Automaton-watching locations in Ottawa.
May 11, 2017 7:36 AM   Subscribe

We're flying to Ottawa July 27-30 in order to see the performance of La Machine. The website is vague on details and I want to get an AirBnB that won't be too far from the action. Help?

We'll be 2-4 adults and one 5-year-old. I'd like to be within easy walking distance (see: 5-year-old) of spots that are likely to be locations of the La Machine performances, as well as other nice things to see and do in Ottawa (I've never been).

What neighborhoods should I be focusing on while looking for accommodation?

Any other Ottawa tips? What's the public transit like? Good vegetarian food spots?
posted by soren_lorensen to Travel & Transportation around Ottawa, ON (3 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I haven't lived in Ottawa for a few years, but The Table was my favourite vegetarian place when I lived there, though the giant falafel that served as a veggie burger at Hintonburger was also great. The Museum of Nature and the Canadian museum of History were pretty good for kids. The Museum of History is on the Gatineau, Quebec side of the river, but most buses that cross the river will stop in front of it, and it's got a big lawn that might not be a bad site for one of the performances. It's a pretty short walk from there to the National Gallery and the Byward Market which are both on the Ottawa side of the river, but in a very central location.
posted by peppermind at 9:21 AM on May 11, 2017 [1 favorite]

In this context, I would assume "Downtown Ottawa" probably means Byward Market, or possibly along Elgin, or even onto the Quebec side near the Museum of History. So for accommodation, you could look at the Market, the area called the Golden Triangle/Centretown, or the downtown core, though that's mostly office buildings and hotels. Sandy Hill, which is near the University of Ottawa and not far from the Byward Market, is also pretty close to all of that.

Museum of Nature is awesome with kids that age. There's a great kids museum at the Museum of History, though it gets really packed.

Transit is....okay. If you're near the Transitway, it's quite good, if you're tucked further into a neighbourhood, it can be a bit trickier. But all of the neighbourhoods listed above are pretty well-served by transit, as Ottawa transit goes. Plus, the city is pretty small, really, and quite walkable.

Ottawa is becoming really good for veggie/vegan food. Pure Kitchen (one location on Elgin, one in Westboro) is delicious, though very busy. The Table and The Green Door are both pay-by-weight buffet type places. So Good and Wei's Noodle House are Chinatown options with separate veggie menus. Cafe My House is upscale vegan food (not 5-year old friendly, though). And lots of other spots are very accommodating.
posted by sabotagerabbit at 9:58 AM on May 11, 2017 [1 favorite]

Ottawa is very walkable and the transit is good as long as you stick to the transitway-
that's the main bus route through downtown. The locals veer off from there and are less frequent but are still fine if you're not in a hurry.

Chinatown, Little Italy, and Hintonburg are nice neighborhoods with lots of reasonablish Airbnbs. There are also lots of little parks with splash pads in these neighborhoods. Very walkable and all near transit.

I'm not sure how much space is needed for a performance but if it can fit on Sparks Street, I would imagine it would be there. Also the byward market is where things usually happen. Lansdowne is where the football stadium is and that would be a natural performance space. I've walked there from Chinatown with kids (in strollers) lots of times. Maybe the Arboretum or somewhere around Dow'S Lake as well.
posted by TheLateGreatAbrahamLincoln at 5:31 PM on May 11, 2017

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