Choose the right Scarborough Bluffs park for a personalized outdoor adventure in Toronto.
Whether you’re a birdwatcher, beach-hopper, or a hiker seeking lake views, the 11 parks that encompass the Scarborough Bluffs have something for you. Stretching out for nearly 15 kilometres of the Lake Ontario shoreline and only 30 minutes from downtown, there’s everything from swimming to beach volleyball, gardens and sculpture to butterfly watching.
The big draw is the rugged vistas of the bluffs—the word for steep, rounded cliffs—that are perfect for showcasing on the ‘gram. Here’s how to pick which bluff park is for you.
Enjoy #BeachVibes at Bluffers Park
A Blue Flag beach that meets strict water quality and safety guidelines, the sandy stretch at Bluffer’s Park is a sweet spot for lake swimmers, sunbathers and tots building sandcastles. Up for a game of beach volleyball or frisbee? With a public net onsite, this is definitely the park for you. Set against the scenic backdrop of the bluffs, this is the only designated swimming park in the Bluffs, and has family-friendly amenities like outdoor showers, picnic areas, changing facilities, a washroom and drinking fountains. It’s also home to Bluffers' Restaurant (7 Brimley Rd. S., Scarborough).
Get there: 175 Bluffer’s Park Bus
Enjoy stellar photo ops at Cathedral Bluffs Park
Cathedral Bluffs Park is one of the highest points in Scarborough Bluffs, so it’s the spot for epic vistas. At an elevation of 90 m (295 ft), this park offers a sensational view of the eroded sandstone bluffs. If you’re a photo buff, be sure to bring your DSLR camera to capture the cliffs’ signature Ice Age spires. A spacious, grassy field (which is perfect for picnics) leads out to panoramic views of the lake and the surrounding area. However, be sure to heed the fencing and safety signage as the bluffs themselves can be unstable, according to the City of Toronto.
Get there: 102 Markham Rd. bus to Neilson Road. Walk south to Broadmead Avenue and east into the park.
Immerse yourself in nature at Cudia Park
Named after a local family, Cudia Park is a firm favourite of hikers is one of the quieter parks. It’s the best spot for walking and escaping into a bit of city-adjacent wilderness. Dense vegetation, lake and forest views with lots of shade cover, multiple trails and abundant wildlife will all appeal to nature lovers, avid photographers and vloggers in your party. Keep your eyes peeled and smartphone ready, just in case you glimpse the white-tailed deer (the same adorable breed as Bambi) who inhabit the Scarborough Bluffs.
Get there: 102 Markham Rd. bus to Pine Ridge Road stop. Take Pine Ridge Road south to Meadowcliffe Drive. Follow it south to the bend in the road, enter from the parking lot.
Feast your eyes on art and architecture at Guild Park
With its intersection of elegant gardens, important sculpture and historic architecture, Guild Park and Gardens would easily pass Netflix’s Bridgerton vibe check. This sprawling, manicured 36-hectare (89-acre) park is a sculptural sanctuary that is now the final resting spot for fragments of dozens of Toronto’s now-demolished buildings. There’s also a significant collection of outdoor sculptures, lending it a patina-rich, Old World charm. On the grounds are the Guild Inn Estate, a mansion-turned-banquet-hall, and of course, stunning lake views.
Get there: 116 Morningside bus towards Conlins Road via Ellesmere. Exit at Guildwood Parkway at Chancery Lane.
Watch migrating wildlife at East Point Park
East Point Park’s mix of meadows, bluff, beach, shrub thicket, forest and wetland mean one thing: unparalleled butterfly- and bird-watching opportunities. Monarch butterflies use this spot as a staging area for migration, as do more than 178 species of birds. Bike or stroll along the three designated trails and be treated to glorious meadows lush with tall, swaying native grasses, and wetland-animal spotting, or enjoy taking in a local softball game at one of the four diamonds. There are drinking fountains and washrooms onsite.
Getting to Scarborough Bluffs:
- 86 Scarborough bus to Coronation Drive and Beechgrove Drive. Walk east and south to the end of Beechgrove Drive.