The National Gallery of Canada has reopened after the most recent pandemic lockdown with a new exhibition of Rembrandt and a lofty new vision for its future that aims to connect to more diverse voices and audiences through critical conversations in art. In this vain they have taken what was slated to be a pretty standard Rembrandt exhibition and infused it with Black and Indigenous voices and artists that broaden the scope of the exhibition to reflect on the time period that Rembrandt lived in and how it connects to colonization and the Trans-Atlantic slave trade. The exhibition runs until September 6th so there are still a few more weeks to see it!
With most things still closed in Ottawa this spring due to the pandemic I tried to enjoy spending time outside, which for me means photographing all the flowers. So here are some shots of spring in Ottawa.
** Due to the Covid-19 pandemic it is important to maintain social distancing when out in public and avoid congregating in groups. Please visit the flowers responsibly this season **
Springtime in Ottawa is one of the best seasons when all the flowers start to bloom and it finally feels like winter is over. It may take a bit of time for it to finally happen and there may be a number of rainy and cold days but when the sun comes out Ottawa shines. The annual Canadian Tulip Festival is the star of the spring season in Ottawa with thousands of tulips blooming through out the city.
August is probably the best month in Ottawa to buy all your fruits and veg at the Ottawa Farmers’ Market. Literally everything in season and there is so much choice it can be hard to decide what to buy. Sunday mornings from 9am-3pm in Aberdeen Square at Lansdowne Park is where my favourite market in Ottawa takes place.
Skating on the Rideau Canal is probably the best thing about winter in Ottawa. I mean where else can you skate on a historic UNESCO World Heritage Site canal through the centre of a city? Stretching 7.8km the Rideau Canal is the world’s largest naturally frozen skating rink and my favourite thing about winter here in Ottawa.
Gongfu Bao is one of my favourite little bites in Ottawa and if you haven’t been you really should. Gongfu Bao started as a food truck but recently opened up a restaurant on Bank St. in downtown Ottawa. I’ve been a few times now and it’s always great. The bao steam buns are delicious with great flavours.
Christmas at Upper Canada Village is one of the best places to see lights during the holiday season. I usually end up going after Christmas to see the Alight at Night festival to extend the Christmas season a bit. I love just walking around seeing all the pretty lights and there are also horse drawn wagon rides.
Touring the Parliament of Canada is one of the things a lot of tourists do when they come to Ottawa. As someone who lives here though you never really think about it much unless you’re on a school field trip. However, when it was announced a while back that Centre Block would be closing for at least 10 years for extensive renovations I knew that I really wanted to see it again since the last time I went on a tour was probably almost 10 years ago. One of the bonuses of waiting so long to go on a tour was that it was all decorated for Christmas making the building even prettier.
Apple picking is one of my favourite fall traditions since I love everything apple and baking apple pies. It’s so fun to get out on a beautiful, crisp autumn day and pick some apples. Mountain Orchards is located in Mountain, Ontario, just outside of Kemptville about 45 minutes south of Ottawa.
One of the best things about summer is all the amazing fresh and local produce and it’s even better when you get to pick it yourself. I recently discovered Rubicon Farms through Instagram and it was the perfect place to go pick blueberries.