THE WAR ENDS SOON
WINTERLUDE, FEB 1 – 18Celebrate the joys of winter, with three fun-filled weeks in February! Skate on the Rideau Canal Skateway, the world’s largest skating rink. Check out the dazzling ice sculptures at the Crystal Garden, or zoom down giant snow slides at Snowflake Kingdom—North America’s largest snow playground—in Gatineau. There’s fun for the entire family, and all sites are open on Family Day. Join us for Canada’s Capital winter celebration!
View Snowflake Kingdom Video
View Ice Sculpture Video
View Rideau Canal Skateway Video
VODOU IS A MUST-DO!If you’re visiting Canada's Capital in the coming months, don’t miss the Canadian Museum of Civilization’s fascinating look at the complex spiritual traditions, beliefs and practices of Haitian vodou. Vodou features over 300 objects from the Marianne Lehmann collection, recognized as the world’s most important collection of objects related to Vodou. But don’t come expecting to see the popular images of Vodou manufactured by Hollywood–this exhibition presents authentic and comprehensive insights into the history and continuing impact of Vodou practices in daily life, with explanations provided by practicing Vodouists. The exhibition continues at the Museum until early 2014.
HOLD ON TO YOUR HAT!The Canadian Museum of Nature is quaking with a new exhibition about the darker side of mother nature called, Nature Unleashed: Inside Natural Disasters. Earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, tornados-nature’s natural forces have shaped the planet and this exhibition leaves no stone unturned in explaining how they work, the power they unleash, and how people cope and adapt. Get blown away inside a hurricane simulator, take a look at the hot topic of lava, and hold onto your hat during a showing of the film, Tornado Alley 3D! The exhibition continues at the Museum until May 2013.
SKATING, ANYONE?Ottawa in winter is an outdoor enthusiast’s dream destination, with activity aplenty. If you’re a skater, Ottawa is, of course, home to the world’s largest naturally frozen rink, the Rideau Canal Skateway – to our knowledge, the only UNESCO World Heritage Site on which you can skate. The Skateway is 7.8 kilometres of fun winding from the heart of downtown to Dow’s Lake – with plenty of change huts and snack bars along the way. The Canal is open, weather permitting, through January and February. And if it’s too warm for the Canal, head to the artificially frozen Rink of Dreams at Ottawa City Hall.
View Rideau Canal Skateway Video
SKIING, ANYONE?If you're into cross-country skiing, there’s no better place than Gatineau Park – just minutes from downtown by car. The park has one of the largest multi-use trail networks in North America, with more than 250 kilometres of trails — 150 kilometres of which are mechanically groomed — offering a “great escape” for classic crosscountry skiing, skate skiing, back-country skiing and snowshoeing. The trail network includes several parking lots and trails that are rated according to varying levels of difficulty. Cabins, yurts and winter tents are available for those who want to overnight. If you’d like to stay in town there are also groomed trails at a number of city parks including Mooney’s Bay. For competitive skiiers, there’s the Canadian Ski Marathon February 9 & 10, and the 35th Gatineau Loppet, February 15 – 17. If you’re a downhiller, don’t despair – there are great hills and resorts just minutes from downtown in the Gatineau Hills and just west of the City.
Download Gatineau Park Ski Trails Map
YUM, TASTES LIKE WINTER!With three culinary schools including Le Cordon Bleu Ottawa Culinary Institute, the Canada's Capital has come of age as a dining destination. This January 10 - 26, local restaurants across the city are participating in Ottawa Magazine’s WinterBites, offering three-course prix fixe menus for $15, $20 or $25 (lunch) or $25, $30 or $40 (dinner). Beverages, taxes, and gratuities are additional. Click here to check out who’s participating.
CASINO DU LAC-LEAMYIf you’re into gaming, excitement and fine dining, head directly to the Casino du Lac-Leamy – just minutes from Parliament Hill. This spectacular Casino features 64 gaming tables – poker, baccarat, blackjack, roulette, sic bo, keno – and 1,870 slot machines. It's Le Baccara gourmet restaurant is one of only a handful of Canadian restaurants awarded the CAA-AAA Five Diamond distinction. And the Casino presents an ongoing lineup of great entertainment and dinner theatre.
View Casino Getaway Package Video