Ottawa’s not so hidden gems. If you’re planning a trip to Canada, visit Canada’s capital city, Ottawa! There is something to do for everyone! From families, to groups or individuals, you’ll find something fun to do, and the food there is delicious, too. If you are looking for free things to do while you visit, here’s a list of my three tops.
- Parliament. This building is where most of Canada’s politics get discussed. If you want to see some unique, and empowering bits of Canadian history, make this your first stop. The building is in the center of the downtown core, and cannot be missed. Take a bus, a cab, or walk. The moment you walk up the path towards the building, you will see the eternal flame, a grand lawn, and if you look straight up, you’ll see the peace tower. From there, take a walk just behind the main staircase and through a metal detector (sorry strollers not allowed), and take the elevator up, on your way up, check out a gift shop, or see lists of names of our fallen soldiers. The best view in the city is at the top of the elevator ride, the 360 degree views are breathtaking.
- Rideau Canal. You can actually see the canal from the peace tower, or if you walk just outside the parliament grounds, you can see the Rideau canal locks. If you’re looking for a more relaxing experience on the Rideau Canal, check out the restaurants like the Canal Ritz, or visit Dows Lake near little Italy, and rent a paddle boat during the summer or skates during the winter. If you visit during the coldest part of the winter, the canal turns into the worlds largest skate way, you can see ice sculptures, listen to live bands, and eat beaver-tails( not real beaver tails, but a funnel cake type desert).
- Museums. On Thursday from 4 pm to closing, the museums are free to visit. They do get busy during these times, but it is a great way to get a bit of culture here is Ottawa. Ottawa has many amazing museums. Check out the gallery of Canada which has some of the worlds most amazing pieces of artwork. If you are looking for something more kid friendly, a 5-minute drive from downtown has the most kid friendly museum, the museum of civilization. The museum of nature in downtown Ottawa, often has, not only dinosaur bones on exhibit, but if you’re a rock collector, you can add to your collection here.
When it’s time to relax, and unwind, grab some takeout and have a picnic on the grand lawn at parliament hill, or come on a Wednesday afternoon and join in a weekly free yoga experience, weather permitting.
Have you had an amazing experience in Ottawa? Let me know what you came up with in the comments below.