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Harbour Environment: Enjoyed by All

colour photograph from the water showing a beach with bathers in the water, multiple colourful umbrellas. To right are number of campers. In background is cupola of Victoria Hall

Cobourg beach seen from an offshore yacht.


In addition to marina and yacht club endeavours, other parts of the harbour area contribute to the town’s evolving heritage.  “Cobourg’s waterfront is a unique, memorable and unified experience that truly reflects the history, culture and geography of the Town.”  In many ways that goal set out in the Town’s 2013 Parks Master Plan is an accomplished fact.

colour photograph of people lying on sandy beach with colourful umbrellas, life guard station unmanned

Summer on Cobourg beach.


Just as in the very early days, the harbour and its beach are filled with activity.  But now it is chiefly swimmers and sailors, locals and tourists, enjoying the warm waters of this sheltered part of Lake Ontario – no more coal piles or oil tankers!  Waterfront and Sandcastle Festivals have taken their place and attract thousands each year.  The harbour area is a constant drawing card for:

  • Dragon boat racers
  • Kayakers, canoeists, paddlers, small craft sailors
  • Bird watchers, nature lovers, photographers
  • Strolling townspeople out to appreciate the atmosphere
  • Thousands of migrating birds depend on the West Headland (Langevin Pier) every year as a stopover both in the spring and fall. Many geese, ducks and other birds frequent the harbour, some through all seasons.
  • All year round, people drive out onto the East Pier to view activities going on at the beach or simply to take in the sunsets/sunrises over Lake Ontario. Even storms have a special attraction.

“Something for everyone” might be an apt description, but in a small town Ontario way!

two female sand artists put the finishing touches to a large castle at blue water's edge, onlookers pause to admire the handiwork.

The popular weekend Sandcastle Festival.