Dorset’s History

Dorset Ontario is a small community, rich in history, loacted on the boundary between the Township of Lake of Bays and the Algonquin Highlands Township. Dorset was settled by the first European settler in 1859 and is now home to Robinson’s voted Canada’s best country store, a lake side restaurant and ice cream parlor.  The Dorset Heritage Museum is located on Main Street and features many displays about Dorset’s early pioneer life and its past as a major logging community. The museum is open on weekends from Victoria Day until Canada Day then Wednesday through Sunday until Thanksgiving. Entrance is by donation.  From the Museum you can hike to the Dorset Scenic Look Out Tower which rises 142 meters above Lake of Bays, offering fantastic views of the area.


The SS Bigwin, the last of the steamships which travelled Lake of Bays taking tourists, cottagers and supplies to various desinations on the shores of Lake of Bays, is now docked in Dorset, where people can board for a historical tour Lake of Bays. Visit the website for a complete schedule.

The community of Dorset continues to develop. and has among other amenities: Health hub, a bank, art galleries, pottery galleries, a post office, marinas, building suppliers, bed and breakfastt,  as well as a LCBO liquor store. The community is also home to Knox United Church.

For more history on Lake of Bays visit:

Austin, Clovelly,  KerrimuirSeabreeze & Scott’s Boathouse.

Watch the video produced by the Lake of Bays Heritage Foundation on the history of Dorset.