|First Nation “Beaver” Lodge Pole|
In past years, Montreal has been our destination of choice for a long weekend in January. This year we headed off in a slightly different direction, with some prompting from friends who have been singing the praises of the city of Ottawa. It is a four hour ride from Schroon Lake, twice the distance as the trip to Montreal. The weather was reasonably cooperative. We had to deal with some snow squalls on the way north on Friday, but nothing that the Mini Cooper couldn’t handle. We arrived at the Chateau Laurier midday on Friday and mapped out our itinerary. The hotel sits on the banks of the Ottawa River, and a nearby bridge with a pedestrian walkway provides easy access to Gatineau in Quebec. Few cities are more pedestrian (and bike) friendly than Ottawa. Paths line major thoroughfares, and the thoroughfares are not limited to roadways. The river and the Rideau Canal are major destinations for tourists and locals alike, especially in winter when skaters crowd the ice covered waterways.
Ottawa serves as both Ontario’s Provincial capital as wells as Canada’s, and the historic Parliament buildings along the river make for many photo opportunities. A ten minute walk across the bridge to Quebec will bring you to the grounds of the Museum of Civilization, which traces Canada’s history from the First Nation settlements of its First Peoples to the modern Confederation. I could have spent an entire day just studying the displays of Inuit artwork and crafts.
|Smoked Octopus Appetizer at Black Cat Bistro|
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