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Take The Scenic Route

The Rideau Canal stretches from Lake Ontario in Kingston to the Ottawa River following the Cataraqui and Rideau Rivers.  It is 202 kilometers long, of which about 19 kilometers is man-made (locks and canal cuts), the rest are natural waters. There are 45 locks with 23 lock stations along the main route of the Rideau. The canal winds its way through historic sites, charming villages, quaint attractions and spectacular recreation areas, offering visitors a variety of world-class arts, heritage, and recreation experiences.

  • 3.5 hrs from
    Toronto
  • 1 hr from
    Ottawa
  • 2.5 hrs from
    Montreal
A Paddlers Paradise
A Paddlers Paradise
Meet Some Furry Friends
Meet Some Furry Friends
Anything But Traditional Terrior
Anything But Traditional Terrior
Cheers To Local Food
Cheers To Local Food
Enjoy The Views And Vistas
Enjoy The Views And Vistas

A Paddlers Paradise

To kayaking and canoeing enthusiasts, the Rideau Canal is a “paddler’s paradise,” due to its calm, clear waters and natural sights. Kayakers and canoers of all ages and skill levels can get out on the water and paddle the 202 km stretch from Kingston to Ottawa. Access is very easy at any of over 30 launch ramps and most lock stations. Those traveling the length of the canal have the option of “locking through” the locks or portaging past them. Those camping will find it convenient at the many campgrounds or at the lock stations. Those wishing to enjoy a more decadent trip may wish to stay in B&Bs along the route. With over 1,091 km (675 miles) of shoreline on the Rideau, there’s so much to explore.

Meet Some Furry Friends

From domestic to exotic, Saunders Country Critter Zoo and Sanctuary has everything from singing dogs to kangaroos and birds of prey! Leisurely stroll around and experience the animals or take in an educational talk for free.

Visit another animal-focused farm that also takes care to the next level: Big Sky Ranch. It’s a safe haven in the Rideau region for all sorts of animals, giving horses, goats, donkeys, pigs, sheep, dogs, cats, and more a chance to recover from previous lives or professions in a supportive and caring environment. It’s open to the public, but calling ahead is recommended.

Anything But Traditional Terrior

Green Gables Vines is charming through and through. This country winery offers a select number of wines crafted in small lots to ensure quality and flavour. The original homestead is featured on-site – a traditional Victorian farmhouse complete with green gables and white gingerbread trim. Look for unique wine names like Dance with Me, Filled to the Rafters and Blushing Daisy. To make the visit even sweeter, tastings at the winery are free if a bottle is purchased!

Scheuermann Vineyard and Winery in Westport is on the shores of Upper Rideau Lake and offers tastings and dining events using its wood-fired grill.

Cheers To Local Food

The Rideau Canal is a maverick in the local food sphere. The food and drink scene is being reimagined here and the opportunities are endless.

Grab a basket and get picking along the Rideau. The superhero of berries is grown in the region with Haskap (Honey Berries) available for pick your own at Berry Good Farms. This little berry packs a nutritional punch and is known for its rich antioxidant power. Berry Good Farms also offers pick your own delicious Romeo and Juliet dwarf cherries.

Local is at the core of everything they do at Wendy’s Country Market near Lyndhurst. A historic schoolhouse from the late 1800s is now lovingly resurrected as an old-fashioned country market – complete with animals to visit. This local food hub is also keen on organics, offering produce from more than 70 local farmers and artisans. Spend an afternoon in the country.

Furnace Falls Farm brought to you by the folks at Wendy’s Country Market, is taking farm-to-table to a whole new level, as a renovated farm house welcomes guests who are keen to experience local food, cooking classes, and luxurious rural hospitality.

Enjoy The Views And Vistas

Get out and explore the Rideau au naturel by hitting trails along the way. With lush greenery, rock outcroppings and pristine water, the Rideau Canal provides natural eye candy at every turn. Photo-ready scenes unravel before your eyes; this is nature at its best.

Rock Dunder, owned by the Rideau Waterway Land Trust near Morton offers a 3.8 km summit loop that is so worth the hike. Standing atop the rock at the summit gives a breathtaking view of the canal with water and treetops below stretching as far as the eye can see. Another unforgettable vantage point is near Chaffey’s Lock on a former train bridge, which is now a section of the Cataraqui Trail. The bridge dates back to the early 1900s and has recently been renovated for use with the trail. A short five minute walk through the woods from the lock awards visitors with an unforgettable view.

Foley Mountain in Westport looks out over Upper Rideau Lake from a granite ridge at Spy Rock. A three-minute walk from the parking lot gets visitors to the rock look out to see the lake and village laid out below.

The North Grenville Trail System links together 150 km of trails, roads, walkways and waterways throughout the municipality. The Sugar Bush Island Trail near Davis Lock also offers incredible views from high atop a rock lookout. It’s an easy hike among Butternut, Sugar Maple, White Pine and Bitternut trees. Be delighted by the abundance of bird life here and by finding stairs in the middle of the woods to help easily traverse some hills along the trail!

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From The Rideau Canal Blog

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Supporting our community during COVID-19