Ottawa winter survival guide.

Winter in Ottawa, can be well…SUPER cold, but that doesn’t stop it from being one of the most fun places to be during the coldest months of the year! I love all the awesome activities that happen in the capital every year, and also all the possibilities for awesome weekend getaways! Check out some of my favourites below:

1. Go for a skate on the canal.

Of course, an obvious first activity on my winter list. The Rideau Canal is one of my favourite ways to spend a winter day in Ottawa. I love getting some exercise by skating a couple kilometres, then cozying up by a fireplace on the canal with a Beavertail and hot chocolate.

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2. Relax at Spa Nordik.

I fell in love with Nordik when I discovered it last year (and so did many other people). Nordik is the epitome of relaxation: with the thermal cycle, saunas, and delicious food, I always walk out of there feeling totally rejuvenated.  I could seriously spend all day here, but I strongly suggest going during the week because otherwise you can wait hours to get in which is totally NOT relaxing.

3. Sample delicious beers at Festibière. 

Have a couple (too many) samples at Festibière in Gatineau. Check out many different breweries and beers at the Canadian Museum of History. With nice views of the Ottawa skyline and so many beers to try, this makes for an awesome night out.

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4. Hit the slopes.

Ottawa is so close to some great ski places. If you want to go for a quick night ski after work, there are many resorts, just a short trip across the river. Many places offer discounts on certain nights, so pick your times wisely. Otherwise, if you’re willing to drive a bit further, Mont Tremblant is totally awesome and is only about a 2-hour trip. Great for a day trip, or a weekend getaway if you want to enjoy the other amenities in the village too.

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5. Have some cozy me time at home.

The often frigid temperatures in Ottawa are the perfect excuse to stay at home and curl up. I love reading books, watching Netflix, or de-stressing with my adult colouring book. Why go outside if you can be cozy at home?

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6. Join a yoga studio.

Yoga is great. I especially love it in the winter because it’s always cozy inside. Ottawa has so many great studios to choose from. My favourites are Elevate, Rama Lotus, and Pure Yoga. It’s a great way to de-stress from all the school work.

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7. Check out the Winterlude ice sculptures.

Famous of course, is Winterlude – Ottawa’s winter festival. Check out all the ice sculptures downtown and other fun activities and be sure to bundle up to stay warm!

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8. Go on a romantic weekend getaway or a girl’s trip.

A bonus about Ottawa is that we have other great cities so close! Some of my winter getaways during uni here in Ottawa include Quebec City with the girls for Carnaval a few years back and more recently a romantic trip to Montreal with my boyfriend. Both awesome places to visit in the winter!

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9. Indulge in chocolate fondue at Cocoa 70.

Hands-down best place to indulge in chocolate. Such a fun place to escape the cold and go to share some chocolate fondue with a friend in a nice cozy atmosphere.

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10. Have a fancy Valentine’s dinner.

Although I must admit, this photo was actually in Montreal, Ottawa has it’s fair share of nice restaurants to go on a Valentine’s Day date. To be honest, I’d rather skip the crowds and celebrate a bit earlier, but it’s always nice to treat you and your S/O to a fancy night out to celebrate every once and a while.

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