Woaah! Vagabrothers reporting from Ottawa with some good news.
Canada’s capital is really really cool.
[Intro Sound]
Let’s be honest, Ottawa is the underdog city of Canada,
even though it’s the capital,
Lately ,it’s been out shined by its neighbours, Toronto and Montreal.
But now, things are changing.
Half the population is under 35,
and employment is high,
which combines to make a young prosperous city
with an appetite for good food, drinks and culture.
Ottawa’s story begins back in the day when the British built the Rideau Canal
to link the St Lawrence river with Lake Ontario
to protect this vital water way from American invasion,
[Speaking French]
Hello, don’t mind me. I’m just practicing my French pronunciation under our little umbrella.
The British brought in thousands of Irish and Scottish
workers to complete the 202 km long canal,
which is the oldest, continuously functioning canal in North America
and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Ottawa was later chosen as capital
because it’s literally right on the border of French speaking Quebec and the rest of English speaking Canada.
That is Ontario.
[Speaking French] That is Quebec.
It’s nice.
C’est bon! C’est tres bon.
Well, that’s Parliament
and it kind of looks like a combination of Notré Dame and Big Ben,
which I think explains a lot about Canada.
That was deep.
And very simplistic.
I know.
While the ruling classes lived up on Parliament Hill,
the canal workers lived in Byward Market,
a rough and tumble neighbourhood
where the past times of the day were drinking, gambling and prostitution.
Now a days, it’s the cultural hub of the revitalised downtown,
where top-notch restuarants breathe new life
into the historic buildings that surround the daily market.
So we met up with Tracy from C’est Bon Food Tours
and took a stroll through Byward Market.
Now the reason food’s so damn good here
is there’re 1200 farms within the city limits,
more than Canada’s other major cities combined,
which means farm-to-table is nothing new.
Local food is huge here and the green symbol of Savour Ottawa
ensures that what you’re eating is grown locally.
So we dropped in on Rochon’s family market
who’ve been selling their home-grown produce for three generations
and are still the choice supplier for local chefs.
I think they want the best quality for what they’re giving to their customers,
and it supports the market
And I know for a fact that if you go to a restaurant in the market,
you really appreciate seeing on the menu that it’s local and fresh.
Byward Market has tons of stalls and stores,
and each one adds a little something different to the recipe.
We started with the house of cheese.
So we’re at the House of Cheese.
On this block alone there’s a thousand types of cheese,
And there’s half of them in this store,
which means, Marko is a happy traveller right now.
Mark’s go-to-joke is always ”My achilles heel is goat cheese.”
It’s not a joke.
I think you’re in for some trouble here, Bro.
As you can see we have about 500 different types of cheese in store.
In the past we used to import a lot more cheeses
But as trends change people want to support local more so we’ve got more local
Right next door is Sasloves Meat Market
where we sampled a rich and creamy terrine of local paté.
And it’s not just Canadian food either.
The Byward Market sells cuisine from around the world.
And Middle-Eastern
And just down the street,
The Bottega Italiana sells all the good products from the Old Country.
Down the street is The Grand.
Once upon a time a notorious by-the-hour hotel,
Today a first class pizza joint.
So we sat down with the owner and asked him how Ottawa’s food scene has evolved.
The last five years has changed a lot.
The last ten years had great change.
There’re lots of new restaurants have come up.
The neighbourhoods and the restaurants have all started to develop together.
So you know there used to be just the Byward Market.
Now there’s little pockets in Ottawa where cool neighbourhoods
and cool little restaurants.
When it came to dinner we had two great experiences:
Innovative tapa- styled dishes at Play
and burgers and beers at the Black Tomato with local food blogger Don Chow.
After that Don took us to sample Ottawa’s favourite dessert.
A pastry called the Beaver Tail.
The biggest tradition with Beaver Tails is this;
In the winter time there isn’t a lot to do
But we have the longest skating rink in the world.
What happens is you skate couple hours in the canal.
They have these on the ice,
So you finish your skating.
You fuel up.
You grab a Beaver Tail.
That’s the tradition.
You gotta squeeze the lemon on nice and hearty.
There you go
That’s sexy.
I don’t know what to think about this.

Animal tails.
Supposedly really good.
Oh yeah!
There’s a lot more to Ottawa than just downtown.
So the next morning we hoped in a cab and headed west.
Okay, so we just got to Hintonburg and Wellington West.
These are the up and coming neighbourhoods of Ottawa,
about 15 minutes from downtown.
Apparently ,they’re full of cool stores
and boutiques and great restaurants and bars, so let’s go check it out.

One of the first places we stumbled upon was Victoire,
Aahip boutique specialising in local craft
whose owner, Regin, told us why she loves Ottawa.
Man, Ottawa has always been cool,
and people who live here know that.
But I know people outside the city don’t know that.
You’ve got to talk to the right people or people who live here,
and then you’ll find the cool stuff that’s happening.
But it is hard if you’re coming from outside the city to find those things,
like where the cool bars are or the fun dance parties.
But people who live here know, we have fun, it’s so good.
So we took her advice and met up with Brad from Brew Donkey Craft Beer Tours
who took us to his favourite nano brewery
Beyond the Pale in Hintonburg.
Boys want a slice?
It’s cut-off Thursday
Yeah, it’s cut-off Thursday!
Beyond the Pale’s ambitions are not to dominate the market
on a national, regional or even a city wide level.
Instead, they focus on serving their immediate neighbourhood
with most of their beer sold in refillable growlers.
The local movement that was farmers markets
about four or five years ago in Ottawa
created a local drive for people to get local produce.
That’s now translated in to :get your local beer.
You’re not going to your local baker to get bread.
That was something that changed.
Everybody’s going to their supermarket to get bread
Well now a days people want to go to the local bakery and get bread,
and they similarly want to go to a local brewery to get beer.
People want to support somebody that they can know makes that product.
They’re shaking a hand with the brewer
If you would have been here yesterday,
Shane would have been here having a beer with you.
Nothing goes better with good food than good beer
So we had dinner at the Wellington Gastropub,
a neighbourhood favourite
with artisan food,
a select beer list,
and a monthly vinyl record club
where they match tasty tunes with delicious beers.
After a few days of eating and drinking our way through the city,
the next morning, we crossed the Ottawa River
to treat ourselves to a little bit of luxury.
Well it’s been an indulgent week, but we’re not done yet.
We just crossed over the river to the Quebec side,
and we’re now at Nordik Spa.
Nordik Spa is one of the largest spas.
It’s THE largest.
It is!
It is the largest spa
In North America,
and we are in for a treat.
Well this is officially the best way to start the day ever.
Oh my God, I can’t wait for this.
So apparently It’s going to go like this;
We ‘re going to have a first sauna treatment
They’re going to beat us with sticks for half an hour. Nice.
And then we’re going to go in the cold water pools
and then down to the Kálla treatment
which is like the Dead Sea.
Basically salty water where we’re going to float on our backs.
And guys this is the most scenic spa I’ve ever seen, Ever!
So let’s get in it. Nice. Very nice.
I guess it’s time to go.
Soaking in the outdoor tubs in Nordik,
we started to appreciate having visited Ottawa in Autumn.
The colours are beautiful,
the beers are seasonal,
and the harvest makes the food that much better.
So we took the slow way back to town,
passing through Gatineau Park
to soak up some natural beauty
before making one last stop at La Brasseurs du Temps
to try all twelve of their beers
and eat some epic poutine.
Well that was our week in Ottawa!
If you’ve been to Ottawa or you’re from there,
make sure you share your tips and advice in the comments box below
so we can make a travelling community in their.
All those things and as always, if you like the video
give it a thumbs- up,
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and share it with your friends.
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It’s like daily vlogging.


  1. As an Ottawa local I can second everything that was shown in this Video!!!! Nordik Spa is amazing! Also, try out some of the museums, or if you come in winter go for a skate on the largest skating rink in the world, it is about 8 kilometres long.

  2. Seems much nicer than my city, Cleveland. Then again, that's not saying much about this place! Anywho, i'm taking my daughter to see Niagara Falls this summer, and are thinking of stopping by Ottawa and Quebec.

  3. Love this video! I'm from Ottawa Valley, but I think you should do a Kingston video next time you're in Canada! Kingston has a great food scene with the most restaurants per capita in Ontario!

  4. I have only been to ottawa twice and both times were very brief, but looved the city. So beautiful and people we so welcoming and kind. Next fall I am going there for an internship and couldn''t be more excited to get to work with what I love, in one of my favorite countries in the world.

  5. Ottawa is not a bad little town, it is just given a bad name by the confederacy of dunces from across the country who have decided to have their offices there.

  6. you guys need to edit this video..coz..prostitution is illegal in Canada this time! and it's the greatest and most peaceful, culturally diverse country.

  7. Just checking it out! I'm going tomorrow and planning on making my own YouTube video there! Thanks!

  8. The nordik spa is big but you should try the SPA finlandais its the most modern spa and full of entertainment or give it a try fpr the Oasis de l'ile its a spa on a freaking island and you get some luxury room inside a mansion on the island

  9. I wish I had better memories of Ottawa, but unfortunately I don’t. My hometown, beautiful city, but will never return

  10. как будто посмотрел пора валить в Оттаву, спасибо за видео

  11. Be honest. Terrible food,
    Stupid strange people, nothing but
    Drink and drug. Heup heup ….. Zzzz.
    You can easily taste the problem of multicultural.

  12. Moved back to ottawa from Vancouver . .. city has grown and changed a lot … becoming a world class city has its growing pains … bottom falling out of the downtown arena deal …. the light rail system delay… etc etc etc . .. gun crime is up … as long as the don't sell the city off by the square foot to off shore Asian investor . .. like they did to Vancouver . . Making impossible for normal people to afford . .. we should be alright

  13. I went to the University of Ottawa. Ottawa is the coldest capital in the world, colder than Moscow.. Just you know before moving 🙂

  14. Jeez….as an Ottawa resident from the part of town with all those farms they mentioned I have got to spend more time down town. Also they didn't say anything about it here but we have some of the best public transit in Canada, makes it easier to see the city… if we could just get the new trains working…..

  15. Ottawa is an amazing city.
    Only the city council is taking it in the wrong direction.
    And if the liberals have it their way, Ottawa will be stripped of it's history like the rest of Canada.

  16. I’m blessed to be a 5 minute drive from the Gatineau hills. And I looooovvvveee it. I’m never leaving my beautiful oasis that’s literally in my backyard.

  17. Live in and love Ottawa, but It’s really not cool though, and it gets boring real fast. Food scene is slowly coming up finally but ain’t at a level that can compete with Toronto, montreal or Vancouver.

  18. Nothing cool when the government O Canada resides in Ottawa and are a bunch of immoral unethical spineless crooks

  19. Secret bar/restaurant is Warehouse. All food is $6 (they make all their money from booze) and has really cool young vibe

  20. Lmao I live in Ottawa and it sucks but this makes it sound really good. If you want to have a good time in ottawa's Stay Downtown it's beautiful, also talked to some of the homeless people around byward Market and Rideau they're pretty hilarious and really nice and can tell you some good places to get food and stuff.

  21. Love hearing about my hood, as long as I can afford to continue living here… Gatineau Park is my gym as is the Ottawa Canal system next to my appartment. La Nordique is okay but the video cannot capture the smell of chlorine, the fake nature music piped in to hide the sound of the birds, or the saggy bodies of that person in the Speedos next to you.

  22. population under thirty five tells me anythings else doesn't belong. that's why ottawa is not fit for leading canada, more less the rest of the world.

  23. I live in Ottawa.
    MTV marketing is less disingenuous.

    Perfect city, if you enjoy extremist politics dictating every day life.
    Example: A guy I know used to own a comic book shop.
    He sells an issue of Wonder Woman to someone, who gets 'triggered' on the 2nd page, returns to the store and demands a full refund, in cash.
    Not only does the shop owner comply, enthusiastically, but makes a series of changes, wondering if he should add 'trigger labels' to EVERY SINGLE ISSUE (there are 1000's), to avoid future trigger instances.
    To be clear.
    The number of things a person can be 'triggered' by is literally infinite, which he soon came to realize, but went along with the idea anyways.

    Imagine trying to return an album, because you didn't like the 14th word in the 3rd song.
    And living in a city where you can actually expect this to work out in your favour.
    I could literally write an Archipelago book on Ottawa culture, and may yet.

    Welcome to Ottawa.

  24. Ottawa is the greatest capital city on earth! My Uncle loved his 3 year stay when he came from LA… I took him to see the Ottawa Fury FC game ⚽️ GO FURY GO 🇨🇦💖⚽️

  25. All the oil is in Alberta. Problem is, all the dipsticks are in Ottawa. Minus the smelly politicians, Ottawa wouldn't be a bad place.

  26. It’s really not that great to live here. All the good concerts skip us for Montreal and Toronto, our sport teams are the laughing stock of their leagues, nothing but bums and gangs in the market, our transit system is a joke, we have to live near all the idiot politicians, and if you don’t speak French you can’t get a job because of all the entitled whiny Quebecers.

  27. Stay away from this hellhole, despite the international reputation, Canada isn't far off from a third world developing nation, massive poverty and drug use is rampant on the streets.

  28. Next time visit le Restaurant Agaric in Gatineau Park Old Chelsea. Water Park and ski hill Mont Cascade in Cantley 25 min from Ottawa.

  29. The food place in the market they called "Middle Eastern", Casablanca, is Moroccan. Ottawa does have tons of actually Middle Eastern places, a lot of them Lebanese and Persian – and it's kind of a shame they didn't mention shawarma, because we have a million of them. If you're going to come here and pretty much just go to fru fru white people places you're not going to get a full picture of anything.

  30. Toronto way exciting city !!!!! Ottawa is NOT only cold weather but people. If you are non white seeking jobs the employers racially profile. The;s is the true facts.

  31. Ottawa is not the best city to live in. Literally nothing to do and a lot of dead malls. No one feels safe going downtown because of crime and drug addicts and Rideau Centre's food court is still filled with homeless people. Also public transit is among the most-unsafe in this province alone. People feel more safer well outside the city limits like Stittsville for example.

  32. The irony of this video is the only way you can get that view of parliament is by standing in Gatineau, Quebec, and not Ottawa. Y'all are standing in the wrong city smh

  33. Ya know, I have lived in ottawa all my life, and it is nowhere near that nice. The reason you viewers only really got to see the shop counters is because these guys want to bring tourism to a city being over populated. If they had not clipped their footage you would have seen more crack heads, hookers and dealers on the streets than shops. Nordic spa is not the biggest in north america, I have watched videos myself right here on youtube about bigger indoor spas in new york. FYI, north america is a continent not a country, and starts at roughly new mexico (states side) and work up until you hit the north pole. If your going to try to draw tourists here, at least be honest. I mean face it, Trudeau is the one who is going to see the money from tourism, not you.

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