With the arrival of the autumn season, Ottawa awakens to a crisp breeze and beautiful fall colours. In this beautiful city, decorated with all the luminous tones and vibrant colours of the new season, exciting outdoor activities and delectable foodie events abound. From fresh culinary delights to beautiful fall scenes, Ottawa has several activities that will help you embrace fall and all of its glorious aspects!
The best part is that most of these events take place in Ottawa’s scenic downtown core and are within walking distance of most downtown area hotels.
For all ages
Gold Rush! – El Dorado in British Columbia
Running from April 8, 2016 to Jan. 8, 2017, this is one of the Canadian Museum of History‘s newest special exhibits! Travel back to 1858 and find out how the gold rush attracted thousands of miners and entrepreneurs to British Columbia’s Fraser Canyon, transforming the landscape forever. This exhibit is housed in Canada’s most visited museum!
Napoleon and Paris (June 16, 2016 to Jan. 8, 2017)
See this new exhibit at the Canadian Museum of History that highlights Napoleon’s career, Paris’ major political players and the everyday life of Parisians. See more than 250 artifacts, including personal items and furniture, that give a glimpse into the Emperor’s inner circle. Also, through paintings, models and architectural drawings experience Napoleon’s ambitious dream of turning Paris into the capital of Europe.
Reptiles (Oct. 7, 2016 to April 8, 2017)
Interested in reptiles? Head to the Canadian Museum of Nature for Reptiles, a new special exhibit that will feature live reptiles from around the world! Get up close to deadly snakes, colourful lizards, turtles and more. The little ones are sure to be entertained!
See an Ottawa Senators game
Hockey season has arrived in Ottawa! The Ottawa Senators are Ottawa’s NHL hockey team. See the ‘Sens’ play at Canadian Tire Centre – just west of Ottawa’s downtown core – throughout the fall and winter seasons. Ottawa Senators tickets are available through CapitalTickets.ca.
Nature Nocturne (Nov. 25, 2016)
Get ready to dance the night away at the Canadian Museum of Nature’s Nature Nocturne event! From 8:00 p.m. to midnight, the museum transforms itself into a nightclub complete with a DJ and bar service. Dance the night away among the museum’s famous dinosaurs – this is a great photo op – or grab a drink in the beautifully lit Queens’ Lantern. This is a great event to attend as a couple or with a group of friends. The theme for Nov. 25 is ‘Glow,’ so get ready for some glow-in-the-dark fun!
Alex Janvier (Nov. 25, 2016 to Apr. 17, 2017)
Alex Janvier, a special exhibit at the National Gallery of Canada, celebrates the artist’s lifetime of creativity. See more than 150 remarkable paintings and drawings, some of which have never been on public display before! Janvier’s creations explore Indigenous culture, history, his experience of residential schools and the effects of colonization.
Foodie Wednesdays at Nordik Spa-Nature
On Wednesday, head to Nordik to take advantage of the spa’s Foodie Wednesdays offer. Each Wednesday, you can enjoy Nordik’s Thermal Baths and Saunas experience along with a delicious four-course meal and wine pairings at the spa’s Restö restaurant. Enjoy a great meal and then relax in a hot tub in the fresh spring air! Nordik’s Foodie Wednesdays package starts at $108.75 CDN per person.
Located in Chelsea, Que., at just a 20-minute drive north of downtown Ottawa, this is the largest spa of its kind in North America! A reservation is recommended.
These are only a few suggestions to get your autumn fun in Ottawa started. There are also packages available that provide passes for various Ottawa attractions.
And as Ottawa is located between the major cities of Montreal and Toronto, consider taking the VIA Rail train to get here. Get cozy in a seat and take in the beauty of fall all along the way!