Alive with celebration
Ottawa is a destination alive with celebration, beginning each year with February’s Winterlude, continuing through May’s Canadian Tulip Festival, heating up July 1 with the biggest Canada Day celebration in the country, and going all-out with headliner summer music festivals. Plus, canal skating in the winter!
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Top Things to Do
Adventure right downtown
Wilderness Tours’ Ottawa City Rafting running half-day white-water rafting trips within view of Parliament Hill on the Ottawa River.
Canada’s most iconic site
It’s not a trip to Ottawa without a visit to Parliament Hill. In the morning, see the Changing of the Guard. With its own regimental band and pipers, it’s quite the scene! For the full capital experience, come back in the evening for the Northern Lights Sound & Light Show.
For every season
For each season there is a different way to experience the Rideau Canal. Walk along the canal’s scenic banks or take a relaxing cruise on its waters. During the winter the canal becomes the world’s largest skating rink.
Renowned cultural attractions
Explore seven national museums including the world’s largest indoor collection of totem poles, ancient dinosaur fossils and aviation artifacts.
The oldest and largest farmers’ market in Canada
Stroll through Byward Market for fresh food, crafts, maple syrup, souvenirs, unique restaurants, clubs and shops.
Fresh, flavourful and drool worthy creations
Ottawa’s diverse culinary scene is making a name for itself in Canada and abroad. There are over 1300 farms located within the city limits and the resulting local products are used by many Ottawa chefs. Check of the restaurants here.
Ottawa, Canada's Capital
- Explore the breath-taking Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica
- Watch butterflies flutter and dance with this video tour of the Canadian Museum of Nature.
- Inspire a love of aviation with online exhibits from the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum
- Take an interactive virtual tour through the Canadian History Hall and learn about Canadian history from coast to coast. The beautiful Canadian Museum of History is located just across the river in Gatineau, QC from Ottawa.
- Close your eyes and image you are at The National Arts Centre with this audio recording of a concert from the NAC Orchestra archives, specially selected by Alexander Shelley, director of the orchestra and famed conductor.
- Virtually tour the Bytown Museum to learn how Ottawa went form a lumber town to the country’s modern capital.