Discover Dimensions Algonquin Highlands
Connecting with nature is integral to healing and leading a healthy life. At Dimensions Retreats around the world, guests can expect to be immersed in sublime natural surroundings and experience programming inspired by the local landscape. Located on Maple Lake in Ontario, Canada, Dimensions Algonquin Highlands offers the peacefulness of a deeply forested location and the tranquility of being adjacent to a body of water. We feel privileged to be the stewards of this pristine property and look forward to facilitating the intersection of well-being, Plant Ceremony and nature for our guests. As we prepare to welcome you, we wanted to share a preview of the natural surroundings and activities you can expect at Dimensions Algonquin Highlands.
Our flagship location has a beautiful legacy as a celebratory space for the local community of Haliburton, Ontario. The original hospitality property at the site was Maple Lake Lodge, which opened in 1932. The heritage of the lands themselves, however, extends far beyond the previous century. As Canadians operating on Indigenous lands, highlighting the historic nature pursuits that occurred here is a meaningful way to respect and connect to our location. As we have learned, the area of Algonquin Highlands was not generally a permanent dwelling for Indigenous peoples. Instead, it was commonly used for hunting and as a throughway by nomadic Indigenous peoples as they travelled throughout Ontario’s lake systems. In honouring this past, we are privileged to embody Indigenous teachings about connecting to nature.
Geographically, Dimensions Algonquin Highlands is located along the Canadian Shield where two biospheres meet. We are immersed in a woodland in a transitional zone where the boreal forest and the Great Lakes–St. Lawrence region meet. This regional shift gifts the property with a rich diversity of deciduous trees (maple, oak, birch and poplar), as well as coniferous trees (cedar, pine and spruce), which together form the magnificent forest canopy. Among many Indigenous peoples of Canada, the cedar tree is sacred and has been used for centuries in smudging ceremonies, as well as in the construction of canoes and as a healing tea.
In addition to the deciduous–coniferous forest, Dimensions Algonquin Highlands’ 40-acre property also hosts a shallow black spruce bog and enjoys approximately 600 feet of shoreline overlooking Maple Lake. A natural beach gently leads into deeper waters. In spring and summer, swimming in the freshwater lake is an invigorating activity, but immersion isn’t just for summertime – you will be able to take a supervised cold plunge during the off-season! You can expect to interact with Maple Lake during your visit, no matter the time of year. When temperatures dip in the winter, the lake freezes over, presenting a fresh opportunity: once we confirm it is safe (typically in late December or early January), snowshoe hikes, cross-country skiing and the property’s trails will extend across the lake itself. Experiencing seasonal activities such as canoeing, kayaking and snowshoeing links us to the history of Maple Lake and its contemporary wilderness.
Our outdoor activities and network of trails meander through the property to connect you with nature. Conservation is an important consideration, and we continue to make an effort to reduce the impact that our outdoor program has on the environment. When blazing any new trails through the forest, for example, we follow natural deer paths and clear only dead trees. This helps keep the forest healthy by allowing new growth to occur.
The importance of a luxurious natural setting to psychedelic-assisted therapy is a cornerstone of Dimensions Retreats, and the start of your journey to well-being. Stepping into nature and away from many of the pressures of daily life – whether it be commutes, work pressures or something else entirely – creates an opportunity to clearly reassess emotions and thoughts. As shown by the science behind the mind–body connection, when we’re in nature, the change to our vagus nerve (which modulates heart rate and respiratory rate) has a positive physiological impact on our well-being and enhances our openness to transformational change.
At Dimensions Retreats, nature is more than setting. It is an integral element in the therapeutic process.