Summer in Canada – Stopover in Ottawa

I know I usually write about life in Morocco, but this is a shout-out to my former hometown.  Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Yes, at one point in my life I was a *gasp* public employee before packing up, moving to Marrakech, and hoping for the best.

But despite this, I really do love that city.  Because there really is so much to enjoy.  And being back brought back memories of weekends exploring the city on bike or foot, soaking up the atmosphere at one of the many festivals, or emptying my bank account  at one of the boutiques or latest restaurants.

And so I’m sharing my favourite things about the National Capital Region:

The National Capital Commission‘s extensive bike paths are a fabulous way to spend a morning passing by some of the city’s best sites.  Pack a picnic and enjoy the views.  Like this one from the

Parliament Hill, Ottawa, Canada Copyright Mandy Sinclair
Parliament Hill, Ottawa, Canada Copyright Mandy Sinclair

The National Gallery of Canada always has an exciting summer exhibit.  Sakahan, this summer’s exhibit, explores contemporary Native art with contributors from around the world.  Sadly, I was unable to attend the show during my short visit to the capital earlier this month.

Mosaika, the sound and light show on Parliament Hill, is amazing and a wonderful way to spend a summer evening.

And a visit to Ottawa would not be complete without a trip to the Byward Market, my former home and playground.  A perfect place to wander and explore the courtyards and street art, trendy little boutiques, cool cafes. And, most importantly, patios perfect for people watching and enjoying a beer.


The numerous galleries, festivals, theatre companies, restaurants and museums ensure there is always something to do.  For both locals and visitors.

Heading out of town, the area surrounding Ottawa is filled with spectacular scenery, including the Gatineau Park.  Lakes, rocks, parks and trees.  I absolutely love cottaging in this region.  In fact, it was decided while laying on the dock that summer in Canada is all about swimming in lakes, hiking through the gorgeous parks, and laying on a dock with a great Canadian beer in great company.

Hanging out on the dock in Gatineau, copyright Mandy Sinclair
Hanging out on the dock in Gatineau, copyright Mandy Sinclair

Wouldn’t you agree?

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