The Perfect 10

Patterson-Kaye Lodge, Ontario

AMERICANS, TAKE NOTE: The inviting wooden deck chairs you see everywhere in Muskoka, a popular region of 1,600 lakes bounded by the wilderness of Algonquin Provincial Park to the northeast and Georgian Bay to the west, are called Muskoka chairs, not Adirondack chairs—even though they're identical.

Patterson-Kaye Lodge

Price per adult is 3 for a week in the lodge, 5 in the cabins; kids stay for half the price. Cost includes all watersports, breakfast, and dinner.

My husband and I piled our twins, Bryan and Scott, into the car and made the nearly 600-mile pilgrimage from our home in New York City to Patterson-Kaye Lodge on Lake Muskoka. Run by the Miller family since 1959, Patterson-Kaye consists of a two-story wooden lodge built in 1936 with five guest rooms, plus 25 spacious private cabins, each with one to four bedrooms and a veranda.

Guests can jump off the dock, kayak along the calm shore, water-ski, or simply meditate upon stands of pines from one of those Muskoka chairs. We borrowed two paddleboats for a jaunt with our toddlers—too young for the free children's program for three- to ten-year-olds—but couldn't build up any speed. Exhausted, we headed for the lodge's speedboat. I squeezed into a waiting inner tube and got yanked around Lake Muskoka at breakneck speed. I hadn't screamed like that, or had as much fun, since summers as a kid.

Filed To: Paddling
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