The First Step to a Holiday of a Lifetime


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Superior Lake Superior

CAN - LakeSuperior1Another first from H-C Travel – ride all the way round the World’s largest freshwater lake, Lake Superior. Our route is designed to run along the perimeter of the lake, known to the indigenous peoples of the region as gichigami (Gitche Gumee), and to take advantage of the stunning views from the land out onto the water. Your bike is a Kawasaki KLR650, its dualsport/enduro capabilities are perfect for you to explore the little out of the way places reached only on dirt/gravel roads.

Our tour starts and finishes in the boom town of Thunder Bay, and runs anticlockwise all the way round Lake Superior – no short cuts! Over two weeks you’ll not only marvel at the sheer size and beauty of Superior, but enjoy the wilderness and small towns dotted along its shores.

Day 1 Arrive Thunder Bay. Your flight from Toronto arrives late afternoon or early evening, allowing time to check into your hotel and relax before the ride ahead. At the geographical centre of Canada Thunder Bay is an expanding city with a population of 100,000 on the edge of the vast Northern Wilderness. It started out as Fort William, a summer meeting point and trading post for voyagers bringing supplies from Montreal and traders returning from the wilderness with their year’s supply of furs. It is now a major city and supply route between east and west and promotes itself as the sports capital of Canada. Visit the old Fort William Trading Post for a sense of its real history. Valhalla Inn.

Day 2 Thunder Bay - Duluth (300 km). After collecting your motorcycle this morning, it is a short ride to the US border. You soon come across the historic site of Grand Portage and the artist village of Grand Marais, both well worth a visit. You approach Duluth on the scenic north shore drive and arrive in this lovely city with magnificent views out over Lake Superior. Duluth has a wonderful restored warehouse district in the port (Canal St) and for railroad enthusiasts a well stocked museum in “The Depot.” It is also of course ‘home’ to Bob Dylan, and for slightly younger music fans, Bob Berry of REM. For a bit of bizarre culture, check out the graffiti graveyard. Comfort Suites.

Day 3 Duluth – Houghton (350 km). Turning south east you head out of Minnesota into Michigan, towards Bayfield, the jumping off point for the lovely, and largely uninhabited, Apostle Islands. Take your bike across on the ferry and soak up this historic and bucolic community. Further east, drive up what locals call “The Thumb” of the Upper Peninsula (or the UP in local parlance) to Houghton, and see the curious Houghton Hancock Canal which is used by large freighters as a short cut between ports west and east. Holiday Inn Express.

Day 4 Houghton – Marquette. Continue south to L’Anse at the end of Keweenaw Bay. Take a dip in the lake at Waterfront Park or Second Sand Beach or try a short walk on Little Mountain for a view over the town. Follow the road to Big Bay sandwiched between Lake Superior, the tiny (relatively) Lake Independence and the Huron mountains. A lovely relaxing day’s ride ends in Marquette, where you can relax on one of the local sandy beaches or, for a different experience, why not visit the Tilden opencast mine, where you can take a tour of the huge quarry and iron ore extraction facility. Country Inn and Suites.

Day 5 Marquette - Mackinaw City (for Mackinac Island) (425 km). En route from Marquette this morning, visit Munising on the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. Take a boat trip to see spectacular rock formations along with some interesting, historic and beautiful lighthouses. After another great ride along the south shore you arrive at Mackinaw City. To the east is Mackinac Island, often referred to as ‘The Bermuda of the Great Lakes’. The island has no motorized traffic, just horse power – as in horses and carts and gigs and trolleys. The architecture is magnificent and the Grand Hotel was made famous by the movie ‘Somewhere in Time’. Park your bike at the ferry parking lot and ride the rooster-tail ferry across to the island. Harbourview Inn.

Day 6 Mackinac Island (free day). Just enjoy the peacefulness of the island, or head off for a quick circular ride today.CAN - LakeSuperior78

Day 7 Mackinaw City - Sault Ste Marie (120 km). Well, that’s just about it for the USA, and after a short ride you cross back into Canada and continue to Sault Ste Marie, affectionately known locally as ‘the Soo’. Situated on the north bank of the St Mary’s River, which flows from Lake Superior to Lake Huron, Sault Ste Marie is far from being a backwater with more ships passing through its canal locks than either the Suez or Panama canals. Visit the Sault Canal National Historic Site for an insight into the construction of this great waterway. Sault Ste Marie is also the gateway for excursions into the primeval forests and pristine wilderness of Northern Ontario and home to the Canadian Bush Plane museum with a display of about 20 historic aircraft of the north and exhibits relating to their uses. Quality Inn.

Day 8 Sault Ste Marie (free day). There’s plenty of time to enjoy either of these unique attractions or ride along the nearby shore of Lake Huron. Sault Ste Marie is also the starting point for the amazing Agawa Canyon train excursion, so maybe let the train take the strain for today and enjoy a full day trip aboard one of the most popular rail tours in North America. The train will transport you 185 km North of Sault Ste Marie over towering trestles, along pristine lakes and rivers and through awesome granite rock formations and the vast mixed forests of the Canadian Shield. Before the return journey, the train descends over 150 m into the Agawa Canyon to allow passengers to enjoy a one hour stop in the Canyon Park. A great day off the bike if you need it! Quality Inn.CAN - LakeSuperior89

Day 9 Sault Ste Marie – Wawa (240 km). Today you ride north past Batchawana Bay, a sacred site of the Ojibwa people, and Pancake Bay to Montreal River Harbour, a good lunch stop. Continue north through Lake Superior Provincial Park along the eastern shore where the road is sometimes sandwiched between dense forest to your right and the shore of the great lake to your left. Take time to park, picnic and stroll the superb beach rest areas. Soon after leaving the park you arrive at the interestingly named village of Michipicoten River. See the tumbling Magpie River Falls before continuing the short distance to the gold mining community of Wawa. Rock Island Lodge.

Day 10 Wawa - Red Rock (380 km). The road continues inland for the first half of today’s ride, cutting through ancient forests and crossing wild rivers. White River is famous as the birthplace of Winnie the Pooh. After a further 90 km the road returns to the shore near Marathon, the largest town between Sault Ste Marie and Thunder Bay. Born out of mining and pulp production, Marathon also offers many leisure activities and endless scenery. Further along the road, often sweeping high into the hills and then down to the shore, you pass through the townships of Terrace Bay and Schreiber. Schreiber has a Railways Museum and the Rainbow Falls Provincial Park. The road then continues to Nipigon, famous for excellent trout fishing, and on to the tiny community of Red Rock, a sheltered spot protected from the winds of Superior by St Ignace Island. Red Rock was at one time home to a World War II POW camp, some of whom returned to make this remote community their home. The North Shore of Lake Superior is famous for its incredible winter gales but during the summer it tends to be more tranquil and accessible. Quebec Lodge.CAN - LakeSuperior910

Day 11 Red Rock - Thunder Bay (135 km). Your last day in the saddle, and you’ve done it – you’ve circumnavigated the World’s largest freshwater lake. It’s a short ride into Thunder Bay so you have a little spare time. Why not take a walk along the Nipigon River Recreation Trail between Red Rock and Nipigon This easy trail offers scenic lookouts and a chance to see many species of local wildlife. Ouimet Canyon is an unusual geologic phenomenon with rare rock formations and plants species below the 100m high cliffs or visit the Sleeping Giant Provincial Park Pass Lake. Whatever you do, don’t miss the Terry Fox Scenic Lookout on the outskirts of Thunder Bay for fantastic views of Lake Superior, The Sleeping Giant and surrounding islands. After returning your motorbike, finish your tour with a night on the town. Valhalla Inn.

Day 12 Depart Thunder Bay. The adventure is over, you know why Lake Superior is superior, and it’s time to catch your overnight flights home.

Total distance  c. 2000 km

Start dates Daily, 15 May – 15 Sep

Ready to book? Please click here

Price includes: 10 days Kawasaki KLR650 hire with CDW and theft insurance ($0 excess) and C$1 million liability cover, and soft panniers; 11 nts accommodation, taxes, detailed tour description, road maps and toll-free phone assistance; luggage storage.

Price excludes: See also our Prebookable extras. Flights and travel insurance; refundable security deposit C$2500); entrance fees; all meals (allow c. £25-30/p/day); fuel (allow c. £10/day). Riding gear is not provided, please bring your own.

Superior Lake Superior self-guided tour



Single room supplement




Prebookable extras




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Travel insurance (EU only)

Per person


Airport/hotel parking (UK only)

Per room per night



 | Peak Performance | Mountain Roads | Western Bike Explorer | Ride the Rockies |
| Gaspesie | Quebec and Ontario | Gaspesie and Niagara Falls | Gaspesie, Quebec and Ontario |
| Superior Lake Superior | Great Lakes Vistas | Rental |