Exploring Ontario's Small Towns | Ford Canada

About two weeks ago, I ventured out yet again to explore and see more of what Ontario had to offer. June was a crazy month for travel (managed to do LA, Montreal, and a few small towns in Ontario, all while starting a new job), but I made it work somehow. Where there's a will there's a way!

Ever since last year, I've been more motivated to travel and see more of Canada - specifically Ontario - because there really is so much beauty to see in our own backyard. We often think of travel as international destinations, which is great and all, but there really is a whole different level of excitement when you realize there's a lot going on only a few hours away. Besides, everything is so much better in Summer - and why not enjoy the rest of it with a few thrilling road trips? (And hey, it doesn't hurt to save a bit of money too)

I was fortunate enough to secure the 2018 Ford Explorer Platinum for the weekend - which made the trip more comfortable and enjoyable. The full-sized SUV had everything I needed to make our trip perfect, including something I found very useful (first time I've seen this in a new car, but I believe ford has made this a standard in their newer vehicles), which was the WAZE integration. It was nice to rely on the vehicle for the real-time GPS, as opposed to having my phone propped up. The last time I drove a Ford, was the 2017 Escape (a rental), which was great - but the Explorer was something else because it had a very luxurious interior, including a massage feature, which really made a difference after driving for a few hours. I also found it very interesting that the Explorer shared many features with the Range Rover Sport (you can also notice visual similarities - an intentional move by Ford when they owned the Land/Range Rover brand); you can notice some components of the Range Rover Sport in the Ford Explorer - which I thought really elevated the vehicle.

Beyond the vehicle's abilities, it was simply awesome having an SUV that was fitting of the road trip experience.

As someone who lives in the city, I find it necessary to get out and unwind in nature every few weeks. It really helps me completely relax; and it gets me to take a few steps back to appreciate nature a little more - something I wish I did more of. Throughout our journey, we drove through various areas that caught our attention (some places which I've forgotten the names of, notably around the Muskoka region though). After driving through the beautiful Algonquin Highlands, we found our charming destination, the Little Hawk Resort and Marina. It was a beautiful and quaint spot by the lake that incorporated a full cottaging experience and I really didn't want to come home (even though it was a cloudy weekend).

I got the chance to shop around and try out what the area had to offer. Julie and I picked up some barbecue supplies, as well as s'more kits (an essential) and we even checked out Boshkung brewing (craft) before having dinner at Rhubarb (Haliburton/Minden area, so a short drive from where we stayed). I have to mention that Rhubarb was fantastic and it blew us away. Everything in the restaurant is sourced locally and the food was absolutely phenomenal.

Besides my short post - which doesn't do justice to the experience - I really came out with a renewed appreciation for small town hospitality. My recommendation to anyone reading this would be to get out and see more of what our beautiful province has to offer. Every single time I get out and about, I find myself inspired and refreshed. Make the most out of the rest of this summer by planning a road trip with your friends and/or family - you won't regret it!

I'll leave you with this short video that Julie and I shot with the Ford Explorer!

[video width="1920" height="1080" mp4="https://www.musclesandtussles.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Ford-Explorer-Video-Final.mp4"][/video]

All opinions in this article are mine. This is not a sponsored post, however Ford Canada did provide the vehicle and accommodation.

Photography is courtesy of Julie Yeh (@julie_yay)

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