Not everyone’s definition of luxury involves the flashy five-star hotel and restaurant scene typically found in the big city. For some, luxury means bespoke experiences, extra time to explore, and encounters that leave you feeling like a cherished friend rather than another guest just passing through. If that sounds like your ideal way to spend a few days, this two-day trip to Oxford County and London, Ontario offers extra-special experiences, meals, and places to stay with a true first-class feeling.


Elm Hurst Inn

Elm Hurst Inn and Spa


Day 1 Afternoon


Start your escape with a true escape. Oxford County is home to two incredible Nordic spa experiences. Wave Nordic Spa at The Oxford Hills invites guests to soak up breathtaking rural scenery as they enjoy facilities that include a pool, hot tub, cold plunge, steam rooms, fire pits, hammocks, and more. Choose from one of many spa services, including hot stone massage, pedicures, facials, and body treatments, for the ultimate afternoon of self-care. If your travel partner prefers to relax on the fairway, book them in for a round of golf, then meet for drinks in the restaurant afterward.


Wave Nordic Spa

Photo taken from Wave Nordic Spa's Facebook Page.


Terra Nova Nordic Spa is another great boutique spa option in the area with a thoughtfully curated selection of experiences that include a Nordic circuit with steam, sauna, hot pool, ice bath, rain bath, outdoor pool, relaxation areas, as well as massage therapy, Osteopathy, spa treatments, Yoga, and meditation classes.


Day 1 Evening


Check into Ingersoll’s historic Elm Hurst Inn and Spa, which has been excelling at elegance since 1872! Choose from one of the hotel’s two Premium Suites, which offer a little more space to relax and unwind, a huge Jacuzzi tub, and beautiful views. Depending on how much energy you have following your Nordic Spa circuit, the convenience of enjoying a decadent meal onsite may appeal. If you’re still up for a little more exploring and adventure, make the quick trip to Woodstock for the Chef’s Table experience at sixthirtynine. The husband-wife duo at the helm of this quaint dining space excels at unpretentious farm-to-table cuisine that’s beautifully prepared and attentively served. The Chef’s Table option offers a first-row seat to the action in the kitchen. Be sure to request the seasonal tasting menu for Oxford County’s freshest farm flavours.

Day 2 Morning


Build your morning activity around your unique interest: 

  • With hundreds of kilometres of scenic road routes and rugged trails to choose from, cyclists may be eager to make time for some morning miles. Browse Ride Oxford to find your ideal ride.
  • If the previous evening’s cuisine inspires you to learn more about the farming side of Oxford County’s thriving farm-to-table food scene, consider the Taste of Farm Life experience at Udderly Ridiculous Farm Life.
  • For those who prefer to dedicate an entire day to a woodsy walk and artistic expression, Ottercreek Woodwork’s From Tree To Table experience, which was recognized as the Ontario Culinary Experience of the Year in 2019, is an excellent activity choice. The full-day workshop includes a forest foray as well as time and guidance in an artisanal woodshop, where the incredibly talented David Schonberger helps guests create their very own live-edge charcuterie board to take home.
  • Folks who prescribe to the philosophy of “the best plan is no plan” can rest assured they’ll find plenty of fun just by hopping in the car and seeing where the morning takes them. Be sure to swing into Woodstock’s downtown core, where interesting shops and intriguing spaces include Early Bird Coffee, Habitual Chocolate, Woodstock Art Gallery, Jarful Refillery, and the Woodstock Farmer’s Market (open Saturdays). The Oxford County Cheese Trail is another tasty touring option for cheese lovers who are curious to learn why this region has earned the title of Canada’s Dairy Capital.
  • Now, if you're looking for an experience that's intimate and relaxing, we highly recommend Perennial Palettes. During this exclusive experience, Aggie Armstrong, known for creating the 2023 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair official poster, will not only share her knowledge of watercolour techniques but will also provide you with the tools so that you can continue practicing after you go home. 

Day 2 Lunch


Depending on where your morning travels have taken you, fuel up before hitting the road for the second leg of your adventure with a delicious mid-day meal at a local favourite like The Soulful Spoon, Ironworks Kitchen, Finkle Street Tap & Grill, Charles Dickens Pub, or Tandoori Knight.

Day 2 Afternoon


After lunch, hop on the 401 and head west about 45 minutes to London. This pretty UNESCO City of Music will leave you with a song in your heart as you explore all it has to offer.

  • If you’re visiting between May and October and want the ultimate view of the Forest City, let Sundance Balloons take you high in the sky for a ride in a hot air balloon. To help protect these breathtaking views for the future, consider incorporating offset activities into your visit that will reduce your carbon footprint. From purchasing carbon credits to enjoying a plant-based meal, you can find some great ideas here.  
  • For the ultimate carbon-free activity, take a stroll on one of the city’s many scenic walking trails. The Westminster Pond area features 11 km of rolling trails with an abundance of beautiful birds and other wildlife.
  • Culture vultures will enjoy exploring the city’s artistic side on the OEV Culture Cruise, which showcases public art, historic sites, and more.
  • Avid golfers who want to take their game to the next level while getting in nine holes will want to pack their clubs for the trip. London’s East Park Golf Club, which was designed by renowned architect Robbie Robinson, offers private on-course playing lessons that include nine holes of play accompanied by an instructor.


When you’re ready to put your feet up, check into a sumptuous suite at Hotel Metro, which offers a one-of-a-kind blend of modern and historic design with a commitment to personal service that sets it apart. From walk-in rainfall showers to soothing soaker tubs and premium bedding, there are plenty of pleasant perks here! Idlewyld Inn & Spa, originally built as a private home in 1878, is another excellent choice.


group dining at patio

Idlewyld Inn & Spa


Day 2 Evening


London’s dynamic culinary scene offers incredible options for your evening meal. Yaya’s Kitchen boasts an award-winning cultural supper club experience that blends London’s strong sense of local community with African culinary traditions. From the food and plates to the music and tablecloths, every aspect of the dining experience here is carefully curated with intention and purpose.

Grace Restaurant excels at modern Canadian cuisine. For lighter fare or just a pre-dinner drink, visit Grace Bodega. Craft Farmacy, London’s premiere craft beer and oyster bar, is another excellent choice with delicious bar bites, raw bar delicacies, boards, sharing plates, and hearty mains like Australian Wagyu Tenderloin, Lamb Saddle and Duck Confit.


After dinner, if you’ve timed your trip right, wrap up your second day with a showstopping performance at one of London’s incredible live arts venues, like the Grand Theatre, Budweiser Gardens, London Music Hall, or The Aeolian Hall.

Looking for even more new and exciting things to see, do, taste, and experience in Ontario's Southwest? Browse our collection of experiences and itineraries that have been specially curated for those who are endlessly curious and love to learn about the hidden gems others may overlook.