The Tent Room at Rideau Hall

The original stone villa was built in 1838 by Thomas MacKay as a home for his family. MacKay, a stonemason, was one of the general contractors of the Rideau Canal entrance locks and the mills at Rideau Falls, the landmark after which Rideau Hall was named. It has been home to every governor general since Confederation.

Over the years, various changes have been made to the stately old building to meet the demands of modern times. The grounds, the main residence and its interiors have also evolved to better reflect and reinforce Rideau Hall’s identity as one of Canada’s official residences.

Visit the State Rooms

Visit the State rooms where the governor general fulfills official duties, welcomes dignitaries and honours Canadians. The residence is home to a fine collection of Canadian art and furniture. On display are the works of such renowned Canadian artists as Jean Paul Lemieux, Emily Carr and Allen Sapp. A special exhibition on Canadian honours is also included in the tour.

Guided tours are free of charge. Each tour lasts 45 minutes. You can also visit the grounds

Tour Schedule

  • January 2 to April 26, 2019
    Daily (reservation required) - 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

  • April 27 to June 28, 2019
    Weekdays (reservation required) - 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Weekends (without reservation) - 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

  • June 29 to September 2, 2019
    Daily (without reservation) - 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.*
    *In July and August, you can visit the residence at your own pace from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
    Guides are posted in each room to answer your questions.

  • September 3 to October 27, 2019
    Weekdays (reservation required) - 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    Weekends (without reservation) - Noon to 4 p.m.

  • October 28 to December 20, 2019
    Daily (reservation required) - 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Schedule for Groups (10 or more)

Group visits for 10 or more people are offered year-round. Reservations are required 48 hours in advance. We can then book your reservation depending on the availability of the residence and the official events schedule.  Find more information at Plan Your Visit.

  • September to April
    10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

  • May and June
    9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

  • July and August
    Guided tours at 9 a.m.
    Self-guided tours (without reservation) - 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.


Rideau Hall is a working residence and scheduling for tours is subject to change due to official events.
Group tours are offered on statutory holidays from May to October.
Group tours are not offered on Remembrance Day, throughout the holiday season, or over the Easter long weekend.