Road trip to Ottawa, Kingston and Prince Edward County

Combine the perfect mix of city and country on a road trip to Ottawa, Canada’s capital and beyond.

A couple view the Parliament buildings from Major’s Hill Park in Ottawa.

Parliament | Ottawa Tourism

Experience heritage, culture and natural beauty, as well as great food, wine and local craft brews. Cross the St. Lawrence River and travel from the 1000 Islands to Ottawa, the capital city of Canada. Follow the Rideau Heritage Route to the vibrant city of Kingston and then chill out in Prince Edward County.

Suggested length of trip: 6-7 days

Border crossing information

Travellers to Canada must present a valid passport or NEXUS card. Find out what else you’ll need to know to cross the border into Canada.

Before travelling, check border wait times

Border crossing location from New York State to 1000 Islands in Canada:

Thousand Island Bridge from Alexandria Bay, New York to Lansdowne, Ontario


Approximate distance and driving time from Lansdowne to Ottawa: 95 miles (150 kilometres), 1.5 hours

From the stately government buildings on Parliament Hill and national museums and galleries to the historic Rideau Canal and bustling ByWard Market, experience all Canada’s capital has to offer.

Where to stay in Ottawa 

ARC The Hotel 

Sleek and stylish, this property features local art and is within walking distance of most attractions.
Location: 140 Slater Street, Ottawa

Fairmont Château Laurier 

An upscale historic hotel perched on the Rideau Canal with the finest touches and comforts.
Location: 1 Rideau Street, Ottawa

Andaz Ottawa ByWard Market

Located in the ByWard Market district, the sweeping cityscape from the rooftop Copper Spirits and Sights cocktail bar offers one of the best views of the city.
Location: 325 Dalhousie Street, Ottawa

A man performs at a competition pow wow during Summer Solstice Festival at Mādahòkì Farm.
Mādahòkì Farm | Ottawa Tourism

Things to do in Ottawa

Capital attractions and national museums

Parliament Hill

Take a free, guided tour of the seat of Canada’s federal government, which is housed in striking Gothic revival-style historic buildings. Watch Canada on the March, a morning show where regimental bands from the Ceremonial Guard deliver a concert as they march from Cartier Square Drill Hall to Parliament Hill.

Location: Wellington Street, Ottawa

Rideau Hall

Visit the famous Tent Room and magnificent gardens at the residence of Canada’s Governor General.
Location: 1 Sussex Drive, Ottawa

National museums

Ottawa serves up Canadian culture in a big way, with seven of Canada’s top national museums.

The National Gallery of Canada 
Location: 380 Sussex Drive, Ottawa

Canadian Museum of History 
Location: 100 Laurier Street, Gatineau 

Canada Science and Technology Museum
Location: 1867 St. Laurent Boulevard, Ottawa

Canada Aviation and Space Museum 
Location: 11 Aviation Parkway, Ottawa

Canada Agriculture and Food Museum 
Location: 901 Prince of Wales Drive, Ottawa

Canadian Museum of Nature 
Location: 240 McLeod Street, Ottawa

Canadian War Museum 
Location: 1 Vimy Place, Ottawa

Shopping and foodies tours

Ottawa Shopping Guide 

Hunt down the best bargains and treasures in Canada’s capital, from the Rideau Shopping Centre to trendy retail neighbourhoods like Hintonburg and Wellington West.

C’est Bon Cooking 

Explore Ottawa’s culinary landscape with a local guide. C’est Bon offers a variety of guided sweet and savoury gourmet food and drink tours.

Brew Donkey Tours 

Take a curated “adult field trip” to some of Ottawa’s best craft breweries.

Sightseeing and outdoor fun

Ottawa Boat Cruise

Cruise along Ottawa’s famous waterways, the Ottawa River and Rideau Canal.
Location: 1 Elgin Street, Ottawa

Escape Bicycle Tours

Explore the city by bike on a guided tour or on your own with bicycle rentals.
Location:  65 Sparks Street, Ottawa

Ottawa City Rafting

Experience epic outdoor adventure on the water in the heart of the city.
Location: 102 Greenview Avenue, Ottawa

Events and celebrations

Canadian Tulip Festival

See the world’s largest tulip festival with over a million in bloom tulips (May 10–20, 2024).

Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival

Honour Indigenous culture and heritage in Canada, aligning with National Indigenous Peoples Day on June 21 (June 19–23, 2024).

Canada Day

Ottawa is the epicentre of Canada’s largest party. Dress in red and white and join the celebration from LeBreton Flats Park which includes activities, shows and fireworks. (July 1, 2024).

Ottawa International Buskerfest

Marvel talented street entertainers including acrobats, dancers, daredevils and comedians (August 2–5, 2024).

Great Outdoors Comedy Festival

Catch some of comedy’s funniest acts including Tom Segura, Nate Bargatze and Jerry Dee at Lebreton Flats, August 9-11, 2023.

Capital Pride

Celebrate Ottawa’s 2SLGBTQI+ community (August 17–25, 2024).

Where to eat and drink in Ottawa

ByWard Market

From early-morning coffee to late-night cocktails, the ByWard Market is always bustling with activity. Spanning several city blocks, it’s home to cafés, bakeries, boutiques, restaurants, lively pubs and cocktail bars as well as unique shopping opportunities. Don’t miss the iconic Canadian pastry BeaverTails and their Beaver Bites, or if you’re looking for an upscale lounge, check out The Albion Rooms.
BeaverTails Byward Market: 69 George Street, Ottawa
The Albion Rooms: 33 Nicholas Street, Ottawa

Wilfrid’s Restaurant

Book a table for a relaxed weekend brunch overlooking the Rideau Locks and Parliament buildings. Located in the historical Chateau Laurier, its regional menu changes weekly.
Location: 1 Rideau Street, Ottawa


The unique 40-course tasting menu and wine pairing is a four-hour, bucket list experience for foodies.
Location: 540 Rochester Street, Ottawa


Located in a former bank, the ambience of this contemporary Canadian dining spot is on point and the everchanging menu is consistently delicious.
Location: 62 Sparks Street, Ottawa


Approximate distance and driving time from Ottawa to Kingston: 125 miles (200 kilometres), 2 hours

The Rideau Heritage Route connects Ottawa to Kingston and the St. Lawrence River alongside the Rideau Canal, through some of Eastern Ontario’s prettiest small towns and communities. Home to Ontario’s oldest public market and Canada’s hippest live music scene, Kingston is a walkable city, with historic sites, amazing craft beer and antique markets tucked away in hidden alleyways.

Where to stay in Kingston

Frontenac Club

This former bank is now a luxury hotel that has retained its historic charm.
Location: 225 King Street East, Kingston

Rosemount Inn

There’s a timeless elegance to this intimate, boutique hotel in a beautifully restored Victorian building.
Location: 46 Sydenham Street, Kingston

Residence Inn By Marriott 

Enjoy the views of Lake Ontario at this convenient waterfront hotel.
Location: 7 Earl Street, Kingston

The Smith Hotel

Built in the 19th century, this former church has been converted into a stylish boutique hotel with loft-style suites.
Location: 221 Queen Street, Kingston

Things to do in Kingston

Touring and sightseeing

Fort Henry National Historic Site

Fort Henry is a UNESCO World Heritage Site located just outside Kingston by the mouth of the Cataraqui River. Witness 19th-century military life with guided tours, musical performances and military demonstrations offered by the Fort Henry Guard.
Location: 1 Fort Henry Drive, Kingston

Kingston Penitentiary Tours 

Tour one of Canada’s oldest and most notorious jails, which stopped operating in 2013.
Location: 560 King Street West, Kingston

Kingston Trolley Tour

Explore the city with a hop-on-hop-off Trolley Tour, a flexible and fun way to tour historic sights and unique attractions.
Location: 248 Ontario Street, Kingston

1000 Island Cruises

Enjoy the views and a meal on a brunch, lunch or sunset dinner cruise along the St. Lawrence River. Famous for 1000 Island salad dressing, the 1000 Islands actually consists of 1864 islands of various sizes.
Location: 248 Ontario Street, Kingston

Creative Kingston Walking Tours

Discover a rich creative arts community on film, music and literary-focused walking tours available in both English and French.

Kingston Food Tours

Explore the flavours of Canada’s original capital city on a guided walking tour through the historic downtown.

Blue World Marine Adventures

Book a guided kayak tour over clear, shallow waters where shipwrecks are visible.
Location: 209 Ontario Street, Kingston


Kingston Public Market is Kingston’s oldest market in the historic downtown. It sells fresh products from local producers and unique finds from artisans. 
Location: 216 Ontario Street, Kingston

Kingston shopping guide

From books to records, clothing and jewellery, find something special at Kingston’s locally owned shops. Visit Wellington Street and shop at Antique Alley for antiques, vintage finds and a wide assortment of collectibles or find original and printed artwork at Martello Alley.
Antique Alley, 207-B Wellington Street, Kingston
Martello Alley, 203-B Wellington Street, Kingston

Where to eat and drink Kingston

Pan Chancho

Whether you’re looking for an early breakfast or lazy brunch, the patio at Pan Chancho is the place to be.
Location: 44 Princess Street, Kingston

Atomica Kitchen

Delicious options include plant-based and gluten-free soups, salads and pasta.
Location: 71 Brock Street, Kingston


Located in Delta Hotels Kingston Waterfront, enjoy waterfront dining with sensational views indoors or on the patio.
Location: 1 Johnson Street, Kingston


A family-run business specializing in traditional and contemporary Italian food. Ingredients come from local producers.
Location: 39 Brock Street, Kingston

Craft breweries

Kingston is home to eight top-notch breweries and a cidery.

Prince Edward County

Approximate distance and driving time from Kingston to Prince Edward County: 60 miles (95 kilometres), 1 hour

Located in the northeast end of Lake Ontario, Prince Edward County or “The County” as it’s known by locals, has a long and rich farming tradition. With the introduction of grape growing in the region, the last few decades have seen The County grow into one of Ontario’s most popular destinations for wine, food, the arts and lakefront views.

Where to stay in Prince Edward County

Merrill House 

Victorian heritage boutique hotel with a fine dining French cuisine restaurant, extensive wine cellar, cocktail parlour, onsite sauna and a Natural History Exhibit.
Location: 343 Main Street East, Picton

The Royal Hotel 

Located in a restored historic building, The Royal was included in Condé Nast's list of best new hotels last year.
Location: 247 Picton Main Street, Picton

The Lakeside 

Located on the water in Wellington, the Lakeside is a stylish hotel with an onsite restaurant, bar, patio and pool.
Location: 349 Main Street, Wellington

Drake Devonshire 

A hip, all-season boutique retreat steps from the shore of Lake Ontario.
Location: 24 Wharf Street, Wellington

Things to do in Prince Edward County

Winery tours and tastings

PEC Wineries

Prince Edward County is home to over 35 wineries that offer everything from wine tasting and tours to fine dining, culinary classes and more. Find a complete list of wineries and experiences on the Prince Edward County website.

Don’t miss the sparkling wines at Hinterland Wine Company, Chardonnays at Closson Chase and Baco Noirs at Waupoos Estates, Prince Edward County’s original winery.
Hinterland Wine Company, 1258 Closson Road, Hillier
Closson Chase, 629 Closson Road, Hillier
Waupoos Esates, 3016 County Road 8, Picton

County Bike Rentals 

Explore Prince Edward County’s backcountry roads to wineries and more by bike. County Bike Rentals provide bicycle rentals, helmets, locks and route suggestions, as well as free delivery and pick-up.

Nature and outdoors

Sandbanks Provincial Park

From beaches and sand dunes to forests and trails, summer is a great season to explore the parks and outdoor spaces in The County. Sandbanks is a popular spot so plan a weekday visit and book your park pass well in advance.
Location: 3004 County Road 12, Picton

Lake on the Mountain 

As its name suggests, this is an elevated body of fresh water with a mysterious water source. The park offers great views of the Bay of Quinte, where you can watch the Glenora Ferry cruising back and forth across the bay to Adolphustown.
Location: 296 County Road 7, Picton

Art and culture

Prince Edward County Arts Trail

Artists, artisans and creators have gravitated towards Prince Edward County for decades resulting in a flourishing arts community with amazing galleries and studios. Notable favourites include the Oeno Gallery at Huff Estates WineryMad Dog Gallery and Armstrong Glassworks.
Oeno Gallery, 2274 Prince Edward County Road 1, Bloomfield
Mad Dog Gallery, 525 County Road 11, Picton
Armstrong Glassworks, 326 2 Avenue, Wellington

The Regent Theatre

Architecture buffs and culture lovers will appreciate the restored Edwardian-style opera house built in 1918 that continues to host live performances and film events.
Location: 224 Main Street, Picton

Base 31

Once a former WWII air training base, this cultural hub is home to several venues hosting live music and entertainment, art galleries and installations, an open-air food and drink market and a unique sensory garden.
Location: 26-343, County Road 22, Building 26, Picton

Where to eat and drink in Prince Edward County

Midtown Brewing

Enjoy craft beers and freshly made pub food, including wood-fired pizzas and flatbreads.
Location: 266 Wellington Main Street, Wellington

Good Place

Vegan and gluten-free meal options, as well as a large selection of teas and organic beverages.
Location: 153 Main Street, Wellington

La Condesa 

Enjoy authentic Mexican cuisine.
Location: 298 Wellington Main Street, Wellington

Flame + Smith 

With a sustainably sourced surf and turf menu, meals are cooked over an open flame for a unique culinary experience. Make sure to book a reservation in advance.
Location: 106 Bloomfield Main Street, Bloomfield

Stella’s Eatery 

Comfort food made with fresh, foraged and seasonal ingredients.
Location: 2470 County Road 8, Waupoos
The County Cider Company 

Sample some of the tastiest craft cider flavours along with some of the best lake views in The County.
Location: 657 Bongards Crossroads, Waupoos

Slake Brewing 

Stop by for stunning panoramic views from atop a limestone hill and the latest selections of craft beer on tap.
Location: 181 Mowbray Road, Prince Edward County

Slickers County Ice Cream 

This is the place to go for creamy homemade ice cream and milkshakes in delicious flavours.
Location: 271 Main Street, Bloomfield, Ontario

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Last updated: May 2, 2024

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