Gatineau Park, Winter, Cross-country skiing

Uplift your spirits in Ottawa this winter

In Ottawa, we welcome winter with open arms. Our region has many unique winter activities and attractions that can help you stay happy and healthy and beat those winter blues. So grab a friend, bundle up, and create your perfect winter wellness experience!

Lighten up

There’s nothing better than a little physical activity outside to stay warm and get the endorphins flowing in the winter! Ottawa is known for its many outdoor recreation options all year round, but the city really shines in winter with something for everyone to enjoy the great outdoors.

Lace up

When you think of winter in Ottawa, the first thing that comes to mind is probably the world’s largest naturally frozen skating rink – the Rideau Canal Skateway. Residents and visitors alike flock to the Skateway to experience this iconic Ottawa winter attraction.

The Ottawa area has lots of other places to skate too! Icelynd in the west end and RiverOak in the south feature skating trails that wind through the woods for a unique and magical way to connect with nature.

Speed up

If your idea of wellness includes an adrenaline rush, plan a visit to one of the Ottawa area’s downhill skiing centres. Camp Fortune is a popular option that’s just a short drive from downtown. After a day on the slopes, you’re sure to feel invigorated!

Cross-country skiing is also very popular in Ottawa, with hundreds of kilometres of groomed, scenic trails for all skill levels in the city and surrounding areas. Not a skier? Snowshoeing is rapidly gaining popularity as an easy, fun way to stay fit in the winter, and there are lots of great places to explore in and around Ottawa.

Warm up

Sometimes it’s just too cold to be outside. Not to worry! Warm up with these activities that will be sure to boost your mood.

A winter visit to Nordik Spa-Nature is an unforgettable experience. You’ll be transported to an oasis of wellness and relaxation surrounded by nature, where you can warm up in the thermal baths, saunas, and cozy lounge areas by the fire.

Wellness and yoga go hand in hand, so why not try out a class at one of Ottawa’s many studios? Both Pure Yoga Ottawa and Yogatown offer a wide range of classes in several locations with a drop-in option so you can try something new.

Regular massages can be a great way to relax and recharge, especially in the winter. Escape from the everyday and let your troubles slip away under the expert hands of one of the skilled massage therapists at Au Naturel Spa or Holtz Spa.

For a uniquely relaxing experience, try flotation therapy at ISÖ Spa. Book a session in one of their float tanks and soak your stresses away.

Fuel up

All that activity (and relaxing) will work up an appetite. Many of Ottawa’s vegetarian and vegan restaurants offer a plant-based take on "comfort food" that's healthy, filling and delicious. Wellness never tasted so good!

For fresh produce and other wholesome goodies that you can take home to your own kitchen, look no further than Ottawa’s local farmer’s markets, many of which run year-round.

Of course, coffee is essential fuel, especially in the winter months. Get your fix at one of Ottawa’s many local roasters.

With all these activities to help you feel your best, you are sure to warm up to winter in Ottawa!

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