January can seem like a boring month where you don’t know what to do with yourself after the holiday season. It doesn’t have to be!
Whether you’re looking to get out and have winter adventures or stay warm and treat yourself, here are nine things to do in Ottawa this weekend that won’t break the bank.
Slide down a city ice trail
Price: free admission
Address: 185 Ruisseau-de-la-Brasserie Road, Hull, QC
Why you need to go: Open daily until 10 p.m., this creek skating rink in the heart of downtown Gatineau will have you skating under scenic bridges and through a cityscape. Access to the ice is via Taylor Street next to Montcalm Street where you will find a trailer and washrooms.
Dine in a comfortable outside cabin
Courtesy of Hunter’s Public House
Food: East Coast Pub
Address: 4750 Bank Street, Unit 1, Gloucester, ON
Why you need to go: This Ottawa pub has a winter terrace furnished with wooden cabins that block the wind, each with its own heater. They also have a fire pit to warm up with hot food including stews and hot French press coffees.
Go tubing in a terrain park
Price: Admission for non-residents $10; tube rental $6
Address: 39 Chem. de la Montagne-Noire, Ripon, QC
Why you need to go: You can run a tube on a snowy hill day or night at the Parc des Montagnes Noires in Ripon. Night tubing is open on Fridays and Saturdays.
Warm up in a tropical plant paradise
Megane Renaud | Narcity
Address: 4228 Navan Road, Orleans, ON
Why you need to go: You can hunt for a new houseplant by strolling through the garden center and greenhouse at Serres Robert Plante. They have all the plants you could want and more. Transport yourself to a tropical location near their collection of citrus fruits and cacti.
Address: 311 boul. Saint-Joseph, Gatineau, QC
Why you have to go: La Pataterie Hullouise is one of the best places for poutine in Ottawa. The family size fries, gravy and cheese curds will keep you happy all day long. You can add your choice of toppings or go for the classic.
Discover ice sculptures along the river
Address: Voyageurs Trail, Gatineau, QC
Why you have to go: In Alymer Quebec, along the Ottawa River, handmade ice sculptures resembling inunnguat have started to appear, and even the snowstorm can’t knock them down. They make a nice addition to a winter hike near the water. The best place to park and walk is the Parc des Rapides-Deschênes parking lot.
Look for deals at a surplus store
Address: 2444 Wildwood Avenue, Ottawa, ON
Why you need to go: Quick Pick is a new clearance store in Ottawa offering incredible prices on everything from clothing and accessories to electronics. On Friday everything is $25, but the price drops every day and everything is $1 on Wednesday. They are soon opening a second store.
Eat a sweet breakfast on a stick
Price: $10 or more
Address: pick up or delivery in Ottawa
Why you need to go: If you love waffles, you should try the decadent treats on a stick from Wafflie Pops Co. The menu includes waffle toppings ranging from chocolate and fruit to fun cereal, and they have special desserts for different holidays.
Skate on a secret ice track in the valley
Address: 17 Double Dip Road, Deep River, ON
Why you need to go: In the town of Deep River, you’ll find a forest skating rink at Grouse Park, lined with twinkling lights and free to use. The ice trail is open daily and has picnic tables and benches for resting and strapping on skates.
In Ontario, a vaccine passport is required to access certain events, services and businesses, including restaurants and bars.
Before you go, check out our responsible travel guide to be informed, be safe, be smart, and above all, be respectful on your adventure.