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The Near North is a region in Northern Ontario, Canada.


  • 1 Sudbury — Northern Ontario's largest city
  • 2 Espanola — renowned for its picturesque wilderness, lakes, fishing, camping, hiking and golfing opportunities
  • 3 French River — fishing, canoeing, kayaking, angling and hunting are popular activities on the river
  • 4 Killarney — its wilderness lodges, campgrounds and retail services are geared toward campers and other visitors to Killarney Provincial Park
  • 5 Magnetawan — a village on the Ontario Ghost Trail
  • 6 Mattawa — a point of departure for canoeing or boating on the Ottawa River
  • 7 North Bay — calls itself the "gateway to Northern Ontario"
  • 8 Parry Sound — the world's deepest natural freshwater port is home to several cultural festivals
  • 9 Powassan — a small, hockey-loving town
  • 10 Temagami — a village set amongst old-growth pine stands ideal for hiking or canoeing

The North Channel[edit]

  • 11 Blind River — a rest stop with sandy beaches, campgrounds and a championship golf course
  • 12 Elliot Lake — a former mining boomtown that now seeks to attract tourists and retirees

Other destinations[edit]


Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Air Canada Express provides daily service from Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ IATA) to Sudbury. Porter Airlines flies to Sudbury from Toronto City Island Airport (YTZ IATA).

By bus[edit]

Ontario Northland[dead link] operates the following routes in the region as of Sep 2021:

  • Toronto - Barrie - North Bay
  • Toronto - Parry Sound - Sudbury
  • North Bay - Timmins - Cochrane
  • Sudbury - Timmins - Hearst
  • Ottawa - North Bay - Sudbury
  • Sudbury - Sault Ste. Marie

By train[edit]

Via Rail provides infrequent service to Sudbury from White River (8 hr) from $85 as of Sep 2021.

It also provides service from Toronto to Parry Sound and Sudbury Junction (10 km from the city), and continues through Northern Ontario with stops at Hornepayne, Longlac, Sioux Lookout and several minor stops, to Winnipeg, Manitoba and westward.

Get around[edit]

See the Ontario Northland routes in "Get in", above. Public transportation is otherwise very limited in the region.


The Agawa Canyon Tour Train is a very popular scenic one-day rail excursion to Agawa Canyon Park, 114 railway miles north of Sault Ste Marie. There is a three-hour stopover at the canyon where there are hiking trails and a railway museum. The train has dining cars, dome cars, and regular coach cars.

Science North is a science education centre in Sudbury with an IMAX theatre, a butterfly gallery, a robotics lab, and interactive exhibits on geology, animal biology and other areas of science.


Many towns through the region have outfitters who will equip you with everything you need for fishing, hunting, wilderness canoeing and camping or snowmobiling trips, and can provide guides, or organize the whole trip for you.

This region is a popular place to rent a cottage on a lakeside during the summer for fishing, boating and swimming, or during the winter for snowmobiling and cross-coutry skiing.

Paddle, hike, ski or snowshoe through in this craggy, imposing landscape of Killarney Provincial Park, one of Ontario Parks’ crown jewels.

Stay safe[edit]

Cell/mobile phone service is not available on so stretches of highways through the region, even those most travelled (Highways 11 and 17). You will have service in and around cities and towns, but you should bring some emergency supplies in the case of a breakdown, such as water, blankets, and food.


Black flies and mosquitoes are abundant throughout the Near North. To protect yourself when camping or hiking, wear long sleeve shirts (white or brightly coloured), thick socks, and long pants (tuck the pants into the socks), and apply insect repellent containing DEET. A mosquito net can be nicer than applying repellent to your face. Also some type of bug netting in your tent is advised. Flies are most active at dawn and dusk between mid-June and late July.


Winter driving can be treacherous, given the inclement winters here. Be prepared to adjust or cancel travel plans should the weather conditions require it.

Go next[edit]

This region travel guide to Near North is a usable article. It gives a good overview of the region, its sights, and how to get in, as well as links to the main destinations, whose articles are similarly well developed. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.