This is a guest post by Jessica Hobin.

When people think of Canada, I expect they think of cities like Vancouver, Toronto, maybe even Montreal – but probably not Ottawa. Ottawa seems to have a reputation as a bit of a sleepy city, and perhaps people think that we’re only really on the Canadian radar because we have the Parliament buildings, and are therefore the Nation’s capital. Admittedly, Ottawa does not have the most vibrant night-life like Toronto, or the stunning views that Vancouver has, but we’ve got some pretty cool stuff too! The awesome thing about Ottawa is that is truly has 4 complete and utterly different seasons, and therefore is completely different depending on when you visit. So let’s talk really quickly about the best times to visit.

Early-mid July – Early July is a great time to see Ottawa and Canadian culture, as there are so many festivals happening here! Go to parliament hill to watch the fireworks on Canada Day, Get a pass to bluesfest, and enjoy all the little festivals you can make it to.
Early February winterlude, an outdoor winter Fesitval, and the world’s longest skating rink are great ways to see Canada in the winter (if you can brave the cold!). Don’t forget to eat a beavertail and have a poutine to warm up.
October – Autumn is my favorite season so I might be biased, but if you’ve never experienced leaves changing colour, this is an amazing time to visit. There are a lot of cool Halloween-themed things to do as well, if that’s your thing.
As you can see, What you are going to do here really does depend on when you come. However, one thing that stays fairly constant is the Byward market, a huge outdoor market that is at the heart of Ottawa. The market isn’t just an outdoor market, though – it also houses a huge amount of really cool restaurants, shops, boutiques, and nightlife. If you visit Ottawa, you will want to spend a while exploring this area for sure.

Shop the market stalls for fresh veggies, fruit, plants, and Canadian Maple products.

Visit the locks on the bridge leading to parliament hill

Eat at the grand, an amazing pizza place in the market

Have lunch and a coffee at Cafe 55, at the very heart of the market.

I hope I’ve convinced you that Ottawa is not as boring as its reputation may be!

Jessica is a 23 year old Nursing student from Ottawa, Canada. She loves polaroid cameras, film photography, Harry potter, and fashion. She also has an awesome cat that she shaves like a lion, and loves just a little too much. She blogs at This Analog Adventure. You can also find her on facebook, twitter & instagram.
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