Ottawa Travel Blog› entry 9 of 42 › view all entries
We arrived in Ottawa on Thursday, the first time we have arrived somewhere while it's still been light and what a difference it made! We found our hostel with relative ease, got settled in then found a fantastic pub which did food that we could BOTH enjoy! For the first 3 weekends in February, Ottawa hold the biggest Winter festival in North America, called Winterlude, and we timed our visit well so that we will get to see 2 weekends worth before we move on (we have to stay a while before going over the border to avoid the US visa!). Almost everyone told us that Ottawa was so dull and boring, and it might be normally, but so far we have had a great time! The people are friendly, we've had some lovely inexpensive meals out, and most activities have been free! Can't ask for more than that in my book!
Much of Ontario and Quebec were engulfed by 'The Storm' on Friday which we were warned about repeatedly.
Thankfully the next morning was much better, lovely blue sky but the road gritters had not been out much and it was still quite a mission to get anywhere! However, our guide to Winterlude said there was a free pancake breakfast with hot chocolate, and we were not about to let that pass! Suitably fed and watered we walked/slid down the road to the Nature Museum as it was free admission before midday.
Each Winter, the Rideau Canal through the centre of Ottawa become frozen and turns into the world's longest skate rink at 7.8 kilometres (4.8 miles). Yesterday we walked just over half the length, actually on the ice, and ate beavertails from the stands constructed along it's length! A beavertail is like a flat doughnut with topping on like sugar or chocolate spread, it was very nice! We are planning on skating along it one day this week, the hostel has a whole box of skates which you can just borrow.