What to do when in Ottawa

Ottawa is Canada’s capital city, and as in any capital city there is plenty to see and do while visiting there. No matter what time of year, you will always find something to do and see while on vacation here. But if you are looking for something special to check out, then these might interest you.

1. Parliament Hill

Parliament Hill is the most visited Ottawa attraction, because it is the seat of Canada’s federal government and a background setting for national celebrations throughout the year. During the summer months you can witness the Changing of the Guard ceremony, which is held every morning on the front lawns. While, in the evenings you are invited to the spectacular Sound and Light show. Both events are free and are a must on everyone’s checklist.

2. National Cultural Attractions

Ottawa has an incredible cultural scene full of attractions such as museums and galleries. Visit the amazing National Gallery of Canada, displaying some of the best art in the world, or the Canadian War Museum. There are so many more museums to see and experience, so why not take advantage of the National Museums Passport? You can save money when you visit three out of the seven national museums in three days. Perfect for those on a weekend break.

3. UNESCO Rideau Canal

Rideau Canal is a historic waterway used by boaters from spring to fall. In winter in becomes the worlds largest naturally frozen skating rink. It winds its way through the centre of Ottawa, connecting the Ottawa River with the stepped locks next to Parliament Hill.

4. The Outdoors – Adventure

You can find some Canada’s best white-water raftering, kayaking and other watersports on the Ottawa River. You can even end your day with some adrenaline inducing bungee jumping There are also 800Km or 497 miles worth of cycling pathways, connecting parks, national sites and natural areas throughout Ottawa.

5. Festivals

Ottawa is a city of celebrations. There are festivals happening all year round. The Canadian Tulip Festival in May gives visitors to admire over a million tulips and enjoying special events. Canada Day, on the 1st of July is the biggest party the city celebrates, and one of the largest in the country. You may also want to visit the many festivals held throughout the year, including the Ottawa Jazz Festival, Ottawa Chamberfest, and RBC Bluesfest, which welcome some of the world’s biggest acts to the city. There is also plenty to do in winter, as Canada celebrates Winterlude.

6. Culinary scene

The culinary scene in Ottawa is growing constantly, with a community of Ottawa chefs and diverse restaurants making names for themselves both nationally and internationally. Take a guided tour with C’est Bon Cooking and explore food shops, farmers’ markets and different restaurants. Or enjoy the Ottawa Tasting Tours and Experience Food, who make all the arrangements for you to enjoy multiple venues in one single outing.

7. Performing Arts

The Capital is home to one of the best performing arts venue in the country, the National Arts Centre. It offers locals and visitors alike a full line-up of music, dance and theatre, plus popular touring acts and shows. Ottawa also has a thriving local theatre scene, including the Great Canadian Theatre Company, Ottawa Little Theatre, The Gladstone and La Nouvelle Scène.

8. City tours

Ottawa is filled with sights and attractions worth visiting and seeing, and just about as many ways to see them. Experience a tour on both land and water with the Lady Dive Amphibus or take in a walking tour across Ottawa’s picturesque ByWard Market courtyards.

9. Night Life

Ottawa has a great nightlife scene with plenty of bars and restaurants where you can enjoy a drink before heading to the club for some dancing. If Free Vegas Slots are more your thing, there also a great range of casinos to enjoy.