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Taste Ottawa’s culture with transit this summer

Image - Taste Ottawa’s culture with transit this summer

Almost every week this summer is filled with many events and festivals to experience the multicultural landscape of Ottawa. Whether you're a local or visiting from out of town, your Ottawa summer is guaranteed to be all about food, music, dance, art, tradition, and amazing weather.

Not only will you get to experience different cultures, but you'll also visit different areas of the city. So, grab your best friend, choose your best fare, and see how transit is the best way to get there.

Choose your best fare

12 years old or younger?

Kids Go Free all day, everyday.

More info about Service Types

13 years old or older?

On weekends, you and a friend can ride together on a single fare with the 2-for-1 DayPass.​​​​

More info about Service Types

At least 65 years young?

On Wednesdays and Sundays, seniors can ride OC Transpo buses and trains for free!

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Attending many days?

multi-day DayPass might be the best fit.

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Begin your cultural tour

While most of these events and festivals are free, some might require purchasing a ticket, or some activities might have a fee and/or require registration ahead of time. Make sure to visit the website of each event for details.

Asian Night Market

Friday, May 31 to Sunday, June 2

The first stop on our tour is Chinatown where you'll be immersed in vibrant colours, stunning K-pop performances, and diverse street foods. This three-day festival will be happening at two locations this summer. Visit the Ottawa Asian Fest and Ottawa Chinatown Night Market websites for details.

Tanger Ottawa, 8555 Campeau Drive

Chinatown, Somerset Street West (Bronson Avenue to Bell Street)

Italian Week 

Thursday, June 6 to Sunday, June 16

Benvenuti a tutti! A few days later and we find ourselves in Corso Italia / Little Italy for Italian Week. With wine-tasting, pasta-making, coffee-sipping, bike-racing, and night-dancing — your tummy and your heart will be full. 

Corso Italia / Little Italy, Preston Street (Somerset Street West to Carling Avenue)

Festival Franco-Ontarien

June 13-15

Learn more about Ontario's Francophone community and discover French culture from around the world with three evenings of live music and cuisine at Festival Franco-Ontarien.

Major's Hill Park, Mackenzie Avenue

Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival

June 21-23

Thursday, June 20 has the longest day and shortest night of the year and marks the first official day of summer. To celebrate, Ottawa's Indigenous communities combines an entire weekend of throat singing, horses, games, hoop dancing, a pow-wow competition, story-telling, and more. Check the full calendar at the Summer Solstice Festivals website.

Mādahòkì Farm, 4420 West Hunt Club Road

Lebanese Festival

July 17-21

We then take a two-week resting period before celebrating the best in Middle-Eastern tradition. At the Ottawa Lebanese Festival, you will surely be consumed with rides, games, dance, and art, and consuming popular foods like hummus, tabouli, falafel, and shawarma.

CSt. Elias banquet Centre, 750 Ridgewood Avenue

Carivibe

July 19-21

Overlapping the tail end of the Lebanese Festival, we'll travel from the Middle-East to the Caribbean and arrive at Ottawa's biggest beach party, Carivibe. Taste tropical cuisine, drinks, icecream. Laugh with the Jamaica versus Trinidad comedy competition. Dance to sweet, sweet Soca, Dancehall, Reggae, and AfroBeats.

Petrie Island Beach, 795 Tweddle Road

Great India Festival

August 8-11

After a two-and-a-half-week break, we arrive at The Great India Festival where we will experience the vibrant tapestry of dance, music, arts, heritage exhibitions, workshops, and panel discussions, and authentic cuisine from across India.

Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West

GreekFest

August 15-18 and 23-25

Live a day the Greek way at GreekFest and don't miss two weekends full of live bouzouki bands, firey Zorba shows, traditional dances, and Greek language lessons.

Hellenic Event Centre, 1315 Prince of Wales Drive

Latin Sparks

September 7

From reggaeton dance performances, dance lessons in Salsa and Bachata to dancing to live bands, a DJ, and all the tacos and churros you can eat, the Latin Sparks Festival is sure to bring the flare and the flavour.

LeBreton Flats, Kichi Zībī Mīkan

AfroFest

September 7-8

After spending a day at a Latin fiesta, we head over to AfroFest where we can continue the party by celebrating the rich and diverse heritage of Africa. Experience food, music, fashion, activities for children, arts and crafts, live performances from local and international talent, a marketplace, and much more! 

Mooney's Bay Park and Beach, 2960 Riverside Drive