Since 1971, the Rideau Trail Association has established, maintained and encouraged low-impact, self-propelled use of the Rideau Trail, a 387 km network of interconnected hiking trails between the City of Kingston and the City of Ottawa located in the general area of the Rideau Canal and its tributary waters.

The Rideau Trail Association is an active charitable organization that maintains and champions the Rideau Trail and arranges self-propelled outdoor activities such as hiking, snowshoeing and cross-country skiing on the trail and in nearby areas, through an engaged core of members and volunteers.
On the main Trail, red-orange isosceles triangles mark the to northbound route to Ottawa while red-orange triangles with yellow tips mark the southbound route to Kingston. In addition to the main trail, a number of side trails which are marked by blue triangles. The total length of cleared and marked trails is 387 km.
The trail itself crosses terrain ranging from placid farmland to the rugged Canadian Shield. It is intended for hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. RTA owns no part of the Rideau Trail itself and the continuity of the trail is made possible by the generous permission of both private and public landowners and enhanced by a special fund called the Rideau Trail Preservation Fund.
Each of the three hiking clubs of the RTA – Kingston, Central (Perth), and Ottawa, organize outings year round.

Outings usually take place on the weekend and can include cross-country skiing and snowshoeing in the winter and hiking, cycling and paddling in the spring, summer and fall. Other activities are scheduled during the week or on some holidays.

Link to interactive maps:

The blogger, The Passionate Hiker, wrote an interesting piece on his end to end hike of the Rideau Trail in 2014. You can read his story here.    And in 2018 he wrote a piece on the blue side trails of the Rideau Trail.  You can read it here.

Rideau Trail is just one of the many nature trails and hiking trails you can find throughout Ontario by using the search features of

Nearby towns and cities:

Rideau Trail characteristics

Length: 387 km from Ottawa to Kingston
Difficulty: Moderate (Trail classifications)
Trail surface: Natural and Paved
Trail use: Hiking, Cross-country skiing, and Snowshoeing
Accessibility Notes: Not wheelchair accessible.
Fees: none

Flora & Fauna:

Not yet reported.

Amenities: none

Attractions: none

Rideau Trail Association, Kingston, ON 613-545-0823

Find it: 1 Canal Lane, Ottawa

GPS Coordinates (main trailhead):
Latitude: 45.4261980
Longitude: -75.6985510

Rideau Trail Image Gallery

Photo credits:

Rideau Trail Association (Jack Tannett)