So you’ve finished your favourite Netflix series and you’re in the mood for an adventure that doesn’t consist of a VIP cinema seat at your local Cineplex (and you’re not yet ready to re-marathon all of Stranger Things). Bytown Bites has you covered with our top 10 Ottawa Area date night ideas.
Explore the main strip of Aylmer, accessible via a short drive or a longer bike ride from Ottawa. Bistro L’Autre Oeil is one of our favourite patios (if weather permits) with an extensive craft beer list. Antonyme has tasting menu options that defy their pricepoint and a walk on the marina before sunset is sublime.
Explore one of the best art collections in the country at the National Gallery before grabbing some gelato at Mantovani 1946. Take your gelato to go and have a seat at Nepean Point to to watch the sunset, catch some fall colours and largely avoid the Byward Market chaos that is close by.
There are a lot of options in a neighbourhood that keeps reinventing itself. The Museum of Nature is free to explore on Thursday evenings and is a nice way to precede or follow dinner at Whalesbone or Fauna and some of the unreal ice cream at Moo Shu‘s. Alternatively, dine in the intimate atmosphere at Fairouz or Town before catching a performance at the National Arts Centre.
Get to Nordik Spa early and enjoy North America’s largest outdoor spa before finishing the evening at Chelsea Pub, for a beer and a poutine to undo all the health that preceded it. Stop by Boucanerie Chelsea Smokehouse and pick up some of the best smoked salmon we’ve ever tasted before you drive back home.
Start with some coffee from the Ministry of Coffee and Social Affairs and grab a donut from nearby SuzyQ to have one of the best morning combos that we can think of. Spend the rest of the day window shopping and exploring various shops around the area including Danish Modern and the always surprising St. Vincent De Paul‘s thrift store. Stop in for lunch/brunch at Meatpress or have a pint at Tooth and Nail/take some growler’s to go from Beyond the Pale.
Grab one of Dirienzo‘s famous sandwiches (our favourite is a #14 with the eggplant), pasta and/or a cannoli and have a picnic in the Dominion Arboretum before having a relaxing stroll around Dow’s Lake. Finish the night with cocktails at The Moonroom.
Enjoy Alirang‘s famous Gamjatang stew (or if it’s out, you can’t go wrong with bibimbap) before catching an arthouse film at the Bytowne Theatre.
Old Ottawa South
Check out the hip Belmont Snackbar for a meal or a drink, visit Stella Luna for some of Ottawa’s finest gelato. Follow that with a film at the Mayfair or spend your evening playing arcade games at the House of Targ, which has some amazing perogies if you’re in the mood for more food.
Wakefield is a gem that is within driving distance. Walk along the water and have a fantastic meal at Village House. Finish the evening with a show at local institution, the Blacksheep Inn, and try not to start looking up real estate prices in the area.