Note: Only Parks Canada-administered sites will be offering free admission in 2017. Visitors must pay entrance fees in sites managed by third parties.

Map

A map of the itinerary route

7 Days - Ottawa to Kingston via Thousand Islands National Park and Rideau Canal

Day 1

Thousand Islands National Park, Mallorytown Landing - 136 km from Ottawa

Escape from everyday life and enter into the heart of the wilderness only a few hours from the city. Lace up your running shoes and discover different paths that wind through the park on undulating hiking trails. Explore hemlock forests, walk through spectacular wetlands, reach wooded ridges and admire impressive rock walls covered with ferns. Discover a forest changed dramatically by the work of industrious beavers. Don’t forget your binoculars, the park is the ideal place to observe wildlife.

Spend the night in the heart of nature in your comfortable waterfront oTENTik. Stoke up your campfire, roast some marshmallows, take in thousands of stars and just relax.


Four friends sit around a picnic table laughing after dinner
Thousand Islands National Park

Day 2

Wake up to the sound of water lapping the shore. Walk on the wharf, coffee in hand, what a relaxing morning! Ready for adventure? Grab your kayak and explore the St. Lawrence River’s blue-green waters. Visit picturesque granite islands and admire iconic windswept pine trees. You will be fascinated at every turn by sunken ships, historic castles and a landscape steeped in First Nations history. You might be lucky enough to glimpse a soaring bald eagle or a family of turtles basking on a rock.

Two kayakers paddle past an island at Thousand Islands National Park
Thousand Islands National Park

Day 3

Ride the 40 km of paved bike path along the 1000 Islands Parkway and observe its stunning river views. Take a picnic break on the breezy banks of the St. Lawrence River. In the afternoon, relax by the waterside and take a refreshing dip in the water. Want to go fishing before dinner? Who knows, with a bit of luck, you will be frying what you caught today!

Couple sitting by the water.
Thousand Islands National Park

Day 4

Prescott - 45 km from Mallorytown Landing

Go to Fort Wellington National Historic Site and enlist in the Royal Artillery for a day! Recruits will spend their time training to be a member of the cannon crew. Feel the surge of adrenaline as you fire a 19th century muzzle-loading cannon.

Return to Thousand Islands National Park for a final night along the scenic County Rd 2. Stop in Brockville along the way to shop on the main street and maybe pick up a Thousand Islands souvenir.

Four uniformed interpreters fire a cannon for the Royal Artillery presentation
Fort Wellington National Historic Site

Day 5

Kingston - 45 km from Mallorytown Landing

Tour the restored home and gardens of Bellevue House National Historic Site, home of Sir John A. Macdonald. Wander through the family’s preserved kitchen garden, bite into an heirloom apple and watch costumed gardeners cut the lawn with scythes, just like in the 1840s.

Take a stroll through the charming Kinston streets. Explore the city’s defensive system at Kingston Fortifications National Historic Site – located by the Kingston Harbour – and discover the defensive heart of Canada’s first Capital.

Merrickville - 105 km from Kingston

Continue your journey all the way to Merrickville, a magnificent Victorian village along the Rideau Canal. Wander around the historic village and travel through time. Cozy up for the night in an oTENTik by the Rideau Canal.

Two people take a selfie with an interpreter in front of Bellevue House
Bellevue House National Historic Site

Day 6

Ottawa - 75 km from Merrickville

Discover the national capital in a different light! Paddle through the scenic countryside, historic towns and quaint villages of Eastern Ontario on one of the many lakes, rivers or canals that wind through the city. There is so much to see and do along the Rideau Canal National Historic Site. Create your team and join us for a Voyageur Canoe Sunset Paddle in Ottawa on the Rideau Canal!

People in a voyageur canoe paddle on the Rideau Canal
Rideau Canal National Historic Site

Day 7

Take time to explore the canal on foot! It is a perfect activity to immerse oneself in the Rideau Canal’s history and nature. Do not miss the lockstation in Ottawa, with its historical flight of eight locks.

On the way back home, stop at Laurier House National Historic Site. Enjoy a behind-the-scenes white glove tour: explore rooms usually off-limits to visitors and touch some of the artifacts in the collection. Enjoy afternoon tea served on the veranda before heading back home.

People bike and run down the path along the Rideau Canal
Rideau Canal National Historic Site

Want more itineraries?

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