15 Best Things to Do and See in Ottawa

Thinking of moving from Montreal to Ottawa? Like any good capital city, Ottawa is a place to learn and explore the history of the country and the world. But it also has a lot to offer in the way of world-class entertainment, both urban and national.

Visit Parliament Hill

Parliament Hill is not only the seat of the country's government; it is also a cultural and community center with activities that take place in a truly incredible setting. For example, you can do yoga on Parliament Hill. During the summer, every Wednesday at noon, hundreds of people in yoga gear flood the hill with their placemats to sit and stretch in front of the iconic buildings.

Enjoy the Rideau Canal

Many people know that the Rideau Canal is the world's largest naturally frozen skating rink (4.8 miles long). But the channel is a year-round destination to visit if you want to have some outdoor fun. Yes, in the winter, you can skate along a seemingly endless track over the canal waters and enjoy a ride through downtown Ottawa with two blades strapped to your feet.

Try BeaverTail If you want a unique Canadian experience, you can't help but try the local specialties. BeaverTails Canada, also known as BeaverTails, is a chain of Canadian bakeries known for marketing a dessert that bears the same name because, when fried and stretched by hand, it looks like a beaver tail.

Visit Casa Laurier

Located at 335 Laurier Avenue in Ottawa's east end, Casa Laurier is a historic Victorian house that once served as the residence of two of Canada's most popular prime ministers. Sir Wilfrid Laurier (for whom the building was named years later) and William Lyon Mackenzie King.

Tour of Olde Maple Lane Farm from Stanley

Stanley's Olde Maple Lane Farm is popular for its natural beauty and serves as a venue for weddings, retreats and other group outings. It is located only 10 minutes from downtown Ottawa and includes a quarry, various log buildings and a wooden barn surrounded by huge maple trees.

Discover the Natural History Museum of Canada.

The museum essentially showcases the entire natural world in a handful of exhibits that will leave you thinking about the time that has passed. And if you're looking for a big attraction, it's hard to describe how impressive it is to see the complete skeleton of a blue whale, the largest animal on the planet.

Visit the Canadian War Museum

Sitting on the banks of the Ottawa River, it's hard to see the Canadian War Museum. The distinctive museum building is mostly flat, but it shoots 80 feet into the air on one side, like a waving hand. A vast collection of tanks, military vehicles, weapons and uniforms fill the walls, allowing us to see and experience the equipment used by generations of brave men and women on the battlefield.

Live the National Arts Center experience

The National Arts Centre is one of Canada's largest and most popular art exhibition venues, with more than 600 presentations annually. Its four stages typically host popular touring shows, international talent and many of Canada's top performers. Whether you're interested in dance, theater or music, you're sure to find a show that interests you, no matter when you go. So visit the center and enjoy a ballet tour, enjoy the house orchestra or attend a high quality English theatre performance.

National Gallery of Canada

The National Gallery of Canada gets a lot of attention because of the 30 foot tall spider statue in front of the beautiful glass building. But once you get past your arachnophobia, the interior of the gallery is an incredible institution of art. With nearly 40,000 works, it covers everything from Inuit sculpture to the latest contemporary art.

Stop at the Peace Tower

The Peace Tower functions as a bell and clock and is located in the central block of the parliamentary buildings. It is officially called Torre de la Victoria et de la Paz or Victory and Peace in French and appears on Canadian bank bills of 50 $. The roof is made of concrete and was covered with copper to give a greenish tint while the walls were made of sandstone.

Feel part of the War Memorial

The National War Memorial, known as "The Response", is located in the heart of Ottawa, in Confederate Square, within the Parliament Buildings and with the Gatineau Hills as a backdrop. It was unveiled in 1939 to commemorate Canada's participation in the First World War and has since become a national icon representing the sacrifice of all Canadians during wartime.

Canada Aviation and Space Museum

At the Canada Aviation and Space Museum, you can take a step towards answering that question. Hear what life is like on the International Space Station through the voices of the astronauts who live there and find out what it's like to wear a space helmet and travel to the station. Once you've fulfilled your childhood dream, the rest of the museum offers 130 different military and civilian ships to explore, as well as a real flight simulator, complete with full motion.

The Byward Market area

For nearly two centuries, farmers and craft vendors have flocked to the ByWard Market to share the fruits (literal and metaphorical) of their labor. What was once a simple market has become the absolute center of food, shopping and entertainment. More than 260 jobs occupy the market itself, while more than 500 businesses have set up shop in the area around the market.

Canadian Museum of History

Although not technically in Ottawa, the Canadian Museum of History is just a few minutes away, across the Gatineau River. It is one of the oldest museums in the country, dating back to 1856, and also the most visited in Canada, with 1.2 million visitors per year. The museum, located in Gatineau, has 4 million exhibits that trace the history of the country and the world back 20,000 years.

Ottawa Haunted Walks

This is not your typical walking tour. When you take a haunted walk in Ottawa, you'll really test your mettle and see if you pass or fail, as these are different 90-minute walks that will take you to some of the city's haunted buildings. This includes a jail turned hostel, where Canada's last public hanging took place, and the historic Fairmont Chateau Laurier, where people have given information about randomly moving objects inside rooms. Ghost stories, anecdotes from the city's dark past and a little history are mixed together to provide a night of entertainment.

For information call Alex 514-569-4443

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