Travel Guides to Canada

2016 Travel Guide to Canada

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TRAVEL GUIDE TO CANADA IN THE CAPITAL REGION BY LAURA BYRNE PAQUET C anada's capital, Ottawa, is a national treasure trove. Home to world-class museums and galleries, it also hosts festivals focusing on everything from buskers and jazz to poutine and tulips. Over 600 km (373 mi.) of multi-use recreational pathways, the world's largest skating rink, challenging whitewater rafting and the 361 sq. km (139 sq.mi.) of Gatineau Park beckon outdoors-lovers. The region—which also includes parts of west Québec, easily accessible via bridges across the Ottawa River—also has award- winning restaurants and Canada's largest bilingual arts centre. The question isn't, "Why should you visit Canada's capital region?" The question is, "Why have you waited so long?" THE SEAT OF GOVERNMENT You've seen it on stamps, on currency and on television, but nothing is as memorable as seeing Canada's neo-Gothic Parliament Buildings up close. The circular Library of Parliament, with its galleries of oak shelves and towering statue of a young Queen Victoria, is a highlight. In summer, soldiers in scarlet uniforms carry out the Changing the Guard ceremony at 10 a.m., and the Hill glows with a free sound and light show each night. FESTIVALS AND PERFORMANCES The National Arts Centre (NAC) offers a calendar of roughly 1,300 theatre, dance and music performances each year, including concerts by the NAC Orchestra under the baton of new music director Alexander Shelley. A $110.5-million architectural renewal project, due to be largely complete by July 2017, will add a landmark glass entrance and enhance the building's performance spaces. Theatres all over the city are expanding; La Nouvelle Scène, a group of four French- language theatre companies, recently opened a new home on King Edward Avenue. UNIQUE FUN CHanGinG tHe GUarD CereMonY, ParLiaMent HiLL • ottaWa toUriSM OTTAWA

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