A beloved public space situated on a gorgeous lake, Queen Victoria Park is one of Kitchener’s most alluring attractions. The historical context of the park, which has existed since 1896 as a public space for residents of Kitchener, makes it a charming look into the city’s past. The high-reaching clock tower, a remnant of the now-destroyed City Hall, was moved to the park in 1975 and stands today as a monument to Kitchener’s history. Visitors can walk along the park’s many trails to explore the flower gardens, outdoor artworks and the famous bridge stretching over the Victoria Park Lake. Grab sandwiches from one of the nearby restaurants to enjoy a picnic at the picnic shelter situated on the lakefront. At the Victoria Park Gallery, learn more about the history of the park, named after Queen Victoria, and the city of Kitchener.
Located in downtown Kitchener, the town just next to historic Guelph and only 100 km from Toronto, Victoria Park sits in the neighbourhood of the same name. Drive to the park or take public transit from within the city. From within Kitchener, take the 25 bus to Ontario Street and Joseph Street to reach the corner of the park. From Toronto, Guelph or Hamilton, take a charter bus to Kitchener Bus Terminal, which is located at the corner of the park. The park also provides some parking.
For up-to-date information and details on Victoria Park, we recommend you visit their website. For information about other places of interest to explore nearby, keep scrolling to see what Destination Ontario recommends.
More about Victoria Park
As the oldest park in Kitchener, Queen Victoria Park serves an important purpose for visitors and longtime residents of the city. The park hosts community events nearly every day, from local soccer games to a pop-up ice rink in the winter. One of the most famous Victoria Park events is the annual Kitchener Blues Festival. The Kitchener-Waterloo Multicultural Festival, an annual festival promoting community and celebrating southern Ontario’s rich cultural diversity, also takes place at this historic park. For kids, the iconic Victoria Park playground — complete with a splash pad for hot summer days — will be the highlight of the trip, unless you visit during the annual Kidspark festival where kids can jump around, learn and play for an entire day. As the start of the Iron Horse Trail, Victoria Park also offers visitors a gateway to the many natural wonders in the region. The trails within the park lead around the stunning waterways, where geese and swans float along.
Victoria Park boasts trails and activities for passersby looking for a scenic walk as well as itinerant tourists hoping to spend a day outside.
For history buffs, Victoria Park is a destination not only because of its status as the oldest park in the area. The park is also filled with many of the amenities that were created for the park’s original opening in 1896, as well as several historical sites. The two classic cannons that live in the park are a sobering memory of wartime history. The statue of Queen Victoria is a photo favourite, paying homage to the park’s namesake.
Spend the afternoon picnicking at one of the park’s picnic shelters, or attend an event at the fully licensed Victoria Park Pavilion banquet hall. Concerts and weddings take place in this picturesque lakeside pavilion. For those interested in an active day, play a game of horseshoe at one of the horseshoe pits or catch a pick-up game at the basketball court. Locals love placing painted rocks around the park, so keep an eye out for colorful decorations on your walk around the park.
You won’t have any trouble finding things to do after your day relaxing at Victoria Park. The Schneider Haus National Historic Site is only a block away from the park and offers a fascinating look at an 1856 farmhouse. Costumed educators give visitors a look into what life was like at this home, the city’s oldest house. Further downtown, THEMUSEUM offers sparkling and innovative interactive art that speaks to the role of science and technology in artwork. Catch a play or concert at Centre in the Square. Along King Street, take your pick of restaurants ranging from cheap burgers to all-you-can-eat Japanese and the tried and true Irish pub. Take a drive to the nearby town of Guelph for more fascinating Ontario history and delicious contemporary restaurants.
Last updated: August 18, 2023