Subject: Visiting Prince Edward County, Ontario

We took another trip in our own backyard last weekend, visiting Northumberland and Prince Edward Counties in Ontario.

We stayed at the King George Inn in Cobourg (about an hour drive east of Toronto). This was formerly the Governor's Mansion and the city jail. Rooms are lovely; breakfast is served in the holding cell in the basement of the jail (from midnight on). The "yard" where prisoners were taken out for exercise and fresh air is surrounded by the jail walls; the outdoor heated pool, off the yard, is undergoing restoration. The Inn has a pub, restaurant and a large patio for dining al fresco.

Cobourg is also undergoing a lot of restoration with new restaurants, shops and pubs opening up. Victoria Beach, on the shore of Lake Ontario, is spectacular though it must be really busy in the hot summer months because there is a recreational trailer park in the area. You can swim here!

We patronised a number of restaurants during our stay. The Cat and the Fiddle (38 Covert Street) has good service, good food and a lovely patio. The Oasis (31 King St. E) has friendly staff; MacGregor's Pub (39 King St. E.) has live music. Service at the Human Bean (80 King St. w.) is spotty, but it's a nice spot for morning coffee.

Rice Lake is about a 20 minute drive north of Cobourg. It's a beautiful spot, though a large lake with lots of water traffic. There are inns along the shore for vacationers.

We drove to Prince Edward County, east of Cobourg along Hwy 401, to get into the countryside. We drove along the "Taste Trail" which takes the visitor to the wineries in the area. These are young wineries, but the products are well worth tasting.

The bonus in this area is Sandbanks Provincial Park. Ontario's provincial parks are well-maintained, usually on choice land, and inexpensive. The beach at Sandbacks is spectacular.

Ontario's tourist motto is "Yours to Discover", so we're in discovery mode.

Lucy, Toronto