Despite the wintry conditions across Ontario this week, spring is officially on the horizon. With the start of the new season just days away, it’s time to start making plans for the warmer weather. If you’re already dreaming about fun and free stuff to do in Ottawa with your BFFs next month, prepare to be inspired!

Ottawa’s winter can be beautiful and whimsical, but by February we can all agree that we're sick of snow, slush and sweaters.

Thankfully, spring is now just around the corner. Many of us are already dreaming about sipping cocktails on the patio, spending hours beside the lake, and devouring ice-cream 24/7.

While it’s nice to enjoy some of the more expensive things that the city has to offer during the sunny season, just being outside and enjoying the warmer weather is enough to have a good time.

Ottawa is full of unique and exciting spring adventures, and many of our favourite annual festivals are preparing to make a comeback.

From Poutine Fest and the Canadian Tulip Festival, to food-trucks and evening walks, you and your besties will have endless options to fill those long, mild evenings. 

Get prepared to pack away your winter boots and pull out your shorts and sunscreen, summer is on the way and it simply couldn’t come any sooner.

Explore Lansdowne Farmers Market

Price: Free

When: Every Sunday

Address: 1000 Exhibition Way, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: This adorable farmers' market is always fully-stocked with fruit, veggies, cheese and so much more. While you don't have to buy anything to enjoy the atmosphere, it's hard to resist the incredible goodies!

Picnic In Major’s Hill Park

Price: Free

Address: Downtown Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: If you've been missing your floral fix over the winter, Major's Hill Park is the place to top up! There's no better spot to enjoy a picnic when the sun is shining.

Stroll Around Fletcher Wildlife Garden 

Price: Free

Address: Prince of Wales Dr, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: This park is a nature-lovers paradise, and it's one of Ottawa's best kept secrets. The picturesque gardens are home to so many flowers and so much wildlife, it even has a frog pond.

Experience Yoga On The Hill

Price: Free

When: Wednesdays from 12:15 p.m., May - August, 2020.

Address: Wellington St, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: Join thousands of yoga enthusiasts and experience a free class on the grounds of Parliament Hill. The Prime Minister may even compliment your posing!

Hike To The Eagle's Nest Lookout

Price: Free

Address: Directions

Why You Need To Go: There's no better way to welcome back the warm weather than with this easy but rewarding hike. You will find awe-inspiring 360-degree views from the top of this cliff, and you'll be able to witness the changing season from above.

Catch The Sunset At Nepean Point

Price: Free

Address: National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: If your Instagram is full of wintry, snowy vibes, it's time to change it up! Capture one of the city's famous sunsets at Nepean Point, and brighten up your mood AND your socials.

See The Cherry Blossoms At Dominion Arboretum

Price: Free

When: Late April - May, 2020

Address: Arboretum, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: You don't need to fly to Japan to experience beautiful spring blossoms. These enchanting pink blooms are only around for a short period during spring, so don't leave it too late to find them.

Enjoy The Views At Andrew Haydon Park

Price: Free

Address: 3169 Carling Ave, Nepean, ON

Why You Need To Go: Whether you visit for a stroll or a picnic, the relaxing and peaceful atmosphere at Andrew Haydon Park will have you feeling summery in no time.

Visit The Canadian Tulip Festival

Price: Free

When: May 8 - May 18, 2020

Address: Ottawa-Gatineau Metropolitan Area

Why You Need To Go: Experience the world's largest tulip festival, and embrace the sweet smell of more than one million blooms across the city.

Explore Ottawa's Poutine Festival

Price: Free

When: April 30 - May 3, 2020

Address: 110 Laurier Ave W, Ottawa, ON

Why You Need To Go: It's totally free to attend Ottawa's annual poutine festival, although we can't promise that you won't purchase a tasty treat.

Take An Evening Stroll

Price: Free

Address: Anywhere!

Why You Need To Go: This is a big, beautiful city, with so many wonderful places to explore and discover. Enjoy the warm weather and the glorious sunsets, and remember what it feels like to stay out past 7 p.m.!

We strongly advise that before you go swimming or visit any location, you check the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit a location, respect the environment.