The Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve is located in southwest Ontario. It stretches across 725 kilometres, from Lake Ontario (near Niagara Falls) to the tip of the Bruce Peninsula (between Georgian Bay and Lake Huron), spanning a total area of 190,270 hectares. The escarpment corridor crosses two major biomes: boreal needle leaf forests in the north and temperate broadleaf forest in the south. It also includes wetland complexes, cliff faces, slopes and aquatic ecosystems. The escarpment corridor also crosses two major biomes: coniferous boreal forest in northern and temperate deciduous forests in the south.
The reserve includes the provincial Niagara Escarpment Plan Area and 2 National Parks. There is a backbone of strictly protected lands at and near the cliff face. About 120,000 people live in the area, including 1,000 First Nations people. This figure rises to 1,090,000 when including the population of the urbanized areas straddling the biosphere reserve limits. Regional livelihoods vary from wine production, tourism and tender and mixed fruit farming in the south, to cattle farming and adventure tourism in the north.