Originally Laflèche Cave, Aventure Laflèche is North America's largest aerial park and boasts all kinds of attractions. From the Aerial Park to snowshoe hiking to their famous Laflèche cavern, there's hardly a dull moment. With only a half-hour drive's away from Ottawa, the wilderness has never been more accessible. Rates vary, reservations required. See website for more details.
Originally named Colonel's Hill in honor of Colonel John By, the architect of the Canal Rideau, this park was renamed after By was replaced by a Major. The park offers a panoramic view of several major attractions, including Parliament Hill, the Ottawa River, the Museum of Civilization, the National Gallery and Notre-Dame Basilica. It's also the location of Colonel By's original home, or at least its foundation, as well as a statue of the city's founding father. The park is located along MacKenzie Avenue, directly behind the Chateau Laurier Hotel. Visitors can enjoy picnicking at the park's well maintained picnic areas. Taking a walk amidst the lush greenery is not a bad idea either! Escape the hustle bustle of the city and enjoy some tranquil moments at this beautiful park.
Fresh flowers often grace the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, an unnamed Canadian victim of the First World War. Towering above are 22 figures frozen in bronze as they rush forward into battle. Nurses, pilots, soldiers and sailors all represent tales of self-sacrifice and courage. Though prominently located in the busy downtown core, National War Memorial becomes the center of attention every November 11 at 11a, when the country marks Remembrance Day in honor of the men and women who paid the ultimate price for freedom.
Located on the grounds of Central Experimental Farm is the Dominion Arboretum. It houses a wide array of shrubs and plants as old as 1889. The arboretum is home to over 1,700 varieties of trees and bushes. It spans over 64.24 acres (26 hectares) and is home to the Ornamental Gardens where there is an annual showcase of plants, flowers and hedges.
Parliament Hill is the political heart of Canada. Situated on a bluff overlooking the Ottawa River, it is actually a collection of three turn-of-the-century Gothic structures known as the East Block, Centre Block and West Block. The West Block and East Block contain the offices of Members of Parliament. The House of Commons and the Senate are located in the Centre Block, with its soaring Peace Tower.
Built between 1827 and 1832 without the aid of powered machinery, the Rideau Canal is one of Ottawa's oldest landmarks. The canal runs from the Ottawa River near Parliament Hill to Hog's Back Falls on the south end of the city. During the summer months, a wide range of vessels, including tour boats, glide along the waterway. Come winter, the canal is transformed into the "World's Longest Skating Rink" and is a hub of activity during Ottawa's Winterlude festival.
Canada's capital city is a grand exhibition of storied heritage that manifests in prestigious museums and Victorian-era marvels, which it balances with a year-round love for adventure, culture and an overall zest for life. Founded in 1826, Ottawa is rich in cultural legacy and houses numerous museums, art galleries, memorials and heritage sites. While it used to be an Irish and French Christian settlement, Ottawa has now transformed into a multicultural city with a diverse population. Its historic heart revolves around Parliament Hill, where an appealing assemblage of stunningly designed buildings and landscaped greens co-exist in comforting harmony. Amid the architectural splendor of Canadian Parliament buildings that dot its stony streets, the National Gallery of Canada, precluded by the iconic arachnid sculpture of Maman stands out splendidly. Outside of its political center, Ottawa hums with a decidedly vibrant spirit, shaped up by seasonal festivals and events. While the Winterlude festival celebrates the city's Christmas-postcard-like appearance, a host of other festivals pay ode to the city's summer-fed harvest, regional music, and other art forms. Ottawa's famous Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site winds along the city's labyrinthine landscape, its frozen waters during the winter serving as a popular recreational avenue.
Located in downtown Ottawa, the Sparks Street is a pedestrian lane which runs from Elgin Street to Bronson Avenue. This street is home to the Sparks Street Mall which has a number of outdoor eateries and artwork. Apart from this, the street also houses some of the most important structures of this city. National War Memorial, National Arts Centre, Ottawa Post Office and 'Joy' copper sculpture are all a part of this lively stretch. The vibrancy of Spark Street comes from its annual festivals and events. These events, historic structures and shops attract both locals and and equal number of tourists. Shopping at Sparks Street is a wonderful experience as well. There are a number of leading fashion outlets along the street that make it a shopping hub too!
Built between 1839 and 1885, this neo-Gothic cathedral situated on Sussex Drive on the edge of the Byward Market is one of the oldest surviving churches in Ottawa. Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica's twin spires and gilded Madonna are easily identifiable from nearby Parliament Hill and the surrounding area. The interior of Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica is brightly painted and decorated with carved features, exquisite stained glass windows and hundreds of statues of various religious figures. The church is open daily for guided tours and prayer.