Monday 8 September 2008

A few days in Ottawa

After our experience in Montreal, of a sprawling, cumbersome city, which we were pleased to leave, we were not sure what to expect of Ottawa.  We arrived late afternoon on Thursday and instantly felt more at home.  Ottawa is a smaller city which feels cleaner and friendlier than Montreal.  Almost everywhere you look there are green spaces, trees and often squirrels making it feel much less urban than the average city.

We spent our first full day with Chris (our host and excellent tour guide) on a walking tour of the city.  We walked along the Rideau Canal, saw the seven locks in action, visited Parliament Hill, went up the clock tower to admire the views of the city, visited the market (and marvelled at the quality and quantity of fresh produce), had a picnic in the park and walked over the bridge into Quebec to enjoy the view back over the city.  What a day...thoroughly enjoyed by all
of us and giving us a love of Ottawa which I am sure will linger for a while...we are already talking about a winter visit so we can skate the 10km of the canal!

Our run of good weather finally broke on our second day in Ottawa, bringing the temperatures down and also bringing some rain.  Saturday morning started with a fantastic pancake breakfast, which will probably be the best breakfast of the trip!  In the afternoon we headed out to one of the local swimming pools.  Peter and Joseph had great fun jumping in from the diving boards and a rope swing.  Luke was less impressed as he was not allowed to join in the fun, although he was somewhat pacified by finding a bucket to play with, as he has been asking for a bucket and spade since leaving Guernsey.

Sunday morning was spent in the Nature Museum, marvelling at model dinosaurs and enjoying the interactive exhibits (although Joseph listened to most of them in French).  Sunday afternoon we went out to visit Chris' brother and his family.  The children enjoyed running around the garden together and playing baseball and we again enjoyed some excellent Canadian hospitality with a lovely dinner.  We then headed back into Ottawa for the light and sound show on Parliament Hill, we enjoyed it, but all three boys fell asleep during the show...too much baseball, burgers and cookies!

Tomorrow we head on from Ottawa, leaving our excellent hosts Chris and Derek in peace again.  We are heading into Gatineau and then on to definite plans, but we will be watch this space for the next update!

Excellent photos here and my photos added here, enjoy!


No comments: