It’s no secret that Grey County is home to some of the best sights and nature-forward fun that Ontario has to offer. The easy part? You don’t have to bike, hike, or drive far to soak it up. Every gem worth visiting is a countryside drive away. This includes the many purveyors, farmers, and small businesses that celebrate, elevate and love on the environment, too!
I love the phrase “local feels, tastes and looks better”. It perfectly embodies how I feel about the community within Grey and the people who live here. Having the opportunity to chat first-hand with the business owners is something to never take for granted. Learning about the processes, the ingredients, the personal stories – it’s why we support local.
If you love intentional shopping and learning where your products come from – check out a few of Grey County’s best nature-loving businesses, each with great stories and products.
Established in 2015, Good Family Farms is a certified organic farm situated in Meaford on 400+ acres that focuses on regenerative agriculture. The farm raises chickens, cows and pigs and let me tell you, they are well fed. The Goods are very intentional with their farm and the decision making that goes into growing, nurturing and providing exceptional food for the soul.
If you’re in the area and book a farm tour, you can go for a ride around the property to see the full operation including Harvest Moon Farm, an organic farm that grows exceptional vegetables on-site.
On your way out, make sure to visit the farm store to stock up on all my faves: summer sausage, garam masala curry sausages, and the smoked pork chops.
Close quarters: Sideroad Farm – a farm in Walter’s Falls that grows certified organic vegetables and pasture-raised chickens and eggs with a well-stocked on-farm store and bakery.
This place is refill heaven! If you’ve contemplated incorporating more eco-friendly and plastic free products into your household, this is a great spot to start. They have an easy refilling process and if you don’t bring your own or want to purchase new ones, they have donated jars free for taking. Everything you’ll browse is Canadian made and is vetted for quality and integrity.
Fuel up with a plant-powered and nutrient-packed smoothie or snack from Sprout in Owen Sound. My friends and I ordered a chocolate mylkshake and a salted almond smoothie;both were perfectly blended and scrumptious. Fun friend moments with good smoothies are right up my alley.
The Big Canoe Project is a non-profit, social enterprise that offers tours, field trips and day camps in big honkin’ canoes. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or new to paddling, their team will equip you with the tips and tricks to achieve a solid stroke and a good time. During your adventure, you’ll have a chance to collect environmental data on the water while also appreciating the turquoise waters of Georgian Bay and catching a story or two.
Forest Bathing at Scandinave Spa – Enhance your spa visit by taking advantage of their forest bathing trail. Set over a one kilometre radius, this soft well-groomed path was created to encourage mindful movement and stimulate calmness, happiness and increased cognitive function. The perfect way to start or finish your Scandinave experience.
This just might be the coolest spot to spend a few nights off grid, by the fire and in a yurt! Currently offering two solar powered Mongolian yurts and one chalet-style cabin, ReLive Retreat is your invitation to immerse yourself in all things relaxation and rejuvenation. Spend the morning cooking over the fire or enjoying the wood-burning sauna. Time is non-existent here. Milena and Johnny have provided you with necessary amenities to make your stay comfortable yet grounding. Experience the magic in Priceville – your body, soul and mind will thank you for it. And make sure you say hi to Happy the doodle! He’s a cutie.
Don't forget about the Ontario Staycation Tax Credit – Switch up your day trip and spend a night or two with the help of the OSTC. You can claim 20% of your accommodation expenses during year-end taxes! Yes please.
PS. Mid-week visits are where it’s at! Less lines, more availability and the same amount of fun. Happy exploring!
Guest Writer: Stef Richardson
I consider myself a small town gal (raised here in Grey County) with an interest in all things food, culture, community & people. Known for my clogging, blogging and vlogging, my work seeks to showcase the love and appreciation I have for all that is discoverable in Ontario. There is something equally invigorating and addictive about creating relationships with business owners across the region and getting a behind-the-scenes tour of all that they're passionate about. I'm all about digging lokal and sharing my discoveries with the adventurous + foodies at heart. Follow along @lokaldigs