6 Reasons Why Rural Tourism is Good for Your Health

First off, let’s agree on a set meaning for this article on what is meant by rural tourism.  It is a form of tourism which takes place in any rural setting or location far enough from an urban centre that would otherwise be considered a ‘city’. The best exampleHay Field in Brant County we can think of to find ‘rural tourism’ is of course in the County of Brant!

Rural tourism encompasses such a variety of activities which means you might have been a rural tourist and not known it. Activities such as Sunday drives, visiting farmer’s markets or even cycling along a country road can all count as Hay Field in Brant Countyrural tourism.

Rural tourism often has large economic, social and cultural benefits for the people of the rural communities, however there are also many benefits for those who come from urban centres to engage in rural tourism. In fact, there are so many benefits we decided to make a short list! Without further ado, here are six reasons why the County of Brant, as rural tourism destination is ‘Simply Grand’ for both you and your health.


Rural tourism provides relaxation, peace and absolute rest

It could well be just what the doctor ordered! Rural tourism can help regain that peace of mind which runs away from us all now and again. There is a strong, sometimes surprising correlation between physical health and mental health. Hiking Trail in Brant CountyExcessive stress, anxiety and low moods can be tough to shake and may lead to insomnia, heart problems, digestive issues, or weakened immune systems. Life is stressful, but there is nothing more relaxing than the sound of a running river, the crispness of a morning trail walk, a mid-day leisurely cycle or a day long drive through the rolling country side to help you relax and return to yourself.   There’s good news – Brant has all the above – in spades!


It provides a break – a healthy, authentic alternative to the busy city lifestyle
Rural tourism provides an opportunity to get away from all the things that make living in a city unique to, well, living in a city. Traveling in the rural areas discovering the roads less traveled usually means no traffic jams, no multi-lane freeways, no horns – maybe a feed wagon or combine, maybe a small bridge on a curvy riverside road, maybe even a dirt road or two.

Cities are amazing – we love cities, especially the ones we call our neighbours.  Still, every once in a while it is nice to take a breather and get back to the roots of it all where you feel open spaces and natural light, where it’s okay to put stress on the shelf for a day and breathe easy. Rural destinations often provide the re-invigoration needed by providing that perfect blend of clean, clear country air and an atmosphere of tranquility.


It gives you an opportunity to get active

Of course we all hear it – all the time, “We need to be more active”. According to Health Canada, only two in ten Canadians get their daily recommended dose of physical activity. That is hard to fathom for many of us who call Brant home where our playground attracts so many all year long.  Fly fishing in Brant CountyUpon arriving in the County of Brant from the city you can’t help but notice the outdoor adventure just dropping right in front of you! Whether feeling the urge to jump on a bike, walk the trails, cast your line, paddle one of the rivers, capture the beauty of a Blue Heron taking flight or of a Bald Eagle diving for its’ dinner, a trip to the ‘rural-ness’ of Brant will lure out your active side. Bald Eagle flying over the Grand with a goose in the backgroundThe astounding, authentic Canadianna’ with pure and natural beauty, lined with endless outdoor paddling, cycling and hiking routes located in and around the rich cultural rural communities of Brant is truly one of nature’s best playgrounds for young and old alike.


A learning opportunity

Just as our bodies need exercise, so too do our minds and rural tourism provides an excellent learning opportunity to see different things and to see things differently.  Small communities often have strong ties to their local history, with a rich present culture that stretches directly back for generations.  As a result, rural tourism provides an

educational platform for learning about local history, generational industry like farming and artisan crafts that stretch from the first settlers to modern day inhabitants. Learning new things not only keeps our brain cells active, but it also gives us the opportunity to form new connections and make new friends which may also benefit our social and mental health.


Rural tourism helps you to appreciate the small things

Sometimes life exists in a rush of blurred images, tastes, smells and sounds. But every once in a while, we feel the Brant County trails in autumnneed to slow down and take time to savor the seemingly less obvious, marvelously intricate, sometimes simpler things in life. Rural communities provide the perfect setting to experience life in its fullest, rawest, most genuine and impactful form. Distant from every day hustle and bustle, touring rural communities teases the senses. Taking Brant in, truly taking View from the Bridge in Paris in autumnBrant in is experiencing the serene sounds of natural origins, filling the nostrils with a fresh diary of relaxing fragrances and daring to question the reality that what you’re seeing (but not quite believing) still exists in our racing world.


Truly connect with nature

One of the greatest aspects of rural communities is the proximity of them to nature. In the County of Brant, there are a variety of multipurpose trails and close access to two rivers, the smaller Nith River and the aptly named Grand River.  Simply put, with the number and quality of trails in Brant and the access we have to some of the most beautiful, fertile, navigable rivers anywhere – all set in Canada’s only Carolinian Forest – well, the Count of Brant is as connected to nature as any community could be.  Mount Pleasant Nature Park in Brant CountyOpportunities for fishing, canoeing, kayaking and birding are as plentiful as the over 80 species of fish in the Grand River! Connecting with nature has been proven to relieve stress, boost your immune system, increase your Train bridge over the Grand River energy and  sometimes help to increase your overall happiness. Now that’s what plugging in to nature can do!


There you have it. The six top benefits we thought we would share with our urban friends who may just think it’s time to do a little rural routing.

With all of these benefits, you are sure to be eager to plan your rural tour and in Brant it’s easy to do just that. Just 90 minutes from Downtown Toronto, conveniently on the 403, the County of Brant provides the perfect setting to easily leave the busy city for the day to discover the true benefits of rural tourism.

For questions regarding where to stay, what to do or anything in betweenGood Times in Brant vehicle at the Grand River the dedicated tourism team at the County of Brant is just a quick call or text (226) 387-3508 or email us at  tourism@brant.ca .

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