Okay, I’m always to first one to say that Ottawa is a nice city, that there are plenty of things to do, that it’s picturesque, relaxed, etc.

But the truth is, it can get quite grim during the in-between months. It’s very picturesque in winter, under a heavy blanket of fresh white snow, when the Rideau Canal is packed with skaters, and during Winterlude with the ice sculptures. But when the snow starts to melt and it’s still cold out, it’s not so fun. On a rainy day, the downtown core can be downright depressing. We completely avoid some areas, for instance by the Ottawa River, until the weather gets nicer.

Well, it’s spring now, and we are rediscovering Ottawa. Dow’s Lake looks wonderful with the Tulips Festival. Parliament Hill and the Byward Market are awesome too—there are plenty of tourists, the patios are open and the atmosphere is fun.

Mark visited the locks that connect the Rideau Canal to the Ottawa River for the first time. It’s not easy to access it with a stroller so we skipped it last year… but since he doesn’t need a stroller anymore, we were good to go! I have always liked the place. It’s funny, for a city (and a country) obsessed with safety, the locks don’t feel that safe, for instance there are no gates preventing people from falling into the water and the walk across the locks is not for those who fear heights. The scenery is awesome, though: the locks are framed by the Parliament Buildings and the fairytale-like Fairmont Château Laurier hotel, Alexandra Bridge and the Canadian Museum of History on the Quebec side.

From the locks, we walked up to Sussex Street and then went to hang out at Major’s Hill Park, where Mark worked on his “rolling downhill” skills. We ended up at the Byward Market where he danced in front of a street performer much to everyone’s entertainment (sadly, we didn’t collect any change…).

Jaywalking (Ahem, in Front of a Police Car...)
Jaywalking (Ahem, in Front of a Police Car…)
Ottawa Locks
Ottawa Locks
Ottawa Locks
Ottawa Locks
Ottawa Locks
Ottawa Locks
Walking Across the Locks
Walking Across the Locks
Taking a Break
Taking a Break
Major's Hill Park
Major’s Hill Park
Major's Hill Park
Major’s Hill Park
Sussex Drive
Sussex Drive
Byward Market
Byward Market
Mark, Listening to a Street Performer
Mark, Listening to a Street Performer

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13 Comments

  1. Jeruen May 25, 2014 at 10:39 am

    I remember how it was very much similar to Buffalo. During the winter, it is grim. During the summer, things are awesome, stuff happens outside, and people linger outdoors. It starts around May and ends around October. After that, things are gray and cold and blah.

    Reply
    1. Zhu May 26, 2014 at 9:26 pm

      I visited Buffalo in the winter and yep, it was rather grim! 😆

      Reply
  2. I Say Oui May 25, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    Blue water! Blue sky! Green grass! How lovely.

    Reply
    1. Zhu May 26, 2014 at 9:26 pm

      Trust me, we couldn’t wait!

      Reply
  3. Holly Nelson May 25, 2014 at 5:35 pm

    That is how I feel about Hamilton right now! Oh, I was meant to be going to Ottawa (before I became unemployed) this summer. I really want to go!

    Reply
    1. Zhu May 26, 2014 at 9:26 pm

      Let me know if and when you come!

      Reply
  4. petite yaye May 28, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    mais qu’il est bôôôôôôôôô, épanoui comme un papillon de printemps !

    Reply
    1. Zhu May 28, 2014 at 4:22 pm

      Beau mais chiant des fois 😆

      Reply
  5. Cynthia May 30, 2014 at 5:55 am

    It looks really peaceful!

    Reply
    1. Zhu May 30, 2014 at 9:59 am

      It is actually, although it’s packed with tourists these days.

      Reply
  6. Christiane June 1, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    I never heard of the locks before ! I have to go visit then.

    Reply
    1. Zhu June 1, 2014 at 9:29 pm

      No? Right by the Parliament!

      Reply
      1. Christiane June 4, 2014 at 8:18 pm

        Now i have to go see them !!

        Reply

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