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4 Scenic Ottawa Trail Paths You Need to Explore This Fall

Last updated on November 22nd, 2021 at 04:00 pm

We love fall for many reasons, not least of which are the cozy scarves and blankets, pulling out our favourite jackets, the fun decorations, and the roaring fireplaces. Most of all, however, fall comes with some of the most gorgeous scenery imaginable, reminding us that beauty can be found all around us. Before the winter sets in, take some time to get out and find the most amazing spots in Ottawa to enjoy this enchanting foliage. 

Here’s our list of the top trails in Ottawa to walk this fall!

The Dominion Arboretum

There’s no better time to visit the Dominion Arboretum than in the fall when the leaves are turning from green to a canopy of red, yellow, orange and gold. Home to a thousand different trees and plants, it’s the perfect place to admire an autumnal display. Besides the vivid colours, you’ll be able to spend some time walking at your own pace along the water and looking across Dow’s Lake. The Dominion Arboretum Loop is mostly flat and runs for about 4.5 kilometres, making it manageable for anyone who is looking for an hour-long walk on a crisp fall day. 

Stony Swamp Loop

The Stony Swamp Loop, also known as the Sarsaparilla Trail, is an easy but long walk, perfect for those who are eager to spend time outdoors. Spanning 7.9 kilometres in length, it takes most folks just over two hours to complete this trail, but it’s worth the time. It can be accessed from multiple other nearby branching paths and trails. Along the way, you’ll come across plenty of lookouts with fantastic views. Cutting through the trees, you’ll also experience the perfect mix of sun and shade. 

Petrie Island Trails

Petrie Island has a small trail system available, enabling you to extend your walk by the beach as long as you like. Clean paths wind around trees and along waterways, where you can gaze out at still waters and relax. Benches are set up as needed on the paths. At the highest point of the island, you can look down at unoccupied beaches and watch the wildlife interact with the water, or perhaps even spot boaters speeding by. Tap a day of walking off by having a barbecue or laying back on the beach, and don’t forget those iconic sunsets! In addition, please note that dogs are not allowed at Petrie Island. 

Gatineau Park

Gatineau Park is a sprawling natural conservation area with plenty to see, along with many trails to choose from. For those who prefer less crowded trails, Meech Creek Valley, Philippe Lake, or Luskville Falls will be the spots where you’ll want to walk and take in the scenery during the iconic Fall Rhapsody. They all include lookouts, lakes and bridges that make for scenic hikes. 

The Southern section of Gatineau Park is busier for several reasons. It is home to the gorgeous Pink Lake, which is a rare meromictic lake with different layers of water that don’t mix, giving it a gorgeous and mesmerizing gradient look. Furthermore, it is also home to the Mackenzie King Estate and Champlain Lookout. It’s well worth your time to make your way over to the Southern section of Gatineau Park during Fall Rhapsody.

Are you an avid walker? Do you want a home surrounded by beautiful walking trails and easy access to nature? The Geoff & Bobbie team wants to help you find a home that suits your needs and lifestyle preferences perfectly. Just let us know what you’re looking for, and we’ll match you with our best listings. You can even sign up for our listing alert service so that you’re paired with your dream home faster. We have listings in Barrhaven, Kanata, Orleans and many other areas in the National Capital Region, all just a short walk or drive from the Fall Rhapsody and many local trails. Contact us today to get started.