Kingston: More than just an Exquisite Corpse

I went to Kingston with my parents this Thanksgiving weekend.

Last year in Canadian Geography, our teacher loved telling us the sad sad story of Kingston-

It flourished and flourished and flourished on the beautiful Lake Ontario, and was the capital of Canada and had the biggest population, and then things started going down.

It wasn’t the capital anymore, the population plummeted, and now Kingston is just this elegant, perfect and thriving, but it’s not important.

The last part is not true at all. Kingston’s national importance may have been taken over by her cosmopolitan and world-famous siblings (cough, Toronto and Mtl), it is still vibrant and stunning. And it has places more hip than downtown Toronto, as well as scenery more breathtaking than Algonquin, and these elements are all wrapped up in a neat little bundle sitting right next to the Rideau Canal.

The Market


I stayed at Four Points by Hilton, which is very close to the Kingston Public Market (and pretty much everything downtown). The market has been an important part of Kingston since 1801. On Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, it sells local produce, baked goods, flowers and crafts.

The bubble tea place right next to the market and the City Hall is also very good. I’d even say it was better than Coco, so there’s that.

On Sunday the best thing happened- I came across the Antique Market which apparently takes place every Sunday. My mom went cray cray at the sight of all the goodies and got two vases. I did not buy anything, but walked through the market for more than a reasonable amount of times. Here’s what I got.

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All the used books were super cheap (about $4, depending on the vendor), and in pretty good shape. I love books, I love looking at books, I love touching books, I love breathing in the vellichor, but unfortunately I don’t collect antique books, and my TBR list is already kinda too long.


Antique jewelry under the sun is abso-frickin-lutely gorgeous. For example I feel like these doll-face pins were either the collection of a doll-obsessed person, or the trend back then equivalent to our chokers.

They also had these huge clip-on earrings that seemed to be made of coining molds.

The typewriters!

The Suntana Fold-up Sun Reflector from the 1940’s. I guess that was their self tanner back then? It has art on one side and some sun-reflecting material on the other. It was beautiful.

The Streets and the Stores

Make sure to take a walk downtown!


There are three bookstores in Kingston.

Wayfarer Books was sooo pretty and had a great atmosphere. It’s impossible to walk by and not want to go in. It sells used books.
I didn’t go in this one, but I like the name already.

more used books.

And now for my favourite store… Bibbidy bobbidy boo…




Minotaur is full of fun books, party games, word games, Star Wars/Star Trek/Dr.Who merchandise, Tintin and Le Petite Prince figurines, key chains, cards, and cute socks and book-cover-design shirts.

It’s kind of like a mini version of the Strand Bookstore in New York.

I bought these unicorn socks, and I also wanted to buy a poetry kit, which is basically a box of words that generate poems, but I wasn’t sure if it’s actually helpful… any insights on poetry kits? 

The Thousand Islands

My parents and I went on the Island Star cruise (buffet lunch included), and it was stunning. I never thought I’d love just looking at leaves, but…


There are 1864 islands in the Thousand Islands. You can buy one for a pretty decent price.

^All this trivia was told by our cruise host. He was amazing, went all out with his jokes (some of them inappropriate), and it also happened to be his last cruise. He’s also an amazing singer.


The islands were studded with Martello towers, and the red really popped out.




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