The 1000 Islands Tower in Lansdowne is one of the options for a spectacular view of the Thousand Islands region. For those who can’t go Skydiving or take a helicopter tour, you can climb this tower and take in the view with your feet on the ground.
- 1000 Islands Tower history
- Three observation levels
- First level: Indoor Observation Deck
- Second level: Open-air Observation Deck
- Third level: Glass Floor Observation Deck
- Things to do in the tower
- Top facts about 1000 Islands Tower
- How to get to 1000 Islands Tower?
- Is it necessary to make a reservation?
- Can you visit on a rainy day?
- How to get to the top of 1000 Islands Tower?
- Are pets allowed?
1000 Islands Tower history
The idea for the tower was conceived in the late 20th century as a means to showcase the unparalleled beauty of the 1000 Islands region.
The tower was designed to offer visitors an opportunity to experience panoramic views of the St. Lawrence River and the surrounding islands, which were otherwise difficult to appreciate from the ground level.
The tower was constructed in the early 1960s. It was built with a strong focus on safety and stability, using reinforced concrete and steel to withstand the harsh weather conditions and strong winds in the region.
Standing 400 feet (122 meters) tall, it was designed to have three observation levels that would offer visitors different perspectives of the scenery.
Over the years, the tower has hosted various events and celebrated numerous milestones. It has become a popular destination for special occasions, such as weddings and anniversaries, as well as a venue for community gatherings and events.
Three observation levels
The tower boasts three distinct observation levels, each offering unique vantage points and experiences for visitors. Here is an overview of these observation decks:
First level: Indoor Observation Deck
- The first level, located at 130 feet (39 meters) above ground, features an enclosed observation area with floor-to-ceiling windows.
- This climate-controlled space allows visitors to enjoy panoramic views of the 1000 Islands region, regardless of weather conditions.
- Informative displays and maps are available to provide context and information about the islands, landmarks, and points of interest that can be seen from this level.
Second level: Open-air Observation Deck
- The second level, situated at 300 feet (91 meters) above ground, offers an open-air observation deck with safety railings and unobstructed views of the surrounding landscape.
- This outdoor vantage point provides a more immersive experience, as visitors can feel the breeze, hear the sounds of the river, and take in the fresh air while enjoying the stunning scenery.
- Binoculars or telescopes are often available for visitors to get a closer look at the islands, boats, and wildlife in the area.
Third level: Glass Floor Observation Deck
- The third and highest level, positioned at 400 feet (122 meters) above ground, features a thrilling glass floor observation deck.
- This unique experience allows visitors to stand on a transparent floor, providing a bird’s-eye view of the ground below and an unparalleled perspective of the 1000 Islands region.
- The glass floor is designed with safety in mind, using reinforced and sturdy materials to ensure the security of visitors while they take in the breathtaking sights.
Things to do in the tower
The tower holds great significance as a major tourist attraction for several reasons:
- Panoramic views: The tower offers breathtaking panoramic views of the 1000 Islands region, the St. Lawrence River, and the surrounding landscape. With its three observation levels, visitors can fully appreciate the beauty and uniqueness of the area from different perspectives.
- Educational value: The tower provides an excellent opportunity for visitors to learn about the geography, history, and ecology of the region. Informational displays and guided tours offer valuable insights into the area’s natural beauty, cultural significance, and rich history.
- Accessibility: The tower is easily accessible from major cities like Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal, as well as from the United States, making it a convenient destination for both domestic and international tourists. Its strategic location near the Thousand Islands Bridge also makes it a natural stopping point for travelers in the area.
- Photography opportunities: With its stunning vistas and unique vantage points, the tower is a haven for photographers, both amateur and professional. The striking scenery serves as an ideal backdrop for capturing memorable moments and beautiful landscape images.
The 1000 Islands Tower is a major tourist attraction due to its impressive views, educational value, accessibility, and role as a gateway to the region.
Top facts about 1000 Islands Tower
Here are some interesting facts about the 1000 Islands Tower:
- Height: The tower stands at 400 feet (122 meters) tall, providing visitors with expansive views of the surrounding region.
- Location: The tower is located on Hill Island, Ontario, Canada, near the Thousand Islands Bridge, which connects Ontario and New York State, USA.
- Observation levels: The tower features three observation decks at different heights (130 feet, 300 feet, and 400 feet), each offering unique perspectives and experiences for visitors.
- Construction: The tower was built in the early 1960s using reinforced concrete and steel to ensure stability and safety.
- Elevator ride: A high-speed elevator transports visitors to the first observation level in under a minute, offering a smooth and quick ascent.
- Wildlife spotting: From the observation decks, visitors can often spot various wildlife species, such as ospreys, eagles, herons, and occasionally, deer on the nearby islands.
- Nearby attractions: The tower serves as a gateway to other popular attractions in the region, such as Boldt Castle, Singer Castle, and the numerous boat tours and cruises.
- Accessibility: The tower is open to visitors from late spring to early autumn (usually May to October), with extended hours during peak tourist season.
- Bilingual experience: The tower offers an inclusive experience for both English and French speakers, with informational displays and guided tours available in both languages.
- Special events: The tower has become a popular venue for weddings, anniversaries, and other special events, thanks to its stunning backdrop and unique setting.
How to get to 1000 Islands Tower?
To get to the 1000 Islands Tower, located at 716 Highway 137, Hill Island, Lansdowne, Ontario, Canada, follow these general directions and transportation options:
- By car
From Toronto: Take Highway 401 East towards Kingston/Ottawa. Take Exit 661 to the 1000 Islands Parkway/Highway 137. Continue on Highway 137 and follow signs for the tower.
From Ottawa: Take Highway 416 South to Highway 401 West. Then, take Exit 661 to the 1000 Islands Parkway/Highway 137. Continue on Highway 137 and follow signs for the tower.
From Montreal: Take Highway 20 West, which becomes Highway 401 West in Ontario. Take Exit 661 to the 1000 Islands Parkway/Highway 137. Continue on Highway 137 and follow signs for the tower.
From New York, USA: Cross the border into Canada at the Thousand Islands Bridge. After clearing customs, continue on Highway 137 and follow signs for the tower.
- By bus
Various bus companies provide service to the 1000 Islands region. Check with the bus companies for schedules and routes that stop near the tower.
- By train
The nearest train station to the tower is in Kingston, Ontario. VIA Rail and Amtrak provide service to Kingston. Once you arrive in Kingston, you can rent a car or take a bus.
- By boat
If you’re already in the 1000 Islands region, you can reach here by boat. There are marinas and docking facilities available nearby. Be sure to check local regulations and accessibility before planning your trip.
Remember to check the 1000 Islands Tower’s official website or contact them directly for the most up-to-date information on hours of operation, ticket prices, and any special events or closures before planning your visit.
Is it necessary to make a reservation?
It is not necessary to make a reservation, but it is possible. You can make a reservation no earlier than 14 days and no later than 1 hour before your planned visit date. Arrive about 10 minutes before the reservation time.
Can you visit on a rainy day?
As long as there are no severe storms, as long as there are no weather conditions that could jeopardize your safety, you can go to the tower even in rainy weather.
How to get to the top of 1000 Islands Tower?
An elevator is used to get to the top of the tower. The steps around the tower are not allowed to be used for security reasons.
They are used as an emergency exit point to evacuate visitors at the top of the tower in case of an emergency, when the elevator should not work. This may change later, of course. Be sure to ask if you have such a request.
Are pets allowed?
Animals other than service animals are not allowed for the safety of the animals.
In conclusion, the 1000 Islands Tower is a remarkable tourist attraction that offers a unique and unforgettable experience for visitors.
With its three observation levels, panoramic views, and educational opportunities, it showcases the unparalleled beauty and rich history of the 1000 Islands region.