My Canada, 3/150: Fish Point, Pelee Island, ON

When people in Canada say they are “going south”, generally it means Florida. Caribbean. Mexico.

A couple years ago, though, I stood on what’s the south-most point you can reach in Canada: the tip of Fish Point on Pelee Island, the island of the south-most dangle of the province of Ontario.

It takes effort to get there: you take a ferry for an hour or more from the mainland to Pelee Island. While you can take a car on the ferry, we took along bicycles and circled the island counter-clockwise, a 30-kilometre ride. Fish Point Provincial Nature Reserve is near the end of that circuit. You leave your bicycles behind and walk the rest of the way mostly through a lush woods, 1.6 kilometres (a mile) each way.

A beach strip along the woods then narrows to a point, the shape of which shifts with the waves and tides. Here I must note that technically the very very most southern point in Canada is on tiny Middle Island, south of Pelee. While Middle Island has a colourful history from prohibition time as a way-station for rum-running, there is no settlement there now: it is part of a nature preserve not open to visitors except scientists and researchers.

For the rest of us, this is as south as Canada gets: a latitude of 41.7, in the same latitude band as Istanbul, Barcelona, and Rome.

Photo: Chris Moorehead

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