Ottawa restaurants & activities

Aug 10th, 2006, 06:39 AM
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Ottawa restaurants & activities

I'll be in Ottowa on 8/17 & 8/17 with my son - mainly we'll be visiting Le Cordon Bleu, which he is interested in attending. We'll probably go to a baseball game on Thurs, since we are from Baltimore and the Lynx are an Orioles affiliate. But we may have some free time Thursday or Friday afternoon, and we could also use some recommendations for things to do, and for moderately priced casual restaurants. I like French, and my son likes anything a little unusual, as long as it has meat.
smetz is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 06:42 AM
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Also we both like Thai
smetz is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 07:56 AM
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For activities, here are some of my favorites.

Museums, etc.:
Parliament Buildings
Museum of Nature
Museum of Contemporary Art
National Gallery
Royal Canadian Mint

There's also the Ski Museum, Science & Tech Museum, Bytown Museum, War Memorial and the RCMP Stables.

Outdoor activities:
Rideau Canal
Ottawa River Parkway
Vincent Massey Park
Hogs Back Falls
Mooney Bay
Dow's Lake
Experimental Gardens

A quick trip over the bridge to Hull will bring you Gatineau Park (lots to see there) and Museum of Civilization.

You can also go shopping at Byward Market.

There are lots of places downtown to eat (Darcy McGee's, etc.) and Rasputins is a great little place that also has live music.
toedtoes is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 08:06 AM
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The Byward market area is the place to go for inexpensive, outdoor dining, and just walking around. Lots of pubs and interesting places to eat. Ottawa is perhaps the best city anywhere for bicycling, there are beautiful trails along the canal and river. I believe you can also rent kayaks on the canal.
Take a tour of the Parlament building, see the morning changing of the guard and don't miss the nightly light show at the Parlament complex. Ottawa also has some wonderful museums.
zootsi is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 09:34 AM
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There are quite a few Thai restourants in a short walk form Parliament Hill.

One I liked was on Queen Street (I think) which runs east-west, one block south of the Sparks Street mall. There are also some others on Bank Street.
DennyO is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 11:40 AM
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Toedtoes mentioned a number of museums, but failed to mention the most popular by a far margin, the Museum of Civilization. Also, don't spend too much time searching for a Museum of Contemporary Art. There isn't one, but there is a small Museum of Contemporary Photography.

Two good Thai restaurants are Green Papaya and Coriander Thai, about a block apart on Kent Street, just south of St. Patrick's Basilica. My favourite retaurant in the By Ward Market is the Black Tomato on George Street. It shares a courtyard with a number of other restaurants, has a bistro type menu, and a number of Ontario and Quebec micro-brews.
ron is offline  
Aug 10th, 2006, 12:41 PM
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Ron, you're right on the Museum of Contemporary Photography (I must have had "Art" on the brain), but I did mention the Museum of Civilization - I have it a bit further below with Gatineau Park (over the bridge to Hull).

Black Tomato gets good marks all across the board - I don't think I've heard a bad thing yet (that's not a challenge).
toedtoes is offline  
Aug 13th, 2006, 11:03 AM
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Lots of good suggestions here, but you will have limited time, so I'll offer three highlights of Ottawa that you shouldn't miss:

1. The Parliament Buildings. Take a guided tour including a ride to the top of the Peace Tower.

2. The Canadian Museum of Civilization just across the river in Gatineau (Hull). If you can't see everything, make sure you see the Grand Hall, the First People's Hall and the Canada Hall.

3. The Canadian War Museum. A splendid new home for this museum opened last year. The building and the exhibits are stunning.

For restaurants, there are lots of reasonably priced good restaurants in the Byward Market, including the Black Tomato. I think that the Black Cat Café on Murray St. is one of the best in that area, and as you mentioned that your son likes anything a little unusual, also on Murray St. is the Sweetgrass Bistro, featuring North American aboriginal cooking. Some of the best French restuarants are in Gatineau (Hull) and if you are visiting the Museum of Civilization, Le Tartuffe is only a block away.

I know that you asked for moderately priced casual restaurants, but are you aware of Signatures at Le Cordon Bleu? It's the best restaurant in town (either side of the river).
laverendrye is offline  
Aug 14th, 2006, 08:31 AM
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Our favorite restaurant is just a very short drive from dowtown Ottawa. The cuisine is really original, fresh ingredients and different presentation.

If you son is thinking of stuyding at Cordon Bleu he must see this interesting mix of French and Canadian cuisine.

The ambiance is pleasantly relaxing and the scenary is really worth the distance. Here is the link to their menu and directions:

Bon voyage et bon appétit.
LuckyLuc is offline  
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