Perhaps a bit surprisingly to people from outside of Canada, we do have a long history of flight. Alexander Graham Bell (the telephone guy) was involved in developing aircraft in the early 1900s and the Silver Dart that flew near the Bell summer home in Baddeck, Nova Scotia.
Bush planes came into their own between the two world wars and with a brief lull in innovation during WWII, the well known DeHavilliand Beaver, Otter and Twin Otter aircraft were introduced and are still being built and flown.
There are of course the military aircraft, some built under licence by Canadian and other manufactureres as well as historic commercial and passenger aircraft.
Wellington Village is the latest older Ottawa neightbourhood to become gentrified. It is located between the Little Italy area on Somerset St and around Preston St and east of Island Park Drive (Westboro starts to the West of Island Park Drive).
Boutiques, restaurants and theatre are all located in this area, but there are still thrift shops and butcher shops that have been here for decades.
The Museum is very much a "Green" project, and perhaps the most important part of this is the fact that the whole 10.5 thousand Sq M roof is covered by tall grass growing on top of 30cm of soil, Not only does this roof which can contain as much as three quarters of a million litres of rain water,it also provides energy loss from the building in the winter, but also in the summer,helps to clean the air above the building
Down by the Ottawa Locks the Bytown Museum is located - in the oldest surviving stone building in Ottawa. It was built as the Commissariat Building in 1827 as a warehouse for military and canal supplies during the building of the Rideau Canal. And as an office and treasurey. In 1854 the stone building was given to the Canadian Government and was used by different departments for maintenance of the canal. In 1951 the Bytown Museum - Historical Society of Ottawa moved into the Commissariat Building.
The Bytown Museum depicts the story of Lieutenant-Colonel John By and the construction of Rideau Canal. And the history of Ottawa until modern times.
At the museum is an exhibition on the Women’s Canadian Historical Society of Ottawa (WCHSO), founded in 1898.
Opening hours: Monday-Sunday: 10:00-17:00. Thursday and Friday 10:00-21:00 - free entrance on Thursdays from 17:00-21:00.
Admittance fee: CAD6.
In Major´s Hill Park Lieutenant Colonel By (1779–1836), the founder of Bytown, which later became known as Ottawa, lived - with great views of the Ottawa river. Colonel By had received orders to build Rideau Canal in 1826 (see my tips on the Ottawa Locks). It took 6 years to finish the canal.
Colonel By built a two storey stone house on Major´s Hill Park and lived there with his wife and two daughters. After finishing building the Rideau Canal in 1832 he returned to England with his family. After he left the house became a military residence and was occupied by British officers. In 1848 there was a fire in the house and only the chimney and the foundations remained. It was never rebuilt.
Archealogists dug up the ruins of the house more than 120 years after the fire. They found some interesting artefacts. I love what has been made of the ruins of the house, bronze reproductions have been made from some of the household items found on the site. They have been added to the ruins of the house. As always, Canadians have done a marvellous job on introducing their city, both to foreigners and visiting Canadian guests.
There is a statue of Colonel By on Major´s Park Hill overlooking the Ottawa Locks.
Now, this is such a good idea that I want to pass it along to my mayor - maybe we can decorate some steps here in Iceland with a big Viking. I absolutely love this.
There are 2 photos which have been painted or pasted to the steps - so they form a big photo which stretches along the whole steps. Awesome!
Everybody was having their photo taken there. Seeing that I was doing my touristy things alone in Ottawa - I was staying with friends who did not want to do the touristy things, then I had problems with taking a photo of myself there. I put the camera on self-timer (10 seconds) and then rushed up to the stairs to find a good spot and pose and smile :D I did this so many times, with various results. Then the day after a woman offered to take my photo, that one is the best one of them all.
On the upper steps there is a photo of a wolf - and on the lower steps there is a photo of a man with a maple leaf.
My walks by Dow's Lake took me further up the Rideau Canal way up to the locks. I love locks, just sitting there watching the boats beeing passed through the locks is for me a pure delight.
There are 24 lock-stations in the Rideau Canal, beginning with the Ottawa Locks (8 locks), which are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The locks I visited are called Hartwell Locks. Here are 2 locks and it takes ca 30 minutes for a boat passing through the locks.
There is a lockmaster´s house here by the locks. And a picnic area where one can sit and watch the boats being passed through the locks.
Rideau Canal is all in all 202 km, stretching from Ottawa to Kingston. It opened in 1832 and is the oldest continously operating canal in North-America. It was built after the War in 1812. It was built as a war supply route, but became a major route for regional commerce. It is now mainly used by private boats.
There is a relatively new big museum in Ottawa, The Canadian War Museum. It takes you through the history of Canada, the big war in 1812 and all the wars after that, domestic and international. It is extremely well made, but also very taxing walking through it. I almost ran through WW2 and Holocaust.
Walking through all the different periods of war in Canada - and Canada´s participation in wars in other countries - Canada´s military history - takes ca 3 hours. I always find it especially difficult visiting war museums, but wanted to know more about the participation of Canada´s army through the centuries, so I popped in for a visit - which lasted for 3 hours.
There is a medal collection and military artillery - on display is a CF-Voodoo jet fighter and many tanks. One can watch them from above from a small balcony, which I did, or go downstairs and have a look at them up close.
When I visited there was a special exhibition called 1812 - an exhibition on how Canada became the nation it is today.
There is a chance to dress up at the museum and have a photo taken. There is an old soldier´s uniform and women´s clothes.
At the very informative musem one can see a piece of "Die Mauer" or The Berlin Wall, a pig dressed up in search for mines, how different cultures wore differently designed uniforms as not to be heard, First Nation warriors etc., etc.
The prominent building housing the Canadian War Museum was designed by Raymond Moriyama.
Photos are allowed.
Admission fee is CAD 12 (plus tax). This is what I don´t like about Canada, I don´t use my Visa card abroad so I pay in cash. But I never know how much I have to pay. It said CAD 12 at the museum, so I had CAD 12 ready. But I had to pay CAD 13,56 as there was tax. And I never know where I have to pay tax, some items are exempt of tax.
Free admittance on Thursdays after 16:00.
Opening hours: Monday to Wednesday: 09:00-17:00.
Thursday: 09:00-20:00 - admission free after 16:00.
There is a huge oval glass building in the very center of Ottawa - it is quite a contrast to the conventional buildings here - it is Ottawa´s Convention Center. Ottawa is a G8 capital, so they needed a new Convention Center, which opened in 2011.
It says on their website: "...with a mandate to operate, maintain and manage an international class convention centre facility in the city of Ottawa in a manner that will promote and develop tourism and industry in Ottawa and Ontario".
I walked in and had a look around. There was nobody around, but I just sat down to get the feel of the place. It looks lovely.
The Valiants Memorial is a collection of 14 statues and busts, i.e. 9 busts and 5 statues. They depict war-heroes and important persons in 5 wars in Canada´s history. These men (and one woman) were picked out for the memorial, but of course it honours also all of those who took part in all of these wars in Canada´s military history.
The only woman valiant who has got her statue on the Valiants Memorial is Laura Secord (1775-1868). During the Great War of 1812 she had overheard the plans for a surprise attack and travelled 32 km through rough terrain to warn the commander of the British outpost. Thanks to her warning, almost 500 Americans surrended at Beaver Dams in 1813.
She later became a Canadian hero and several schools were named after her. And Laura Secord Chocolates are named after her - with 125 retail outlets in Canada.
Down by Ottawa River is a beautiful monument, a white marble wall with a golden globe perched on top. This is the Royal Canadian Navy Monument. The monument was created as a legacy to the Royal Canadian Navy and unveiled in 2012 to honour the Navy´s centennial in 2010.
Written on the monument: "This monument commemorates the contributions and sacrifices of the men and women in naval uniform who have served and continue to serve Canada at sea in times of peace and war. Their contribution will not be forgotten".
The Navy colours are used in the monument, black (the symbol of the Navy), white (the wall) and the golden colour (the globe). The monument is very symbolic for the Navy, both the white "wall" and the golden globe.
The Ottawa Fire Fighters Memorial Monument is a very impressive monument raised in honour of those Canadian firemen who have lost their lives in the line of duty. It was finished on the 9th of September 2010.
Written on one wall: Always loved - never forgotten.
Written on a wall at the monument: "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends" - John 15:13.
It is heartbreaking visiting this monument, which shows 2 fire fighters, one putting out the fire with the hose, the other one carrying a child wrapped in blanket. A big "THANK YOU" to all the fire fighters of the world!
Another, much bigger, Firefighter Memorial is located in Ottawa as well. It is called The Canadian Firefghters Memorial.
There is a contemporary art gallery at City Hall, free of charge. So that was on my list of free things to do in Ottawa.
The gallery is on the main level and the entrance is kind of invisible, I wouldn´t know that there were a gallery inside if I hadn´t been looking for it. There were some lovely paintings and art-work inside the gallery and so worth a visit. It came as a surpise to me that such a gallery is to be found at City Hall. This gallery is operated by the City of Ottawa´s Public Art Program. The art is both from emerging and better known artists.
The gallery is open daily from 9:00-16:00.
There is also some work of art in the hallway of City Hall plus cerfiticates of the Recipients of the Key to the City.
And there is lovely art-work in the park by City Hall (see my additional tips).
I have stayed in the Glebe in Ottawa on 5 of my visits, all in all for 3,5 months. So I have walked a lot in this area of Ottawa. Just a 5 minute´s walk from where I was staying is a big lake, Dow´s Lake.
This area is one of the gems of Ottawa. The area by the lake and on the lake is so lively. There is a big Pavillion by one end of the lake, with restaurants with the most fantastic view of the lake. There were so many boats on the lake (Autumn 2012), all kinds of boat, small canoes, speed-boats and larger boats, very lively.
In winter time, Greggor58, and my friend in Ottawa, tell me that the lake and canals turn into a skating area - I have never seen this though.
By Dow´s Lake is a lovely park and during the Tulip Festival the park is filled with tulips. Very ornate.
I add another tip on my walks in the park on the other side of the lake.
The Rideau canal flows by the lake into the center of Ottawa.
On Parliament Hill is the Police and Peace Officers´ Memorial. It was raised in remembrance of the Canadian law enforcement officers who have been killed since 1804 - while on duty.
That refers both to RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) officers and other police officers. And to peace officers from Canadian organizations. That includes officers from Canada Border, Fisheries, Parks Canada etc. All those who were protecting Canada and lost their lives on duty.
The memorial is on Parliament Hill beneath the Summer Pavillion behind the Central Block Parliament building. And the Summer Pavillion is part of the memorial. Police officers paid for the replica of the old Summer Pavillion.
There is an inscription at the memorial site: "They are our heroes. We shall not forget them."
The last Sunday in September is the Police and Peace Officers´ National Memorial Day. Then police officers, peace officers and the public gather here on Parliament Hill to pay their respect.
Albert at Bay is central Ottawa and easy going staff with an excellent availability of both...more
I've stayed here for business trip on two separate occasions, the most recent being in February,...more
a pleasant weekend stay, a freebie for spouse after their workplace's Christmas Pary. Excellent...more