As one of Ontario’s oldest cities, not only is Kingston steeped in historic architecture, but it is a favourite for history buffs hoping to connect to Canada’s roots. We were first settled in the 1600s on First Nation lands named Katarokwi before eventually being named Kingston in 1788.
The City's strategic location – where the St. Lawrence and Cataraqui Rivers meet Lake Ontario – have made it an important location for Indigenous peoples since time immemorial. The area began to be settled by Europeans in the 17th century and became the First Capital of a United Canada in 1841. Since that time, the community has grown and changed as a result of multiple waves of immigration and is variously referred to as the “Limestone City” and a place where “history and innovation thrive”. More recently, the City has engaged in a public consultation process to look at how to foster a more inclusive approach to Kingston history.
For more information on the history of the City of Kingston, click here.
Downtown is proud to be home to several historical experiences. Enjoy a pint in Ontario’s oldest brewpub or a meal in the old Kingston Fire Hall. Experience Canada’s first capital while walking through the iconic limestone architecture that makes Kingston truly original.
Respectfully acknowledging that downtown Kingston resides on land which is the traditional territory of the Huron Wendat, Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee, we work towards deeper understanding by engaging in relationship and teaching.