Insider's Guide to Ottawa

Major attractions, tips and our top things to see and do.

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  • Address: Rideau Canal
  • Admission: Free

The Rideau Canal is a signature Ottawa landmark, dividing the city’s downtown into eastern and western segments. Opened in 1832, it’s the oldest still operational canal system in North America.

In winter, the 8 km (5-mile) stretch of canal running through the center of Ottawa transforms into the Rideau Canal Skateway, the world’s longest skating rink.

In summer, joggers, sightseers and cyclers promenade along the canal’s banks. 

One of the best ways to experience life on the canal is aboard a scenic canal cruise.

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