Ottawa and area Museums, Ottawa
The Canadian Museum of History, formally known at the Canadian Museum of Civilization, is the most visited museum in Ottawa. It tells the story of Canada's history in a manner so well done that I left feeling very proud. The museum starts with the story of the original Native Canadians before Europeans arrived with the reproduction of the a West Coast tribal village complete with totems in the Grand Hall.
The museum is broken up into several levels. I thought the third level very interesting. It takes you on a stroll through Canadian history to from the first visits by the Vikings to present times. This includes visits to a Metis Camp, a small town in Saskatchewan (just as it is being visited by Queen Elizabeth II), a Maritime fishing village and an airport. All of this makes great use of life size dioramas.
The Fourth level features temporary exhibits on famous Canadians who have made their mark on Canadian society throughout history. The museum has collected memorabilia and artifacts of over 4,000 Canadians but only exhibits 50 at a time. Some of these people are political whom I think they deal with great objectivity. Others are entertainers, athletes, industrialists and artists. As a history major I really appreciated these collections and think more Canadians should see them.
The first level is dedicated to Native abroginal peoples. This includes the Grand Hall and many interactive exhibits that are well presented. On the Second Level you will find a special children's section and the Canadian Postal Museum.
The museum is open daily but the times change throughout the year. Entry fee is $12.00 for adults and $8.00 for children.
Skip. Waste of time unless you are interest in a 60 year old letter from some old f..t to another. Take a walk instead back through the iron bridge (Alexandria I think) across the river. The view on a sunny day is nice.
The Garden of the Provinces and Territories is such a beautiful park, with two lovely fountains, one of which is called The Great Lakes Fountain (Emil G. van der Meulen, 1962). It symbolyzes the Great Lakes as it has a series of slabs from concrete. Children love to play in this fountain. The other fountain is in the form of a tree - representing Canada´s forests. I love that one, it is kind of mezmerising looking at the water fall from one leave onto the next. Quite lovely.
There is also a brown art-work in the park called Twelve Points in a Classical Balance (Chung Hung, 1981). It was made by a Chinese Vancouver artist, which describes the art-work as "sine curve" - a line that undulates wave-like around a central axis.
This park is so ornate as the floral emblams of the provinces and territories are set in the small stone wall on the square where the tree fountain is located.
This museum I have seen is either called the Currency Museum or the Monetary Museum. It is located inside the Bank of Canada building. I was looking for it and came across a tropical garden inside the building! And opposite the tropical garden was the entrance to the Currency Museum.
It is such an interesting museum, showing the history of currency through the centuries. There is a good exhibiton from the early days when f.ex. shells, metal, glass beads and cacao beans were used for money. And the interaction and trading with the Indians, which was not always that fair.
There is the history of the origin of the dollar and the first coins used in North-America, then the origin of the paper money.
Then the effect inflation had - with Zehn Milliarden Mark and Eine Billion Mark notes. And counterfeit money and how they could be detected.
There is also the Collector´s Corner inside a Vault at the museum.
All the Canadian bills are now bilingual, but before 1935 there were separate French and English
All in all there are more than 8.000 objects on display here at the Currency Museum of the Bank of Canada. It is so worth a visit.
There are interactive displays, so kids will have fun here too.
Opening hours: Tuesday-Saturday 10:30 - 17:00. Sunday from 13:00 - 17:00. It is open on Mondays during the months of May-October.
I am a Nature museum nut, so where ever I go I look for a nature museum. And I was not disappointed when visiting The Canadian Museum of Nature.
It recently reopened on the 22nd of May 2010, after 5 years of renovation, so I was in luck. I went there with a group of friends including one VT-friend Greggor58 and we met another VT-friend there by chance Coollikethat.
The building itself, The Victoria Memorial Museum building, is striking and looks like a Gothic style castle. The building is one of Canada's most significant federal heritage buildings. It even housed the Senate for 4 years after a fire in the Parliament. The Museum of Nature received the 2011 International Architecture Awards.
The museum is on 4 floors and expect to stay there for hours. On the first floor there are dinosaurs and the dinosaur garden (see my photo). On the second floor there is the mammal gallery and blue water gallery. There are polar bears and a sceleton of a blue whale - you know, the largest animal on this planet - it is awesome.
On the 3rd floor is my absolute favourite, The Vale earth gallery, with a collection of 800 minerals - and yes, I have added a travelogue with more photos of the minerals, they just mesmerise me :) On this floor is also a frog exhibition and photo exhibition with awesome photographes. I have added another travelogue with more photos of the museum. Did I mention that I loved my visit there ;)
On the 4th floor is the bird gallery and galleries which are available for rental and while we were visiting there was a wedding reception at the museum :)
Entrance fee is CAD 10. Remember to reserve a ticket to the Aquashow when you buy the ticket - it is very well done.
Free entrance on Thursdays from 17-20.
The museum is open on Thursdays and Fridays from 9-20 and other days of the week from 9-18.
This is the latest version of the museum dedicated to Canada's military history which is both heroic and at times tragic. Apparently there has been a war museum in Ottawa since 1880. I visited the old building on Sussex Drive at least three times in my life and during my last visit in 1995, I was finding it pretty tired. In 2005 an updated Canada War Museum was opened in a new building west from Parliament Hill. The building itself was designed by Raymond Moriyama who is a Japanese-Canadian interned during the Second World War.
This latest edition of the Canada War Museum is a vast improvement. The museum can be toured chronologically. This means warfare between Native Canadian tribes which is depicted via dioramas and display of weaponry. You will then proceed to the colonial wars between the French and the British which involved these same Native tribes as allies. Canada's role in the Boer War, the World Wars and in Korea are also well chronicled. There are many weapons on display here and many life size dioramas that show you how intense the fighting can sometimes be. There are also films throughout that give you recorded accounts from Canadian War veterans. There is also a section dedicated to Canada's role in UN peacekeeping throughout much of the last half of the 20th century. In the basement there is a large collection of 20th century weaponry that I thought was very impressive. Overall I thought that this new museum was excellent. I think that foreign visitors (I mean you folks from the USA and the UK!) will be surprised at the important role Canada has played the World Wars and last half of the 20th century.
If you have bought a ticket for a sameday visit to the Canadian Museum of Civilization, then you will be able to visit both for $18. Otherwise a single visit is $12.00. The museum is open seven days a week.
This museum is always a favourite with the children. The building is actually called the Victoria Memorial Museum Building, which was built in 1905. Because the building sits on unstable Leda clay, the tall front tower was removed in 1915. The glass cube was installed during the 2006 - 2010 and sits where the tower was.
It has a very nice collection of Canadian dinosaur fossils, and since its reopening they have added full scale models of dinosaurs in a realistic looking environment. I have always loved the dioramas of Canadian mammals as well. There is a large mineral collection as well as a display of Canadian birds.
When fire destroyed the Centre Block of the Parliament Buildings, it became the temporary home of the House of Commons, while the Parliament buildings were rebuilts.
It is certainly worth a visit, for young and old. If you rush through, you can get a good overview in a couple of hours, but you should plan to spend about double that to really enjoy the displays.
The museum is situated beside the entrance to the Canal Rideau and contains artifacts from the 1830s construction of the canal.
The museum is small. Tour takes 20-30 minutes.
Mon to Wed from 10:00 am to 05:00 pm,
Th from 10:00 am to 09:00 pm,
Fr to Sut from 10:00 am to 05:00 pm
Price: 3 CAD for children; 6 CAD for adults.
Canadian War Museum outstanding exhibitions explain Canada s rich military history from earliest times to the present, featuring the experiences of people on the battlefields and at home.
Mon, Tue, Wed & Fri: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Thur: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Sat & Sun: 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Adult - $12
Senior and Student - $10
Families (Fam. 5 – max. 2 ad.) - $30
Photography is permitted within the exhibition galleries.
Ottawa Aviation museum exhibiting the history and artifacts of canadian aviation.
See the progress of technology in the past century of flight history.
Aviation Museum collection reflects the transformation of Canada’s aeronautical technology and help to understand this heritage within the broader world context.
The museum is also home to 51 Canada Aviation Museum Squadron, Royal Canadian Air Cadets.
Adults - CAD 8.00 (2011)
Unfortunately, we got there a little late and had to hurry thru the beautiful Chinese exhibit, as they were closing in about a half hour by the time we got to this exhibit. I found this Museum somewhat nice, but compared to the War Museum, it was EXTREMELY busy and crowded. I felt the need to just skip some stuff. That said, I did like the totem poles, the post office exhibit was cool, but overall, I was a little underwhelmed, probably because of the need I felt to rush thru and see all before closing. The views from outside were awesome across the river of Ottawa, and the building itself is really interesting architecturally. We walked from the War Museum, and not far walk back across bridge to Parl. Buildings. I figure you need a good 2-3 hrs to go thru at a normal pace, we only had about 1.5 hrs.
The Canadian War Museum honours Canada's veterans and commemorates the wars and conflicts in which Canada has taken part. It has just moved into a new building that opened in May 2005. The new, modern building is large enough to allow the museum to display more of its artifacts. The building was designed to evoke war imagery, and the small and large windows on the part of the roof that spikes up spell out Lest we forget and N'oublions jamais (the French equivalent) in Morse code. The copper used on the inside of the building is from the roof of the Library of Parliament which was refurbished in 2004.
The Canadian War Museum has an extensive collection with artifacts from early colonial times up to the Gulf War and Peacekeeping. The Museum's most famous possession is Hitler's personal Mercedes limousine. The Museum also has a very extensive collection of war art with over 13,000 paintings, sculptures, sketches, and drawings.
A really neat aspect of the museum is that on November 11 at 11 o'clock, the sun shines through the window of the museum's Memorial Hall and illuminates the only artifact in that space, the headstone of Canada's unknown soldier.
I really like this museum. Not only does it explore Canada's military role but it explores the causes of war. There are tons of interactive stuff to do in there (no you can't shoot a gun). The equipment hall is full of tanks, trucks, APCs, guns, and a full sized CF-101 Voodoo. My only complaint is that the museum isn't signed well enough yet and if you don't know what you are looking for you might miss an important aspect of the museum.
There are many already existing tips on this Museum, so I will just add that it is really worth visiting.
Although it is not Ottawa, it is in Gatineau, Quebec, on the banks of the Ottawa River, directly opposite Parliament Hill.
The Native American exhibit is very intresting and there's a large collection of totem poles. Very impressive!
It is huge, so expect to stay there for a while if you want to see most of it (You will have to go more than once to see it all).
The Canadian Museum of Civilization is the largest and the most popular museum in Canada. Highlights include 43 authentic totem poles and life-size reconstruction of a native village, presenting Canadian history in an interesting way.
There is also an IMAX theatre, the Canadian Children's Museum and the Canadian Postal Museum.
We were told that this museum was free on Thursday nights between 5 and 9pm, however, I got there at 8pm on a Thursday night, and they were closing! Apparently they had just changed their hours the week before.
So while I couldn't really get into the museum, one of the staff and museum leaders, Tamara, asked if we wanted to see a plane in particular, because she could just quickly let us see it.
We decided on a Lancaster, as my grandfather flew one in WWII. Tamara was kind enough to show us around the entire museum, telling us a bit about a few key planes. Even though we weren't supposed to be there, she gave us a 20 minute tour!
Essentially, the National Aviation Museum is a gigantic museum with dozens of historical aircrafts from all around the world. On their website they say that "the Canada Aviation Museum is recognized as having the most extensive aviation collection in Canada and one which ranks among the best in the world."
I totally believe it! They had planes from all kinds of countries, from the earliest airplanes, to the experimental crafts of the NASA period, to war planes of WWI and II, to sea planes and cargo planes used in extreme northern regions, to the first examples of commercial passenger jets. It was absolutely amazing to see all these planes under one roof. It was mind boggling!
If you're into aircrafts, technology, science or history at all, I would definitely say this museum is a must see. I'm not a HUGE fan of airplanes, but i found this museum fascinating. There was always a story behind each plane, and it was quite amazing to have the real thing infront of your eyes.