First encounter with Georgian Bay
In September we get to know Georgian Bay at the east end of Lake Huron. The only place I knew in this region of Canada was Wasaga Beach with its miles of sandy beach. I have almost no idea of Georgian Bay and I have no idea how beautiful this region of Canada is. We found out about this on one of the Parry Sound Plane Tours that told us about the 30000 islands at Georgian Bay in Ontario.
Georgian Bay Airways and Parry Sound Plane Tours
We are invited by Georgian Bay Airways for a scenic flight over the 30000 islands with lunch at Henry's Restaurant, a seafood restaurant. This is on one of the outer islands of the archipelago and can only be reached by seaplane or boat. Actually, we had hoped that the autumn coloring of the forests was a little more advanced. But it's not particularly intense in these northern regions of Ontario in late September. In the meantime, some trees are shining red or yellow out of the woods, but the peak of the coloring of the leaves can probably only be expected after our departure at the beginning of October.
But what's the point? A seaplane flight is also a great experience in summer. And the weather cooperates. Deep blue skies and bright sunshine! What more do we want?
A flight over the 30000 islands
The crew of Georgian Bay Airways welcomes us in their small terminal at the port of Parry Sound, which is the departure point for day trippers and cottage owners on the 30000 islands. The "deckhand" is a young man who is responsible for everything that needs to be done before departure. He takes care of the refueling of the aircraft, care and maintenance of the machines, etc. He then leads us over the swaying jetty to our aircraft. Having flown seaplanes many times in Alaska and the Yukon, I am amazed at how small these planes are on Georgian Bay. However, if you consider that this does not necessarily have to be used to transport food for a whole year, as is often necessary in the far north of the country, then it makes sense to use smaller aircraft in these regions.
Georgian Bay Airways crew
Four people are supposed to fly on our flight: the two of us, the pilot – James Ferguson – and his co-pilot Steve, who, as a newcomer to the region, is supposed to get to know the route. There is not much space in the machine, but it is enough to get an overview of the water and island world below us. And photography and filming is also possible.
Parry Sound Plane Tours provide an overview of the island world
After takeoff, we first look for deeper fairways for the takeoff, because with a fully fueled aircraft and four people on board we can't take off straight away from the harbor bay - due to the heavy weight. Then we start with a view of the open lake. James takes off at full throttle, the engine accelerating, and the outer suburbs of Parry Sound and the salt mounds already ready for the coming winter in the port regions whiz past us faster and faster. When the sea is calm you don't get much of the actual take-off in a seaplane. Suddenly you are in the air with a fantastic view of the world below of deep forests, small lakes and ponds and streams separating large and small islands.
Villas and Cottages in the Georgian Bay Islands
Only from the air do we get an impression of the size of the island world that characterizes the southeast corner of Georgian Bay. There are literally thousands of islands here - some so large that they can accommodate large villas with tennis courts and swimming pools, others are no more than a small rock sticking out of the water's surface. However, the islands with large estates can be counted on one hand. Small cottages and wooden houses are much more common on the 30000 Islands than the posh mansions of the rich city dwellers in Canada.
Soft landing in front of Henry's Restaurant
On the way we are shaken by slight turbulence, so it is not easy to take photos that are not blurred. It is even more difficult to shoot short films in which the image is not distorted by sudden flight movements. But we hardly notice our landing in front of Henry's Restaurant, the seaplane dives so gently into the calm waters of the lake. It will take some time before we arrive at the jetty - the propellers must not remain switched on here. Aircraft noise should be avoided as far as possible, because there are a few summer cottages right next to the landing stage.
An island world almost to ourselves on our Parry Sound Plane Tour
Arriving at the jetty we see a number of jetties that are likely to be teeming with boats in the summer. However, we are only here a few days before Henry's closes for the winter and we are the only guests. A very special feeling to have the island world of the 30000 islands almost to ourselves.
Summary of our Parry Sound Plane Tour:
We have discovered this beautiful region at the east end of Lake Huron in Canada, which has a unique archipelago of 30000 islands. She totally amazed us!
The best part? We got a bird's eye view of Georgian Bay! We took a Georgian Bay Airways Parry Sound Plane Tour and flew over the islands in a seaplane. We were lucky enough to have lunch at Henry's Restaurant on one of the outer islands of the archipelago.
The flight was an unforgettable experience. We flew on a small seaplane that seats four including the pilot and his co-pilot. The island world that passed below us was breathtaking. There was everything from small rocks to large villas. The autumn colors of the forests were particularly intense, but the flight is also a great experience in summer.
The Georgian Bay Airways crew was very friendly and the landing in front of Henry's Restaurant was so smooth we barely noticed it. Once there, we almost had the island world to ourselves, as the restaurant closes shortly after for the winter.
Don't miss the Georgian Bay Islands by Air!
If you have a penchant for nature and adventure, you should definitely experience this unique island world from a bird's eye view. Fly over the 30000 Islands with Georgian Bay Airways and enjoy the beauty of this region. It is an unforgettable experience that you should not miss!
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- Planning trips – That's how we do it.
Source: own research on site. However, our opinion remains our own.
Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs and TravelWorldOnline