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7 Survival Tips for Women Entering Muskoka

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Blog by Ragan Zilic Lovegrove | June 1st, 2016

Picture this: I am working with a couple. The man expresses his dream to buy a cottage in Muskoka. The woman seems a little apprehensive. It’s just not her thing. They are at an impasse and asking for my help. So what do you do?

I’ve been in her shoes.

When I first met my husband and moved up to Muskoka, I wasn't sure that I could do it. I loved living in the city. The convenience. The never-ending buzz. The shopping.

Would I be bored? How would I meet people? And most importantly, would I have to ditch my heels for rubber boots?

You would be surprised how many women have asked me this question…

What is it really like in Cottage Country, and what do you do for entertainment?

Here are 7 Tips that have helped me survive and acclimate to Muskoka. These are sure to help.

1. Become Your Inner Explorer

Grab a friend (it can be furry – like my darling Yorkie, Presley, pictured above) and go for a drive. There are so many things to do in Muskoka that will truly amaze you. I have ridden the Ferry to Bigwin Island; watched artisans craft handmade wooden bowls and blown glass vases; listened to performances by world-class musicians; attended a summer dinner party for 400 in the middle of town. All you have to do is get up and get going.

2. Schedule it in

I looked for things to do that I was doing in Toronto, and I didn’t try to change my schedule very much. I found a yoga class, went to the gym or long walks, and did my work at a local coffee shop. I also got involved in the community where I met some great people.

3. Keep it Fresh

Fresh organic food is a really important to me, so I found local markets and even a food delivery service that brings my organic produce right to my home. That’s even better than Pusateri’s, ladies!

4. Grooming (and I’m not talking about your dog)

“Ragan, where do you get your nails done?”

This was a question that I was asked by a client before she built her dream home. Before heading back to Toronto for those highlights, get recommendations for a local salon. There are a few great ones.

5. BEE-COME your true self

I took the time to explore hobbies that I never had time for in the city. I have met so many interesting and talented people. One of my favourite adventures was to take a fascinating course about honeybees. Where can you do that in the city?

6. Oh look, it’s a Birdie…

A golf course is great place to challenge yourself and meet some wonderful friends. My sister and I played in a Ladies Tournament last summer (with frequent visits from the drink cart). Who knew, wine and golf could be such a great combination!

7. Take Charge of Your Greenery

My absolute favourite thing to do is to plant a vegetable garden. You don't have to have a green thumb; you just have to try. And you can always ask me for tips. Now that’s Whole Foods without the hassle of parking your car.


Moving away from the city doesn’t have to be cause for distress and you don’t have to give up your favourite things.

Are you feeling nervous about moving to Muskoka, or have you gone through something similar? Let me know, or share your story in the comments.

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If you are interested in buying or selling your property in Muskoka please let me know.


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