OTTAWA -- The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many people to cancel their summer travel plans. Instead of travelling across Canada or into the United States, families are looking for staycation ideas.

There's lots of things happening in Ottawa, eastern Ontario and western Quebec this summer, including water parks, concerts, guided tours, museums and sightseeing on a scooter.

CTV News Ottawa looks at some fun things to do in the region this summer.

Ottawa Bluesfest Drive-In

The National Arts Centre and RBC Ottawa Bluesfest present #CanadaPerforms at RBC Bluefest Drive-In the weekends of July 31 and August 1 and Aug. 7 and 8. The shows will be live at Place des Festivals, Zibi Site.

Here is a look at the lineups:

July 31:

Marie Mai, Donovan Woods and the Opposition, Neon Dreams, Terra Lightfoot, Julian Taylor, Kellylee Evans

Aug 1:

Sam Roberts Band, Shad, Haviah Mighty, Leflofranco, Nambi & The Rhythm, Bboyizm,

Aug. 7

Patrick Watson, Basia Bulat, Zaki Ibrahim, Asuquomo, Silla and Rise, Genevieve & Alain,

Aug. 8

Tim Hicks, Kira Isabella, Chris Labelle, Amanda Rheaume, Lyle Odjick & The Northern Steam, Ryan Langdon

For more information, visit

The Drive-In Experience

Wesley Clover Parks is inviting you to enjoy the "drive-in experience." Check out movies, live entertainment and events all summer.

For more information, visit

Ottawa Farmers Markets

The Lansdowne Market is open on Sundays

The ByWard Market vendors are open Monday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Parkdale Market is open Monday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The Carp Farmers Market is open on Saturdays

The Westboro Market is open on Saturdays. 

The Orleans Market is open on Thursdays. 

Parkdale Markets

Museums and tours

Museums in Ottawa, Gatineau and eastern Ontario have started to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Ottawa Art Gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday.

The National Gallery of Canada is open Thursday through Sunday.

Canadian Museum of History is open Thursday through Sunday

Canadian War Museum is open Thursday through Sunday

The Diefenbunker: Canada's Cold War Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday

Vanier Museoparc is offering outdoor guided tours this summer

Upper Canada Village in Morrisburg is open for the summer.

The Canada Agriculture and Food Museum reopens to the public on Aug. 1.  The museum will be open Thursday through Sunday.

The Canada Aviation and Space Museum opens to the public on Aug. 8.

The Canada Science and Technology Museum opens to the public on Aug. 14.

The St. Lawrence Parks Commission presents Kingston Pen Tours. Tour the Kingston Penitentiary this summer.

Kingston Pen

Fun on the river

Paul's Boat Line offers a 90 minute cruise along the Ottawa River.

Rideau Canal Cruise: Enjoy a 90 minute cruise to discover the Rideau Canal, from the Ottawa River to Dow's Lake.

Ottawa City Rafting is open along the Ottawa River in Ottawa. Depart from Britannia Beach and enjoy a trip on the Ottawa River to the Canadian War Museum.

OWL Rafting in Foresters Falls is also open for the summer. Enjoy rafting, camping, a sandy beach and more.

Rafting Momentum in Bryson, Quebec is open for the summer. 

Wilderness Tours Adventure Resort is open. Enjoy rafting, kayaking and bungee. Wilderness Tours is located in Foresters Falls, west of Ottawa.

Paul's Boat Cruises

Water parks

Mont Cascades water park is open for the summer. Enjoy heated pools and water slides, including Mammoth River, Rapids River and Black Magic.  Mont Cascades is located on Chemin du Mont-des-Cascades in Cantley.

Animal Kingdom/Aquatic World/Reptiles 

Brockville's Aquatarium at Tall Ships Landing. Dive into the aquatic world, enjoy the Otter Experience and other exhibits.

Little Ray's Reptile Zoo in Sarsfield is open for private tours. Tours start at $150 for an individual household, with additional households being an additional $50 each, with a maximum of four households.  Little Ray's is also offering sloth encounters.

Little Ray's is also presenting daily Facebook Live shows with its Ottawa and Hamilton Zoo Keepers.

Parc Omega in Montebello is open for the summer. Meet the bison, buffalo, red deer, boar, Rocky mountain goat, alpine ibex and more.

Parc OmegaGolf courses

Golf courses across Ottawa and eastern Ontario reopened in May during the COVID-19 pandemic.

To find a golf course near you this summer, visit

Movie theatres

Movie theatres in Ottawa were allowed to reopen as part of Stage 3 of Ontario's COVID-19 reopening plan. Audiences are limited to 50 persons.

Cine Starz Cinemas at 250 Centrum Blvd. and at St. Laurent Centre are open.

The Bytowne Cinema is open.

The Mayfair Theatre is open.

Landmark Cinemas in Orleans and Kanata will be open as of July 31.

Scotiabank Theatre Ottawa in Gloucester and Cineplex Cinemas Ottawa on Carling Avenue will be open as of July 31. 

Escape Rooms

Escape Manor has opened its escape rooms in Ottawa. Heightened safety, sanitization and deep cleaning measures are in place.

Jigsaw Escape Rooms are open. Measures have been put in place to encourage physical distancing and to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Saunders Farm

Saunders Farm on Bleeks Road has several events available:

  • Campfires for groups up to ten people.
  • A two-hour summer visit to Saunders Farm, including a bounce on the GIANT Jumbo jumpers and cool off in the splash pad.

Visit for details

Haunted Walk

The Haunted Walk has resumed tours in Ottawa and Kingston.

The Ottawa Bubble Ghost Tours is a socially-distanced versions of the Original Haunted Walk of Ottawa and Haunted Ottawa Jail Tour.


Casino Lac Leamy in Gatineau has reopened during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rolling around Ottawa

Scooters are now available to rent around Ottawa. Bird, Lime and Roll companies offer scooter rentals around Ottawa for people to enjoy the area while on two wheels.

RentABike – Rent A Bike is located below Plaza Bridge at 2 Rideau Street, next to the Senate of Canada building. Rent a bike and see Ottawa on two wheels this summer.

Escape Tours & Rentals. Explore Ottawa by bike! Escape Tours & Rentals offers guided sightseeing tours with locals and bike rentals in all sizes and models.

Beaches, wading pools and splash pads

The City of Ottawa's public beaches are open at Mooney's Bay, Westboro and Petrie Island. Lifeguards will be on duty daily between 12 p.m. and 7 p.m.  Britannia Beach remains closed for the summer

Ottawa's splash pads are open for the summer.

The City of Ottawa's wading pools are open for the summer.

The City of Gatineau has opened pools and beaches for the summer.

The National Capital Commission's beaches at Meech Lake, Philippe Lake, La Peche Lake and Leamy Lake in Gatineau are open.

Ottawa beach summer hot weather

Gatineau Park

Gatineau Park is open for visitors. Check out 183 kilometres of hiking trails, as well as must-see attractions like Mackenzie King Estates.

Campsites are open in Gatineau Park for the summer. 

Gatineau Parkway, Champlain Parkway and Fortune Lake Parkway are closed to motor vehicles Mondays to Saturdays and Sunday morning until September 7.


Queen Elizabeth Driveway is closed to motor vehicle traffic between Laurier Avenue and Fifth Avenue daily until September 7. Cyclists, runners and pedestrians can use the Queen Elizabeth Drive daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Sir John A. Macdonald (westbound) is closed to motor vehicle traffic on weekends between Booth Street and Carling Avenue until September 7. Cyclists, runners and pedestrians can use the parkway from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Sir George-Etienne Cartier Parkway is closed to motor vehicle traffic on weekends from Aviation Parkway to St. Joseph Boulevard until September 7. Cyclists, runners and pedestrians can use the parkway from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

NCC Pathways

The NCC manages 236 kilometres of pathways across Ottawa and Gatineau, including in Gatineau Park.

Here is a list of the pathways for walking, running and cycling

Experimental Farm Pathway

Greenbelt Pathway West

Leamy Lake Pathway

Ottawa River Pathway

Rideau Canal Western Pathway

Rideau River Eastern Pathway

Voyageurs Pathway

Gatineau Park