Winter in Ottawa is a beautiful sight to see.
Between skating on the Rideau Canal, the twinkling of holiday lights and a fresh Beavertail with hot cocoa in hand, it’s a season you just can’t miss.
Here are some ways you can find your own winter wonderland while following public health measures.
Skating in the Capital
Rideau Canal Skateway
As winter approaches each year, the famous Rideau Canal is transformed into the Rideau Canal Skateway – the world’s largest skating rink.
According to the National Capital Commission’s website, their team is working to ensure that the necessary health and safety measures will be put in place for this year’s 51st skating season.
Sens Rink of Dreams
The Rink of Dreams is located in front of City Hall on Marion Dewar Plaza.
Huts near the rink – Beavertails, Final Pass Skate Pro and the skate-changing facilities – are closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.
National Gallery of Canada
The National Gallery of Canada has been featuring art since 1880. Admission to the Gallery’s national collection is free of charge from the hours of 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. on Thursday evenings.
Their newest addition to the Gallery is an exhibition called Moira Davey: The Faithful, and is open until Jan. 3, 2021. It features varying images and films of Davey’s family, friends and daily life.
Ottawa Art Gallery
The Ottawa Art Gallery is a not-for-profit, charitable organization that was formed by local Ottawa artists in 1988.
Director and CEO of the art gallery Alexandra Badzak says that the gallery represents a coming of age for the city’s art scene in her director’s message.
One of their highlighted exhibitions is one that was originally featured in South Korea and Japan. RythymScape, created by multiple artists, is a series of contemporary pieces that reflect on the pulse of life, society and work. The exhibition will be open until Jan. 3, 2021.
Canadian War Museum
The Canadian War Museum is deemed the country’s national museum of military history.
Their art collection is comprised of over 3 million artifacts, specimens, art works, documents and sound and visual recordings.
The CWM’s newest exhibition, Forever Changed, is open as of Dec. 4, 2020. The display ties together compelling stories with many artifacts to help showcase personal experiences in Canada and around the world during WWII.
Fun for the Family (Bring a car)
Magic of Lights Ottawa
The Magic of Lights Ottawa event has returned for its fifth year in a row. The drive-by light show, hosted in Wesley Clover Parks, is a fun, festive holiday experience the whole family can enjoy.
One price per carload sits at a $20 value and all proceeds from the event go to the CHEO Foundation.
Each winter, residents of Taffy Lane in Orléans, Ont. decorate their houses for the holidays. But not just ordinary decorations – large blow-ups of festive characters and lights coming from every which way.
Samantha Smiley-Johnson, a resident in Orléans, does the drive-by every year to start the holiday season. She has been doing the drive every year since she was little.
“We would pile into the car, stop at [Tim Hortons] for hot chocolate,” says Smiley-Johnson. “It always meant that Christmas was coming. Now, I take my husband every year to start the season.”