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“Interesting to watch”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Ottawa Locks

Ottawa Locks
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Ottawa Highlights Half-Day Bike Tour
Ranked #12 of 255 things to do in Ottawa
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Owner description: In use since 1832, these locks link the Ottawa River with the Rideau Canal and are still operated by hand.
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Interesting to watch”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 30, 2012

Watching the boats go through is a pleasant and interesting way to spend a few minutes of a tour of Ottawa

Thank nncykr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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565 reviews from our community

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English first
Level Contributor
50 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
“Engineering marvel”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 18, 2012

This is a great way to spend time watching boats go up or down the eight locks to the Ottawa river. July and August are best viewing months.

Visited September 2012
Thank Candu_scuba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
53 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Nice feature”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 10, 2012

There's something mesmerizing about watching the lock operators move these huge walls that are 200 years old. I love that you can ride/walk/run/blade for hours on Ottawa's paved pathways and the Ottawa Locks makes for a great destination/feature along that journey.

Visited September 2012
Thank PlateIt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa Canada
Level Contributor
149 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Interesting to see”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 8, 2012 via mobile

I really enjoy watching the locks in operation. It amazes me how well they function especially since they were built so long ago. This set has more locks than others in the Rideau system. I often ride my bike along the path that runs along the Ottawa River behind Parliament and continues along the canal so I pass by in the summer. There are always many folks watching the boats lock through. There has been a lot of talk about hours being cut this year so check if it is open. If not, it is a nice walk. You can see the Museum of Civilization from the back.

There are washrooms and people working are patient about answering questions.

Thank Stewartsix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Akron, Ohio
Level Contributor
465 reviews
241 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 192 helpful votes
“this is for outdoors people who do not want to be couch potatoes anymore”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed August 24, 2012

I discovered these locks while walking along the canal from far away. It is a nice past-time for leisurely strolling along the Rideau canal near the Chateau Laurier near the end of the canal But it is more than this. I was looking for signs in French and I found them To miss this sight after walking the length of the canal would be enough to question your loyalty to the wilderness as a source of happiness. Do not wear your boy scout uniforms. Do not dress as a park ranger or as Smokey the Bear's brother. Being at the locks does not earn you a merit badge for camping but it might instill a appreciation of the past as it fllows or blends with the contemporary. Yes it is different than watching the changing of the guard or eating Thai food in Ottawa. The Locks offer some people a moment for reflection about what has been lost over the passage of time with regard to water traffic. Barges and boats offer tourists another glimpse of yesterday. This is post card territory without any doubt.T his is also photography time so bring your camera. Group photos do make sense here. Not as wild as Lake Superior near Thunder Bay but it is worth a couple of post cards and photos. Stay away from the souvenir hawkers and those who offer bus tours to Montreal. I would recommend walking the length of the canal backward in reverse from the locks to the other end of the canal for more than just endurance. It can be scenic. A good place to eat lunch and ask questions at the small museum near by. You might feel awkward going in the Chateau after walking for so long the length of the canal and I can understand why. Parked cars and valet service provided by people wearing formal outfits while driving limos with valet parking service out front of the Chateau is in contrast to the spirit or message of the locks. Either the canal locks are out of place or the Chateau Laurier should be relocated. One conflicts with the other. The locks answer the questions about what has happened to modern technology for transporting boats and barges from the canal to the large lake and Ottawa River. Maybe the mistery of live canoe portages will be understood better after seeing the locks operate. Do not buy a wigwam after seeing the locks but so read about them. Yes this is a tourist attraction worthy of at least two Michelin stars for its visible connection with the past and link with the contemporary world that is more than a place for tourists to photograph each other and drink lemonade for thirty minutes. Remember those games with plastic or wooden lego blocks that still occupy lives of teh young and not so young? There is for me a connection with the locks and lego blocks.

Visited July 2012
1 Thank GiudoLocattelli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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