Main Duck Island | Great Lakes Guide
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Main Duck Island

Point of Interest

Main Duck Island is a rustic and isolated island of approximately 1000 acres. The island sits in the middle of Lake Ontario, just north of the US-Canada border. Main Duck holds a rich history spanning thousands of years and serving several different purposes. The island was part of a chain of islands acting as important stopover points for indigenous travellers crossing the rough waters of the lake. Main Duck was also a fishing haven for European settlers in the 19th and 20th centuries, and a critical vantage point for rum runners smuggling Canadian liquor into the US during Prohibition.

Nowadays, the island is managed by Parks Canada and offers a beautifully rugged landscape, with no facilities save for a small docking area and composting toilet on the north side of the island. Although the only way to access the island by boat, it is a popular day trip destination, especially among locals who will come here to spend the day exploring its abandoned buildings, such as the decades-old fishermen huts and impressive 1913 lighthouse. The island also features pebbled beaches with crystal clear water, and a vast array of unique wildlife, including migrating birds, giant snapping turtles, and water snakes. Main Duck Island is truly a hidden gem on Lake Ontario.


Lake Ontario

Traditional Territories






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