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Ottawa Attractions

Ottawa has some great attractions to check out including challenging hiking trails, exciting sports events, casinos, flower festivals and some of the most important historical sites in Canada.

Historic Landmarks and Heritage Sites
Parliament Hill is one of the most impressive Ottawa attractions.  Its most outstanding feature is the Parliament building itself.  Once you see it, you’ll understand why it has been described as the most beautiful government structure in the world.  Its impressive interior is filled with carvings and it overlooks the Ottawa River. It acts as home to the House of Commons, Senate, Library of Parliament, Hall of Honor and the Peace Tower. 

Tip:  Every day at 10:00 a.m., between the months of June and late August, tourists can enjoy the changing of the guard ceremony.  It’s a fine example of pomp and circumstance and it’s at the top of the list for most visited Ottawa attractions. 

The National Gallery of Canada is another majestic site and one of the spectacular Ottawa attractions.  It enjoys international acclaim with permanent exhibits relating the history of Inui art, Canadian sculpture and more.  Its award winning architectural design alone makes it an impressive site.

The Supreme Court of Canada is also a must see among Ottawa attractions.  Its beautiful green copper roof has become an icon of the country’s capital.

The Rideau Hall Government House is best described as a 19th century work of art.  This stately mansion is not just worth seeing from the outside, but touring as well.  It serves as temporary residence to visiting world leaders and boasts a unique park and garden area.

If you love to read, then the National Library is a wonderful Ottawa attraction for you.  They feature every book ever published in Canada preserved for future generations.  Find out about the musical and literary events presented throughout the year.  

Among the list of top Ottawa attractions is the Museum of Canadian Civilization.  It’s said to be the largest cultural institution of Canada and it sits on the riverside and offers sublime views of the city.  The Grand Hall is where the biggest and most impressive collection of totem poles is housed.  And at some of the other galleries, travelers can learn all about the nation’s aboriginal peoples. 

Flight enthusiasts will not want to miss Canada’s Aviation Museum.  With 120 refurbished aircraft, films and interactive exhibits, everyone can learn about the history of aviation and Canada’s role in it. 

Ottawa’s culture is definitely evident in sites like the Arts Court.  It’s located in the Heritage Building, which was built in 1871, and is home to twenty visual arts organizations, galleries and a theater.  You can browse through permanent and visiting exhibits or else enjoy a play. 

Another one of the unique Ottawa attractions is the Laurier House.  It served as home to two past Prime Ministers.  Although it’s not an official museum, it houses important memorabilia.  It also showcases the recreated study of Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson who won a Nobel Prize. 

History buffs from around the globe come to visit the Canadian War Museum; one of the most interesting Ottawa attractions.  It’s an impressive venue of military history relating to Canada’s founding years right through to present times.  

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