From: Friday, February 2, 2024
To: Monday, February 19, 2024
Ottawa Winterlude 2024
Ottawa Winterlude is a three week series of celebrations sure to help make those winter days and nights filled with fun and excitement.
- Visiting for Winterlude? Stay at the Alt Hotel Ottawa just a short walk from all the gay bars and clubs in the neighborhood and a quick taxi ride to the Winterlude events.
- Winterlude is a series of events, food, music, ice sculptures, street performers, and shows that will keep you warm to your core during the icy cold winter.
- If you are into winter celebrations, snow, ice and good Canadian beer, then Winterlude is the event for you. The event takes place in Ottawa, Canada’s Capital.
- The sites hosting the events are located at the Rideau Canal Skateway, at the Snowflake Kingdom at Jacques Cartier Park, and the Crystal Garden in Confederation Park.
- Transportation for the event in between the separate location is free and is provided by OC Transpo and the Société de transport de l’Outaouais in the form of OLG-Snow Buses.
- If you are visiting for the vent, stay close to the Rideau Canal, where you will find the best hotels , close to all the main activities.
- The Winterlude festival has so many things to see and do you would need the entire 3 weeks of the event to experience everything.
- Here are our suggested highlights. The Ice Hog Family, mascots Mama and Papa Ice Hog and their children, Noumi and Nouma will be on hand to welcome you throughout the festival.
- Stay just steps from the top Winterlude events at The Germain Hotel, rated “Fabulous” by guests, with spacious designer rooms and excellent views.
- The main event happens on the Rideau Canal where you can skate on the world’s largest skating rink. At 7.8 km long and skating on Dow’s lake, that’s a lot of ice.
- There are warming stations and food stalls along the way where you can get hot chocolate, BeaverTails, and Maple Syrup treats. Try going early for a skate on the canal as it gets very busy in the afternoon.
- The Metcalfe Hotel, rated “Fabulous” by guests is lcoated close to the canal and features tastefully decorated rooms and suites, highly-rated breakfasts and complimentary hot chocolate, yum!
Winterpride and Gay Nighttime events
- Many pubs and restaurants set up outdoor patios and ice bars with fire pits to keep you warm. There are a lot of gay nighttime events taking place along Bank Street and Spark Street.
- Spark Street is a walking street filled with Winterlude Activities. Many of the gay bars host special Winterpride and Winterlude drag shows and parties.
- Awaiting Dates – Winterpride – night of drinks, DJs and dancing, a Capital Pride March; an Ice Cabaret featuring Montreal drag queens a photo exhibit from the National Portrait Collection of The Arquives (formerly the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives); and Saturday Night Divas, a four-hour performance of drag queens impersonating the likes of Madonna, Adele and Beyoncé, sure to warm all but the coldest hearts.
The Capital Pride Ice Parade
- Awaiting Dates – The Ice Parade, Canada’s Pride first ever parade on ice, will kick-off at 4 p.m. on the Rideau Canal Skateway near the Laurier Street Bridge on Sunday, ending at the Fifth Avenue Rest Area in The Glebe. (Note this event was originally scheduled for 2023 but was cancelled after warm weather closed the Rideau Canal Skateway).
- The ice-parade will feature live music and DJ set by BLK PRL, local drag performers on skates, and Capital Pride’s 30-foot Progress Pride Flag carried by players from Ottawa Pride Hockey.
- Festival-goes, Community members and allies are invited to meet at the start of the parade, in skates or on foot, or join in along the route.
Dow’s Lake Dragon Boat Races
- When you arrive in Ottawa Friday afternoon is the time that things are gearing up for Winterlude. There may be events happening at Dows Lake.
- Catch the final warm-ups for the Dragon Boat Races taking place over the weekend.
- Teams from around the country take part in the annual ice dragon boat race on Dows Lake. It’s dragon boating, but it’s on ice. Instead of paddles, they use sticks with little spikes on them that look like horses hooves.
- Follow their facebook page for exact times and dates.
- Sparks street hosts live acts, djs and dancing throuhgout the day and well into the evening each night.
- DJs keep the party going between acts and food stalls and outdoor bars help keep you warm and full.
- Awaiting Dates – Sparks Street hosts a special “Drags on Sparks Street” celebration, an outdoor drag show on Sparks Street.
- Check out the top hotels close to Sparks Street, one of the top shopping streets in Ottawa.
Jacques Cartier Park
- Enjoy fun activities and events in the park throughout the day. Go Snowtubing with friends or Winter Ziplining. There are ice sculptures all along the ByWard market showcasing the international ice carving challenge.
- Winner’s carvings are on display and you can try your hand with a professional during the winter celebrations.
- Check out Snowflake Kingdom for details.
- ByWard Market is a great place to hang out for the afternoon. There are several outdoor restaurants and bars and lots of shopping and festivities.
- The ByWard Market is mostly outdoors, but the main building has shops and eateries inside and is a great place to escape the cold. Enjoy the classic Winterlude staple, BeaverTails and hot chocolate.
- ByWard Market also features Chimes, an interactive light and sound installation made up of dozens of illuminated tubes and eight loudspeakers.
Where to stay?
- The Westin Ottawa has a fantastic view of the city and is in the best location for Winterlude. It is located right at the entrance to the canal making skating easy.
We have found hotels with good reviews that keep you close to all the action,
Gay Map of Ottawa
The Ottawa gay scene is is quite small and its easy to get from one bar to another
Recommended Hotels in Ottawa By Booking
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We have chosen hotels in Ottawa that keep you close to all the shops,restaurants & bars
5 Star, Luxury
Featuring an indoor pool, this historic hotel is located in central Ottawa, adjacent to the Parliament Buildings and Rideau Canal. It features elegant dining options and spacious rooms with a flat-screen cable TV. Tea- and coffee-making facilities and a minibar in every room. All rooms include a work desk and windows that open to the outside. The bathroom offers bathrobes.
Lord Elgin Hotel
4 Star, Readers Choice
Directly across from the National Arts Centre, this non-smoking, landmark hotel is only steps from major attractions, and offers spacious accommodations with 49-inch TVs and first-class amenities in the city centre of Canada’s capital. Guests at the hotel can also enjoy ice skating on Rideau Canal in the winter or exploring the vibrant shops and restaurants in Byward Market.
The Westin Ottawa
4 Star, Great Value
Featuring an indoor pool, the Westin Ottawa is located next to the Rideau Centre Shopping Mall and the Shaw Centre. The non-smoking hotel offers a bar and 2 on-site restaurants, Daly’s and the Shore Club. Every guest room is equipped with a 50″ flat-screen TV. In-room films are also provided. A hot tub and fully equipped fitness centre, squash courts & floral services
4 Star, Location
This hotel is centrally located in downtown Ottawa and features a restaurant and bar and spacious rooms. Each guest room offers contemporary furnishings, large windows and a work desk. A 42-inch cable TV, free Wi-Fi and pay TV, a coffee maker. Ottawa Delta City Centre provides a full-services business centre and a well-equipped gym on site. A sauna offers great relaxation.
Video Of Winterlude Ottawa
THIS is how you do WINTER!