A Lake Muskoka Cruise is one of the Best Experiences in Ontario
Sometimes we need to experience the lap of luxury. With this lifestyle being above and beyond most of our budget and means, experiencing it even from arm’s length can be a thrilling tick on the bucket list. The Muskoka region of Ontario brings the upscale and elite together for that perfectly posh marriage it’s know for. It’s a region that many only dream visiting, owning real estate, and actually experiencing the ambiance in an even more immersive way. In fact, such notable stars as Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell even own property on these prestigious waters. Now, if you’re like the majority of the world’s population, you simply cannot afford the high class life, but now and then wish a taste. And nothing works better in this region of Ontario than the Lake Muskoka Cruise. It is one of those activities that brings visitors face to face with this extraordinary area full of history, beauty, tranquility, and inevitably, enviable appeal.
Lake Muskoka and Muskoka Cruise Facts
- The Segwun Cruise ship is the oldest of its kind in North America that uses coal-fire.
- The Segwun cruise ship was built in 1887.
- When heading on the Lake Muskoka Cruise, for the most part, you will take the Wenonah ship instead of the Segwun as it is in better condition.
- The Muskoka region is made up of small cities including Port Carling, Bracebridge, Gravenhurst, and Bala.
- The Muskoka region was originally mentioned in the history of the indigenous peoples in the 1600’s.
- The name Muskoka is derived from a legendary Indian chief in the Ojibwe or Chippewa chief named Muskquakie.
- People are screened before being able to purchase property on the lake to maintain the clout and atmosphere of the area.
- Legend has it that French explorer Samuel de Champlain had travelled through the Muskoka Region and on Lake Muskoka itself.
- Some notable celebrities that vacation in Lake Muskoka or own property include Martin Short, Jim Carrey, Steven Spielberg, Kate Hudson, Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell (as noted above), Donald Sutherland, Tom Hanks, Halle Berry, and Jason Priestley.
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The Lake Muskoka Dinner Cruise
One of the many options to see Lake Muskoka and all its scenic glory is to enjoy a cruise. Knowing the popularity of this impeccable and natural tourist destination, several options are now available for this excursion. Personally, all the choices including fishing charters, scenic routes through millionaire’s row, sunset trips, and dinner cruises are top notch and offer only the most sophisticated of amenities on board; however, I personally can stand behind the quality and experience of the dinner cruise as it blew me away, and literally off the bough as I danced to the on board band’s catchy rendition of Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline…
The Dinner on the Lake Muskoka Cruise
So you have the history, the scenery, the prestige on the Lake Muskoka Cruise…now bring in the food. The dinner cruise is a very popular option for experiencing such a beautiful and world famous part of Ontario. With the admission fee, you get the ambiance, paired with some high class grub. Upon arrival on board, you are given the option of a welcome wine or glass of beer to get the experience off to a fine start.
Now for the best part of the evening – the food! The dinner option of the Lake Muskoka dinner cruise offers a three-course meal of appetizer, main, and dessert, served with fountain drinks and coffee. If you wish wine, beer, or a cocktail, these are an extra fee on top of your admission ticket. Vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free etc.? No worries! Advise the crew of this preference upon booking and a meal to suit your requirements will be served.
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For the first course, enjoy a lovely traditional Caesar salad. I liked the salad here as it included grated cheese, which isn’t on the original recipe, but has been adapted over the years for the Westerner’s perspective on the salad. I also enjoyed it because the dressing wasn’t drowning the lettuce and the croutons were the right crispiness.
The main course for most (those without dietary restrictions) is a steak meal with potato and vegetables. It can be challenging to perfect a meal that passengers all enjoy differently – some like steak rare, others prefer medium, and a token few even enjoy steak Like rubber well done. My steak was cooked just right and the sauce wasn’t overpowering to the flavour of the meat. The one thing I may critique is the portion size. It was so big and I will be blatantly and shamefully honest – I couldn’t finish it and unfortunately the remains went to waste. I hate wasting food. As someone growing up in a country of food and resources, I get really upset when I see waste when there are so many countries desperate for food. So if they could reduce the size of the main meal, it would make the experience better mentally for those who simply don’t have the capacity to finish a 12+ ounce cut of meat.
Now for the dessert. As noted above I simply could not eat more than one bite. I had to try it in order to provide an honest view on the taste and texture of one of the most popular desserts out there. After the bite for the blog, my consensus is that it seriously was one of the most delightful and tasty cheesecakes I have ever eaten. I can say with all honesty that it was my favourite part of the dessert. It really was. I could only enjoy 2 bites, but they were my favourite 2 bites of my entire meal. If you’re a cheesecake snob, you will enjoy this recipe.
The Sites and Atmosphere
The Muskoka Cruise is far more than food; it is an overall experience and yolo excursion for all Ontario road trips up to the region. While on the cruise, marvel at the calmness of the lake. Breathe in fresh feel of the prestigious region. And simply step back and take in the moment. We seriously move too fast in life. Yes, I took pictures with my phone on the Muskoka cruise. Yes, I am writing to you about this experience. But while on the ship, 90% of the experience I spent having fun, taking in the moment, allowing myself to enjoy that little sprinkle of luxury. Oh , and I sang my heart out to Sweet Caroline, Mony Mony, and a 1960’s Tommy James and the Shondells song “Dragging the Line.” Yep. I know that song. I know many songs thanks to being immersed as a child into the sounds of the past within my father’s 1000-piece music collection.
Millionaire’s Row in Lake Muskoka
The Lake Muskoka Cruise Logistics
I’m sure you’re now wishing to enjoy a Muskoka cruise yourself while exploring Ontario. Fantastic! But how do you get there? Where do you board and all that fun stuff?
- Head to Gravenhurst – the gateway to the Muskokas. This is the central hub for the Lake Muskoka Cruise and all your options for dinner, sunsets, and more.
- At the dock, pay admission and perhaps pick up a souvenir or 2 at the little souvenir shop.
- Before you board, maybe walk up and down the boardwalk for some photographs, a touch of history of the region (vintage boats adorn the boardwalk) or pick up a coffee at the Wolff’s Den – a delightful family-owned cafe right at the water’s edge.
- The cruise is around 2 hours which includes the dinner and entertainment.
- Don’t forget to bring your camera, sunglasses, a little jacket for outside winds, and of course, your appetite for your dinner.
- Allow at least 2.5 hours of driving time if leaving from Toronto. The highways are unpredictable, especially in the summer months with cottagers.
So there you have the ins and outs of the dinner Lake Muskoka cruise that departs every day throughout the summer months. It should be on everyone’s Canada bucket list.
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