Cheap Flights to Ottawa

Ottawa overview

When to fly to Ottawa

As with most cities, Ottawa is a year-round destination with something to do even in the depths of winter. However, winter can get very cold -- in January, Ottawa ranks as the third-coldest capital in the world (after Ulan Baatar and Astana). If you can brave the cold, cheap trips to Ottawa and discounted hotel rates are available otherwise, book Ottawa flights during the summer months when the temperatures are relatively warm. The average July temperature is around 26C.

Peak Season

The most popular season to visit Ottawa is during its summer, roughly from June to late August.

Off season

Winter time (November through February) is the least popular time to visit Ottawa. Cheap flights to Ottawa are found in spring and fall as temperatures and weather are unpredictable. Heavy snow has been known to fall as late as May. However, there is still much to do in the city: most attractions are open year-round and there are annual events and festivals taking place. Check the events and festivals page of the Ottawa city website for detailed information.

Overview

Canadian travellers booking flights to Ottawa not only go to explore Canada’s capital city, but a trip to Ottawa is also a historical and cultural experience. Ottawa was chosen as capital in 1857 by Queen Victoria and since then has welcomed millions of tourists each year. The city is located on the Ontario side of the Ottawa River, opposite the French-speaking city of Hull and less than an hour’s drive from the border with the States. Ottawa itself is bilingual, with most residents speaking both French and English, so it’s likely you’ll hear a few different dialects on your Ottawa flight.

It’s only the fourth-largest city in Canada, but Ottawa packs a lot of sightseeing into this compact province. Bring your walking shoes with you – once you leave your Ottawa flight the best way to see the attractions and tourist destinations is to walk the city. The country’s parliament is housed in three spectacular gothic buildings perched atop Parliament Hill on the west side of the Rideau Canal. Museums, galleries and theatres occupy the cultural centre, including the National Gallery, the Museum of Civilization and the National Libraries. Eco-friendly travellers will be quiet pleased with Ottawa – it’s ranked one of the country's greenest cities, with many public parks and spaces easily accessible, including a lush surrounding countryside waiting to be explored.

Ottawa climate

Ottawa has a vast range of temperatures between summer and winter, and is subject to unpredictable weather conditions. Winters are generally snowy and icy. Temperatures in winter can drop as low as -25 degrees Celsius at night, but averages are misleading because days can be much warmer. Ice storms can occur. Summer weather in Ottawa is warm and humid, with temperatures exceeding 30 degrees fairly often, sometimes as early as April and as late as October. Summers are usually short, though, and spring and autumn are unpredictable, with early or late snowfalls possible or even unseasonal heat waves.

Getting around Ottawa

The easiest way to get around Ottawa is by foot. Most of the city’s attractions are close to each other. If you don’t feel like a walk, you can hop on the O-Train, a light rail transit system covering eight kilometres. The buses are an excellent option, since there are many routes and the buses move quickly through traffic in dedicated bus lanes. Taxis are cheap and accessible, and you can also take summer boats on the Rideau Canal.

Ottawa insider information

  • The annual Canadian Tulip Festival is the largest of its kind in the world, and takes place every May through Ottawa and Gatineau. The festival dates back to 1945, when Queen Juliana of the Netherlands gave a gift of 100,000 tulip bulbs to Canada. Today, the festival showcases tulips throughout the city, with more than three million tulips on display for ten days in May.
  • Canada Day, on July 1, is celebrated best in the country’s capital. Major events take place throughout the city, but the focus of the entertainments are (understandably) on Parliament Hill. Hundreds of thousands of people take to the streets to celebrate with concerts, street displays and fireworks in the evening.
  • Parliament Hill is the first spot most tourists visit. Don’t miss the sound and light show which runs on summer evenings. Half an hour long, the film about Canada is projected onto the Parliament Buildings accompanied by fantastic lighting effects. The show is free and no booking or tickets are required.
  • The Byward Market, east of downtown, is a huge neighbourhood, characterized by its open air market stalls. Fresh fruit, vegetables, flowers and art are all on sale in the stalls, while the surrounding shops have become increasingly boutique in recent years. Visit during the day for some shopping or browsing, or at night time for some of Ottawa’s best restaurants, bars and clubs.
  • For open air pursuits, the Rideau Canal is one of the best spots. Boat trips are available, for views of the city by water. These can usually be arranged at your hotel or at the canal. The banks of the river are popular routes for joggers and cyclists. Best of all, when the canal freezes over in the winter, it is transformed into a huge outdoor skating rink.

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Prices found by our users for local departures to Ottawa

Airports for Ottawa

Cheapest flights to Canada

How much do things cost in Ottawa?

Transport
One-way ticket (local transport)
C$ 3.56
Petrol (1 litre)
C$ 1.05
Taxi - fixed fee
C$ 3.51
1 km taxi journey
C$ 1.72
Markets
Bottle of beer (imported beer)
C$ 2.66
Large bottle of water
C$ 2.09
Bottle of local beer (0.5 litre)
C$ 2.38
Restaurants
Cappuccino
C$ 3.76
Local draught beer (0.5 litre)
C$ 6.01
3 course meal for 2
C$ 67.17
Imported beer (0.33 litre)
C$ 7.01
How much does an apartment cost in Ottawa?
1 bedroom apartment in the suburbs
C$ 899
1 bedroom apartment downtown
C$ 1160
3 bedroom apartment downtown
C$ 1919
3 bedroom apartment in the suburbs
C$ 1459

International departures to Ottawa

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