Ottawa
Cruises & Boat Tours

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Our most recommended Ottawa Cruises & Boat Tours

Ottawa: Sightseeing River Cruise

1. Ottawa: Sightseeing River Cruise

Discover the natural beauty of the region that captured the imagination of the first European explorer Samuel de Champlain. Climb aboard the 'Paula D' for a 1.5-hour sightseeing cruise on the Ottawa River. This must-do experience offers an entertaining glimpse of the region's rich history and leaves you with plenty of time to enjoy the rest of your stay. For your convenience, there are two departure docks, one located in Gatineau and another in Ottawa. Once boarded, sit back and relax as you cruise down the river. Enjoy spectacular views of the city and learn about the river's past life as a watery highway for transporting resources with your guide's engaging and informative commentary in both English and French. During your cruise, you'll have the opportunity to see the Parliament Buildings, the Rideau Canal Locks, and the cities of Ottawa and Gatineau from the river. You'll also be able to spot some sights that are only visible from the water or from Gatineau. While you're taking in the sights, savor a nice cold beverage (at your own expense) on the large open-air upper deck. Alternatively, escape the elements and visit the closed-in lower deck to take advantage of the on-board canteen with a bar.

Ottawa: 1-Hour Bilingual Guided Tour by Amphibious Bus

2. Ottawa: 1-Hour Bilingual Guided Tour by Amphibious Bus

Climb aboard a unique vehicle that can travel on land and water and discover the historical attractions of Ottawa and the Ottawa River from different perspectives. Spend 40 minutes on land and 20 minutes on the water. Admire landmark monuments and attractions such as Lake Dow, Landsdowne Park and Byward Market. Get a magnificent view of the city as you cruise along the river aboard the amphibious vehicle. See all the important sights of Ottawa and the city of Gatineau, located just across the water. Avail of an activity that is both fun and educational for the entire family, and ideal for those who are short of time but want to see it all.

Ottawa: Haunted Night Walking Tour

3. Ottawa: Haunted Night Walking Tour

Experience Ottawa like never before on a 75-minute Original Haunted Walk. Spend an evening with fascinating tour guides who are chosen from the best local storytellers and have a passion for sharing the unexpected side of Canada's capital city.  On the Original Haunted Walk, your expert cloaked guide will reveal to you their favorite ghost stories from the Downtown Ottawa area and lead you by lantern light to some of the city's most well-known haunted spots. Visit locations such as the Fairmont Château Laurier, Grant House, and Ottawa’s haunted high school. A favorite stop is the haunted Bytown Museum where many of the guides have had their own experiences to share. You’ll never look at the city and these buildings the same again.  After being led through the streets of Downtown Ottawa, your guide can walk you back to the start location or leave you to enjoy a (sleepless) night in the city.

Ottawa: Ottawa River Tour by Hawaiian Palapa Hut

4. Ottawa: Ottawa River Tour by Hawaiian Palapa Hut

Take a relaxing tour up and down the Ottawa River on a Hawaiian-style palapa hut in a boat trip like no other. Just head to one of the embarkment sites, climb aboard and get the party started. The activity provider's captains are all small vessel certified and licensed. Enjoy fancy drinks and snacks as the tiki bar takes you along the river, offering stunning views of the shoreline. Whether it’s just hanging out with friends for a fun time, spending some relaxing time with your family, taking a romantic cruise, or a group excursion, this tour is one of the most unique ways to get out on the water. Cruise the time away sipping drinks, and listening to or singing karaoke to your favorite tropical tunes.

Ottawa: Small Group Half-Day City Sightseeing Tour

5. Ottawa: Small Group Half-Day City Sightseeing Tour

Enjoy a half-day tour to visit some of Ottawa's most popular attractions including various Parliament buildings. After exploring these landmarks, take part in a canal cruise and catch a glimpse of must-see sites throughout the capital city. Start the day with pickup from your downtown Ottawa hotel. While heading to your first stop on the tour, which is Parliament Hill, your guide will give you your first introduction to the city. They are able to answer questions, provide you with fun facts and point out important landmarks and sites. On your tour of the Parliament headquarters, get a behind-the-scenes look at the state-of-the-art facilities. There will be plenty of free time available where you can explore the surrounding buildings, wander the grounds, and capture some amazing photos of the nearby sites.  Finish the day with a relaxing 1.5-hour river cruise that will have you leisurely floating down Rideau Canal (seasonal availability from mid-May to mid-October). After your memorable experience, your tour guide will take you back to your downtown Ottawa hotel.

Ottawa: Yacht Tour on the Ottawa River with Drinks

6. Ottawa: Yacht Tour on the Ottawa River with Drinks

Cruise along the Ottawa River for a mellow tour aboard a classic yacht. Meet some new people or opt for an intimate experience by booking all 12 spaces. Relax in the breezy open-air deck to see landmarks such as the Chateau Laurier, the Rideau Canal Locks, the Parliament Buildings, and Rideau Falls. Meet the captain and first mate of the modest Everly or the more spacious Dolce Far Niente and get a quick safety briefing before setting sail. You can also grab dry bags for your electronics. These yachts are proudly maintained by a Canadian-owned tour company that’s accredited by Transport Canada. Kick back and take in the sights and sounds of Ottawa’s busy riverside at your ideal time of day with options in the afternoon, at sunset, or by night. Enjoy non-alcoholic beverages served on-board, or bring your own alcoholic option which staff will be happy to serve to you.

Ottawa: Street Art City Exploration Game

7. Ottawa: Street Art City Exploration Game

Get to know Ottawa’s diverse urban art scene through its street and public art. From new to well-known artists – and a few hidden gems – find dancing lions in Chinatown, learn about one of the world’s greatest inventors in Little Italy, and track down a café courtyard with art on every wall. Start the game at the Ottawa Mural. As you solve challenges, directions on your phone take you to the next location and puzzle to solve. It will take you between 1-1.5 hours to complete but you should explore at your own pace: simply pause the game and resume when you want from the location where you paused it. You can play on your own, in a large group, or in several smaller groups that compete against each other before meeting at the final stop of the game, KindComments.

Ottawa: 2 or 3.5-Hour Sightseeing Bike Tour

8. Ottawa: 2 or 3.5-Hour Sightseeing Bike Tour

Get on a bicycle for a 2 or 3.5-hour guided tour to discover many of downtown Ottawa’s major attractions, must-see spots, and hidden gems. Choose your own adventure from two tour options and the option of a French, German, Spanish or Dutch speaking guide. 2-Hour Express Tour A fun and short sightseeing tour ideal for newer or easy-going bicyclists, who want to learn about Ottawa’s downtown and beyond. All ages will enjoy the leisurely 8.5-mile ride, stopping at major attractions for sightseeing and photos. Highlights include Parliament Hill, War Memorial, Rideau Canal Pathway, Rideau Hall, Rideau Falls, Quebec province, the National Art Gallery, the Museum of History, the Rideau Locks and Bytown Museum. 3.5-Hour Highlights Tour Discover more of Ottawa’s must-see spots and hidden gems on a slight longer 3 to 3.5-hour tour, with 95% of the route on bicycle paths. This 12-mile bike tour includes short stops along the way for sightseeing and photos plus a power bar snack. Highlights include Rideau Canal, War Memorial, Love Lock Bridge, Rideau Canal Locks, the Glebe, Lansdowne Park, Arboretum, Dow’s Lake, Little Italy, Ottawa River, province of Quebec, Museum of History, Rideau Hall, Rideau Falls,  National Gallery of Canada, Byward Market, and Parliament Hill.

Ottawa: Rockcliffe Neighborhood Exploration Game

9. Ottawa: Rockcliffe Neighborhood Exploration Game

The city game starts at the Norwegian Ambassador’s Residence. It will take you around 1.5 hours to complete and you can also explore at your own pace: pause the game and resume anytime from the location where you paused it. You will finish at the American Ambassador’s Residence. As you solve challenges, the story unfolds and exact directions on your phone will guide you to the next location. Ready for an adventure? After your booking you will receive an email with instructions on how to download and play the game on your phone. You can play on your own, in a large group or in several smaller groups that compete against each other and meet at the final stop of the game. We recommend that each user purchases a ticket for an optimal experience, although several people can share a phone.

Ottawa: Foods of the World Exploration Game

10. Ottawa: Foods of the World Exploration Game

The city game starts at Ottawa’s Bike Cafe. It will take you between 2 to 3 hours to complete and you can also explore at your own pace: pause the game and resume anytime from the location where you paused it. You will finish at Beyond the Pale Brewing Company. As you solve challenges, the story unfolds and exact directions on your phone will guide you to the next location. So, are you up for an exciting city game? After your booking, you will receive an email with instructions on how to download and play the game on your phone. You can play on your own, in a large group or in several smaller groups that compete against each other and meet at the final stop of the game. We recommend that each user purchases a ticket for an optimal experience, although several people can share a phone.

Frequently asked questions about Ottawa Cruises & Boat Tours

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Other Sightseeing Options in Ottawa

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What people are saying about Ottawa

Overall rating

4.2 / 5

based on 78 reviews

Better than expected. The Crew was super friendly and helpful. The trip out was highly informative… the trip back was music … I must be getting old …. Lol it would’ve been nice listening to Canadian super stars or some classical… overall ! 9.9 out of 10

My sister and I had fun cruising along the Ottawa River in this Hawaiian Hut Boat...the most unique watercraft ever. We listened to reggae music while sipping Pina Colada!

We were hampered by the weather, raining and cold, so I would have loved a hit beverage instead of bar service. Snacks, too.

The scenery was beautiful the second week of May and I marvelled when I heard the history of the canal.

Très belle petite croisière sur le canal Rideau. Excellent guide.