Lake Muskoka is one of the most well known lake in Ontario. The inter-connected sisters of Lake Muskoka, Lake Joseph and Lake Rosseau are known throughout the world as being one of the most prestigious places to have a cottage and National Geographic in 2013 and 2014 recognized Muskoka as the best place in the world to visit! That recognition lies in part on the reputation of Lake Muskoka. In his book ‘Who’s Where on the Muskoka Lakes’ (1976) Hugh Carmichael starts by writing ‘No one comes to Muskoka on his own, someone always brings him. Perhaps as long ago as fifty years such a statement would not have been applicable, but all of us here during the last half a century were introduced to Muskoka by a friend or family member.” The pendulum has swung again…as magazines such as National Geographic and internet sites have spread the word that Muskoka is the best place in the world to visit. Between 1850 and 1930 visitors travelled by horse and wagon, train, bus or Model T to the shore of Lake Muskoka, where our office is located in Gravenhurst, then sailed up the lake on one of the steamships – Medora, Sagamo, Cherokee, Segwun or Nipissing. The present office of Muskoka Real Estate Services Inc. was the office for the purchasing of tickets and bills of lading for those boats.
Beaumaris on Tondern Island was a favorite of the successful and wealthy Pittsburg families in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Throughout the lake hotels such as the Walker Hotel, Montcalm Hotel, Glen Echo and Muskoka Beach Hotel sprung up on beautiful points of land to serve the tourist industry. The attraction for tourists in those days is not much different today. Lake Muskoka is almost 20 miles in length with another two large, fresh, clear water lakes -Joseph and Rosseau- attached to the north and connected with a manual lift lock. It is a tremendous area to explore by boat and if bad weather blows up, shelter may be taken in one of many bays or behind one of the hundred islands in the lake. There are now over 3000 cottages on Lake Muskoka and most old resorts are gone. With so many islands and cottages a strong service industry has built up around their needs. These include commercial ventures such as marinas, cottage rentals, landscapers, dock builders, cleaning services and even pet spas.
The fishery has attracted Pike and Bass Fishing Tournaments. There are also pickerel, lake trout, cisco, herring, perch, sunfish, brown catfish, crappie and a variety of minnows. Since the introduction of Pike the smelt population, which was strong in the 1980’s, has significantly dropped. Most of the lake has a typical Muskoka Granite shoreline, but there are a few pockets of sand beach like those around Taboo Resort, Kirby’s Beach and the Muskoka Center Property in Gravenhurst. Water flows into Muskoka from a) the Muskoka Rivers connecting Lake of Bays and Mary Lake, b) the Hoc Roc River flowing from Gull Lake, c) Pigeon River from Pine Lake, d) from Hardy Lake and e) from Lake Rosseau. The water flows out at Bala through the Moon River to Georgian Bay. Hardy Lake Provincial Park abutts the south shore of Lake Muskoka and contains its own name sake lake. There are many public access areas, although difficult to find by visiting tourists. Purchasers are attracted to Muskoka waterfront because of it’s proximity to Toronto. They are particularly attracted to the larger lakes because of the boating access and the long views available. It is possible to boat to 4 towns; Bala, Port Carling, Bracebridge and Gravenhurst. The larger the lake the higher the price of the properties surrounding it and Lake Muskoka is one of the largest lakes in Muskoka. For many buyers the activity on the larger lakes such as Muskoka is not attractive, it’s a personal choice. Depending on your location on a lake this activity will vary.
Access to Lake Muskoka is from Hwy #400 from Toronto to Hwy #11 and straight north to Gravenhurst. Gravenhurst has always been considered the ‘Gateway to Muskoka’. From Gravenhurst follow ‘Hwy #169 west to Bala or continue to Bracebridge and take #118 to Port Carling. Alternatively Hwy #400 at Barrie goes north to Mactier and Foot’s Bay on Lake Joseph is the access to Hwy #169 south. Most cottages or homes are accessible by year round road, but not all. Properties on Muskoka Lake islands vary from $350,000. to one island that sold for $10,000,000. ( a rare price, an immaculate island ), with an average closer to $490,000.00 and the road access properties vary from $390,000.00 to $4,500,000.00. The average road access property sells for about $620,000. and about 40 sold for over $2,000,000 in the past couple of years. For properties for sale on this lake call Muskoka Real Estate Services at 705-687-7777.Contact Muskoka Real Estate
- Location (Google Maps)
- Lake Muskoka (Wikipedia)
- Cottagers Association
- Antique and Classic Boat Show
- Campbells Landing Marina
- Taboo Resort and Golf
- Walkers Point Marina
- Land Use Map (Muskoka Bay)
- Lake Muskoka Data Sheet