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KVC Vacation Tours – The Best Adventure on 2 Wheels

A Look Back at 10 Years of KVC Cycle Touring

One of the signature features of KVC is its multi-day tours – and the jewel in that crown is the annual weeklong tour. The destinations and themes have varied over the years, with a general pattern of starting off one year in Kingston, the next in a distant location. Where have we been? Check out the table below…

Year Tour Highlights
2006 Eastern Ontario Tour Overnight stays in Westport, Tamworth, Cobourg & Prince Edward County
2007 Celebrating Rideau Canal 175 Stops at each Canal lock en route to Ottawa and back
2008 New York Finger Lakes Wineries, limericks, and multiple ice cream stops marked this tour around Cayuga Lake.
2009 Bruce Peninsula Collingwood to Sauble Beach and Southhampton via Lion’s Head, Little Tubb and Tobermory
2010 Tour of Lake Ontario Circumnavigation of Lake Ontario
2011 Eastern Townships St. Jean-sur-Richelieu to Vermont and back, with a ride over  Jay Peak.
2012 Ottawa via the St. Lawrence Seaway Followed the St. Lawrence from Kingston via the Waterfront Trail and the Long Sault Parkway to Ste. Zotique, PQ and back via Vankleek Hill and Ottawa
2013 Bruce Peninsula Thornbury to Sauble Beach via Lion’s Head, Tobermory, and the Meaford Trail
2014 European Capitals Tour of upper New York State with stops in Copenhagen, Vienna,
2015 Lake Erie Shore Inland from Dunville, Ontario to St. Thomas; 2 nights on Pelee Island; return via the Lake Eire Shore, with stops in Port Stanley and Port Dover
2016 Montreal the Scenic Way Travel from Kingston through Mallorytown, Winchester, Vankleek Hill, Rigaud and Oka to Montreal, returning via Cornwall, the Long Sault Parkway and Brockville.

What does a day on the road look like? There’s lots of riding, for sure. But there is also a lot of sightseeing and other stops built in to ensure that we fully appreciate the local history, culture and hospitality. Typical stops have included scenic overlooks, museums, historic sites, craft breweries, wineries/vineyards, bakeries and bistros.

These self supported tours are best done on touring bicycles that will carry at least two panniers. The amount of gear carried depends on the rider’s choice of accommodation. Those who camp along the way will need to carry a tent, sleeping bag, and whatever camping gear they want to have along. Most campers like to eat at least their breakfast in the campground, and some will plan to cook a few evening meals el fresco as well. Riders who choose the motel or B&B option can get away with carrying a lot less gear, relying more on their credit card for a comfortable night’s sleep. On occasion there has been a SAG (support and gear) vehicle to help carry heavier items for riders who wish the support (or to transport beer to a campsite). The whole group generally gets together in the evening at a common spot for dinner and to re-visit the day’s events.

The length of each tour has varied from 5 days to a maximum of 10. This year’s tour will be one of the most ambitious, starting on July 23rd and winding up on Monday of the August long weekend for a total of 10 days. The average daily distance is 80km, but days have ranged from 50 km up to 120. The itinerary for each tour is posted online at least 8 weeks in advance of the ride. We understand we may have a SAG vehicle for this year’s tour.

Participation on the rides is an art form in itself. Some riders join for just a day or two, while others commit to the full tour. Number of total riders on each tour has ranged from a low of 3 to a high of 17 (2016). Why not be one of them?

Weeklong 2016 - Montreal

This year’s weeklong cycle tour (July 23 – August 1) was a tale of two cities – Kingston and Montreal – with a whole lot of rural in between.   A record 17 riders took part this year, 11 of them camping and the others choosing motel or B&B accommodations. Check out the ride report for additional details.

Weeklong 2015 - Lake Erie

For the 2015 KVC Week-Long Tour, we cycled the north shore area of Lake Erie from July 25th through August 2nd. Starting and ending in Dunnville, ON, our route was: west inland through some of Canada’s southernmost farm county; ferry to tranquil rural Pelee Island for a 2-night stay, with vineyard tour and beach options on the “rest day; and, then back east along the shore of Lake Erie. This was a 9-day total (counting the day on Pelee Island), self-supported tour with camping and motel/hotel/B&B options. For more details, see the ride report to the right.

Weeklong 2014- New York 

The tour started in Kingston and went south into the State of New York via Wolfe Island. The route covered the area southeast of Watertown over to just west of the Adirondack Mountain, visiting a number of "European" capitals along the way. For a detailed report, see the ride report to the right. 

Long Weekend Tours

Are you interested in leading an overnight tour over one of the summer's long weekends? We can provide support with the organization. Contact Rosemary at tours@kvc.ca