COVE™ City Guide: OttawaJune 19, 2019
Ottawa is so much more than the nation’s capital city. Once regarded as a sleepy home to bureaucrats, Ottawa is quickly becoming a destination for those looking for an urban adventure. Surrounded by the Rideau Canal, stunning national parks and ample national landmarks, a weekend adventure to Ottawa will not disappoint.
Gatineau Park, Gatineau
Immerse yourself in nature in Gatineau Park, the Capital’s conservation and outdoor recreation park is just 15 minutes from downtown Ottawa–Gatineau. In summer enjoy swimming, hiking, biking, camping and in winter, go cross-country skiing, snowshoeing. The Park is a sanctuary for more than 100 species of plants and animals at risk.
Commissioners Park, Ottawa
The Canadian Tulip Festival was established to celebrate the historic Royal gift of tulips from the Dutch to Canadians immediately following the Second World War as a symbol of international friendship. The Festival reserves the memorable role of the Canadian troops in the liberation of the Netherlands and Europe, as well as commemorates the birth of Dutch Princess Margriet in Ottawa during World War II—the only royal personage ever born in Canada.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the “Canal” weaves its way through Ottawa’s quaint downtown core. The Rideau Canal is walkable and bikeable in the summer months, and you can skate the entire thing in the colder winter months. Hop on a houseboat if you feel inclined to row down its banks.
After exploring Ottawa, take a short drive over the Chelsea, Quebec and check into the Nordik Spa-Nature. Treat yourself to a massage in the spa’s tiny wood cabins amongst the hundreds of saunas. This spa is the largest of its kind in North America.
National Gallery of Canada
The National Gallery of Canada is home to the world’s most comprehensive collection of Canadian art. The massive building is host to an impressive array of works by Canadian artists, including rooms dedicated to First Nations art and modern art.
ByWard Market is a buzzing hub of outdoor market stalls, specialty food shops, bars, restaurants and galleries. It’s also known for its street art and local clothing retailers. Perch on a patio for an afternoon and take time to explore this vibrant public space.
Origin Trade Inc.
Located in the centre of the Byward Market, Origin Trade Inc. offers a selection of regional foods and beverages, which show their love of Ottawa. Origin supports local suppliers and focuses on serving the freshest products. They source foods from Ontario farms, wine from local wineries and craft beer from local breweries.
Kettleman’s Bagel Co.
Kettleman’s Bagel Co. serves Montreal-style bagels with an Ottawa twist. The bagels are served hot and fresh – and are perfect for a hearty breakfast or lunch before exploring the city. They also make a nice picnic option if you’d like to enjoy al fresco along the Canal or on the lawn of the Parliament Buildings.
Fraser Café is an independently-owned, seasonally-focused restaurant run by brothers, Ross & Simon Fraser. Their focus is locally sourced and globally inspired dishes in a cozy setting. Fraser Café is a must for brunch on Saturdays and Sundays too.
- Take a free tour of Canada’s Parliament Buildings. Time your tour to take place during Question Period to get a glimpse of MPPs and the Prime Minister debate issues of the day.
- Eat a Beaver Tail, an Ottawa delicacy, this sugary, puffy pastry is best consumed with an extremely hot, hot chocolate or coffee. Sometimes a beavertail is the only thing that can warm one up on a cold Ottawa afternoon.
- Skate or walk along the Canal. The Rideau Canal connects Canada’s capital city of Ottawa, Ontario, to Lake Ontario and the Saint Lawrence River at Kingston, Ontario. It’s an impressive 202 kilometres in length.
This list is just the start, we hope you explore all Ottawa has to offer and discover more. At COVE™ our goal is to Make Each Experience a Discovery ™.
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