January 19, 2017
2017 has barely started but Canadians are already excited to celebrate the coming year!
What makes 2017 so special for Canada? Canada is celebrating 150 years as a nation this year. Across the country, communities and organizations are holding events to celebrate the sesquicentennial (say that 3 times fast!).
In the City of Ottawa, the energy level and excitement is high, especially in our office at 4-H Canada. We are gearing up to not only celebrate with 4-H members across Canada but with 4-H members from around the world!
With all this excitement we wanted to share some tips to help make your travel to Ottawa easier.
- Book your flights early. Summer is a popular time to visit Ottawa and with all the attention on Canada’s 150th celebrations, flights are filling up.
- Reserve your hotel room as soon as possible to be near the Summit. In addition to our preferred hotels, a lower-priced option is being considered and may be available. Contact us for more details.
- We will be providing transfers from the airport starting Sunday, July 9 to the preferred hotels. Should you arrive before then and wish to go downtown, the best way to do so is by taxi. The Ottawa International Airport is about 30 minutes from the downtown. Once downtown, there is lots to see and do within walking distance of most hotels, including the Summit preferred hotels.
- July 1 is “Canada Day”, the Canadian national holiday and thousands of people flock to Ottawa to celebrate in the nation’s capital. It’s a fun place to be but hotel availability is usually limited and prices higher. If you’re planning to extend your stay, consider staying after the Summit.
- Passenger train service is not as extensive as it in Europe but ViaRail does provide service to Ottawa from other major cities, including Toronto and Montreal. They also offer discounted pricing on Tuesdays.
- Canada is a HUGE country! 9.985 million km2 to be exact. You will not be able to see the whole country on a short visit and would be best to stick to one area. Here, a New York Times writer shares his experience of “seeing” Ottawa in 36 hours.
- Ottawa is located in the Province of Ontario, geographically considered to be “East”. Across the Ottawa River, is the French-speaking Province of Quebec.
- A Dollar is not a Dollar! Canada`s currency is the Canadian Dollar (CAD). It`s different from the US Dollar (USD) and currently valued at about $0.75 in comparison. You may need to convert your currency to USD before you can convert it to Canadian dollars. This can be costly, so check before you leave home to learn the best way to buy Canadian dollars.
- Get your travel visa. Also, make sure your passport is current, does not expire before December 15th, 2017 and has at least 2 blank pages!
- Get more Ottawa travel tips and advice on Lonely Planet.
Interested in what else is happening around Canada this year? Get some fun ideas for your trip in this article, 150 Ways to Celebrate Canada 150 in 2017.
The Westin Ottawa lights up for Canada 150 on New Years Eve. Credit: LoveOttawa
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