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Fathom Five National Marine Park

Fathom Five National Marine Park

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Fathom Five National Marine Park is a National Marine Conservation Area
National Marine Conservation Areas
National Marine Conservation Areas is a Parks Canada programme responsible for marine areas managed for sustainability and containing smaller zones of high protection. They include the seabed, the water itself and any species which occur there...

 in the Georgian Bay
Georgian Bay
Georgian Bay is a large bay of Lake Huron, located entirely within Ontario, Canada...

 part of Lake Huron
Lake Huron
Lake Huron is one of the five Great Lakes of North America. Hydrologically, it comprises the larger portion of Lake Michigan-Huron. It is bounded on the east by the Canadian province of Ontario and on the west by the state of Michigan in the United States...

, Ontario
Ontario
Ontario is a province of Canada, located in east-central Canada. It is Canada's most populous province and second largest in total area. It is home to the nation's most populous city, Toronto, and the nation's capital, Ottawa....

, Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

, that seeks to protect and display shipwreck
Shipwreck
A shipwreck is what remains of a ship that has wrecked, either sunk or beached. Whatever the cause, a sunken ship or a wrecked ship is a physical example of the event: this explains why the two concepts are often overlapping in English....

s and lighthouse
Lighthouse
A lighthouse is a tower, building, or other type of structure designed to emit light from a system of lamps and lenses or, in older times, from a fire, and used as an aid to navigation for maritime pilots at sea or on inland waterways....

s, and conserve freshwater ecosystems. The many shipwrecks make the park a popular scuba diving
Scuba diving
Scuba diving is a form of underwater diving in which a diver uses a scuba set to breathe underwater....

 destination, and glass bottom boat
Glass bottom boat
A glass bottom boat is a boat with sections of glass, or other suitable transparent material, below the waterline allowing passengers to observe the underwater environment from within the boat. The view through the glass bottom is better than simply looking into the water from above, because one...

 tours leave Tobermory, Ontario
Tobermory, Ontario
Tobermory is a small community located at the northern tip of the Bruce Peninsula in the municipality of Northern Bruce Peninsula, Ontario, Canada. It is 300 km northwest of Toronto...

 regularly, allowing tourists to see the shipwrecks without having to get wet.
Many visitors camp at nearby Bruce Peninsula National Park
Bruce Peninsula National Park
Bruce Peninsula National Park is a national park on the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, Canada. Located on a part of the Niagara Escarpment, the park comprises 156 square kilometres and is one of the largest protected areas in southern Ontario, forming the core of UNESCO's Niagara Escarpment World...

 and use the park as a base to explore Fathom Five and the surrounding area during the day.

Fathom Five also contains numerous islands, notably Flowerpot Island
Flowerpot Island
Flowerpot Island is an island in Georgian Bay, in the Canadian province of Ontario and is a part of Fathom Five National Marine Park. The island spans 2.1 km from east to west, and 1.5 km from north to south, and has a total area of 2 kmĀ²...

, which has rough camping facilities, marked trails, and its namesake flowerpots, outlying stacks
Stack (geology)
A stack is a geological landform consisting of a steep and often vertical column or columns of rock in the sea near a coast, isolated by erosion. Stacks are formed through processes of coastal geomorphology, which are entirely natural. Time, wind and water are the only factors involved in the...

 of escarpment cliff that stand a short distance from the island, most with vegetation (including trees) still growing on them.

Established in 1987, the park represented a pioneering departure for the national park system, which had centered on land-based conservation until then. Its designation as a National Marine Park foresaw the creation of others, though nomenclature for such units would morph into National Marine Conservation Areas, leaving Fathom Five as the only National Marine Park. Despite its unique name, it is categorized as an NMCA, and is deemed the first one in the country.


Visitors' Centre


In 2006, a new visitors' centre opened to serve Fathom Five National Marine Park and the Bruce Peninsula National Park
Bruce Peninsula National Park
Bruce Peninsula National Park is a national park on the Bruce Peninsula in Ontario, Canada. Located on a part of the Niagara Escarpment, the park comprises 156 square kilometres and is one of the largest protected areas in southern Ontario, forming the core of UNESCO's Niagara Escarpment World...

. Designed by Andrew Frontini of Shore Tilbe Irwin + Partners
Shore Tilbe Irwin + Partners
Shore Tilbe Irwin + Partners , now Shore Tilbe Perkins+Will, is an architecture firm based in Toronto, Ontario. Since its founding as Shore and Moffat in 1945, STI&P completed numerous buildings, complexes, and master plans across Canada, as well as in locations in the United States and Bermuda...

, the CAD
Canadian dollar
The Canadian dollar is the currency of Canada. As of 2007, the Canadian dollar is the 7th most traded currency in the world. It is abbreviated with the dollar sign $, or C$ to distinguish it from other dollar-denominated currencies...

 $7.82 million centre, approached by a boardwalk, features an information centre, reception area, exhibit hall and theatre. A 20 metre viewing tower was also constructed to provide visitors with aerial views of the surrounding park and Georgian Bay
Georgian Bay
Georgian Bay is a large bay of Lake Huron, located entirely within Ontario, Canada...

. The centre was designed with environmental sustainability in mind, receiving $224,000 from the Federal House in Order initiative for implementation of innovative greenhouse gas reduction technology.

See also


  • National Marine Conservation Areas
    National Marine Conservation Areas
    National Marine Conservation Areas is a Parks Canada programme responsible for marine areas managed for sustainability and containing smaller zones of high protection. They include the seabed, the water itself and any species which occur there...

  • National Parks of Canada
  • List of National Parks of Canada

External links