Camping in 2020

  • Starting September 4th, 2020, camping at some sites on the Rideau Canal has been made available at the Lockmaster’s discretion.

  • This includes camping for cyclists and hikers, as well as camping for boaters (paddlers and vessels under power)

  • Camping for organized groups (eg. Scouts, paddle groups) can be reserved on a case by case basis, by calling 613-283-5170 x278.

  • Unfortunately, due to measures taken to reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Rideau Canal will be unable to offer “car camping”, or experiences reserved through Parks Canada’s online reservation system, such as oTENTiks, for the remainder of the 2020 Navigation Season

  • Camping is a great way to experience life on the locks. Whether you're visiting by car, bike or boat, these scenic campsites will have you staying right at the water's edge with access to various amenities. Wave to the passing boats, chat with the lockmasters, and roast marshmallows as you watch the sun go down on the historic canal. This is a camping experience like no other.

    Permits and fees

    All boaters and land-based visitors are welcome to camp at most lockstations on the Rideau Canal National Historic Site (see list of exceptions).

    • Reservations are not required
    • Space is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis at the discretion of the lockmaster
    • Boaters who are paying for overnight mooring camp for free
    Fees
    • First-come first-served campsites cost $5.01/night
    • Reservable campsites cost $21.97/night
    • Reservable campsites with showers cost $26.06/night (where available)
    • Equipped Campsites cost $71.54/night (where available)

    General camping information

    Operating season:
    • May 15 to October 12, 2020
    Staff hours:
    After hours registration:
    • If you plan on arriving outside of staffed hours, please call the lockstations directly to obtain check-in instructions ahead of time.
    Check-in time:
    • After 1:00 pm
    Check-out time:
    • Before 11:00 am
    Quiet hours:
    • 10:00 pm to 7:00 am
    Maximum length of stay:
    • 21 days
    Maximum persons per site:
    • Up to 6 people
    Maximum vehicles per site:
    • 2 Vehicles
    Maximum camping units per site:
    • 2 Tents
    Generator policy:
    • Use of any generator is limited to 7:00 am - 10:00 pm
    Electrical service:
    • None

    Visitor guidelines

    Before you visit, please review the rules and regulations of this National Historic Site. These guidelines were designed to make sure all visitors enjoy a safe and memorable camping experience.

    Review all visitor guidelines


    Prohibited camping

    Camping is not permitted at Bridge Stations due to a lack of public space and facilities. These sites include:

    • Ottawa Locks
    • Hogs Back
    • Smiths Falls Combined
    • Smiths Falls Old Slys
    • Brass Point Bridge

    Facilities

    Public washrooms are located at all lockstations where camping is available. Overnight parking is also readily available at most locations for those visiting by car. Various other amenities like picnic tables, firepits and paddle docks are available at some locations. To learn more about a specific lockstation campsite, please email:


    Large groups

    Large organized cycling and hiking groups (6+) should communicate their camping requirements to Parks Canada in advance. Please email:


    Equipped camping

    No gear? No problem. Parks Canada is pleased to provide the essential items you need to enjoy a safe and memorable camping experience without any added hassle.

    Learn more about Equipped Camping.


    Reservable campsites for land-based visitors

    Three young women sit at a picnic table between two tents on their campsite with a cooler and fishing poles visible beside them

    IMPORTANT: These campsites are NOT in Ottawa

    There are three lockstations along the Rideau Canal that accept reservations for visitors who are hiking, cycling, or arriving by car. Each one offers a different experience, so be sure to read more about available amenities in the descriptions below.

    Kilmarnock (Lock 24)

    Reserve your stay!
    Phone number: 1-877-RESERVE (737- 3783)

    Location: 1424 Kilmarnock Road, Montague ON
    GPS coordinates: 44.884583, -75.9304

    Map: Google maps

    Phone number: (613) 283-3792
    Directions
    • Located at Kilmarnock Lockstation on Kilmarnock Rd
    • Accessible via County Rd 43 between Merrickville and Smiths Falls
    Amenities
    • Free parking
    • Paddle docks
    • Picnic tables
    • Washrooms
    • Fire rings
    • Firewood is for sale at Lockstation
    • Gas, groceries, hardware, ice, gift shopping, etc. available in Merrickville and Smith Falls
    Beveridges (Lock 34)

    Reserve your stay!
    Phone number: 1-877-RESERVE (737- 3783)

    Location: 145 Beveridge Locks Rd, Perth ON
    GPS coordinates: 44.876966, -76.145462

    Map: Google maps

    Phone number: (613) 267-2036
    Directions
    • Located on the Tay Canal between Smiths Falls and Perth
    • Highway Access is 300 metres north of Port Elmsley Road (County Rd 18)
    Amenities
    • Free parking
    • Paddle docks
    • Picnic tables
    • Washrooms
    • Showers
    • Fire rings
    • Firewood is for sale at Lockstation
    • Closest gas station is located in the community of Rideau Ferry
    • Groceries, hardware, gift shopping, etc. also available in Perth
    Newboro (Lock 36)

    Reserve your stay!
    1-877-RESERVE (737- 3783)

    Location: 10 Blockhouse Lane, Newboro ON
    GPS coordinates: 44.645867, -76.32155

    Map: Google maps

    Phone number: (613) 507-3183

    Directions
    • From Ottawa, take Hwy 416 South
    • Exit 49 Rogers Stevens Drive toward Smiths Falls
    • At Smiths Falls follow signs for Hwy 15 South toward Kingston
    • Exit Right at Crosby on County Rd 42 to Newboro
    • At Newboro Exit left on Lock Rd, then right on Blockhouse Lane
    Amenities
    • Public pay parking
    • Paddle docks
    • Picnic tables
    • Washrooms
    • Fire rings
    • Firewood and ice is for sale at Lockstation
    • Restaurants and gift shop in Newboro (10-minute walk)
    • Groceries, hardware, gift shops, and closest gas station located in Westport (10-minute drive on County Road 42)

    Other accommodations

    Visitors looking for a more serviced experience can book a stay in an oTENTik or historic accommodation.