Cruise the Ottawa River (Ottawa to Kingston) – 8 Days / 7 Nights


This is an independent tour and cruise on a replica steamship.

Calm water cruising on the St. Lawrence and Ottawa River is a relaxing and carefree way to enjoy Canada’s natural wonders as well as some of her favorite cities and sightseeing attractions.

Ottawa, St. Lawrence Cruise Line (Ottawa-Kingston), Toronto
Departures on select dates


Day 1 – Arrive Ottawa
Welcome to Ottawa! Your package includes a voucher for the airport shuttle. This service will take you directly to the Lord Elgin. Our choice of the Lord Elgin puts you within easy walking distance of the Houses of Parliament, the National Gallery and the bustling outdoor market filled with handicrafts, fragrant flowers, crisp fruits and vegetables.
Overnight – Lord Elgin

Day 2 – Ottawa at Leisure/ Late afternoon boarding (St. Lawrence Cruise Lines)
Ottawa is a delightful city. From the Lord Elgin you can walk to Parliament Hill, the National Gallery, the War Museum and the open-air market. Your cruise departs from Ottawa’s sister city Hull, a short taxi ride from the Lord Elgin. As you depart Ottawa the Nation’s Capital will be presented from the waters of the Ottawa. This evening, join the captain & crew for a welcome reception before arriving to the town of Cumberland.
Overnight – Canadian Empress

Day 3 – Cruising: Cumberland to Carillon
This morning buses will take you to the Cumberland Township Museum where you will tour a historic village committed to preserving the rich architectural heritage of the early 1900′s. Among other things, you’ll see the oldest surviving example of an original Imperial Oil Station. This afternoon you’ll tour Omega Park where you will have the opportunity to see many of Canada’s wild animals in a natural setting. This evening take in some of the ships activities!
Overnight – Canadian Empress

Day 4 – Cruising: Carillon to Lachine (Montreal area)
Today you are bound for Lachine, a quaint borough of Montreal. Before you exit the Ottawa River, a few words; The Ottawa River was first explored by Samuel de Champlain in 1613 and is the largest tributary of the St. Lawrence River. The total length of this river is 790 statute miles with a total drop of no less than 1,100 feet. Upon arrival into Lachine you will board a motorcoach for a 2 ½ hour guided bus tour of Montreal. Time allows for you to explore & enjoy the unique character of Lachine.
Overnight – Canadian Empress

Day 5 – Cruising: Lachine to Upper Canada Village
En route to Upper Canada Village you will pass through a series of 4 International Seaway locks and you’re sure to encounter some large “lakers” and ocean-going “salties” who are always ready and willing to greet you with a blast of those great ship’s horns. There are seven locks in the St. Lawrence River; five in Canada and two in the United States.
Overnight – Canadian Empress

Day 6 – Cruising; Upper Canada Village to Brockville, Ontario
Upper Canada Village, rated “Top Attraction Award Nation-wide” year after year, is a world-class living museum community recreating the life, work and development of the early settlements along the river. Passengers are taken to the village by horse and carriage and as you pass through the 1850 gate into the village, sounds and smells of a past era are immediately evident; the woolen mill, grist mill and sawmill, all powered by water. You’ll see wool become blankets and wheat become flour. Make sure the Cruise Director returns to the ship with some of that freshly baked bread from the village. Our horse-drawn wagons will return from Upper Canada Village to the ship for lunch and our departure bound for Prescott, Ontario where we’ll tour historic Fort Wellington, originally built during the war of 1812 and later reconstructed as a result of the Upper Canada Rebellion in 1837-8.
Overnight – Canadian Empress

Day 7 – Cruising; Brockville – Rockport (1000 Island Village)
Make sure you have your cameras and binoculars in hand because you will be departing Brockville to wander leisurely through the famous and beautiful 1000 Islands en route to Rockport, Ontario. Upon arriving a bus will be waiting for a transfer to the 1000 Islands Skydeck for a panoramic view of the Islands from 350′. You are scheduled to arrive into Kingston mid afternoon, where you will be met and taken on a tour of Kingston before going to the VIA Rail station for your train to Toronto.
Overnight – Fairmont Royal York

Day 8 – Toronto/Home
Although people tend to think of Toronto as a commercial city, they are surprised to find that it loaded with “people pleasing” features. A beautiful lakefront, a castle, and sightseeing attractions that is fun and interesting. Toronto has excellent air service, so spend as much time as possible enjoying this lovely city.

Tour Highlights:

  • Arrival or departure transfer – Ottawa
  • 1 night Ottawa – Lord Elgin
  • 5 nights – MV Canadian Empress Cruise
  • Captain’s Welcome Reception
  • All meals aboard the cruise
  • Shore Tours
  • Onboard Activities
  • Nightly entertainment
  • Ports of Call include: Cumberland, Carrillon, Montreal Area/Lachine,Upper Canada Village, Brockville
  • Sightseeing included on cruise: Omega Wildlife Park, Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, Fort Wellington, Carillon Lock, The International Seaway and locks, Upper Canada Village, 1,000 Islands Skydeck, 1,000 Islands Tour
  • Meet and assistance at the pier in Kingston
  • Kingston area sightseeing and transfer to the rail station
  • Entrance fees to all included sightseeing features
  • VIA Rail – Business Class service from Kingston to Toronto with  delicious meal and beverage service
  • 1 night Toronto – Fairmont Royal York
  • Maps and destination information
  • Hotel and cruise taxes, port charges and GST as applicable

Dates & Rates – 8 Days / 7 Nights

  • Begins on select dates
  • Rates are in US Dollars, per person, double occupancy

Starting in Ottawa, cruise to Kingston, rail to Toronto:

Select Dates Land Only
July 7 , 2018 on request
August 8, 2018 on request

Starting in Toronto, rail to Kingston, cruise to Ottawa:

Select Dates Land Only
July 2, 2018 on request
August 3, 2018 on request

COMING SOON:  This section will include detailed information about the hotels in this tour, along with a PDF of the hotel brochure.

You clear Canadian Customs and immigration at your first point of entry into Canada. Customs and Immigration clearance is generally a quick and simple process. Please note that Non-citizens should carry a valid passport and check with their local Canadian Council for visa requirements.

If transfers are included in your tour package, vouchers have been provided. Present your vouchers to the bus driver.

Be casual and comfortable. Comfortable shoes are a must. We suggest flat shoes with rubber soles on the train, as this makes getting around easier and safer.

We are pleased to pass your requests to our hotels, but we cannot guarantee that the hotels will be able to accommodate these requests. Please keep in mind, that often hotels are filled to capacity.

Electricity is on the same current in Canada as in the states – 110 volts. If you are traveling on VIA Rail, bedrooms have a small sink and outlet for small appliance use like razors.

When planning your daily activities, please keep in mind that your hotels are generally not available for check in until mid afternoon. If you arrive and cannot check in, we suggest you leave your bags with the hotel bell desk and go off to explore the city!

Based on your tour service selections, Cartan has reserved and paid for these tour services. Services, which you elect not to use, are not refundable. In the event a service cannot be used for reasons beyond your control, a refund will be issued provided the service supplier has agreed that they will refund or credit Cartan Tours. Based on the service suppliers’ refund to Cartan Tours, requests for qualifying refunds must be made in writing and will be processed less a $35.00 handling fee.

Incidental charges such as valet, telephone calls, beverages, and room service must be cleared before leaving the hotel. If you have made calls with a credit card or called collect, you may still have charges to clear. The hotels will appreciate your clearing them before you leave.

Credit cards are widely accepted throughout Canada. To avoid carrying large amounts of cash, we suggest you use your credit cards. Change the amount of money you feel you will need for general day-to-day activities. We find you get the best rate of exchange when you exchange money at a bank. Most people find it convenient to change money at the airport bank when they arrive.

Cartan Tours pays GST on all taxable inclusions; however, we are not required to pay GST on hotel stays for non-Canadian visitors. Thus, there is no GST rebate due on hotel rooms reserved and paid by Cartan Tours.

Tipping percentages and policies are as in the States. A very acceptable tip for a meal is 15%. When dining, always check to ensure the service charge has not been added to your bill. You will see a tax charge that averages 12 – 17%. Service, if charged, should also be listed. Although menus frequently specify their policy on tipping, if unsure, feel free to ask.

It is customary in Canada to leave a small tip for the chambermaid. We suggest $1.00 per room per night. Baggage handling we suggest $1.00 – $2.00 per bag.