Walking across the Corktown Footbridge in Ottawa

Walking across the Corktown Footbridge in Ottawa? Here’s what you shouldn’t miss!

In the heart of Canada’s capital, where the Rideau Canal weaves through the city’s soul, the Corktown Footbridge beckons all with its charm. 

This 70m (230ft) bridge is located south of the Laurier Avenue Bridge and connects the University of Ottawa campus with the Golden Triangle neighborhood. 

It also connects the eastern and western sides of the Rideau Canal Pathway and has links to Colonel By Drive on its eastern side. And on its western side, the Queen Elizabeth Driveway and Somerset Street.

But what makes this pathway so special is that it offers great views that’ll look perfect on your social media accounts, along with getting to be a witness to a tradition of love.

So, lace up your favorite walking shoes, and we’ll lead you by the hand to find out everything you shouldn’t miss while walking across the Corktown Footbridge!

1. Rideau Canal

Rideau Canal

Your journey begins with the grandeur of the Rideau Canal itself, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. As you stroll across the bridge, watch in awe as boats gracefully navigate the historic locks, a tradition dating back almost two centuries. 

In the summer, you can witness the flourishing flora that lines the canal’s edge, while winter transforms it into the world’s largest naturally frozen skating rink. 

The cheerful flowers, lush trees, and fragrant gardens create a serene and inviting atmosphere during the warmer season. Meanwhile, the colder season offers everyone a naturally-occurring winter wonderland that’s a quintessential part of Ottawa’s winters.

Take it from us: whichever season you plan on dropping by and taking that walk here, you’re bound to find a lot to see and gasp over at the Rideau Canal. And that’s not just a guess, but it’s a guarantee!

2. Brown’s Inlet Park

Browns Inlet Park

When you’ve had your fill of the Corktown Footbridge’s breathtaking views and are ready for a break, Brown’s Inlet Park is your oasis. 

It’s also nestled alongside the Rideau Canal, and this park is a green haven of tranquility that offers a delightful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

As you step onto the park’s pathways, the immediate hush of nature surrounds you. Trees sway gently, and the waterside ambiance creates a serene soundtrack for your leisurely stroll. 

If you’ve packed a picnic, you’re in for a treat because this park is the perfect setting for an al fresco feast. You can spread out your blanket, savor a sandwich, and soak in the beauty of the canal. 

While you’re nibbling on your snacks, you might spot a boat or two gliding through the canal’s historic locks. 

For those who prefer a more contemplative escape, there are plenty of benches along the waterside. Here, you can take a seat, let your thoughts wander with the ripples of the canal, and simply breathe in the natural serenity. 

3. Dow’s Lake Pavillion

Dow’s Lake Pavillion

Just a stone’s throw away from the Corktown Footbridge, you’ll find the Dows Lake Pavilion. It’s not just a dining spot; it’s a culinary experience with a side of breathtaking views, especially if all that walking has gotten you a bit tired and hungry.

This inviting spot provides a range of dining experiences, from casual to fine dining. Whether you’re indulging in a hearty meal after a long stroll or treating your taste buds to something special, Dows Lake Pavilion has got you covered.

The real treat here, besides the food, is the stunning waterfront backdrop to accompany you as you sip your coffee or savor your meal. You’ll be treated to scenic views that encapsulate Ottawa’s charm. 

The picturesque Dow’s Lake, surrounded by lush greenery, adds a touch of serenity to your culinary adventure. It’s an environment where you can enjoy the tranquil beauty of Ottawa’s waterways and relax in a dining space that feels both welcoming and vibrant.

Plus, if you’re visiting just in time for the annual Canadian Tulip Festival, you’re in for a double delight! 

4. Love Locks

Love Locks

The last thing you should ever miss while walking across the Corktown Footbridge is the ‘love locks’ decorating it! 

As you walk along the footbridge, you’ll discover an array of padlocks, each inscribed with heartfelt messages, names, or dates. These tokens of affection tell stories of love, commitment, and unity. 

They’re a symbol of the enduring connections that bring people together, and they add an extra layer of charm to this already picturesque bridge.

While the origins of the love lock tradition are debated, its sentiment remains universal: these locks represent an unbreakable bond between those who placed them. 

Whether it’s a couple celebrating their love, a family commemorating a special moment, or friends sealing their friendship, these locks are a reminder of human connections.

Love Locks

For someone just strolling along the Corktown Footbridge, every step you take here is layered with tales of love, friendship, promises kept, and hearts forever linked.

So, as you wander across this bridge, take a moment to admire the love locks, maybe even snap a picture or two for your social media accounts.