Travel Bug: A Weekend in the Capital

There is no denying that Canada’s capital, Ottawa, is a gorgeous city. It over looks the Ottawa river and the Rideau Canal and has an incredible atmosphere all around the city. Around Parliament Hill, it is very easy to feel a sense of patriotism and to be swept up in the for our and joy of being Canadian. This past weekend I spent it in Ottawa with my roommate since first year and probably my first friend in Toronto, Alytron. It was a fantastic time that turned into an unsuspecting tea-filled weekend. None of this was planned, it just happened, as all great events in life should.

Parliament Hill on a bright, sunny day.

Parliament Hill on a bright, sunny day.

The first morning, we wandered into the downtown core and just walked around the Parliament grounds and took amazing photos of the scenic backdrop of the Rideau Canal. It was also Red Bulls’ Flugtag event and so the river was flooded with people out to see this daring event. Afterwards, we made our way to ByWard Market which was absolutely wonderful. ByWard Market has plenty of pubs, small shops and stands selling a variety of everything. Honestly, it felt like I was walking through the bustling market of a small town, like I was plopped in a middle of a movie. It was truly fantastic. This market also houses the famous Moulin De Provence bakery that President Obama purchased a cookie from during his visit to Canada. Honestly, no other country leader would be able to up the sales and make famous a local bakery by buying a shortbread cookie.

Across the street, sits the Tea Store. Simply, this is a store that sells teas. A lot of it. I was in tea heaven.  Not only was the place wall to wall teas, they also had an abundance of tea merchandise and accessories. There was a couple of delicious desserts that you could purchase to pair with your afternoon tea. Alytron and I had a difficult time choosing which tea to indulge ourselves in but we ended choosing a hazelnut black tea. There were so many other teas to choose from, I wished I could just sample ten teas at once. The tea was perfect and the apple strudel cake I ordered was simply Devine. The atmosphere was so relaxing, and we had so much to talk about, we sat for two hours and just talked over tea. Definitely a tea spot I recommend to every going to visit Ottawa. Simply amazing the variety. The next day, we were fortunate to get a reservation at Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel for some afternoon tea. Another delicious reason to visit the nation’s capital.

This quiet weekend with a friend turned into a gigantic tea adventure for us. Some of the best times in life just boil down to a simple cup of tea enjoyed with friends. It was fantastic to be able to meet up with people who had made my life in Toronto so memorable.

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