Paddling in the Thousand Islands
Guided kayaking trip – an effortless escape in the islands
There’s nothing like escaping into the Canadian outdoors to help you unwind and reconnect with your loved ones. Paddling the cool waters of Thousand Islands National Park is nearly effortless with the help of regional outfitters. Experienced guides take care of every detail, from introductory lessons to en route snacks. The fresh air is good for the body and soul and trip planning is a breeze. To really indulge, opt in for a gourmet picnic of bioregional delicacies. As the sun sinks, return to shore refreshed and recharged.
Rent a kayak, canoe, or paddle board and immerse yourself in the islands
Escape the crowd, forget the tour boat and witness Thousand Islands National Park as few do, from the intimate perspective of a kayak, canoe or paddle board. Explore the dynamic channels of the Thousand Islands with your crew and find something to fascinate you around every bend; sunken ships, historic castles, and a landscape steeped in First Nations history. Lucky paddlers may glimpse a soaring bald eagle or a family of turtles basking on a rock. Chance upon a roving park interpreter and discover elements of the park’s nature and culture up close. Tired but inspired, share the day’s stories around a crackling fire.
Regional outfitting companies such as 1000 Islands Kayaking Company, Misty Isles Lodge, Harmer’s Cottages, and Ahoy Rentals (Kingston) can equip you with a kayak, canoe, or paddle board, safety equipment, basic or advanced instruction, and guidance on routes.
The Thousand Islands Water Trail provides maps for 9 full-day and half-day routes that connect for the option of a longer trip. These maps identify access points, trip times and lengths, potential hazards, and points of natural and cultural interest. They are not replacements for accurate nautical charts.
Trip planning tips
- If you’re looking for a more tranquil experience, consider that July and August are the most popular months for visitors to Thousand Islands National Park. June and September are quieter with less boat traffic.
- Check out our facilities and services page to pick the island that best suits your needs. Browse the availability of garbage and recycling collection, campsites, picnic shelters, wood stoves, and barbeques on different islands.
- Docks, beaching sites, composting toilets and picnic tables are available on all serviced islands. Drinking water and bathrooms with electricity and flush toilets are available on Central Grenadier Island.
- Enjoy hiking trails, campfire pits, and great swimming on the islands.
- Be sure to use a navigational chart when boating in the area.
- Groups of islands have ideal conditions for paddling: protection from wind and lower speed limits for other boats. Check our “Getting here” page for access points.
- Camping reservations are recommended. However if you choose campsites that are available on a first-come, first-served basis, paddling in groups of islands provides easy access to alternative sites if one island is full.
- All vessels must have a valid mooring or beaching permit. These permits must be purchased on arrival at the island. See our park fees page for a full list of fees.
- Knowledgeable island attendants circulate throughout the islands to serve you and maintain facilities, sell firewood, assist with fee payment, help with concerns, and make your experience a positive one.
For more information on natural hazards, weather conditions, and planning a safe activity, please see our Visitor Safety page.
For your comfort and safety
- Complete park rules and regulations are available here