House Boat Holiday – 7 Days sailing East

Looking to get away from the crowds? Consider a staycation on Ontario's UNESCO World Heritage Rideau Canal. Houseboat vacations are an excellent way to spend quality time with your family and create lasting memories.

The Canadian boating vacations are the perfect way to discover the beauty of the Rideau Canal. Traveling along this attractive waterway, you will be able to unwind and take in the amazing nature, picturesque towns and lively cities of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. One of the greatest engineering feats of the 19th century, the Rideau Canal is the oldest continuously operated canal system in North America.

Discover the unique charm of the Rideau Canal and the towns and villages that dot its shores as you sail your own fully fitted Premier Horizon boat.  You can plan your own itinerary from 4 to 7 days or longer. 

Why should your client choose a Boating Holiday?

A boating holiday allows cruisers to explore beautiful lakes, rivers, canals and discover the surrounding towns, villages, and countryside – all from the unique perspective of a private sundeck. 


  • Modern Houseboat Experience. 
  • No boating license or experience needed!
  • COVID Friendly Travel Option. 
  • Perfect Staycataion.
  • Kid Friendly.
  • In-depth Boat Training is given to ensure Client’s confidence.
  • Clients set their own agenda.  Sleep in, stop for lunch, and decide to how far they want to travel each day!
  • This offer is based on four persons sharing a two cabin boat for four nights.

Who is the typical Boating Holiday Customer?

  • A boating holiday is a perfect getaway, short break or vacation for couples, multi-generation families or a group of friends. 
  • Affluent, experienced travelers. 50% of the clients have little or no boating experience. 
  • Want an independent vacation, enjoy “off the beaten path” travel, and have the ability to set your own agenda. Stay, shop, and explore local. 
  • Discover quaint towns & city life mixed with beautiful landscapes & nature. 
  • Look forward to a relaxing holiday with mix of soft adventure such as cruising, biking, stand up paddle boards or kayaking.   
  • De-stress & relaxing –enjoy time with family & friends. 
  • “Brag Worthy” and unique holiday for all ages.

Boats can accommodate between 2 to 12 people. Clients can charter one or more boats depending on the size of their family or group of friends, for more information please visit  Our Boats.

Important Note:

  • A minimum of two able adults are required per boat to book a Houseboat Holiday.
  • The offer ehre is based on a minimum of four persons sharing a boat with two cabins for four nights.
  • Minimum Boat charter is for a period of 3 nights or more.  

Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for information and assistance.

Arrive in Ottawa.  Transferred on arrival from YOW Airport or VIA Rail station to hotel in downtown Ottawa.  Rest of the day free to explore Ottawa.

Overnight in Ottawa, ON.
Day free to explore Ottawa on your own.  We offer a number of optional day tours and admissions to attractions and museums in Ottawa.  Please check with us for more details.

Overnight in Ottawa, ON.
This morning, you will be transferred from your hotel in downtown Ottawa to the Pier at Smiths Falls, ON 80 kms southeast of Ottawa. 
Smiths Falls:  Located on the banks of the historic Rideau Canal, Smiths Falls offers a unique mix of leisure and recreational activities set against a backdrop of history and nature. With her rich heritage, Smiths Falls today offers museums, theaters, art galleries and outdoor adventures including hiking, biking, and fishing.
  • Arrive at the Le Boat base in Smiths Falls. 
  • Check in.
  • Load your belongings onto the boat. 
  • Meet with the boat crew for your boat safety and orientation. 
  • Overnight in Smiths Falls and unpack and relax.
Great town with lots of activities for both families and couples. Downtown just minutes from the docks and is wonderful place to buy all your boating supplies. You will also find the grocery store, LCBO, Beer Store, and award-winning butcher shop as well as great restaurants for lunch or dinner. Family splash pad for the kids, Historical Railway Museum, bike paths, beach, and movies are all close by.

Overnight on board your houseboat in Smith Falls, ON.

  • Breakfast onboard your boat in Smiths Falls or in town at one of the local cafés and restaurants.
  • Plan to depart in the morning when the locks open. 
  • Plan for a 4-hour cruise to Merrickille. You will be passing though Old Slys Lock in Smiths Falls and then Kilmarnock and Edmonds locks. Any of these lock’s is a suitable place to stop for lunch, and Edmonds offer a great place to walk about as well. 
  • Continue cruise to Merrrickville or overnight at the lock station if you like. On the western edge of Merrickville is the Rideau Migratory Bird Sanctuary, eight hundred hectares (2800 acres) beside the river - some of the best wetlands along the Rideau Waterway. This part of the cruise is excellent for wildlife spotting.
  • Arrive in Merrickville mid afternoon. 
Important: Dock at the Public Harbour and do not go though the lock. 

Merrickville:  Merrickville is Canada’s prettiest village. The village center consists entirely of picturesque Victorian-era stone houses perched by the waters of the Rideau Canal. Home to several local arts and craft shops, museums, restaurants, and specialty stores, Merrickville serves some of the best local handmade ice cream or gourmet mustards on the Rideau Canal.

NOTE:  Shore power is available for $10 Fee payable to Parks Canada.

Overnight in Merrickville, ON.

Continue to enjoy a second day in Merrickville   
Enjoy a relaxing day in town and exploring the region, bike, hike, swim, or kayak etc. 
If you want a shorter cruise day tomorrow, can plan to leave Merrickivlle and overnight at Edmunds  Lock. 

Overnight in Merrickville, ON.

  • Breakfast onboard your boat.
  • Plan your cruise back to Smith Falls (approx. 4 hours with lock times).
  • Enjoy a nice launch at Edmunds Lock or Kilmarnock lock 
  • Stop by at Old Slys and visit the Heritage House Museum in Smiths Falls
  • Arrive back in Smiths Fall and dock at Le Boat Base 
  • Plan your final dinner on the top deck or at local restaurant. 
Overnight in Smith Falls, ON. 

  • Breakfast onboard.
  • Tidy up and pack your belongings! 
  • Time to check out and say goodbye to your boat.
  • Check-out 9:00 AM.
  • Transferred from Pier at Smith’s falls to YOW Airport or downtown Ottawa.
End of your houseboat holiday.
Please check with us for the below itineraries and quotes
  • 3 Days Boat Charter & Itinerary
  • 4 Days Boat Charter & Itinerary
  • 8 Days Boat Charter & Itinerary

We feature

  • 2 Cabin boats - sleeps up to 5 persons
  • 3 Cabin boats - sleeps u to 7 persons
  • 5 Cabin boats - sleeps up to 12 persons

Contact our Canada Destination Specialist


  • 2-night’s hotel accommodations in downtown Ottawa based on Quad occupancy.
  • 5-days charter of Horizon Class Houseboat with two cabins and ensuite washroom & shower for the exclusive use of the clients.
  • A fully equipped kitchen including fridge, burners and gas oven, kitchen utensils, cutlery, pots, and pans.
  • Bed linen, duvets, and pillows.
  • Small bathroom towels and tea towels. Clients must bring own beach towels.
  • Full tank of fuel, and water (used in kitchen and bathrooms).
  • Heat exchanger to provide heated water in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • Empty Grey and Black water tanks.
  • Blue Tooth, USB Ports, etc.
  • Guidebooks,  Maps, Binoculars.
  • Daily weather reports.
  • A boat handling demonstration prior to departure.
  • Technical support.
  • On-board maps and visitor information.
  • Passage through locks.
  • Mandatory moorings fee has been included in the price quoted. See compulsory costs for more details.
  • Arrival transfer from YOW Airport or VIA Rail station to hotel in downtown Ottawa.
  • Transfer from hotel in downtown Ottawa to Pier at Smiths Falls to board your houseboat.
  • Transfer from Pier at Smiths Falls to YTOW Airport or downtown Ottawa at the end of your boat charter.
  • Taxes & GST.

Note: The duvets and pillows are poly/cotton mix, hypo-allergenic fillings, no feathers. The duvet covers are 100% cotton and the pillow cases are poly/cotton blend.


  • Airfare.
  • Meals including breakfast.
  • Collision Damage Waiver to cover damage to the boat. 
  • Running costs (diesel, gas, engine wear and tear) - charged by the engine hour.
  • Optional holiday extras.
  • Waterside services if you use them (i.e., moorings where a charge is applicable, pump-out if needed, water, etc.).
  • Food and drink.
  • Boat Cleaning Fee.
  • Cancellation plan & any travel/personal insurance.
  • Travel Insurance (Canadians) - recommended. We require Travel Agent to secure a signed Waiver in the event client declines your offer to sell Travel Insurance. DMCi will require Travel Agent to provide us the signed waiver when required as a part of the Terms & Conditions of Contract. DMCi sells Manulife Travel Insurance. Please check with us for rates.
    Non Canadian Clients - must purchase travel insurance through their travel agents in the country of their domicile.  Evidence Travel Insurance or a signed waiver when required will be requested at the time of confirmation.
  • Bottled Water.
  • Early Check-in and Late Check-out charges. Charges will apply.

Accommodations Featured

Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for information and assistance.


Room Configuration Beds Occupancy

For more information on Rooming and how rates apply, please refer to Important Notes

Optional Tour

These optional tours can be booked with our package. Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for rates.

Notes about this Tour


Minimum number of adults required to book a Houseboat Holiday

A minimum of two able bodied adults are required to book a Houseboat Holiday.

Minimum Boat Rental Nights

The least number of nights one can book a Houseboat Holiday is 3 nights.  

Boating License

  • Boating License – Clients do not require a Boating License or experience to book our Houseboat Holiday. 
  • Who can captain the boat – Guests have to be minimum 18 years of age to Captain the boat.
  • Why are we not required to have a prior boat license? - The reason clients do not require a license to operate the based on Boating Rules as set by Transport Canada.  For more information, please visit the below link.

What is included in the Package Price? What is not included?

The price includes the charter of the boat and its equipment (kitchen gallery equipped, utensils), towels and linen for all passengers, a boat handling demo, technical support, on-board cruising information & locks fee (except in Ireland where locks fee should be paid locally in supplement).

Clients must bring their own beach towels.

What should clients bring with them?

We recommend that clients bring:

  • Some form of non-slip footwear such as boat shoes,   
  • A pair of gloves (gardening gloves or similar) as clients will need this when handling teh ropes during mooring and passing through the locks.
  • Beach towels. 
  • Bring small foldable travel suitcases as these will be easier to store on the boat. 
  • Clients’ can bring food & provisions with them if they wish, although most bases have a supermarket close by easily accessible by car. Alternatively, clients may order provisions in advance of their holiday and we will make arrangements to have same delivered to the boat at the start of the sailing.

Extras, fuel, moorings fees, water/fuel refill, travel to the base are NOT included in the Houseboat Holiday price.

What is already on board?

  • Hand soap – you should wash your hands regularly. 
  • Bed linen – which has been washed at high temperature. 
  • Duvets and pillows. 
  • Small bathroom towels and tea towels (not beach towels) – washed at high temperature.  Clients must bring their own beach towels. 
  • Fridge (with a small freezer compartment for ice), burners and gas oven. The size of the fridge depends of the boat model, please refer to boat feature specifics located on individual boat pages for more technical details. 
  • Kitchen utensils, cutlery, pots and pans.  

Note – the boats do not carry hairdryers.  Clients must bring their own.

Our Boats

  • How many boats are there in the fleet – there are 24 boats, all of them 3 years or less in age.   
  • Deck Plan – please refer to Our Boats
  • Captain’s Handbook – offers valuable information about the boats and boating on the Rideau Canal. 

For specific information about the boats, please visit – Our Boats.

Boats come with

  • Wi-Fi – almost 100% of the Rideau Canal is covered.  Quality of signal will depend on where your bat is on the canal. 
  • Cell phone coverage – available almost all along the Rideau Canal.  It depends on the Wi-Fi signal.  
  • Bluetooth. 
  • USB Ports. 
  • Instagram. 
  • Guidebook. 
  • Binoculars. 

Safety – every boat comes with

  • First Air Kit. 
  • Fire Extinguisher. 
  • Life Vests.  Clients must bring their own life vests for pets they bring on board. 
  • Lifeline for man overboard circumstance.

Check In & Checkout.  Can Clients Organize An Early Check-In Or Lake Check-Out?

  • Check-in – 2 PM 
  • Check-out – 9 AM 
  • Early Check-in – 12 Noon - $ 145 plus 13% HST. 
  • Late Check-out – 12 Noon - $ 145 plus 13% HST.  

Extremely late arrival (due flight delays etc.) – Clients must advise us as soon as they become aware of such situations.  We will accommodate as best as possible. 

What time should clients report – we recommend reporting 2 hours ahead to the base. 

Hotels & Motels in and around Smiths Falls

There are several hotels and motels in and around Smiths Falls.  We can assist your clients with overnight accommodations if required.

Fuel – How Much Should Clients Budget For Fuel?

  • The boats come with a full tank of fuel – 700 liters.  This should be more than enough for most of the sailings. 
  • Before departure, client will be required to leave a engine hours deposit in the local currency for the value of between CA $150 to $350 depending on the length of the charter.  At the end of the holiday, clients are refunded the excess or be asked to pay any additional costs as required. For client information, typical consumption of fuel will run around.  
Length of Charter
Typical Consumption
3 to 4 days CharterCA $225CA $150
7 DaysCA $425CA $300

What Will Affect the Fuel Usage 

Typically, the consumption of fuel is dependent on hours the engines are running.  The engines are still working even if they are idling.

Water & Heated Water

  • Boats come with a full tanks of 500 liters of Water.  This should be more than enough for most of the sailings including showers.  If required, clients can top up along the canal as they cruise. The Rideau Canal Guide provides information on where clients can top up if required.   
  • Heated Water – offered on the boat.  The water is heated by batteries on board. 
  • Grey & Black Water – the boats have inbuilt grey and black water tanks large enough that there should be no need to dump.  Dump stations are available along the canal.  Refer to Rideau Canal Guide for more information.   
  • Grey Water - is wastewater that has been collected from the vessels galley, showers, laundries and sinks. 
  • Black Water - describes wastewater containing fecal matter and urine.

Power onboard

  • Boats are running on 110 Cycle.  Converters must be brought with you if clients are coming from a 220-cycle domain as converters are not easily available locally. Clients from overseas will need a plug adaptor suitable for use in Canada. In Canada, the electric wall outlets where the plugs go are for types A and B, requiring two and three prong plugs like in the United States. On the boats, these sockets only provide power when cruising or when 'hooked-up' to a shore power supply.   
  • The boats also have USB sockets in the saloon and all cabins.  All boats have a 12-volt power sockets (as you would use in a car) which can be used to plug in your adapter lead for a mobile phone or any other low power equipment. 
  • The boats come with on board batteries that charge as the boat operates and provide necessary power for the boat.  Clients can also hook up to onshore power source when moored.   

For onshore power, Parks Canada typically charges $10 per day.  The cost of onshore power is not included in the cost of charter.

Pet Friendly

Yes. you can bring your pets on board.  A charge of CA $85 + HST applies per animal.

Busiest Months on Rideau Canal

With almost no commercial traffic and run by Parks Canada, the Rideau Canal is operated almost exclusively as a recreation space.  This means, as you travel, you’ll see many locals and visitors alike taking the time to enjoy the canal. Common activities include boating, canoeing, fishing, hiking, cycling, stand-up paddle boarding and jet-skiing

  • July – is the busiest month and the canal can get busy.
  • June, August, and September are the quieter months.
  • May and October are the perfect time to escape the masses. 

Fall Colors - Traveling in late September and thru October has the added benefit of being able to witness Canada transformed by autumn colors.

Itinerary Planning & Rideau Canal

  • Rideau Canal Guide – refer to Rideau Canal. 
  • Locks & Lock Stations – All Locks and Lock Stations are operated by Parks Canada.  Clients must refer to Rideau Canal Guide for opening and closing times when planning their itinerary.  Clients are not allowed to operate any of the locks or interfere/help with the process of operating the locks.

        -  24 Lock Stations.

        -  27 Locks. 

  • Lock Fees – refer to Tariffs.
  • Mooring fees – refer to Tariffs.
  • Next Town – maximum 3 hours sailing away.
  • Weather Reports – provided.

Itinerary – clients plan their own itinerary.  We will provide with assistance if required.

Mooring Stations along Rideau Canal - 24 Lock Stations, 47 Locks

OttawaManotickEdmondsBeveridgesWestportUpper & Lower Brewers
Dows LakeBurrits RapidsOld SylsPerthNewboroKingston Mills
HartwellsNicholsonsCombined LockRideau FerryChaffeys LockKingston
Hogs BackClowesSmiths FallsColonel by IslandDavis
Black RapidsMerrickvilleDetached LockPortlandJones Falls
Long IslandKilmarnockPoonamaileThe NarrowsSeeleys Bay

CDW (COLLISSION Damage Waiver) 

The CDW provides cover against accidental damage or loss to the vessel and ancillary equipment. Pre-paying the CDW means you will pay a lower Security Deposit at the base.

Clients has two options to choose from:

  • Option 1 – Buy at the time of booking CDW at CA $ 79 per day per vessel plus HST. Should clients opt for this choice, they are required to leave behind a security deposit for a minimum deductible of CA $1,135 per vessel chartered.  On the return of the vessel without any damage to itself, the equipment onboard or a third party, the full deposit will be returned.  If the vessel is returned with damage to itself, the equipment onboard or a third party, all or appropriate portion of the deposit as deemed necessary by Le Boat will be retained to cover such costs.   
  • Option 2 - Leave a deposit for the sum of CA $ 4,920 and not pay any daily CDW charges.   Once again, full refund will be made when the vessel is returned without any damage to itself, the equipment onboard or a third party.  If the vessel is returned with damages to itself, equipment abroad or a third party, all or appropriate portion of the deposit as deemed necessary by Le Boat will be retained to cover such costs. 

Parking at the base (Smiths Falls)

Parking is available at $7 (approx.) per day.  Clients are required to prebook the parking.

Grocery Pack

Clients may bring in their own groceries or order a Grocery Pack through us.  Several grocery, beer and liquor stores are also available in Smiths Falls as well as along the Rideau Canal sailing route.


Clients may bring in their own liquor.  Operating the vessel under the influence of intoxicant substances including alcoholic beverages, recreational marijuana, etc. is strictly prohibited.  Rules similar to D.U.I. applies.

Can Clients Bring Their Own BBQ?

No, the law is strict and only a fitted BBQ can be used on a boat.  The boats come with hotplate BBQs.  

Parks managed by Parks Canada along the Rideau Canal have BBQ Pits that could be used by clients.  

Technical Assistance

The boats are very new and technical issues are not expected.  Boats are no older than 3 years and subject to maintenance post each cruise.  However, 24/7 shore help is available should there be a situation that requires immediate attention. 

Speed of the vessel

Boats are built with a max speed of 10 miles per hour. 

Captain - can we hire one?  

Yes, you can for an additional cost.  Please check with us for more information on this.  Typically, Captains leave the boat most evening unless your clients would need them to stay with the family/group.  If Captain has to stay on board the boat with the clients, meals and accommodations must be provided.


Client can go fishing.  To the best our knowledge, the catch is fit for human consumption.  Fishing Licenses are required and same can me acquired from Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.  

Extras – should clients book ahead?

It is possible to purchase Extras at the base, however all Extras are subject to availability.  Therefore, it is best to pre-book and prepay for your Extras prior to travel to ensure you don’t miss out! Please refer to the Holiday Extras page for pricing and a full list of possible Extras.

Seasick - would guests fall Seasick?  

The answer is no.  Clients are sailing waters that have literally no waves.


There are big hospitals in Kingston and Ottawa.  Small clinics are available in Smiths Falls and some of the smaller towns along the sailing route.  

Sample Itineraries

Choose a 3-5 night short break OR a 7-10+ night holiday.

Go where you want; do as you please!

All trips Start and end in Smiths Falls, ON.

  • 3-nights - Smith Falls, Perth, Rideau Ferry return
  • 4-nights - Smiths Falls, Rideau Ferry, Westport return
  • 4-nights - Smiths Fall, Merrickville, Return
  • 5-nights - Smiths Falls, Rideau Ferry, Westport, Chaffey’s Lock, Portland, return
  • 5-nights - Smiths Falls, Merrickville, Manotick, return
  • 7 to 10 Nights - Smiths Falls to Kingston, return
  • 7 to 10 Nights - Smiths Falls to Ottawa, return

Some Sample Itineraries

Busiest Months on Rideau Canal

With almost no commercial traffic and run by Parks Canada, the Rideau Canal is operated almost exclusively as a recreation space.  This means, as you travel, you’ll see many locals and visitors alike taking the time to enjoy the canal. Common activities include boating, canoeing, fishing, hiking, cycling, stand-up paddle boarding and jet-skiing.

  • July – is the busiest month and the canal can get busy.
  • June, August and September – these months are bit quitter. 
  • May and October are the perfect time to escape the masses.
  • Fall Colors - Traveling in late September and thru October has the added benefit of being able to witness Canada transformed by autumn colors. 

Operation Info

The Houseboat Tours operate:  

Low Season21 Apr to 14 May 2022
Mid Season19 May to 29 Jun 2022
High Season30 Jun to 17 Aug 2022
Mid Season18 Aug to 14 Sep 2022
Low Season15 Sep to 31 Oct 2022

Hours of Operation:

Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat and Sun: 9:00 AM - 5.30 PM. 

Tue and Thu: Closed.  Houseboat Holiday cannot start on Tue and Thu.



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