Just two hours east of Toronto, Prince Edward County—PEC to its friends—is the ideal spot for a summer getaway. It’s not too close to the big city, but not impossibly remote, either. PEC is particularly perfect if you like to do a lot of different things, because the possibilities for activities are just about endless: swimming and hiking at Sandbanks Provincial Park, indulging in some seriously good food, touring a winery, or taking a long, leisurely bike tour through the rolling countryside. Add in ridiculously charming small towns, and you’ve got the ingredients for a masterpiece of a vacation. And because you’ll want more than just a day to explore PEC, you’ll want somewhere to stay that reflects the region’s charm and elegance. Here are our favourites, available for rent through CanadaStays.
Old-fashioned elegance from $500 per night
This beautiful three-bedroom home is right in the heart of PEC, meaning it’s close to everything the region has to offer. Enjoy a morning cup of coffee on the gingerbread-framed front porch surrounded by gorgeously landscaped gardens, then move around to the backyard gazebo later in the day for a quiet glass of wine. Inside, the home is a perfect balance of antique beauty and modern conveniences, including a jacuzzi tub in the main bathroom. The house is an easy drive to the area’s numerous wineries and is on the county’s Taste Trail, which you can follow to sample the best of PEC’s food treasures.
Bright beach house from $150 per night
This fully renovated waterfront cottage on Smith’s Bay offers peaceful waterfront views from the bright, open concept kitchen and living area. Enjoy a glass of wine on the new dock, or gather around the custom-built kitchen island that seats 10—perfect for sharing the adventures of the day. Bedrooms feature cozy duvets, fluffy bath and beach towels and enough room for 14 guests—perfect for a “catch-up” getaway with family or friends. Take full advantage of the gourmet kitchen with produce from one of the area’s many farmers’ markets, wine from a local vineyard and cheese from nearby Black River Cheese.
Lakeside oasis from $219 per night
Oakwood Lake House gives you a front-row seat to stunning views of Lake Ontario, with water access just a few steps from the house. You’ll get a panoramic look at the lake from the dining room, living room, master bedroom and deck. If you’re interested in fishing, the Bay of Quinte offers great walleye and bass fishing—and if you’d prefer someone else to cook the fish, nearby Picton boasts several restaurants, including the top-rated Chef Michael Hoy Culinary. If you’d like a change of scenery, a pass to the white sand beaches of Sandbanks Provincial Park is included in your rental.
Victorian cottage charm from $125 per night
This five-bedroom guest house in the heart of picturesque Picton features the best of its heritage aesthetic while providing all the comforts of modern living. Enjoy breakfast on the backyard deck, soak in one of the clawfoot tubs, or curl up with a good book in the cozy living room. The kitchen is beautifully appointed and comes complete with gas stove and an island to gather around. Wander into Picton, take in some of the shops and restaurants (the Vic Cafe is a fave for breakfast and lunch), then head to Macaulay Mountain Conservation Area to check out Bird House City—a collection of more than 100 birdhouses, many of them reproductions of historic buildings.
Artsy retreat from $165 per night
Staying at this studio suite—ideal for a romantic, art-inspired getaway—is the perfect way to get off the beaten path and find some quality down-time. The building has been constructed from eco-friendly straw bales, with almost everything created by hand, either from scratch or by reclaiming old materials. Feel inspired with the handmade pottery sinks, tiles, light sconces and other elements—and when you’re finished appreciating the lovely artistic touches throughout the suite, wander out into the six-acre property, take a look at the organic garden and enjoy the views of the surrounding countryside. There’s a fire pit for evening get togethers—and if you feel like exploring the area, North beach Provincial Park is 10 minutes’ drive away, with quaint towns to investigate also close by.
Historic mill building from $325 per night
This unique spot has been the social hub of Trenton since before Canada was a country—and now, Stockdale Mill is a one-of-a-kind base from which to explore Prince Edward County. Inside, reclaimed barn boards and thick beams recall the building’s heritage, while extensive renovations provide all the comforts of modernity—with a definite artsy feel throughout the four levels of the open-concept space. Views of the rushing waterfall can be seen out the windows from the first, second and third levels and from the cozy balcony. When you’ve absorbed the building’s history, head to the Mount Pelion Lookout in Trenton for gorgeous 360-degree views of the town. And when you get hungry, check out the farmers’ market, which runs from April to November along the Trent-Severn Canal.
Visit rentals.cottagelife.com to view all rental properties and find your perfect stay. Plus, we have a special discount code for Cottage Life fans—use CLSUMMER50 at checkout for $50 off booking fees until September 30th.