The recently completed section of bike path along the shoreline of the Ottawa River, just east of the confluence of the Gatineau and Ottawa rivers, allow for spectacular views across the water. Previously this stretch of Rue Jacques-Cartier consisted of two narrow lanes with lots of potholes and speeding traffic, making it a challenge for cyclists to concentrate on anything but survival. Now users of all ages visit and cycle along the shoreline, testament to the huge success of this new bike infrastructure.
The blue line on the following map shows how to get there entirely along bike paths starting from Centretown in Ottawa. The purple line is the new stretch of path along Rue Jacques-Cartier, described in more detail below.
The re-design of the shoreline has included gathering nodes for people to pause and take in the scenery. Many of the stops have interpretive panels that describe the history of the area.
The design of the various furnishings appear to have been inspired by the lumber industry so prevalent in Point-Gatineau’s past.
Not only has this new bike infrastructure created a fantastic destination well worth the visit, it also provides an important link to the Route Verte recreational path network that runs across Quebec. It also encourages bike commuting for hundreds of residents living in Pointe-Gatineau and beyond.
All sorts of midsummer flowers are in bloom! There are a number of wonderful gardens throughout the National Capital Region that are open to the public and maintained with lots of tender loving care. Here’s a ride I took to visit a few of them that , starting along the O-Train path between Carling and Scott.
Third Stop – The Central Experimental Farm Ornamental Gardens, just off Prince of Wales Drive south of the round-about. Here’s a link to a detailed map that shows it’s location, along with a number of other gardens on the Farm. The layout of this garden is strict but the flora is fantastic! Another volunteer group plays a big role in maintaining the garden.
Fourth stop – Beyond the Edge: Artists’ Gardens, located across the street and a short distance further south along Prince of Wales Drive. The three art garden installations are located along a path that circles around a big Agriculture Canada research plot. This annual display is organized by the Candenses Botanical Garden Society.
Final stop – Fletcher Wildlife Garden, accessible by path just to the east of our previous stop. Lots of volunteers help maintain this magical network of paths that run through a mixture of natural habitats and gardens. Well worth a visit any time of the year.
Indigenous Walks is ‘A guided walk & talk through downtown Ottawa that presents participants with social, political, cultural & artistic spaces from an Indigenous perspective‘. I put together the following bike tour for Indigenous Walks with Alanis King. Alanis is a published playwright and theatre director, as well as past Artistic Director of Native Earth Performing Arts and Saskatchewan Native Theatre. If you are interested in taking this tour I suggest calling Indigenous Walks to see if they are planning any future group rides.
Here’s a map of the route, starting in front of the Totem Pole on Victoria Island, and ending in the plaza looking in to The Grand Hall of the Museum of History.