Destination Ottawa

Cycling in Ottawa

There are many options for cycling in our region on your commuter bike. Our city is huge, about 100 kilometers (65 miles) east to west, but thanks to the Greenbelt, the Ottawa river, the Rideau River and the Rideau canal, you never have to go far for a casual afternoon or evening ride.

If you want to go for a bike ride and you are not familiar with Ottawa, or you simply don’t know where to start, these blog posts may help. With lots of pictures so you get to see what you can expect. Most rides are somewhat of a loop, with a descent stop somewhere for coffee (albeit it hard to find in the suburbs). Obviously, the nature of a of a loop is such, that you can start at any place…..

The Ottawa river has bike paths on both sides, which is great if you are in town for a conference and you really don’t want to go to that cocktail with your boss. Rent a (Bixi) bike and cycle up or down or across the river. In the picture behind the church steeple is the war museum and further west the Water filtration plant that filters upstream raw sewage and nuclear waste out of the river before we drink it. (image – Hans Moor).

Destination Old Nepean – a 50 km loop through older developments as well as the Greenbelt. You get to see developments of the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s, agriculture in the Greenbelt as well as Bruce Pitt with its fenced in dog run;

Destination Centrepointe Nepean a 19 km loop that winds from our home in Fisher Heights crossing Merivale Road along a quiet residential road to Algonquin College. Crossing Woodroffe, you will get lost at the Baseline bus station as there is no clear way to get to Centrepointe library. From there follow parks and residential roads and follow more paths underneath hydro lines eastbound again. Cross Merivale Road once again into Colonnade Road and wind your way along the Nepean Creek;

Destination Kanata – a 60 km loop, partly on the Transcanada trail, Kanata’s suburban parks, the fringes of Ottawa’s built environment, some rural parts, coffee at a strip mall, lunch at a bay of the Ottawa river and back through forests in the Greenbelt;

Destination Barrhaven Starting inside the Greenbelt, this leads you through residential areas to a stone dust path in the Greenbelt between Merivale and Woodroffe. From there roll into Barrhaven, have coffee at the Mall (which kind of functions as a city centre but don’t expect cobble stone squares). There is a nice path following the Jock River which goes eventually underneath Prince of Wales. You can go north, which isn’t great or south to Manotick, which is only a few more kilometers. Or you can turn back;

Destination Prince Edward County – a 40 km loop in the south west corner of Prince Edward County, ON near Wellington, wine tasting, rural vistas, pizza from a wood fired oven, rosé, admiring crops, dip in Lake Ontario and coffee at the “rural hip” Tall Poppy café. Live can’t be better;

Destination Gatineau – 36 km loop from south of the Experimental Farm, along Dow’s Lake and the canal, passing the NCC bike troughs behind the NAC and a stop at the Bytowne Museum. Then on over the Alexandra Bridge (formerly a train bridge), further north over NCC paths towards Parc La Baie. Back along the Ottawa river to cross the river at Portage to have dinner at Tacolot in Hintonburg and then across the Farm back home. This one is nearly all on NCC bike paths.

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