Oh, autumn: The season of crunchy leaves, warm sweaters, apple cider, and all things pumpkin (and pumpkin spice!). With its multitude of oranges, yellows, reds, and greens, Fall really is the season where nature has one last spectacle, and there is seldom a place that knows how to make the most out of the autumn season than Ottawa, Canada.
Travel through the Fall colored fields of the Canadian capital, find the most stunning autumnal sights this side of the world can bring, visit pumpkin and apple farms with friends and family: as the winds start to turn chilly, Ottawa has just the right Fall activities to warm any lucky visitors.
9 Fall Rhapsody
When the trees become multicolored, Fall can feel like nature is playing its own grand symphony. Ottawa knows that better than anywhere else: the annual Fall Rhapsody is an event that runs from the beginning of autumn up to the end of October, seeking to get the most out of the season.
8 Get to know the Downtown in a guided walking tour
Ottawa’s Downtown is an area filled with beautiful views, stunning parks, architectural wonders, and historical sites, all intermingling with lively cafés, restaurants, squares, and shops. Take part in a walking tour to discover the history of the area, or bike around in the flat road paths to take in the beauty of Ottawa during Fall Rhapsody.
7 Take a day trip to the most beautiful paths in the Greenbelt region
Consisting of over 20 thousand hectares of protected green areas on the borders of Ontario’s rural lands and its urban sprawl, The Greenbelt is a perfect place to explore during the beautiful, multicolored Fall season. Natural trails make it perfect for trekking and biking, practicing sports like canoeing, rafting, and kayaking in the lakes and wetlands. Make a trip to the many Greenbelt farms and check out local produce, or have a picnic by the orangeade forests!
6 Enjoy sports in the multicolored outdoors
Beyond The Greenbelt, other places in Ottawa such as Gatineau Park, or Major’s Hill and Jacques-Cartier Park, are urban or country parks perfect for enjoying outdoor activities in the crisp autumn air, whether that is a leisure stroll or the more athletic activities such as hiking, trekking, cycling, and kayaking.
5 Get your spook on in the Pumpkinferno
Get the most out of the spooky vibes in the air on Pumpkinferno, an installation made up of intricately and artistically carved, glowing pumpkins on display on Upper Canada Village. From scarily intricate to downright creepy, it’s certain to say these glowing pumpkin sculptures aren’t any ordinary Jack o’ Lanterns!
4 Visit pumpkin patches and apple orchards
Is it even really fall without apple or pumpkin picking? Ottawa has, from the urban center to The Greenbelt, a long list of orchards, patches, and farms open for visitors to come and enjoy the seasonal harvest by choosing and picking their own produce!
3 Frightening fun at Saunders Farm
With their own pumpkin patch plus tens of different mazes, treehouse play structures, and a special spook-filled program for fall, Saunders Farm is an unmissable stop for families, fun for adults and children alike.
On Saunders’ Farm Haunting Season, visitors can pick pumpkins, experience their immersive Fright Fest attractions, including haunted rides, scary open areas, and street theaters like the witchy The Coven, the Haunted Hayride, the Barn of Terror, and more.
For those who need to recover from the scares, some hard cider on the patio is highly recommended.
2 Take a shopping trip to Byward market
From the same mind that headlined the building of the Rideau Canal - another great place to explore by bike - was created the Byward Market, one of Canada’s largest and oldest farmers’ markets, planned and built in 1826.
Byward Market consists of both indoor market stores and permanent outdoor stalls, where visitors can find anything from artisanry goods, local produce, seasonal sweets and décor, plants, and flowers. It’s a perfect place to lose a few hours and has many dining and nightlife options.
1 Taste all the Fall treats Ottawa has to offer
We’ve covered apple and pumpkin picking, but for those looking for something a little less ‘from-scratch’, this is the season of wonderful treats. The town's many breweries prepare special, fall-themed craft beers - the pumpkin beer is especially delicious - and hard or apple cider tastings are always a favorite. Pumpkin spice lattes, warm coffees, and luscious hot chocolates are sure to ward off the chill in the air.
Satisfy that autumn sweet tooth by trying out the apple pie version of the Ottawa native Beaver Tails, or cruise the town's pastry shops and food markets for their special themed sweets, like apple cider doughnuts, pumpkin scones, caramel apples, and fall-themed cookies!