 2 New Rockland Motel, 3 Canal St E (just off Bolton St (the main street) by the lock), +1 705-738-4300, toll-free: +1-877-422-4864, .
  • 3 Southwinds Resort & Marina, 94 Front St E, +1 705-738-2295, toll-free: +1 800-472-5441. Room options include one queen bed hotel rooms, one and two bedroom suites with some kitchen facilities, and small cottages in the garden. There is a dock across the street and daily boat rentals for fishing or pleasure cruising are available for a fee. $105-165 during summer, rates about 20% cheaper in off-season (except hotel rooms). Weekly rates are available for some rooms.
  • 4 Stoneyhurst Motel, 1 Main St (A short walk north of the main part of the village across the channel), +1 705-738-2371, . Catering to visiting sport fishers, all units are equipped with propane stove top, microwave, coffee maker, toaster, dishes, kettle, bedding and towels, pots and pans, fridge, 3-piece bathrooms, cable TV, and outdoor barbecues. May Jun Sep Oct: single $80, double $95, triple $110, quad $125; add $5 per room in July and Aug; plus taxes. Sa to Sa weekly rates available at less than 5 times the daily rates.
  • On Front St. East, there are several camps of rentals cottage available during the summer.
  • 5 Birch Point Villa, 75 Meachin Dr, . A cosy five-bedroom, 464 m² cottage with a 2,000 sq. ft. living room and a 35 ft. high cathedral ceiling breakfast area overlooking Sturgeon Lake. Sleeps 14+; architecture and furnishings are rustic/modern.

Stay safe[edit]

Blue-green algae is a toxic form of algae that can be an occasional problem in this region. Do not swim or wade in water where this algae is present, do not drink the water, and do not let pets in the water. Blooms most commonly occur in late summer and early fall. They thrive in areas where the water is shallow, slow moving and warm, but they may be present in deeper, cooler water. Dense blue-green algae blooms may make the water look bluish-green, or like green pea soup or turquoise paint. Very dense blooms may form solid-looking clumps. Fresh blooms often smell like newly mown grass, while older blooms may smell like rotting garbage.

Poison ivy is common in wooded areas. All parts of poison ivy, including the roots, contain a poisonous substance which causes an irritating inflammation of the skin of most people, the inflamed areas frequently developing blisters and accompanied by intense itchiness.

Go next[edit]

This city travel guide to Bobcaygeon is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.