7 Outdoor Activities Around Ottawa You Can Enjoy This Holiday Season
Browse a covered market at a brasserie
Price: Self-guided tour
When: January 29 and 30, from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Address: 2265 Robertson Road, Nepean, ON
Why you need to go: You can browse ten local vendors in a cozy covered market inside the Kichesippi Beer Co dining room. There will be beachwear, vintage items, bath products, knitwear cozy and more. If you fancy a pint or a snack afterwards, they have fire pits on their terrace so you can have a drink outside.
Have a winter adventure across the river
Address: 741 boul. Maloney E., Gatineau, Quebec
Why you need to go: Parc du Lac-Beauchamp is a large wooded area in Gatineau where you can cross-country ski, snowshoe, ice skate and tube slide. Tubing rentals are available for $6.25 per hour, and you can rent other equipment like trekking poles and snowshoes. You may also spot a deer!
Eat pizza at an ice cream bar
Courtesy of the Grand Pizzeria & Bar
Price: $6+ for food and drinks
Address: 74 George Street, Ottawa, ON
Why you have to go: The outdoor bar made of solid ice is back at the Grand Pizzeria starting Friday, January 28. It will be open all weekend, with live music on Saturday. Along with alcoholic beverages like a Mocha Martini, you can enjoy their wood-fired pizza next to the heaters and fireplaces.
Hike a secret forest trail
Address: 3546-3700 Roger Stevens Drive, North Gower, ON
Why you need to go: The Marlborough Forest is a vast natural area that is part of the Rideau Trail network and one of many magical forest hikes around Ottawa. You can enjoy an easy hike through snow-covered trees on the Cedar Grove Nature Trail, a 2 kilometer loop near a pond.
Find Ottawa’s tallest snowman
Price: Free (Accept donations to CHEO)
Address: 773 Holt Crescent, Ottawa, ON
Why you need to go: Waldo, Ottawa’s giant snowman, is truly a sight to behold. He moved from his home in Orleans aged 14 to the Elmvale Acres neighborhood. The snowman is currently about 18 feet tall, but if more snow arrives, creator Luc Guertin plans to build it and hopes to make it taller than 20 feet this year.
Discover the heated terraces of the valley
Address: 729 Mill Street and 636 Mill Street and 12612 Lanark Road, Calabogie, ON
Why you need to go: On The Rocks, Oh-el-la Cafe, and Calabogie Brewing are all within a three-minute drive of each other in Calabogie. You can enjoy a charcuterie board on a bar in snow, sip a coffee facing a lake and then drink a pint by a flowing river. They are also close to hiking trails and a ski resort.
Websites: one, two, three
Rent skis or snowshoes for a winter trail
Price: Free, donations welcome
When: Pick up at the Overbrook Community Center on Saturdays from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. and Tuesdays from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
When: Avenue Boyd pickup Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Thursdays from 2:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Address: 33 Quill Street and 877A Boyd Avenue, Ottawa, ON
Why you should go: try a winter sport for free! The Ottawa Outdoor Equipment Library supports equal access to the outdoors, aiming to make it more inclusive and is primarily run by volunteers. They offer us a free way to try new winter sports and enjoy the snow. Become a member online for free and reserve your pick-up time to rent snowshoes or skis, or consider donating an old pair you no longer use.
Hunt beautiful frozen waterfalls
Address: Boul. St. Joseph, Ottawa, ON
Why you need to go: Princess Louise Falls is right downtown and offers an easy escape into a magical winter wonderland. They seem tucked away, but you’ll find the waterfalls just steps away in the forest on St. Joseph Boulevard, or take a short hiking trail from the neighborhood off Princess Louise Drive.
Plan to dine out next week
When: January 31, 2022, from
Address: 155 Queen Street, Ottawa, ON
Why you need to go: Provincial restrictions are easing and restaurants can open at 50% capacity, so get ready to enjoy your favorite spots in town again! One of the many local places that will reopen for indoor dining on January 31 is the Bier Market. Make a plan for lunch or dinner this coming Monday.
In Ontario, a vaccine passport is required to access certain events, services and businesses, including restaurants and bars.
Before you go, check out our Guide to Responsible Travel to be informed, be safe, be smart, and most importantly, be respectful on your adventure.