Ottawa
Culture & History

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Our most recommended Ottawa Culture & History

  • Ottawa: Sightseeing River Cruise

    1. Ottawa: Sightseeing River Cruise

    Discover the natural beauty of the region that captured the imagination of the first European explorer Samuel de Champlain. Climb aboard the 'Paula D' for a 1.5-hour sightseeing cruise on the Ottawa River. This must-do experience offers an entertaining glimpse of the region's rich history and leaves you with plenty of time to enjoy the rest of your stay. For your convenience, there are two departure docks, one located in Gatineau and another in Ottawa. Once boarded, sit back and relax as you cruise down the river. Enjoy spectacular views of the city and learn about the river's past life as a watery highway for transporting resources with your guide's engaging and informative commentary in both English and French. During your cruise, you'll have the opportunity to see the Parliament Buildings, the Rideau Canal Locks, and the cities of Ottawa and Gatineau from the river. You'll also be a...

    It was an excellent way to learn Ottawa and the area. We had a great tour guide, Kat!

  • Ottawa: 1-Hour Bilingual Guided Tour by Amphibious Bus

    2. 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.

    Glad we did this! Great way to see our nation's Capital. Very informative and a unique experience!

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

    3. 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!

    The tour was very informative and you get to see the city in whole different way. Would highly recommend this tour.

  • 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.

    It was a great experience sightseeing while relaxing on a tiki boat on the Ottawa river. 10/10 would recommend to anyone looking for a unique experience!

  • Ottawa: Haunted Night Walking Tour

    5. 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 ...

    Liz is a great storyteller. She kept us on our toes. I did the night tour, which added more to the experience compared to the day tour.

  • 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.

    Well planned out, guide was informative, and listened to our questions and needs. Made us feel welcomed

  • Ottawa: 2 or 3.5-Hour Sightseeing Bike Tour

    7. 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 bicyc...

    We were a group of 8 persons and Lisa, our guide was great to make us discover for 2 relaxing hours Ottawa and Gatineau. Loved to learn about the history.

  • 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.

    I loved the tour and Chris, the guide, is absolutely wonderful! I definitely recommend this tour to Ottawa.

  • Ottawa: Small Group Half-Day City Sightseeing Tour

    9. Ottawa: Small Group Half-Day City Sightseeing Tour

    Ottawa has so much to see and do that it is hard to pack it all in one day. This tour is a half-day tour that will allow you to visit some of the city’s most popular attractions including various Parliament buildings. After exploring these landmarks, take part in a 1.5-hour river cruise giving you the opportunity to catch a glimpse of over 55 must-see sites throughout the capital city. The day will begin with your tour guide picking you up from your downtown Ottawa hotel. While heading to your first stop on the tour, which is Parliament Hill, your guide will give you your first introduction to the city. They are able to answer questions, provide you with fun facts and point out important landmarks and sites. The adventure will begin once you arrive at the Royal Canadian Mint. On your tour of the headquarters, you will get a behind-the-scenes look at the state-of-the-art facilities. Ther...

    Yes we sure did. It was awesome and our tour guide did a fabulous job showing us sites with regards to the diplomatics, where they lived, their unique license plates, took us to places we not find on our own. Very well done. Great job would highly recommend to other visitors. Tracey Lawrence

Other Sightseeing Options in Ottawa

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What people are saying about Ottawa

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 265 reviews

It was a fun experience. The guides were warm,fun and informative. We had a nice conversation with a couple from out of town. The only thing wrong was it was a cloudy day but no one's fault for that. I would recommend it to my friends.

Woww such a wonderful experience !! And what to say about our captain Jakob !! It is a pearl! Incredibly kind! Everyone was super nice and jovial !! A must for a wonderful evening in good company !!

Glad we did this! Great way to see our nation's Capital. Very informative and a unique experience!

The hosts were friendly and wonderful! We had a lot of fun!!

Our guide was friendly and knowlegeble and forthcoming