Killarney Provincial Park Ontario

Killarney Provincial Park is one of the best places in Ontario for winter stargazing

If its beautiful landscapes, sparkling lakes, lush pine forests, and pink granite coastline weren't already reason enough to visit, Killarney Provincial Park's breathtaking starry skies may convince you.

Located just south of Sudbury on Georgian Bay, Killarney's striking scenery has long captivated visitors and artists alike, including The Group of Seven who were known to take inspiration for their paintings from the La Cloche Mountains and the park's back country.

Killarney covers a vast wilderness area including wetlands, forests, numerous lakes, Cranberry Bog Trail, and the white quartz La Cloche Mountain range. The park's iconic pink granite cliffs along the coast were once sculpted by a glacier, leaving a breathtaking rosy contrast against the dark lakes below.

In 2018, Killarney became the first provincial park in Ontario to receive a dark sky preserve designation from the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, meaning artificial light is restricted within the borders to protect nighttime ecology. The only other provincial parks with this designation are Lake Superior Provincial Park and Quetico Provincial Park.

For stargazers, Killarney has an incredible observatory with a research-grade 16" telescope for outstanding astro-photography. You may also get lucky enough to see the Northern Lights, especially in the late winter months on cold, clear nights.

Once the snow falls, Killarney transforms into a wonderland for winter adventurers. The park has a variety of well-groomed trails for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and winter hiking with bird's eye viewpoints overlooking the frozen lake.

You can stay overnight in the park's heated yurt accommodations, or try winter backcountry camping, perfect to experience the darkest skies and get the best view of the stars.

Reservations to camp or stay overnight in Killarney Provincial Park can be made online.

Lead photo by

Ontario Parks

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