Insider Itineraries: Whitney Haynes

By Visit Kingston

It takes a huge leap of faith to move your family from one city to another to build your own business. Luckily for Whitney Haynes, she chose to settle in Kingston — we’re known for embracing those with a keen eye for the creative. She came to Kingston from Toronto to focus on her jewellery design and silversmithing.

We asked Whitney to hand-pick ten of her favourite Kingston experiences that make for a great adventure for visitors and locals alike.

1. New Waterfront Development at Breakwater Park

King Street East

Breakwater Park got a facelift in 2018 and quickly became a go-to spot for the family over the summer. It’s great to have a place created for swimming at the waterfront — it breaks that summer heat and adds a little something special to the water’s edge. We’ve taken a photo-op or two at the “Time” sculpture at the centre of the park, too.

2. Market Square Events

216 Ontario Street

There’s always something going on at Springer Market Square, no matter the season! There’s the Sunday Antique Market throughout the summer; the Farmers’ Market throughout the week — which is a great place to pick up fresh, local ingredients. And, depending on the day, you might stumble across a yoga takeover, chef cooking demos, concerts, movies, and more.

Fun Fact

Did you know that the Public Market is the oldest market in Ontario? It’s been running since 1801!

3. Downtown Kingston (shopping + eating)

I love Downtown Kingston for all the great shops and unique restaurants. There’s a perfect mix of brand staples and local boutique shops, too. If you’re into art galleries like me, stop by Martello Alley, Kingston Glass Studio, or Studio 22. To finish off a busy day of shopping, drop by one of the many cafes or restaurants for a bite to eat. One of my favourites is Le Chien Noir for great food and a relaxing atmosphere.

Fun Fact

Kingston has more dining choices per capita than anywhere in Ontario!

4. Water Activities on Lake Ontario

A wonderful part of living in Kingston includes being close to a body of water. There is never a shortage of things to do – the 1000 Islands Poker Run, freshwater sailing festivals, and a 1000 Islands Cruise to name a few. You can even rent kayaks, canoes, and paddleboards if you’re visiting for the day! Ahoy Rentals is a great spot for this.

Fun Fact

Kingston once held the sailing Olympics in 1976 at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour.

5. Juniper Café + the Tett Centre

The Tett Centre can be described as a gathering place where artists, arts organizations and communities come together to create, explore, and be inspired. Upgrade your art skills with a Tett creative workshop which are open to the public. After an artful day, settle down with a coffee at Juniper Café. You’ll be blown away by the waterfront view and unique space.

Fun Fact

At Juniper Café over 80% of the ingredients are sourced from local farms and food producers year round!

6. Trailhead

262 Princess Street

Trailhead is the go-to spot for everything outdoors. They’ve got great outdoor gear and locally owned and operated. Rent out gear like boats, tents, and hiking packs – they always get us ready for our next adventure.

Fun Fact

Trailhead strives every day to make sound environmental decisions. Check out their Eco Timeline for inspiration on being green.

7. Unique Coffee Shop Hangouts

Coffee and Kingston go hand in hand. There are so many great spots to sit down, relax, get some work done or catch up with friends. I like to enjoy the view of the market and City Hall at Kingston Coffeehouse. Crave always has something delicious and the chocolates and ice cream from Coffee & Company are incredible.

8. Northside Espresso + Kitchen

281 Princess Street

Drop by the charming Northside Espresso + Kitchen for a little taste of Melbourne, Australia. I love the relaxing atmosphere – great music, surrounded by plants, and delicious food! Make sure you ask for a spot on their patio if the weather is nice to soak up the sun Australia-style.

9. Community Support for Local + Global Charities

One thing that is great about Kingston is the support for local and global charities. Being such a tightly knit community we always go out of the way to help others. Some of Kingston’s major events are held for charities. Some of my favourites are Hospice Fest (Chillifest), Fall for Kingston, Swim for Kids, and many sporting events are all for great causes.

Fun Fact

Did you know the Kingston Pen Tours donates funds from tours to the United Way? In 2017, they raised $421,415.44 for Youth Homelessness Initiatives!

10. The Sanctuary

221 Queen Street

For entrepreneurs and start-ups, The Sanctuary is a great place for inspiration. It’s situated in a beautiful limestone building (and a former church) and offers hot desks, private offices, meeting rooms, and event spaces for professionals – truly embracing co-working with others and sharing ideas. Many members who use the space hold workshops, events, and clinics open to the public, make sure you check it out!

Describe Kingston in 3 phrases

Unique, gorgeous, friendly gathering place

If Kingston had a Theme Song, what would it be?

Any song about summer

Complete the sentence: Kingston makes me


Are you trying to find something different to do this summer? Try paddleboarding, kayaking, and more in Kingston!