All aboard the big red trolley and grab a window seat because you won’t want to miss the sights! Kingston Trolley Tours offers visitors and Kingstonians the opportunity to explore Kingston attractions with an expert guide. The ability to hop on and off the trolley at any of the nine stops gives you the flexibility to experience Kingston the way you like. Tighten your camera strap, open up your Trolley Passport, and get ready for your adventure around historic Kingston!
First stop is City Hall at the Visitors Info Centre. Arrive early and stroll down to the waterfront or walk around the Info Centre where there are tons of pamphlets on museums and sites that you can see on your journey.
Next up is Royal Military College. Be sure to listen for the pranks that RMC students have played on their campus, you would be surprised by the colour their military tanks were painted one year! Touring RMC was an exciting experience and learning about their traditions gives insight to life at a regimented officer training school.
If you want to see the best views of Kingston, Fort Henry is the stop for you. Fort Henry has been listed as a World Heritage Site since 2007. This national treasure is bustling with activities including parades, marching bands, cannons blasting, and soldiers from Royal Military College.
Springer Market Square is in the heart of downtown and surrounded by city hall, artisanal cafés and local restaurants. On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays the square hosts the Kingston Public Market featuring produce from nearby farms, delicious food, plants, and handmade crafts. Truly a community oriented event, the market is a lively place full of activity.
Hop off at the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes and check out the Alexander Henry ship in the dry dock. This is your chance to tour the boat and see the captains’ cabin, steer the ship, or recreate your favourite scene from The Titanic at the bow!
Your journey through Kingston continues along the water to Bellevue House where Sir John A. Macdonald lived for several years. This Italian style villa is located in a charming neighbourhood call the ‘Western Liberties’. Next, the trolley departs from Sir John A. Macdonald’s house to the home of Canada’s infamous criminals. Yes, you read that right. The Kingston Penitentiary is the next stop on the tour! Kingston is the prison capital of Canada. However, you don’t need to worry because the Penitentiary has been closed for several years and is excitingly being reopened for public tours!
As the trolley drives up University Avenue, take in the stunning campus of Queen’s University. Queen’s is the first university to grant degrees in Canada. Since the university was established in 1841, the student population has grown to over 30,000 Canadian and International students. The arts are strongly supported on campus through the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Union Gallery, and Miller Museum of Geology.
As the tour comes to an end, the trolley takes you through the entertainment and shopping district, which is filled with boutiques and places to browse or treat yourself.
The best way to take the Trolley Tour is with your K-Pass! The K-Pass is your ticket to Kingston and includes admission to museums, galleries, and historic sites. In addition to the Trolley Tour you also get to take a trip on the 1000 Island Cruises. Find out more information at http://www.kpass.ca/.
Hopefully by the end of the tour you will know who Sir John A. Macdonald is and be able to differentiate between some of Kingston’s many limestone buildings. The trolley eases accessibility to Kingston’s greatest sites and orientates you to the city. Whether you just arrived in Kingston or have lived here for years, there is always something new to learn as the city grows through existing attractions and new sites. You don’t have to choose one place to visit; the entire city is your destination. Find yourself at a historic treasure or discover your own Kingston on the Trolley Tour.
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