Whether you’ve lived here forever or you’re relatively new in town, touring the place you call home like a tourist can help you see your community with fresh eyes. So how can you tour Barrie like a tourist? We have some ideas…


Take A Good Look At The Spirit Catcher 


For local Barrie-ites (Barrieons?), the Spirit Catcher is a ubiquitous Barrie landmark. A local treasure and also something we tend to kind of forget about. You’ve walked or driven by countless times. But have you really stopped to take a look at this impressive piece of outdoor public art? Do you know what the Spirit Catcher is really all about? 


Well, my friend, it’s time to make like a tourist and get up close and personal with this structure. First off, did you know it’s inspired by the Indigenous myth of the Thunderbird? It is. Before you go, you may also want to  take a moment to learn a little more about the sculpture’s interesting history. (Including the time that strong winds caused one of the quills and antennae to become dislodged). You can find all the deets here


Check Out Some Art 


Continue your touristy tour of Barrie with a little more art. Located in the downtown core, the MacLaren Art Centre offers the opportunity to visit an art gallery and gaze at interesting, beautiful and thought-provoking art works in a variety of mediums. Between the Forest and the Sky is the current exhibition, focusing on the work of Bewabon Shilling and his depiction of the forest and skies around his home at Rama Mnjikaning First Nation.



Take In A Show 

Whether live theatre is your jam or you’re more apt to rock out with live music, remember that you don’t always have to head down to the city to get your fill. The Five Points Theatre offers a variety of shows and performances. Mavericks Music Hall & The Foxx Lounge are also places to catch great local and not so local acts. Check out what’s on next and plan your next night out at one of these fine establishments. 


Eat Some Local Grub 

There are a ton of local, independent restaurants offering some seriously good local grub. Whether you are digging fresh, local and mindful lunch options or a big dirty burger and a pint, Barrie’s got you covered. Instead of opening your Skip the Dishes app for the fourth time this week (no judgement!) , try out a local restaurant for the first time. 


A couple of Barrie Uncovered suggestions:  

– Gastropub, located in downtown Barrie, is the only fully vegan pub in Ontario.

– Il Buco gets consistent kudos via online review and ratings 

– The energy and atmosphere at Flying Monkeys can’t be beat. And it’s a great night out for a date! 

– Kenzington Burger Bar has some seriously good burger combos 




Go For A Stroll 


A walk along Barrie’s waterfront can become quite a new experience when you pretend you’re on holiday and strut like a tourist. Why not grab a coffee and pretend that this is your first time venturing on the waterfront trail? 



Alright, you’ve got your itinerary. It’s time to pretend that you’re not from around here and take in the sights and sounds of Barrie with fresh eyes and a new appreciation for what our city offers.

And hey, there pretend tourist – why not post your pics on Instagram with the hashtag #barrieuncovered and share your experience with us?