What to Know Before Moving to Ottawa

Photo by Robbie Palmer on Unsplash

Canada’s capital city may not be one of its most popular tourist destinations, especially when compared to places like Montreal, Banff, Victoria, and Vancouver, but as one of North America’s fastest growing cities, there are many reasons so many people are choosing to buy one of the Ottawa homes for sale to make their move. If you’re one of them, here’s what you need to know.

It’s a Great Place for a Start-Up Company or a Tech Job

Sometimes called the “Silicon Valley of the North,” Ottawa is home to around 1,750 tech companies as a globally recognized tech hub anchored by high-growth startups, multinational giants, and homegrown successes. It’s a center for business growth and an ideal spot for entrepreneurs. Of course, as the capital, there are plenty of jobs to be had working for the federal government as it’s the city’s largest employer. 

You’ll Need to Invest in Some Warm Winter Clothing

Unless you’re already living in a place that experiences temperatures that are often well below zero during the winter, investing in some warm clothing is going to be a must. The record for the coldest temperature in Ottawa’s history is minus 33.1 C (27.58 F), but the average is quite a bit warmer at minus 4 C. Still, those chilly temps provide the perfect excuse for wrapping up in a cozy blanket with a cup of hot chocolate in hand while watching the snowflakes fall. Many Ottawans don’t hesitate to get outside anyway, enjoying activities like ice hockey, ice skating, skiing, snowshoeing, and more. 

It’s One of Canada’s Safest Cities

Ottawa is often ranked among the country’s safest cities with a crime index of 56 according to Maclean’s. When considering that there are quite a few with scores of 150+ (Thompson, Manitoba has a 366 crime index), you know that you’re going to feel more comfortable living here. 

It’s Home to One of Canada’s Oldest and Largest Public Markets

The Byward Market is open year-round, providing residents with fabulously fresh offerings and local specialties. It offers stalls selling everything from produce and herbs to maple sugar candy. Plus, there are many eateries serving favorites like poutine, the Canadian classic: French fries loaded with cheese curds and gravy. The French Baker is a must for baked goods and sweet treats with apple turnovers, buttery croissants, and chocolates. 

Lots of Recreational Opportunities

As mentioned, Ottawans don’t stay inside all winter, there are plenty of fun activities for burning off the calories from all that poutine in every season. You’re not going to be stuck inside when temperatures drop – the city’s famous Rideau Canal is transformed into the world’s largest naturally frozen skating rink in the winter; in fact, many locals use it to get to school or work. When the weather warms up, you’ll find opportunities for golfing, fishing, hiking, biking, climbing, and kayaking nearby. 

The city boasts many parks and green spaces ranging from small parks with playgrounds for the kids to vast parks with more than enough space to toss a Frisbee around. Just a short drive away are the Gatineau Hills in Quebec with miles and miles of hiking trails. The Ottawa River Parkway runs along the Ottawa River right in town, an ideal place for walking or biking while enjoying nature.

Featured photo by Robbie Palmer on Unsplash


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