By: Serge Guenette

Top Ottawa picnic spots


If you’re looking for a summer pastime that allows you to social distance with your friends and family while still enjoying the outdoors, picnicking is the way to go. Whether it’s a quick thrown-together basket of snacks to enjoy or a cooler with a full spread of food, picnics are an easy activity that don’t take a lot of planning to make happen.

Ottawa is full of green spaces that include picnic tables, areas to lay out a blanket and views that will make your picnic lunch even better. Here is a list of five of our favourites. Why not check one or more of them out? Happy picnicking!

  1. Major’s Hill Park: Want a picnic with a view? Major’s Hill Park is the perfect spot to choose. Right in the downtown core of Ottawa, this park offers a view of Parliament Hill, the Rideau Canal locks, and the National Art Gallery, depending on where you choose to sit. The park can get quite busy, but luckily there is plenty of green space to choose from when you’re looking for a spot to sit.

  2. Britannia Park: Heading towards the west end of Ottawa near Bayshore Shopping Centre, Britannia Park normally offers a two-in-one picnic experience, with both vibrant green spaces and a long sandy beach to enjoy. Although the beach is closed this summer for extensive maintenance and environmental mitigation, it is typically the perfect place to plan a full day outdoors, where you can cool off with a swim. Even though you can’t swim right now, it’s still a great spot for a picnic.

  3. Petrie Island Beach: Located in the east end, Petrie Island Beach is a unique spot surrounded by the Ottawa River. The island itself has much to explore with walking trails and lookout areas, but it also has plenty of green space and sandy beaches to enjoy a picnic on the island. You do have to pay for parking — $2 for five hours — so make sure to come prepared for that.

  4. Patterson Creek East: Heading to the Glebe, Patterson Creek East, located on a small creek leading into the Rideau Canal, offers you a peaceful and quiet picnic spot to take in. With beautiful trees and stone bridges near the walkways and green spaces, you will want to take your time with your picnic and enjoy the scenery.

  5. Centrepointe Park: In Nepean near Algonquin College, Centrepointe Park offers a large green space perfect for picnics that’s surrounded by a loop walking trail. This park has a small pond, sports fields and a recreational area for kids. It’s a perfect spot for the whole family to enjoy a picnic lunch while still having the chance to get active outdoors.