Things to do in
Ottawa

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Our most recommended things to do in Ottawa

Ottawa: Haunted Night Walking Tour

1. Ottawa: Haunted Night Walking Tour

Experience Ottawa like never before on a 75-minute Original Haunted Walk. Spend an evening with fascinating tour guides who are chosen from the best local storytellers and have a passion for sharing the unexpected side of Canada's capital city.  On the Original Haunted Walk, your expert cloaked guide will reveal to you their favorite ghost stories from the Downtown Ottawa area and lead you by lantern light to some of the city's most well-known haunted spots. Visit locations such as the Fairmont Château Laurier, Grant House, and Ottawa’s haunted high school. A favorite stop is the haunted Bytown Museum where many of the guides have had their own experiences to share. You’ll never look at the city and these buildings the same again.  After being led through the streets of Downtown Ottawa, your guide can walk you back to the start location or leave you to enjoy a (sleepless) night in the city.

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Ottawa: Hop-On Hop-Off Guided City Tour Day Ticket

2. Ottawa: Hop-On Hop-Off Guided City Tour Day Ticket

All aboard for this popular hop-on hop-off city tour of Ottawa that’s filled with fun, facts, and history! Stay on the bus for the 1.5-hour tour or hop off and back on throughout the validity of your ticket. See the sights of Ottawa from a classic open-top, double-decker bus. Sit on the lower deck and enjoy the inside comfort or ride on the top deck and enjoy the fantastic views as your knowledgeable, bilingual guide points out landmarks and shares the city's history with you. Hop off at sites you want to explore and hop back on to resume your city tour. Do this at your own pace, and visit as many of Ottawa’s top sites as you like. See museums, parks, galleries, the Byward Market, the Canadian Parliament buildings, and lots more. Explore, dine, and shop throughout the capital city!

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Ottawa: 1-Hour Bilingual Guided Tour by Amphibious Bus

3. Ottawa: 1-Hour Bilingual Guided Tour by Amphibious Bus

Climb aboard a unique vehicle that can travel on land and water and discover the historical attractions of Ottawa and the Ottawa River from different perspectives. Spend 40 minutes on land and 20 minutes on the water. Admire landmark monuments and attractions such as Lake Dow, Landsdowne Park and Byward Market. Get a magnificent view of the city as you cruise along the river aboard the amphibious vehicle. See all the important sights of Ottawa and the city of Gatineau, located just across the water. Avail of an activity that is both fun and educational for the entire family, and ideal for those who are short of time but want to see it all.

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Ottawa Tiki Tour

4. Ottawa Tiki Tour

Take a relaxing tour up and down the Ottawa River on a Hawaiian style Tiki Hut, in a boat trip like no other. Just head to one of the embarkment sites, climb aboard and get the party started. Our captains are all small vessel certified and licensed. Enjoy fancy drinks and snacks as the tiki bar takes you along the river, offering stunning views of the shoreline. Whether it’s just hanging out with friends for a fun time, spending some relaxing time with your family, taking a romantic cruise, or a group excursion, Ottawa Tiki Tours is one of the most unique ways to get out on the water. Cruise the time away sipping drinks, and listening to or singing karaoke to your favourite tropical tunes.

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Ottawa: Canadian War Museum Admission

5. Ottawa: Canadian War Museum Admission

Visit The Canadian War Museum, the national museum of military history, conveniently located west of Parliament Hill near downtown Ottawa. The museum is one of the world's most respected places for the study and understanding of armed conflict.  Discover the inspiring and touching stories of Canada's military contributions. Canada's rich military history is showcased through personal stories, artwork, photographs, and interactive presentations. Tour the extensive permanent exhibitions and expand your knowledge of the conflicts that shaped Canada, Canadians, and the world. The galleries have been designed to emphasize the human experience of war.  Explore at your own pace as you discover the rare and historically important artifacts, uniforms, vehicles, art, and memorabilia that make up the 3 million pieces in the collections. Each gallery highlights defining moments in Canada’s military history and the ways in which past events have shaped the nation.

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Ottawa Private Tour with a Local

6. Ottawa Private Tour with a Local

Explore the city with a friendly local who is passionate about the city and eager to share all the information that will help you make the most of your trip. Get to know Ottawa through the eyes of a local on a 2, 3 or 4 hour private tour. Meet at your accommodation and head out on the tour to get familiar with the neighborhood. Learn about the best places to eat and buy groceries, the easiest ways to get around, and the top things to see and do. By the end of the tour, you'll feel more comfortable navigating the city and confident that you have all the information you need to make the most of your stay.

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Gatineau: Canadian Museum of History Admission

7. Gatineau: Canadian Museum of History Admission

Experience Canada’s rich history in exciting new ways at The Canadian Museum of History and tour the expansive permanent exhibitions. The Museum is located five minutes from downtown Ottawa and Parliament Hill. Explore immersive galleries and learn about the outstanding achievements of First Peoples. The signature exhibition, the Canadian History Hall, reveals the events, personalities, and historical currents that have shaped Canada. Make the most of your visit with the free multilingual museum guide. Download the app prior to arrival to unlock exhibition overviews, interactive maps, images, and 360-degree virtual reality tours.

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Montreal: Private Day Tour to Ottawa

8. Montreal: Private Day Tour to Ottawa

Discover the history and culture of Canada's capital city Ottawa, just a 2-hour drive from Montreal.  Get picked up directly from your accommodation and enjoy a scenic drive through the charming Canadian countryside. On arrival in Ottawa, visit Parliament Hill, where you will see the stunning neo-Gothic Parliament Building that overlooks the majestic Ottawa River. Then, wander to ByWard Market, one of Canada's oldest and largest public markets. Next, take a stroll through some of the unique parks of Ottawa. If you’re feeling peckish, get some advice from your guide on the best places for lunch in Ottawa.  In the late afternoon, your driver will take you back to your hotel where you will arrive between 5.00 and 6.00 PM.

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Ottawa: 3.5-Hour Night Tour with River Cruise

9. Ottawa: 3.5-Hour Night Tour with River Cruise

Surprises aplenty lie ahead when you choose to spend an evening on the Epic Ottawa Night Tour. Uniquely designed to show you that the nightlife in Canada’s capital city is more than just drinking, dancing and visiting nightclubs, this 3-hour guided tour will have you walking away at the end of the evening with memories – and photos – that will last a lifetime. Navigating the streets of Ottawa by night can be stressful, which is why your tour will begin with a pick-up from a complimentary shuttle. Choose any downtown hotel or prearranged destination and your tour guide will pick you up and take you on your way to the first stop on the tour. While driving you to your first stop – a sunset river cruise – your tour guide will provide you with amazing facts about the city. Feel free to ask your tour guide anything about the city. You will reach the Ottawa riverside in just enough time to set sail on a lovely Paula D cruise boat. As you casually drift down the river, you will be treated to a beautiful sunset and some unique views of the city’s most popular landmarks and attractions. Just sit back and take in the beautiful sights or grab your camera and capture the moment. When your river cruise is over, your personal tour guide will drive you around and allow you to explore some of the fun and exciting areas throughout the city. Your tour guide will provide you with fun and interesting historical facts for each of the locations you pass. Make sure you have your camera ready because there will be numerous opportunities to take photos of the brightly lit landmarks and attractions. After your driving tour, it will be time to experience the nightlife for yourself. There will be a brief stop at the historic ByWard Market, which are lined with vendors and shops that offer delicious snacks and drinks for you to sample. Ask your tour guide for recommendations or be adventurous and pick at random! The tour will end on a memorable note with the Northern Lights show - watch as a stunning projected light and sound show lights up the Parliament Building. This is a can’t miss show and a wonderful way to end the evening.

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Ottawa: 2 or 3.5-Hour Sightseeing Bike Tour

10. Ottawa: 2 or 3.5-Hour Sightseeing Bike Tour

Get on a bicycle for a 2 or 3.5-hour guided tour to discover many of downtown Ottawa’s major attractions, must-see spots, and hidden gems. Choose your own adventure from two tour options and the option of a French, German, Spanish or Dutch speaking guide. 2-Hour Express Tour A fun and short sightseeing tour ideal for newer or easy-going bicyclists, who want to learn about Ottawa’s downtown and beyond. All ages will enjoy the leisurely 8.5-mile ride, stopping at major attractions for sightseeing and photos. Highlights include Parliament Hill, War Memorial, Rideau Canal Pathway, Rideau Hall, Rideau Falls, Quebec province, the National Art Gallery, the Museum of History, the Rideau Locks and Bytown Museum. 3.5-Hour Highlights Tour Discover more of Ottawa’s must-see spots and hidden gems on a slight longer 3 to 3.5-hour tour, with 95% of the route on bicycle paths. This 12-mile bike tour includes short stops along the way for sightseeing and photos plus a power bar snack. Highlights include Rideau Canal, War Memorial, Love Lock Bridge, Rideau Canal Locks, the Glebe, Lansdowne Park, Arboretum, Dow’s Lake, Little Italy, Ottawa River, province of Quebec, Museum of History, Rideau Hall, Rideau Falls,  National Gallery of Canada, Byward Market, and Parliament Hill.

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Frequently asked questions about Ottawa

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Other Sightseeing Options in Ottawa

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What people are saying about Ottawa

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 1,377 reviews

We had such an amazing time celebrating our friends 50th birthday! A big shout out and thank you to Gabby, Mike (aka bat man) and their daughters they were great host! We highly recommend giving this a try!! Thank you again for all laughs.

Everyone was very friendly and helpful. We were taken to the exhibit that i wanted to see. When we were lost a very nice young man came to our rescue.

Very Knowledgeable tour guide provided a good overview of interesting places in Ottawa. Driver was friendly and provided great service.

What a great tour, went all over the city, able to get off and then get next bus.

A great, informative tour. We learned so much about the city.