The Canadian War Museum tells the story of Canada’s past conflicts, how the country and its people were affected, and remembers the sacrifices made by those that served the country in wartimes. Among an ever-changing display of new exhibitions and themes, there are several permanent exhibitions. The Legion Hall of Honour, for example, commemorates the past through personal stories, photographs and artifacts and explores common burial practices throughout history. The Military Technology Collection on the other hand is more scientific and documents the technological progress through both personal stories and a collection of different artillery and vehicles, such as fighter jets.
Four Canadian Experience Galleries called “Wars on our Soil, For Crown and Country, Forged in Fire and A Violent Peace” delve into separate conflicts and battles. These range from early aboriginal warfare and the wars of the First Nations, to the conflicts with the British and the French that shaped early Canada to the later overseas wars, such as the Boer War and the World Wars and goes on to explore veterans coming home, the Cold War as well as more recent conflicts. The extensive exhibition is located in a modern, unique building which opened in 2005 and has the theme “Regeneration” strongly attached to it, hoping for a better future and a recovery from the devastations of the past. The angular look and all the concrete might give off a very bunker-like feeling, but the building is very ecofriendly, using recycled materials, river water for cooling and a glass covered roof.
The Canadian War Museum is located just west of Parliament Hill and opens daily from 9:30am to 5pm, except on Thursdays, when the museum stays open till 8pm. It’s easily accessible by foot or public transport and if you arrive by car, you will find indoor parking spaces at the museum.