Between events, the park is a calm oasis in downtown Ottawa, and the perfect spot to take a break between visits to the ByWard Market and nearby museums and galleries.
This park features some of the best lookouts in Ottawa, offering stunning views of the Ottawa Locks on the Rideau Canal, the Ottawa River and the Parliament Buildings. Take a stroll through the park’s stately trees, over its rolling lawns and winding pathways, and learn about its history through a series of interpretation panels.
Washrooms: May to October
Open 8 am to dusk (no later than 9 pm), daily
Parking: Free and paid parking are available in the ByWard Market, and there is paid parking in the National Gallery of Canada’s underground parking lot.
Picnic Areas: There are picnic areas in the park.
Major’s Hill Park is the Capital’s first park, used as such since 1826, when the building of the Rideau Canal began. In 1867, fireworks and bonfires in the park marked the Capital’s first Canada Day celebrations. It was formally established as a park in 1875.
The park features the remains of the house where Colonel By lived during the building of the Rideau Canal. It also features Header House in the northern end of the park, the last remaining section of the Major’s Hill Park greenhouse complex, which was dismantled in 1937–1938.
Nowadays, Header House is home to Tavern on the Hill, a seasonal outdoor canteen, patio and ice cream shop that offers up locally-sourced food.
Major’s Hill Park covers 5.06 hectares of land across from the Embassy of the United States of America on Mackenzie Avenue in Ottawa. The park is located between the National Gallery of Canada to the north and the Fairmont Château Laurier to the south.