Passes and permits

Rideau Canal National Historic Site

Various passes or permits are required for transiting through the locks on the Rideau Canal, and for mooring overnight at lockstations. Visitors travelling by boat or paddlecraft (kayaks and canoes) will be required to show permits for lockage and/or overnight mooring.

Permit types

Seasonal lockage

Allows passage through any number of locks (Ontario and Quebec) throughout the entire navigation season

6-day lockage

Allows passage through any number of locks on any six days

1-day lockage

Allows passage through any number of locks in a single day

Transit lockage

One-way travel through the entire Rideau Canal system

Single Lockage and Return

Fee charged to travel through and then return by the same lock station

Seasonal mooring:
Allows day and overnight mooring at seven historic canals and two national parks throughout the entire navigation season
Overnight mooring
Allows boaters to stay overnight at lockstations on a first-come first-served basis

Where to purchase permits

Permits are available for purchase at most lockstations on arrival.

Purchase by phone

Phone number: 1-888-773-8888

Related topics

How fees are calculated
  • Vessel length is used to calculate lockage and mooring fees
  • Vessels 12ft and under are charged a minimum rate for all permits
Towed vessels
  • Vessels towing a boat (aluminum, fiberglass, rubber dinghy or personal watercraft) regardless of size, with or without an engine, will require a lockage permit for the towed craft
  • A mooring permit for a towed vessel is also a requirement
Displaying your permit
  • Permits are valid only during the year of issue and are not transferable or refundable
  • Seasonal lockage, mooring or transit decals must be affixed to the vessel

Camping permits

Camping permits are issued on a first-come first served basis at most lockstations at the discretion of the lockmaster.

  • Fees are determined by group size
  • Boaters with overnight mooring permits camp for free
More information about camping at lockstations

Overnight accommodations reservations

Bookings for oTENTik sites along the Rideau Canal, are made through the Parks Canada Reservation Service or by phoning: 1-877-737-3783.

Reservations for historic accommodations are managed by Rideau Lakes Cottages. Visit their website

More information about overnight accommodations

Special Events

Special Events (including on-water activity taking place over the bed of the Rideau Canal National Historic Site) must have a valid Special Events permit in order to proceed.

Visitor guidelines

Before you visit the Rideau Canal National Historic site, please read and review the rules and regulations that help protect this special place. All visitors who transit the locks and stay overnight are expected to understand and follow these guidelines.

See all Visitor Guidelines

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