1000 Islands and Rideau Canal

1000 Islands and Rideau Canal

Explore the engineered and natural waterways of the 1000 Islands and UNESCO-designated Rideau Canal through some of Ontario’s most charming communities, including the united counties of Leeds and Grenville in Southeastern Ontario.

The Rideau Canal and connecting waterways meander over 200 km between Ottawa and Lake Ontario, via the famous 1000 Islands in the St. Lawrence River.

To learn more about 1000 Islands and Rideau Canal Waterway, scroll down or visit the area’s tourism website.

Where is 1000 Islands and Rideau Canal?

Named for its two most defining geographical features, this area lies between Kingston and Cornwall in the united counties of Leeds and Grenville, bordered by the St. Lawrence River and 1000 Islands to the south and the rideau waterway in the north.

Highway 401 cuts through the area, and is the most direct route, at just over 3 hours, driving from Toronto. Ottawa is just an hour north up highway 416.

Things to know about visiting 1000 Islands and Rideau Canal

Whether you’re still in the planning stages or you’re already on your trip, you'll appreciate what the locals recommend.

Unique way to explore

One of the most unique ways to navigate the Rideau Canal is by houseboat. You can travel at your own pace and enjoy all the "cottage comforts" onboard.

Where to go for ice cream

For delectable handmade ice-cream, gelato, chocolate, brittle and toffee, follow the locals to Downtowne Ice Cream Shoppe in Merrickville.

Favourite local fair

Be a part of history at one of Canada’s oldest fairs. The Delta Fair began as an agricultural event in 1830 and has grown into a local and visitor attraction each year at the end of July, with shows, food, a Midway and loads of fun activities.

Points of interest

Discover more highlights this destination has to offer.

Last updated: August 25, 2023

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