Winter has finally arrived in Ottawa as if somebody suddenly flicked the nasty weather switch. But it was an inevitable fate and it’s easy to take it out on our ancestors for settling in this northern region of the world. Then again, I think about how lucky we were to have had such a warm and long-lived summer and how it will be back again! For now, it’s time to embrace the seasonal change and welcome all the great things that winter has to offer in our Nation’s Capital!
Ottawa is home to some of the best activities during the winter months and I’ve added some of my fav obvious ones below to help inspire some adventure and keep you moving! The human body was built to move and keep active so get inspired!
Hit the slopes! Our city is surrounded by nature & rolling hills! It won’t be long before the resorts open their doors and we’ve certainly got our fair share of slopes! It’s seriously a blast & a great workout to get outside with your skis or snowboard on those sunny winter days! I typically avoid skiing when it’s brutally cold out, but thankfully winter isn’t minus 30 degrees celsius every single day and the sun still shines! Checkout Ottawa-Gatineau’s ski resorts here
Shopping just got way better in Ottawa! #TheNewRideau! On those brutally cold days, take shelter at the new Rideau Centre and shop til you drop! With new stores like SImons, H&M, and Nordstrom having just opened their doors this past August, you’ll feel a resurgence of downtown urban energy. Ottawa’s small-town feel is a changin’. Visit the CF Rideau Centre website & check out what they have to offer! Don't forget to visit the Nordstrom E bar cafe or Green Rebel and try one of our freshly pressed organic juices!
Holiday Season at the National Arts Centre will help awaken your holiday spirit. That warm and fuzzy feeling you get during this time of year is good for your well being and should be embraced. You can get tickets to see classic holiday season performances including The Nutcracker which runs from November 30th through December 4th or A Christmas Carol which runs from December 13th through December 31st.
Break a sweat & work those buns when you skate that 8 KM Rideau Canal, otherwise known as the World’s Largest Skating Rink! Once you’re out on the ice, you’ll warm up fast! Take a break at one of the warm up stations. The National Capital Commision recently (a few years ago) introduced new elegantly designed ice huts where you can sit to tie your skates and warm up with family, friends, and laughter. Great memories to be had!
Ottawa 2017! You’ve heard and seen it everywhere! Ottawa has been gearing up for it’s 150 birthday which will put our city on the Cool Map! Just watch their website’s video to get a sense of what we should expect for the duration of an entire year as soon as the Near Year arrives! I’m looking forward to this city’s energetic awakening!
Then there’s Winterlude! It’s fun for families. Not my cup of tea per se buut, I do enjoy the energy and winter holiday spirit this festival offers. It’s a great time to throw a party or two amongst friends and family! To find out what’s happening and when, check out their website here. Winterlude happens in February.
For smaller, more neighbourhood-y things to do, check out Ottawa Tourism - Neighbourhoods for a quick guide on Ottawa’s main neighbourhood attractions. See what’s cool in the ByWard Market, the Bank Street Village, Chinatown, Little Italy, Wellington West and more! From fine dining, to local shops (like ours in Wellington West), and the list goes on!
Finally, you need to go to Spa Nordik. It couldn't be a better time of year to sit in the most romantic outdoor hot tubs and ground in nature! Winter sometimes leaves us disconnected from the outdoors because we're so bundled up but here's your chance to be half naked under the crisp night sky and as comfortable as can be from the hot bubbling water! Take you favourite person or persons with you and enjoy the magic.
The main thing is to not let the fact that we’re the world’s third coldest capital city get you down! Stay active. Stay engaged. Get inspired.
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