May is finally here! Summer in Ottawa has something for everyone. With so much to do and see, you’ll need to prioritize your time just to fit everything in. If you’re looking for some ideas to add to your list, here are some of the events and activities that you can enjoy this summer around Dow’s Lake in central Ottawa.
Enjoy the Tulip Festival
Nothing ushers in the summertime like colourful vibrant displays of tulips. If you love tulips, then don’t miss out on the 65th edition of the Canadian Tulip Festival that’s taking place around Dow’s Lake from May 12th to the 22nd at Commissioners Park.
This colourful festival isn’t just a celebration of blossoms and the warmer weather. The roots of this celebration are in appreciation of the liberation of the Netherlands by Canadian troops over 70 years ago and the safe harbour Ottawa gave to the Dutch royal family. As a show of thanks and gesture of international friendship, Princess Juliana presented the people of Canada with 100,000 tulip bulbs. She continued to send tulip bulbs each year throughout her reign as Queen of the Netherlands. People began to gather each spring to enjoy the blooming of the tulip blossoms, and a tradition was born.
In visiting the Tulip Festival, you can pay homage to our veterans, celebrate international friendship, enjoy breathtaking fireworks, and partake in the special interactive programs in this beautiful, natural setting.
Go Boating, Kayaking or Paddle Boarding on the Lake
If there’s one thing that Canadians love to do, it’s spending time on the lake! And at Dow’s Lake, there’s never a shortage of ways to enjoy being on the water. You can go boating, canoeing, kayaking, or even take out a paddle board and glide along the water while taking in the beautiful scenery around you. It’s the perfect way to get outside and embrace the stunning natural surroundings that Ottawa has to offer.
Jog Along the Canal
Why not take a leisurely walk, brisk jog, or bike ride along the canal? This is one of the best ways to relax and unwind, while enjoying one of the best areas throughout the city. Follow the canal as it winds through The Glebe and Old Ottawa South, and past Lansdowne Park all the way to the locks where it meets the Ottawa River in front of Parliament and the Chateau Laurier, if you’re feeling ambitious.
Enjoy the Lakefront View at the Restaurants in Dow’s Lake Pavilion
If you’re in the mood for some tasty eats after all that paddle boarding or canoeing, you can head over to the pavilion that’s located nearby. The pavilion is home to Lago Bar & Grill, which serves up seasonally inspired Canadian fare; Malone’s Lakeside Grill, with elevated casual dining; and the resurrected Mexi’s, where you can enjoy some of the best Tex-Mex in town.
There’s so much to see and do around Dow’s Lake in Ottawa. Whether you’re looking to take in a festival, embrace the Canadian past time of canoeing on the lake, or dive into some delicious food while enjoying the lakefront view – this area offers so much to enjoy.
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