Although shisha, commonly known as hookah or arguileh, has been around for a while, it's definitely safe to say that Drake made it way more popular in Canada. Although its' initial origins are not completely known, it is heavily connected to being a Middle Eastern cultural practice.
Fortunately, Ottawa has a massive Middle Eastern population living here, meaning a lot of their customs and traditions have also been brought over. Of course, this includes shisha which means Ottawa is boasting some of the hottest shisha spots you'll ever visit in Canada.
Where: 1344 Bank St.
One of the OG spots in Ottawa, Sinbad has been around for what seems like forever. They have some of the best shisha and they have free candy at the counter! I'd recommend trying their french fries - to die for.
Where: 750 Gladestone Ave.
Gladstone is super low key but super lit. They have a huge screen projector that plays top 40's hip hop and a little bit of pop but the shisha is great. They also have cards available that people can play and the dimmed lights make for a cool vibe.
Bay Rock Cafe
Where: 2446 Bank St.
Bay Rock Cafe is low key but has some of the best shisha in Ottawa! It's not too expensive and located in the South end of Ottawa. It's definitely a place to try out at least once but I can almost guarantee you'll head back for a second time.
Where: 5307 Canotek Rd.
Not only will you get some dank shisha here but you'll also get to experience authentic Middle Eastern cuisine and live shows. You better dress to impress when you head here and be expected to dance!
Bab El Hara
Where: 1818 Bank St.
Bab El Hara is an Ottawa gem and definitely a favourite amongst Ottawans. They have great shisha, great vibes, and the prices are reasonable. Just make sure to bring some ID!
Where: 730 Industrial Ave.
If you're just looking to spend a chill night with some friends, this is the place for you! The vibes are chill but the shisha is great and you most likely won't run into anyone you know.
Where: 1930 Bank St.
Dijla Café offers some amazing shisha options and the prices aren't bad at all. From blue mist to watermelon, you'll definitely enjoy yourself here. If the location doesn't work out for you, they have another location in Chinatown, a little closer to downtown.
Where: 2764 Lancaster Rd.
This place is such a sweet, little gem. The owners and workers are really amazing people who offer good quality shisha for a cheap price. They also give out free water bottles and snacks, have cards to play, and will make you want to go back here every time!