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Your Guide to the Perfect Day on Kingston's Waterfront

By Rosalyn Gambhir

Summer is almost here, and downtown Kingston's waterfront is calling your name! Whether you're up for some adventure, looking to kick back and relax, or eager to indulge in delicious eats on a patio, downtown Kingston has it all.

With endless activities and experiences waiting for you, let’s make the most of those long summer days. Being a tourist in my own backyard, join me as a I share my favourite spots while soaking up sunshine and enjoying stunning waterfront views!

Set Sail with Kingston 1000 Islands Cruises

One of the best ways to take in Kingston's stunning waterfront is by hopping on a Kingston 1000 Islands Cruise. With various options to suit any schedule, there's something for everyone!

For a quick but memorable trip, the Discovery Cruise (1 hour) lets you explore Kingston’s historic waterfront, featuring sites like Fort Henry, Royal Military College, and Kingston Penitentiary. If you've got more time, the Heart of the Islands Cruise (3 hours) offers an in-depth look of the breathtaking 1000 Islands. Looking for something special? The Sunset Discovery Cruise (1.5 hours) offers spectacular views as the sun sets over the water – a personal favourite! And if you're a foodie, their dining cruises are a must. Whether it's brunch, lunch, or a sunset dinner, you'll enjoy a delicious meal with absolutely amazing views.

Adventure Awaits

For the more adventurous folks, Ahoy Rentals is your go-to destination for water activities on Lake Ontario. Whether you’re into kayaking, canoeing, or sailing, Ahoy Rentals has all the gear you need for an exciting day on the water. Prefer to stay on land but still want a scenic adventure? Rent a bike and cruise along the beautiful Waterfront Trail.

It's the perfect way to get a workout in while enjoying the sights!

Waterfront Dining

Calling all foodies! Kingston's waterfront dining scene is something you won’t want to miss.  

Start at Wharf & Feather, located at the Holiday Inn Kingston Waterfront, where you can unwind and savour the flavours of summer. Next, check out AquaTerra located by Confederation Basin Marina for a sophisticated indoor dining experience or a relaxed meal on their outdoor patio, with a menu packed with the best local ingredients. For a more laid-back vibe, Baja Craft Kitchen serves up vibrant, Mexican-inspired dishes that are sure to hit the spot and make those taste buds dance. And don't forget to visit the Dockside Patio at Crawford Wharf for a casual meal right by the water before you hop on a Kingston 1000 Islands Cruise!


Relax on a Kingston Trolley Tour

If your perfect summer day includes relaxing and soaking in the sights, then a Kingston Trolley Tour is just what you need. This guided, one-hour city tour takes you through downtown Kingston and beyond, showcasing highlights like City Hall, Springer Market Square, and many more iconic spots. It's a stress-free way to learn about Kingston's rich history while enjoying the scenery.

Sweet Treat on the Waterfront Trail

No summer outing is complete without a sweet treat! As you stroll along the Waterfront Trail, be sure to stop by Mio Gelato for some of the best gelato in town. If ice cream is more your style, head to White Mountain on Ontario St or General Brock’s Commissary on Brock St for a sweet treat. It's the perfect way to cool down on a warm day while enjoying the beautiful waterfront views in downtown Kingston.

Bonus: K-Pass for the Ultimate Experience

If you have family and friends visiting, or just want to play tourist in your own city? The K-Pass is a great option! This all-inclusive ticket to Kingston includes a 1000 Islands Cruise, Hop On Hop Off Trolley Tour, exclusive deals at restaurants, and admission to many of Kingston's museums and attractions. Choose from a 24-hour, 48-hour, or 72-hour pass, each granting you access to each attraction once while the pass is active. For locals, the Residents’ K-Pass offers unlimited access to Kingston’s top attractions without any time limits.

It's a perfect way to explore and enjoy all that Kingston has to offer.

Rosalyn Gambhir  

I’m a daydreamer, a foodie, an adventurer, and an explorer. But most of all, a tourist in my own backyard of the limestone city rediscovering old favourites and hidden gems. As a proud Kingstonian for over a decade and an alumna of Queen's University, I has thrived in this vibrant community, which has fueled her creativity and passion for building a strong online community and supporting local businesses through my blogging, social media and freelance writing.

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