Stories from the Wild

Growing Up in the Canoeing Capital of Canada

                It can be tough for couples with young children who are considering where they would like to raise a family, but I can speak for many that Atikokan is one of the safest and most supportive places to live. Everyone’s childhood is different depending on where you grew up. Whether you experienced your childhood in a big city like Toronto or a small town like Atikokan, we all have different stories to tell. Growing up in a place surrounded by nature is a surreal experience; the beautiful lakes and lush forests of Atikokan really accelerate the imagination of a child. Having a forest in your backyard is an opportunity not many have.

Growing up in Atikokan, children spend their days building forts from tree branches, dipping their feet in the nearby creeks, catching frogs and butterflies, drawing on the sidewalk with chalk, playing with the neighbourhood kids, and experiencing what the Earth has to offer. Many of us spent weekends at the lake learning how to fish, start a fire, what poison ivy looks like (and to definitely avoid it), and where the best place is to catch a frog. When you move away from Atikokan for the first time as a young adult to go to school, people always ask, “do you feel like you missed out on anything growing up in such a small town?”. The answer to that question is definitely “no”. Atikokan provides so many skills and experiences from a young age (swimming, hiking, canoeing, snowshoeing, fishing, kayaking, camping, and much more) and we are so fortunate to have all this knowledge. Not to mention the support system that our town provides to each and every person who lives here. It is very comforting to know that if anything happens to go wrong and you need help, you have exactly 2,753 people who will have your back. As the saying goes, “it takes a village”.

So, if you have ever thought about moving to a small town or simply visiting, here is your sign to do it.

Maija Goranson, Senior Atikokan Tourism Ambassador.

Learn more about moving to Atikokan

Visit the Town of Atikokan website at

Visit the Atikokan Economic Development Corporation website at

Visit the Atikokan Employment Centre website at

Something for Everyone

Atikokan is on the doorstep of one of Ontario’s most traditional wilderness areas, as Quetico Provincial Park stands among the best for its beauty and its ruggedness. We’re only too happy to have you here, whether it’s for a day, for a week, or a lifetime. We are the Canoeing Capital of Canada. We are the Gateway to Quetico Provincial Park. We are Naturally Wild.