Bluffer’s Park in Toronto is at the end of Brimley Road and bounded to the north by the Scarborough Bluffs. Bluffer’s Park beach has to be one of the finest in Toronto and certainly the cleanest.
The sand was brought in to create the long stretch of beach at the foot of the slowly (and sometimes not so slowly) eroding clay cliffs, but the area somehow retains its wilderness feel, attracting hundreds of beachgoers on summer weekends.
And while you could probably waste the day lounging on the soft sands, there’s so much more here than just sunbathing and swimming.
If you’re driving, arrive early to snag parking, or risk parking elsewhere and taking the 25-minute walk from Kingston Road to the lake.
If you’re traveling by TTC, take the 175 Bluffer’s Park bus, which runs between Kennedy Station and Bluffer’s Park Beach every 15 minutes during the day, early evening, weekends, and holidays.
The beach, the only one along the bluffs, is on the northeast side of the park, just past the yacht club and marina.
You can still participate in some amenities even if you are not a member of the marina. Curbside Dogs offers a bit of post-tan nourishment with hot dogs, tacos, poutine, and milkshakes, all served at the concession stand.
Once you reach the beach, you may regret it if you decided to visit the rocky shores of Woodbine or Cherry Beach in its place.
The wide beach promenade stretches for a few kilometers and offers enough space for the many visitors along the coast. With plenty of room to spread out, you can start a game of beach volleyball or frisbee without disturbing those lounging in the sun.
Despite being a man-made beach and one of the busier beaches around, the area still manages to feel rustic and secluded, especially compared to others like Sugar Beach or HTO Park.
This is partly due to the dramatic natural setting, but also due to the shady trees that line the opposite sides of the cliffs, a perfect spot if you want to enjoy a picnic.
And if you miss your food on the way there and forgot your picnic basket at home, a cool treat from the ice cream truck will help. Expect a line on the weekends.
Bluffer’s Park Beach is also one of eight Blue Flag swimming areas in the city. So be sure to plan some time for swimming. That’s huge considering the beach used to have some of the worst water quality in Toronto.
If the main beach ever gets too crowded, there’s always Bluffer’s Sand Beach further west. This little hideaway tends to see a lot more wind due to the adjacent bluffs, so it might not be ideal for die-hard sun-worshippers.
On your way between the two beaches you will pass the swamp where waterfowl like to hang out on the rocks.
If you want to end the day with views from the top of the cliffs, you can do so by visiting Scarborough Heights Park to the west, or Cudia Park, which offers a bird’s-eye view of Bluffer’s Beach.
Alex Bylin with the rest of Olivia Little