Kew-Balmy

Toronto, Ontario

Balmy Beach is a Blue Flag Beach for the 2019 season*.

Kew and Balmy Beaches were first opened to Toronto in the 1930s. Torontonians would swarm the sand, the boardwalk and the amusement parks that dotted the shore. Today these beaches still hold onto some of that charm and history – with the Kew Beach lawn bowling club, and the Kew Gardens Bandstand (built on the remains of a lost river!). The bandstand hosts bands throughout the warmer months as well as the annual Jazz Festival. Right on the shore is a beach club that dates back to 1905. Members of the Beach Club have won gold and silver medals at the Olympics and their football team won the Grey Cup, twice, in 1927 and 1930. At the most eastern end of the beach is the Robert Harris Water Filtration Plant – a gorgeous art deco palace – that was memorialized in Michael Ondaatje’s novel In the Skin of a Lion. The City of Toronto merged Kew and Balmy beaches in 2006. While you're here try stand up paddling (SUPing) with SupGirlz! Find them online at www.supgirlz.com.

*A Blue Flag beach is one that meets strict water quality and safety criteria. These beaches are certified annually as being clean, accessible, eco-friendly, and having great water quality! Swim Drink Fish is the National Operator for Blue Flag in Canada.

For more information, visit www.blueflag.ca

Photo by: Saritile

COVID-19

Keep your distance from other people.

Practicing social distancing is essential right now. Follow the advice of the health experts. If your community has asked that you remain indoors and away from others, do so. Heading to the beach should only be considered an option if social distancing practices can be followed. Spending a day in any crowded place is the worst thing we can do for our most vulnerable right now and will counter the efforts to curb the virus’ spread.

For more information, please visit the World Health Organization public resource on COVID-19.

Water Quality
  • Passed water quality tests 60-95% of the time

  • Historical Status
  • This status is based on the latest sample, taken on September 2nd, 2019. Lake Ontario Waterkeeper updates the status of this beach as soon as test results become available. These results were posted to Swim Guide on September 4th, 2019 at 8:11 AM.
For water quality icon legend, click:  
Current Weather
21°C
A mix of sun and clouds
Monitoring Frequency

Kew-Balmy is sampled daily from June 1st from September 4th.

Source Information

Toronto Public Health monitors recreational water quality at sites in this region. Sampling season starts in June and ends Labour Day Weekend. Swim Guide updates Toronto beaches using the City of Toronto's Open Data.

Water at all sites is sampled for E. coli. Toronto Public Health issues beach advisories when the geometric mean concentration of at least five samples exceeds 100 E. coli / 100 mL of water. This standard was set by the Ministry of the Environment. Water samples are collected daily at Toronto Beaches. Results are posted to Swim Guide as soon as lab results are available. They are also available at https://www.toronto.ca/health/swimsafe and via Toronto's open data portal. In Swim Guide, a beach is marked Green when the geometric mean of at least 5 samples is below 100 E.coli / 100 mL water. A beach is marked Red when the results are equal to or above a geometric mean of 100 E.coli / 100 mL water. A beach is marked Grey when there are no current results or there is no available information.A Ministry of the Environment Procedure (F-5-5) says that a clean beach is open at least 95% of the swimming season, even if it is near a sewage pipe or combined sewer outfall. This rule applies to every place that is public, accessible, and feels like a good place to swim. When all else fails, the Ontario Environmental Protection Act strongly states that no one can interfere with the use that you can make of a public waterway - like swimming!

Water Quality Graph

Kew-Balmy

Toronto, Ontario

COVID-19

Keep your distance from other people.

Practicing social distancing is essential right now. Follow the advice of the health experts. If your community has asked that you remain indoors and away from others, do so. Heading to the beach should only be considered an option if social distancing practices can be followed. Spending a day in any crowded place is the worst thing we can do for our most vulnerable right now and will counter the efforts to curb the virus’ spread.

For more information, please visit the World Health Organization public resource on COVID-19.

Water Quality
  • Passed water quality tests 60-95% of the time
  • Historical Status
  • This status is based on the latest sample, taken on September 2nd, 2019. Lake Ontario Waterkeeper updates the status of this beach as soon as test results become available. These results were posted to Swim Guide on September 4th, 2019 at 8:11 AM.
For water quality icon legend, click:  
Current Weather
21°C
A mix of sun and clouds

Balmy Beach is a Blue Flag Beach for the 2019 season*.

Kew and Balmy Beaches were first opened to Toronto in the 1930s. Torontonians would swarm the sand, the boardwalk and the amusement parks that dotted the shore. Today these beaches still hold onto some of that charm and history – with the Kew Beach lawn bowling club, and the Kew Gardens Bandstand (built on the remains of a lost river!). The bandstand hosts bands throughout the warmer months as well as the annual Jazz Festival. Right on the shore is a beach club that dates back to 1905. Members of the Beach Club have won gold and silver medals at the Olympics and their football team won the Grey Cup, twice, in 1927 and 1930. At the most eastern end of the beach is the Robert Harris Water Filtration Plant – a gorgeous art deco palace – that was memorialized in Michael Ondaatje’s novel In the Skin of a Lion. The City of Toronto merged Kew and Balmy beaches in 2006. While you're here try stand up paddling (SUPing) with SupGirlz! Find them online at www.supgirlz.com.

*A Blue Flag beach is one that meets strict water quality and safety criteria. These beaches are certified annually as being clean, accessible, eco-friendly, and having great water quality! Swim Drink Fish is the National Operator for Blue Flag in Canada.

For more information, visit www.blueflag.ca

Photo by: Saritile

Monitoring Frequency

Kew-Balmy is sampled daily from June 1st from September 4th.

Source Information

Toronto Public Health monitors recreational water quality at sites in this region. Sampling season starts in June and ends Labour Day Weekend. Swim Guide updates Toronto beaches using the City of Toronto's Open Data.

Water at all sites is sampled for E. coli. Toronto Public Health issues beach advisories when the geometric mean concentration of at least five samples exceeds 100 E. coli / 100 mL of water. This standard was set by the Ministry of the Environment. Water samples are collected daily at Toronto Beaches. Results are posted to Swim Guide as soon as lab results are available. They are also available at https://www.toronto.ca/health/swimsafe and via Toronto's open data portal. In Swim Guide, a beach is marked Green when the geometric mean of at least 5 samples is below 100 E.coli / 100 mL water. A beach is marked Red when the results are equal to or above a geometric mean of 100 E.coli / 100 mL water. A beach is marked Grey when there are no current results or there is no available information.A Ministry of the Environment Procedure (F-5-5) says that a clean beach is open at least 95% of the swimming season, even if it is near a sewage pipe or combined sewer outfall. This rule applies to every place that is public, accessible, and feels like a good place to swim. When all else fails, the Ontario Environmental Protection Act strongly states that no one can interfere with the use that you can make of a public waterway - like swimming!

Water Quality Graph

  Beach Location Water Quality
Toronto, Ontario
Toronto, Ontario
Toronto, Ontario
Toronto, Ontario
Swim Guide
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* The RBC Foundation

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