Amherst Island 

The tranquil farming community of Amherst Island is world famous for its bird watching, Lake Ontario winds, cycling, artisans, and music concerts (Waterside Summer Series).

Amherst Island the "first of the Thousand Islands" is located 22km west of Kingston.  Drivers can access the Island via the ferry dock in Millhaven. The ferry ride takes about 15 minutes and runs on the hour from the Island (on the half hour from the mainland). It runs 365 days a year.  The first trip leaves the island at 6am and the last ferry leaves the mainland at 1:30 am.

As you drive or cycle around the quiet island, you will see stone beaches, with stones polished by the waves of the water, dramatic vistas, acres of pastureland and lots of sheep.  


Town of Stella  

The Lodge is an easy walk from the ferry through Stella. Stella boasts a number of summer attractions. Among the local residents are several well known artists who display and sell their work at the Weasel and Easel (our Island Gallery).  

The Neilsen Store and Museum acquaints visitors with local history while the Stella Cafe serves up cool drinks, hot meals and great music. 

Information on the Neilsen Store and Museum

Topsy Farms Store and Tours  

Topsy Farms is a large sheep farm on Amherst Island. They are a cooperative family farm with 5 shareholders, and 3 generations contributing.  The April shearing yields several thousand pounds of raw wool, which is shipped to MacAusland’s Woollen Mills, Prince Edward Island, to be washed and gently processed, then returned to as yarn and wool. 

Through The Wool Shed Store (located on our Farm), they offer these and other products.

More Information on Topsy Farms  

Fishing

Bass, Musky, Pike, and Walleye abound in these waters. World class Salmon and Trout fishing can be had in Kingston waters and around Amherst Island. Lake Ontario's increased stocking programs, improved water quality and a large number of fishing charter services have contributed to the sudden interest in our area's fishing opportunities.  

Kingston has been a Brown Trout stocking site since the mid 1980's. Nicholson Point and Parrot's Bay are two of the best fishing sites in the area, easily reached by small boats. they have become popular with local fishermen and -women as well as anglers from all over Ontario and Quebec.

Further information, including current fishing conditions, is available at the Fish Kingston website. 

Birdwatching

For birdwatchers there is a bird sanctuary on the most southeasterly corner of the Island, as well as the famous “Owl Woods”. The most common species found here during the winter are the Northern Saw-whet Owl, Long-eared Owls, with smaller numbers of Barred Owls, Great Horned Owls, and a few Boreal Owls and Great Grey Owls. 

Snowy Owls, as well as the Northern Hawk Owls, are usually found in trees and on fence posts or hydro poles near open fields throughout the Island.

To access the Owl Woods Sanctuary, take Front Road east approximately 3 km to Marshall 40 Foot Road. The Sanctuary is located a few kilometers down 40 Foot Road. For more information on Birdwatching on the Island please visit the The Kingston Field Naturalists (KFN)  website. 

Sailing 

The waters off Kingston offer some of the best fresh-water sailing in the world. Located at the eastern end of Lake Ontario and the head of the St. Lawrence River, the combination of land mass, islands and thermal effects produce excellent wind and wave conditions with very little current.   

Winds during July are predominantly from a south-westerly direction, with an afternoon wind range of 10-15 knots.  Water temperature will vary between 18 to 22 degrees (Celsius).

For more Information on sailing conditions in Kingston please follow the link to the Cork website. 

Waterside Summer Series 


The Amherst Island Waterside Summer Series was established in 1994 and is now an independent not-for-profit organization. Its goal is to present quality music in the wonderful setting of Amherst Island, a place of tranquility and natural beauty. 

The concerts, which begin at 7:15 p.m.  Tickets cost $35  and include refreshments served during the 20-minute intermission. These well-attended concerts are a perfect outing for a summer evening, bringing together beautiful music and a remarkable natural setting. 

Information on the Series 

Dry Stone Walls 

Amherst Island contains the largest known concentration of historic Irish dry stone wall in Canada.  Newer dry stone structures have also been built

Take a self-guided driving tour brochure and check them out.  Dry Stone Canada runs regular public dry stone walling workshops at The Lodge for all levels of interest.