Entertainment and Attractions
Ottawa is a rather young city, it is not even 200 years old, so you will not find a completely venerable antiquity here. However, the list of attractions is quite long.
Beautiful examples of Gothic and neo-Gothic architecture – Parliament Hill and the Basilica of Our Lady. The first is a whole ensemble of several blocks, decorated with slender towers, on which intricate stone figures are carved. The most famous is the Peace Tower, its main treasure is a carillon (mechanical device) of 53 bells, they can be heard daily. The basilica is crowned with a gilded statue of the Madonna. Inside the building is a collection of beauties in the form of stained-glass windows, figures of saints, a gilded altar and a phenomenal organ of 4,700 pipes.
A calmer architecture is demonstrated by the Rideau Hall mansion, which managed to be the residence of Elizabeth II herself. Now he is proud of a luxurious park and a unique collection of antiques and art. At Parliament Hill and Rideau Hall you can see the changing of the guards in the traditional red uniform and shaggy caps.
Tourists unanimously give the title of the most original attraction to the Upper Canada Village complex. This is a whole village with picturesque meadows, forests and ponds, where time stood still at the mark of “1860”: wooden buildings and crafts of that period are collected here, mini-trains and horse-drawn carriages run, weavers and flour millers work, bake real bread and make incredible cheese.
You can take a look at the flour milling at Watsons Mill – they say that a ghost lives here. And to breathe in the intoxicating Canadian air, walk around marvelous gardens, watch the life of animals, tourists are invited by the Experimental Farm. Here you can stock up on recipes or ready-made dishes of rural cuisine, see intricate village buildings – in a word, forget for a few hours that you are in the very heart of the main city of a huge country.
Museums in Ottawa
In terms of the number of museums, Ottawa surpasses all other Canadian cities. The most famous of them is the National Art Gallery, which contains the richest collection of paintings and sculptures not only by Canadian artists, but also by famous European masters. The exhibition includes paintings by El Greco, Cranach, Picasso, Léger and many others.
The Military Museum contains exhibits related to the First and Second World Wars, and visiting the Cold War Museum, you can find yourself in a real bomb shelter.
The Civilization Museum exhibits exhibits that tell about the history of Canada, from the migration of the aborigines and the invasion of the Vikings to the present day. The Agricultural Museum is a working livestock farm located within the city. There you can ride a horse and have a picnic.
Holidays and events
The festive season opens with the Winterlude festival, which takes place in February and is famous for its ice sculpture exhibitions and a 7-kilometer skating rink where bed races are held.
The brightest event in Canada – the traditional Tulip Festival is celebrated in May. Back in 1945, the royal family of the Netherlands “sowed” love for these flowers in the hearts of local residents, who sent plant bulbs as a gift for their salvation during the Nazi occupation. During the days of the festival, the largest parks in Ottawa are full of multi-colored flower beds with tulips, and many cultural events take place.
In summer, the sounds of chamber music, blues and jazz are carried over the city – music festivals replace each other during June-August. At the beginning of June, there are Ottawa Open Days, when institutions closed at other times become available to visitors, in the middle of the month they celebrate the Pow-wow holiday – a meeting of Indian tribes. During the summer months, the Lak-Limi casino organizes a fireworks festival, and the beginning of autumn is celebrated with a balloon festival.
Ottawa has a humid continental climate, the temperature regime is close to the south of the European part of Russia. Winter is usually snowy, lasting from December to mid-March, although sometimes frosts occur even in May. Summer falls on the period from mid-May to mid-September. See citypopulationreview.com for weather in the capital of Canada.
Winter and summer are characterized by sharp temperature changes. The warmest months are June-August. But their reputation as an ideal time for a holiday has been greatly tarnished by the rains: it is in August that the highest amount of precipitation falls. So the most favorable season to visit Ottawa is early autumn.
Ottawa is attractive for shopaholics of all stripes. Those who cannot imagine their wardrobe without high-profile brands will pay tribute to the local collection of boutiques and the size of shopping centers. And those who are crazy about handmade trinkets will not leave without a thousand and one purchases from the local markets.
It is better to take the whole day to hunt for interesting things. You should start from Sparks Street, where there are shopping centers 240 Sparks and CD Howe Building (240 Sparks St). Then walk along Banks Street, looking in turn at all the oncoming shops. And then you can take a taxi and leave for shoes, jewelry, accessories at the Bayshore Shopping Center (off. site in English).
You need to look for handmade souvenirs, as well as jams, cheeses, pastries and other products of local farmers in the famous ByWard Market or in Upper Canada Village.
In addition to branded trophies, it is worth bringing “dream catchers” and other Indian crafts, beaver figurines – the symbol of Canada, the famous maple syrup and equally famous Ice Wine, the form of the national hockey team and other things with maple leaves.
Cuisine and restaurants in Ottawa
In Ottawa, and in Canada in general, there is no national cuisine. The recipes that are cooked here are an unimaginable mixture of North American Indian, French and British cooking traditions. The only thing that can be said for sure is that they are very fond of meat, especially venison, rabbit meat and game. Therefore, all kinds of chickens, melt-in-your-mouth steaks and scalding stews are served in every institution.
Restaurant or cafe – whatever you choose, the price tag will not please. The most modest snack for two will cost 25 CAD, a full dinner in a restaurant with alcohol – 65 CAD. But it’s not worth spending money on food – otherwise how can you describe to your friends the skill of local chefs?
Ottawa has great lobster and beef in maple syrup. Locals also recommend “fillet brochette” – tender meat mixed with champignons and onions on a skewer.
The hallmark of Ottawa is the delicacy “beaver tails”, sometimes called bear tails – these are puff pastries with a sweet filling. Of the drinks, craft beer, which is brewed in private breweries, is popular.