Bursting with boutiques, restaurants, coffee shops and bars, come visit Ottawa’s oldest, most concentrated neighbourhood! The ByWard Market neighbourhood and Rideau Street offer a unique experience for tourists and locals alike. No trip to Ottawa is complete without experiencing everything this pedestrian-friendly area has to offer.
Food + Drinks
Ottawa’s ByWard Market and Rideau Street are full of incredible culinary options with a diverse range of flavours and cultures. This iconic downtown area is a haven for food enthusiasts, offering a variety of experiences perfect for everyone’s palate.
From cozy cafes serving freshly brewed coffee like Happy Goat Coffee Company to elevated restaurants offering mouthwatering cuisine like Play Food & Wine and Side Door, the ByWard Market and Rideau Street’s culinary scene has something for everyone.
Arts + Culture
The cobblestone streets and historic architecture of the ByWard Market neighbourhood create a vibrant canvas for artistic expression. The National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa Art Gallery and SAW Centre create a sense of community in the arts and culture space. Boutiques, murals and art installments line the streets, showcasing contemporary and traditional works.
Street performers, also known as buskers, from musicians and painters to magicians and dancers, captivate audiences with their incredible talents. The ByWard Market isn’t merely a destination; it’s an immersive experience where culture thrives.
The parks surrounding the ByWard Market neighbourhood provide a serene contrast to the bustling energy of the market itself. Major’s Hill Park, with its sweeping views of the Ottawa River and Parliament Hill, is an oasis where you can escape into a slice of nature and historic monuments. Confederation Park is a cultural location, hosting can’t-miss festivals and events year-round.
Nearby, the Rideau Canal is a UNESCO World Heritage site. In the winter, it becomes the world’s longest outdoor skating rink. And in the summer, you can boat and paddle along the water!
Perfect for fashion enthusiasts seeking unique apparel and accessories and those in search of handcrafted gifts and souvenirs, the ByWard Market’s diverse array of shops offer something for every shopper.
The ByWard Market is renowned for its collection of local artisanal products, including exquisite jewellery, artwork and home décor items. Beyond traditional offerings, you can explore gourmet food stores and spice shops. Shop from indoor vendors and artisans all year and enjoy the outdoor farmers’ market from May-October.
From cozy pubs exuding old world charm to sleek lounges radiating upscale elegance, the ByWard Market has it all. Savour handcrafted cocktails, local brews and international wines from places like YOW – York on William and Blue Cactus Bar & Grill.
Discover intimate acoustic performances to energetic bands and DJs that grace the stages of the area’s numerous bars and clubs. The Market is a go-to destination for those seeking an unforgettable evening.
Major annual events + sports
Ottawa’s ByWard Market plays host to numerous events that infuse the district with an infectious energy throughout the year. The bustling farmers’ market showcases the region’s freshest produce while the annual Canada Day celebrations paint the streets red. During the warmer months, the ByWard Market is abuzz with buskers and outdoor concerts that animate the atmosphere. As the holiday season approaches, the Market transforms into a winter wonderland with holiday decorations and offerings.
Explore the ByWard Market
How to get to the ByWard Market
Conveniently located in Ottawa’s downtown core, the ByWard Market, Rideau Street and Sandy Hill area is accessible by car, bus, LRT, biking and walking. Paid parking and free street parking are available in the Market and surrounding areas. Check out the for directions on how to get there. Check out the ByWard Market District Authority for directions on how to get there.