Get ready for a riot of colour in Ottawa...
Spring is my favourite time of year in Ottawa and I know I'm not alone. Everyone has a huge grin on their face as they stroll! Everyone is always so excited to greet a new season and spend more time outdoors. And the best part of an Ottawa spring in undoubtedly the Canadian Tulip Festival. It's incredible to see the city scape explode in a riot of colour. Here are my favourite, most colourful things to experience at Tulip Fest.
When a jet-setting friend comes to town, you better make sure you're ready!
It's not everyday that a friend flies half way around the world to see you - and it's even better when that friend is an incredible travel writer! Jo from Frugal First Class Travel is coming to Canada for the first time and I get a rare opportunity to show off my home city of Ottawa. It's so seldom that international visitors come to Ottawa on their first trip! I've seen Jo on her home turf of Sydney, Australia, as well as Athens, Greece - both tremendously interesting, stylish, fun, delicious cities. I have to make sure that Ottawa measures up and that I come up with a girlfriend's guide that's worthy of an international jet setter.
When four girls converged on Whitewater Village, we had recipes for cookies - and fun!
What do you think happens when four women, who haven't let their hair down in a long time, get together for a weekend retreat with no men allowed? There's a wee bit of wine, a heaping serving of gossip, and a whole lotta food! Add in a gorgeous cottage in the pristine setting of the Ottawa Valley and you have a recipe for adventure and fun (and hopefully not too much mischief)! I was eager to add my own kind of recipe into this mix - of the gooey, indulgent, Christmas cooking kind - and was keen to share some festive treats with my girlfriends.
There is great budget grub in Canada's Captial
Everytime I've had a great sandwich while travelling I remember every detail. Like the cranberry and Brie on herb bread that I devoured in Bath. Or the sliced chicken donair on white baguette with seasoned cabbage and onion in Instanbul - a delight after hours of walking. Or the hot, fluffy bread pockets at Paris' Cosi, a cross between pita and focaccia. And there's my absolute favourite: some kind of chicken salad with tomatoes done in a panini press in Lilongwe. I wasn't sure the mayonnaise wouldn't kill me, but it was heaven after months of fish and rice.
Sandwiches are really the perfect food, for travelling and at home. They're quick, easy, affordable, filling, and (if you're lucky!) absolutely delicious! I'm happy to share with you my 5 favourite sandwich shops in Ottawa. These are the places I'm constantly popping into and always urging visitors to try out. Whether you're a local, a backpacker, or a business traveler, I think you'll find something on this list you'll love.
Who Makes The Best Croissants In Ottawa?
It's not just anyone I would trust with the critical task of researching the best of Ottawa's croissant scene, but Reese is just the kind of gal who can handle the pressure! Reese is a mom of 3, a passionate reader, a fan of sports, TV, and shopping - and is a blogger to boot! If anyone can balance the demands of croissant research, it's Reese! www.reesespeaks.wordpress.com
Hey There Readers!
The croissant. That golden, crescent moon shaped delicious pastry. It is one of my absolute favourite guilty pleasures. Ever since my mom introduced me to these sinfully delicious treats when I was 14, I have always craved them!
Thanks to Vanessa, she helped me to cross an item off of my blogger's bucket list of posts. I have always wanted to go on a hunt to find the tastiest croissants in Ottawa to satisfy my croissant crush.
Find out why my favourite Ottawa market is in Cumberland!
Farmers' markets are exploding in and around Ottawa and, if last summer's growth is any indication, there will soon be a market in every neighbourhood of the city. I've had the chance to explore a lot of them, all in the name of my unflinching dedication to maintaining quality control of the city's baked goods, homemade jam, and strawberries.
Could Ottawa's Best Tea Actually Be in Hull?
A stone’s throw away from the Parliament buildings is Old Hull. A little grungy and edgy, this area is often overlooked even by people that live close by. Its imminent gentrification is obvious by the hip shops and restaurants sprouting up amongst condemned buildings.
Enter Cha-Yi (61 Eddy Street): a tea shop that is inviting, with room at the back to bring your laptop and get some work done while sipping a warm cup of tea. The counter area resembles a Chinese medicine store. Embossed, shiny silver containers line the shelves behind the counter, holding teas, some decades old, that were all chosen by the owner on his yearly trip to China. The staff here are knowledgeable beyond expectation and will help you pick a delectable leaf to brew at home or to enjoy on site.
The National Gallery is one of my favourite places in Ottawa.
One of my favourite ways to wile away a day in Ottawa is to visit the National Gallery of Canada. When I first moved to Ottawa, nearly a decade ago, I spent about a year as a volunteer at the Gallery, passing every Tuesday in the volunteer office where I compiled statistics from the prize entry cards left by thousands of visitors. Even after I started to work full time, the Gallery continued to feel like a home away from home for me.
Like many travelers, taking care of myself is rarely a high priority. Constantly being on the road, catching early morning trains and late night buses, rarely lends itself to looking good, no matter how much fun the adventures might be.
But I live in Ottawa, a government town, and important meetings can come up at any time. It was a situation just like this that brought me to Robbie and George at Salon Niccio for the first time.
I had recently finished one contract and was enjoying some downtime when the chance for a new position fell into my lap. It was a wonderful opportunity, but it required a new look – and fast! I needed to look polished and professional and ready to stand in front of a crowd at a minute’s notice. But I also needed a look that even a harried traveler like myself could handle.
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