Description  |  General Information/Landmarks  |  Entertainment  |  Bars  |  Restaurants  |  Arts  |  Gyms/Spas  | Shopping  |  GLBT   


 
 
 

With a population of over one million people, the National Capital Region includes two cities and two provinces, with two official languages—English and French. Ottawa-Gatineau is an area steeped in tradition, and as Canada's Capital, it boasts some of Canada's best in the arts, culture, historic architecture, museums and restaurants, as well as lots of beautiful scenic views along the Ottawa River and Ottawa Canal.

Centretown (where the Gilmour Inn is located) is a thriving mix of business, residential, government and cultural buildings, many of historic import and all within walking distance. Here you'll want to visit Parliament Hill, the Supreme Court of Canada, the newly build Convention Centre, the National Arts Centre, Ottawa City Hall and more. Along Elgin, there's plenty of bars and restaurants for a thriving nightlife, and Bank Street boasts the emerging gay-friendly Village district, formally recognized in 2011, between Nepean and James Streets.

North-east is the picturesque ByWard Market area, with an abundance of food vendors, restaurants, shops and bars. Don't miss ByWard Market Square or Sussex Street, which boasts loads of boutique shops and the National Gallery of Canada. Travelling further along Sussex, visit Rideau Hall, the Rideau Falls, and pass by 24 Sussex, home of the current Prime Minister.

To the south of Centretown is the Glebe, an eclectic mix of hip young families and upwardly mobile professionals, served by a variety of funky shops and eateries. To the west is Chinatown, with a stunning new gate that is one of the best in the country. If you are a fan of delicious Asian food from a variety of countries, and of course, karaoke, then a visit here is a must. Further west is Hintonburg and Westboro, rivaling the Glebe for the hippest and fastest growing neighbourhood in the city.

Wherever you go, you'll be charmed by the friendliness, warmth and beauty of this wonderful city. Explore through our extensive list of links below and well as using our handy online map for locations and directions.

 
 

« back to top



 
 
General Information: Landmarks and Important Buildings: Museums
· Canada's Capital · Canadian Tribute to Human Rights · Canada Aviation and Space Museum
· City of Ottawa Visitor's Guide · Dows Lake Pavilion · Canadian Museum of History
· Ottawa Tourism · Fairmont Chateau Laurier · Canadian Museum of Nature
  · Laurier House · Canadian Science and Technology Museum
Colleges and Universities: · Lord Elgin Hotel · Canadian War Museum
· Algonquin College · Mackenzie King Estate · Royal Canadian Mint
· Carleton University · National War Memorial  
· Cégep de l'Outaouais · Ottawa City Hall Parks and Gardens:
· La Cité collégiale · Ottawa Convention Centre · Central Experimental Farm
· Université du Québec en Outaouais · Parliament Hill · Confederation Park
· Université St-Paul · Rideau Canal · Gatineau Park
· University of Ottawa · Rideau Hall · Hog's Back Falls
  · Supreme Court of Canada · Major's Hill Park
    · Nepean Point
    · Rideau Falls
 
 

« back to top



 
 
Entertainment: Festivals: · Ottawa Jazz Festival (late June)
· Bytowne Cinema · Ottawa Festivals · Dragon Boat Festival (late June)
· Canadian Tire Centre · Winterlude (early February) · Ottawa Fringe Festival (late June)
· Casino du Lac Leamy · Maple Sugar Festival (mid March) · Ottawa Bluesfest (early July)
· Mayfair Theatre · International Writers Festival (late April) · Ottawa Chamberfest (late July)
· Yuk Yuk's · Northern Scene (late April) · SuperEX (late August)
  · Canadian Tulip Festival (early May) · Ottawa Folk Festival (early September)
  · Festival franco-ontarien (mid June) · Christmas Lights Across Canada (early Dec.)
  · GlowFair (mid June)  
 
 

« back to top



 
 

The listing below is merely a highlighted list of places worth a visit when in or near Centretown. In Centretown, the busiest bar area is along Elgin Street north of Gladstone Avenue, followed closely by Bank Street, mainly south of Somerset Street W. Also well worth a try is the ByWard Market area, which is chock full of places to imbibe. For gay-friendly clubs, scroll down to the GLBT section.

· ClubZone (bar and event listings) · D'Arcy McGee's · MacLaren's on Elgin
· Babylon · Fox and Feather · The Manx
· Barrymore's · James Street Pub · Mercury Lounge
· Chateau Lafayette · Heart and Crown · Vinyards
· Chez Lucien · Lieutenant's Pump · Zaphod Beeblebrox
 
 

« back to top



 
 

Ottawa can boast some of the best and most varied restaurants in Canada and around the world. It would be impossible to amass all the excellent restaurants the city has to offer, but please consider some of these as ones we especially recommend. If you prefer to window-shop for a place to eat, consider walking through the ByWard Market, Chinatown (along Somerset W east of Percy), Little Italy (Preston south of Somerset W), the Glebe (Bank south of the Queensway) and Hintonburg/Westboro (Wellington W east of Melrose) especially, though most major commercial streets, such as Bank, Elgin, Sparks, Sussex and Somerset W all offer a wide variety of cuisines at various price points.

Restaurants: · Imperial · Shanghai Restaurant
· Urban Spoon (restaurant listings) · Johnny Farina · Social
· Al's Steak House · Khao Thai · Todric's
· Atomic Rooster · Le Cordon Bleu Bistro · town.
· Beckta Dining and Wine · Mekong · Union 613
· Black Cat Bistro · Miga Restaurant · Viet-Thai
· Burgers on Main (BOM) · Navarra · Whalesbone
· The Buzz · Oh So Good · Zak's Diner
· East India Company · Oz Kafe  
· Eggspectation · Pancho Villa Coffee Shops:
· Elgin Street Diner · Play Food and Wine · Bridgehead Coffeehouse
· Empire Grill · Restaurant E18hteen · Second Cup
· The Green Door · Royal Oak · Starbucks
· Hy's Steakhouse    
 
 

« back to top



 
 

Art Galleries: · National Gallery of Canada Performing Arts:
· Falldown Gallery · Ottawa Art Gallery · Great Canadian Theatre Company (GCTC)
· Galerie SAW Gallery   · National Arts Centre
· Gallery 101   · Opera Lyra
· La Petite Mort Gallery   · Ottawa Little Theatre
 
 

« back to top



 
 

· Bodé Spa · Le Spa · SAAB Salon Spa
· Character Salon · The Loft · Taggart Family YMCA
· Downtown YMCA · Lucas Nault Hair Studio · TrueForm Fitness
 
 

« back to top



 
 

Ottawa, like most major cities, has an abundance of shops, boutiques and malls. Listed below are some of the places we highly recommend in the Centretown region. While Ottawa is not a fashion-forward city, per say, there are lots of clothing and jewellery shops in the major shopping mall, the Rideau Centre, as well as boutiques along Sussex, Sparks and in the Glebe and Market. Aside from fashion, we've listed some of the best spots for a traveller to pick up necessities, such as books and magazines, cosmetics and health care, camera supplies, and food and drink.

Shopping: · Murale Food and Drink:
· 240 Sparks Street Mall · Rideau Centre · The Beer Store
· The Bay · Ruby X Fashion · Golden Baguette
· Book Bazaar · Shoppers Drug Mart · Hartman's
· ByWard Market · Silver Snail · Herb and Spice
· Chapters · Stroked Ego · LCBO
· The Comic Book Shoppe · Sussex Drive · Thimblecakes
· Canada's Four Corners Gift Shop · Sparks Street Mall  
· Henry's · Wicked Wanda's  
· Holt Renfrew · World Exchange Plaza  
· L'Esplanade Laurier · Zone  
· Mags and Fags    
 
 

« back to top



 
 

Ottawa has a modest but growing gay scene and in 2011, the City of Ottawa officially recognized its GLBT-friendly Village along Bank Street between Nepean and James. Late August is an ideal time to visit during the Capital Pride Festival, culminating in a parade and outdoor festival on the closing Sunday. If you happen to visit in early February, check out the Snowblower Festival for guys into guys. Before you hit the clubs, consider visiting one of several sex shops to pick up supplies. Club Edge is the largest club, but caters mainly to youth and those who like them. The Lookout has popular nights on Thursdays and Saturdays for men, and Fridays for women. Centretown Pub caters mainly to men aged 30 and up, and features a once-a-month leather/latex night, but is mainly a casual, no-frills pub. Mercury Lounge has Hump Night on Wednesdays, which is popular dance and drag night with a younger/hipper crowd. Swizzles is bias-free and is especially popular during their karaoke nights on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays. For karaoke on Saturdays, check out Shanghai Restaurant, home of China Doll, one of Ottawa's best and well-beloved drag queens... she's also the cook. Then again, you can always skip the clubs entirely and try one of the two bathhouses catering to gay men, or visit shops and services like After Stonewall, PTS and Stroked Ego.

General Info: Bars: Services:
· Dorothy's Closet/Type Q · Centretown Pub · AIDS Committee of Ottawa
· Xtra Ottawa · The Lookout · Bruce House
  · Mercury Lounge · Gay Zone
Adult: · Swizzles · PTS
· Central Spa    
· One in Ten Festivals: Shopping:
· Venus Envy · Capital Pride · After Stonewall
· Wilde's · Snowblower · Stroked Ego
     
  Restaurants:  
  · The Buzz  
  · Shanghai Restaurant