8 Best Neighbourhoods in Ottawa: Where to Live in Ottawa, Ontario

Ottawa Best Neighbourhoods

Before moving to Ottawa, Ontario, it's crucial to familiarize yourself with the city's vibrant and wide-ranging neighbourhoods. Each area offers unique amenities, communities, and atmospheres, catering to various preferences and needs. Discover the best neighbourhoods in the capital city of Ottawa and find out what makes each one unique and the right fit for you.

Tunney's Pasture

Tunney's Pasture sits on the southern banks of the Ottawa River just east of the Champlain Bridge. The neighbourhood is known for its government buildings dating from the 1950s. Since then, the 121-acre site has been reimagined by Canada's Public Works and Government Services as an eco-friendly, mixed-use development with residential, retail, and commercial spaces. The 18-building campus aims to double government employees living and working in the area to 20,000 workers, creating a sustainable community that maximizes public transit and promotes a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere.

Apart from the new Tunney's Pasture LRT station, which includes a retail hub and civic plaza, the neighbourhood provides a network of green spaces, pathways, and parks. Local shops, cafes, and restaurants also add to the community's convenience and vibrancy. 

Locals take advantage of the outdoor pool and ice rink at Champlain Park, west of the government campus, and the waterfront attractions at Remic Rapids Park, north of the campus, including the Kichi Sibi Winter Trail. Other popular local amenities include Drip House Coffee, Rig Boxing, and St. George School.

Homes in Tunney's Pasture blend low-rise condominiums alongside detached, single-family homes. Prices range from $300,000 for a one-bedroom residence to $1 million for a three-bedroom house.

Tunney's Pasture Amenities

  • Al Fajr School
  • Parkdale Market
  • Anytime Fitness
  • Bar Lupulus
  • Petit Bill's Bistro
  • Metro Supermarket
  • Wellington Diner
  • Goldenrod Garden

Alta Vista

Reasons to Live in Alta Vista in Ottawa, ON

Located south of the Rideau River near the city's south end, Alta Vista, one of Ottawa's best waterfront neighbourhoods, is also one of the city's top overall areas. Known for its tranquil suburban living near downtown, locals enjoy plenty of green spaces, excellent schools, and a rich mix of local businesses. Alta Vista is also home to the city's major hospitals, including the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario and the Ottawa Hospital Riverside Campus.

The Billings Bridge Shopping Centre is another big draw for Alta Vista residents, offering over 80 stores and services, including an independent grocer. Outdoor recreation options are also plentiful, with Grasshopper Hill Park and Orlando Park offering playgrounds, baseball diamonds, and tobogganing. Notable schools in the area include Alta Vista Public School and Ridgemont High School, both of which are part of the Ottawa-Carleton District. Popular restaurants, cafes, and shops can be found along Bank Street, including Hometown Sports Grill, Pelican Seafood Market, and O'Brien's Eatery & Pub.

Developed in the 1960s, Alta Vista's residential landscape features large two-storey homes and single-story bungalows, each with its own distinct style. Homes in Alta Vista list from $500,000 to just over $1 million.

Alta Vista Amenities

  • Farm Boy
  • Heron Park
  • Ten Sushi
  • FRST Fitness
  • Alta Vista Plaza
  • Westboro Academy
  • RA Recreation Centre
  • Billings Estate & Museum

Westboro

The historic neighbourhood of Westboro has evolved from a humble sawmill hub in the late 1800s into a thriving urban community with some of the most sought-after luxury homes in Ottawa. Located west of Island Park Drive and south of the Ottawa River, the neighbourhood is known for its trendy restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques, and local markets. It also boasts some of the best attractions in Ottawa, including Westboro Beach, Maplelawn Garden, and the popular Mountain Equipment Co-Op (MEC), a favourite among outdoor enthusiasts.

With its lively commercial district along Richmond Road, known as Westboro Village, the neighbourhood is brimming with convenient urban amenities. Foodies can choose from a variety of independent and chain establishments, like The Works for craft burgers, Pure Kitchen for vegetarian dishes, and Gezellig for legendary brunch. Local boutiques, like Tallow and Fashion United, are also located on the strip, surrounded by vibrant street art and pedestrian-friendly walkways. Additional amenities include an array of green spaces, top-notch schools, and sporting facilities at the Dovercourt Recreation Centre.

Homes in Westboro are in high demand and priced accordingly. Modern 1-bedroom condos typically cost around $440,000 on average, while charming cottages, bungalows, and contemporary houses can be found in the $800,000 to $2.5 million range.

Westboro Amenities

  • Zak's Diner
  • Bushtukah
  • Hampton Park
  • Equator Coffee
  • Clocktower Brew Pub
  • Wedel Touch of Europe
  • Hilson Avenue Public School

Downtown Ottawa

Reasons to Live in Downtown Ottawa, ON

It's no surprise that Downtown Ottawa is considered one of the best places to live in the city. As the capital's central core, residents are conveniently located near the city's major attractions, including Parliament Hill, the ByWard Market district, and Major's Hill Park. The neighbourhood is also well-connected by public transit, with the O-Train Confederation Line running through the heart of downtown and various bus routes serving local commuters.

Government buildings, embassies, and corporate headquarters dominate the neighbourhood's skyline, but there are residential pockets that offer a quiet escape from the bustling business district. As for shopping and dining, residents won't be disappointed. The nearby Rideau Centre, spanning one million square feet, is home to 180 retailers, while Johnny Farina and Nando's Peri-Peri add to the global food scene in Downtown Ottawa, serving Italian and Portuguese dishes, respectively. For outdoor recreation, locals often visit the Rideau Canal, which offers year-round recreational activities, such as ice skating in the winter and kayaking in the summer. The neighbourhood is also a major hub for festivals, including Winterlude and Jazz Fest.

Downtown Ottawa's real estate market is diverse, with high-rise condos concentrated in the central business district and single-family homes on quieter streets. Homes in Downtown Ottawa generally list from $300,000 for a studio to $1 million for a three-bedroom house.

Downtown Ottawa Amenities

  • The SconeWitch
  • Pour Boy Pub
  • National Gallery
  • National Arts Centre
  • Confederation Park
  • Elgin Street Public School
  • Wellington Child Care Centre

Hintonburg

Located north of the Trans-Canada Highway and northeast of Parkdale Avenue, Hintonburg is known for its historic brick homes, modern low-rise condos, and trendy shops and restaurants. The main commercial street in Hintonburg is Wellington Street West, home to unique boutiques like Flamingo, Kindred, and Flock, as well as popular dining spots such as Art-Is-In Bakery for freshly baked baguettes and cronuts as well as the Hintonburg Public House for pub fare and game nights.

Hintonburg is also home to the Great Canadian Theatre Company, which offers a variety of performances throughout the year. Locals can also enjoy a selection of parks, schools, and recreational facilities, including the Hintonburg Community Centre, which offers athletic courts and a fitness centre.

Homes for sale in Hintonburg range from two- and three-storey brick townhouses to condominiums. Prices start at around $300,000 for a 1-bedroom condo and range up to $1 million for a larger home.

Hintonburg Amenities

  • Victoire Boutique
  • Ministry of Coffee
  • The Smoque Shack
  • City Centre Mall
  • Orange Art Gallery
  • Connaught Public School

Old Ottawa South

Situated south of the Rideau Canal and north of the Rideau River, Old Ottawa South is known for its picturesque tree-lined streets and attractive historic homes. In fact, approximately 300 structures in the neighbourhood are included in Ottawa's heritage reference list, enjoying legal protection from demolition or alteration. Old Ottawa South is also home to Canada's first School of Journalism at Carleton University.

The vibe in Old Ottawa South is laid-back and friendly. Homeowners can be seen on their front porches chatting with neighbours, strolling along the streets with their dogs or browsing at local shops like Black Squirrel Books & Espresso Bar, Vertigo Records, and Ottawa Antique Market. Outdoor enthusiasts can easily visit Brewer Park and Windsor Park, where the Old Ottawa South Art and Music Festival takes place. In the commercial heart of the neighbourhood, historic buildings are home to local landmarks such as the Mayfair Theatre, Hopewell Avenue Public School, and the Ottawa House Community Centre, formerly a fire hall.

Homes in Old Ottawa South are a mix of century-old properties, updated single-family houses, and some condos. Prices generally fall between $500,000 and $2 million.

Old Ottawa South Amenities

  • Brewer Arena
  • Patty's Pub
  • Life of Pie
  • Oat Couture Cafe
  • Table Sodam Korean
  • Yardley's Antiques
  • Cedars Food Market
  • Lansdowne Animal Hospital

The Glebe

Reasons to Live in the Glebe in Ottawa, ON

The Glebe is home to a tight-knit community and residential landscape that includes colonial- and Victorian-era homes, plus character-filled Ottawa townhomes with brick facades and colourful accents. Located south of the Trans-Canada Highway and the downtown districts, this area was originally known as "the glebe lands," which were spacious plots of land set aside for church use. It's now become a popular choice for buyers seeking to live close to the city center without the hustle and bustle.

Easy access to the Rideau Canal, TD Place Stadium, the Lansdowne Market, and the Bank Street Shopping District makes The Glebe one of the best places to live in Ottawa. Residents enjoy charming tree-lined streets, schools, well-maintained parks, and a diverse range of local businesses. These include the world-class sporting facilities at Lansdowne Park, the private high school Blyth Academy, and the Canadian Tulip Festival at Commissioner's Park. Another big attraction is the historic Rideau Canal Skateway, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that offers the longest outdoor skating rink in the world.

The Glebe real estate market is known for its charming historic homes, many of which have been updated with luxury features. Buyers can also find contemporary Ottawa waterfront homes with views of Dow's Lake. Homes in The Glebe generally start at $1 million, and they can reach upwards of $5 million.

The Glebe Amenities

  • Irene's Pub
  • Feleena's Mexican
  • Whole Foods Market
  • GoodLife Fitness
  • Lansdowne Cineplex
  • The Glebe Apothecary
  • Glebe Community Centre
  • Glebe Collegiate Institute

Orléans

Settled by Francophones in the mid-1800s, Orléans is now a thriving suburb in Ottawa's east end, with just over 125,000 residents. French is still widely spoken here, with around one-third of the population using it as their primary language at home. The neighbourhood is bordered by the Ottawa River to the north and Navan Road to the south, with Highway 174 running through the north section. 

Orléans offers a healthy share of the new construction homes in Ottawa. It's also known for its master-planned subdivisions, abundant green spaces, and Place d'Orléans, a major shopping centre with over 130 stores and services.

Orléans has a suburban feel, with plenty of recreational facilities like the Ray Friel Recreation Complex and François Dupuis Recreation Centre, offering indoor swimming, ice skating, and fitness programs. The neighbourhood is also home to more than two dozen schools, including École élémentaire Des Sentiers and Sir Wilfred Laurier Secondary School. Dining options include Stray Dog Brewing Company, Occo Kitchen, and St. Martha's Brasserie. Residents are also near Petrie Island Beach, a popular summer spot for swimming and picnics.

In terms of real estate, Orléans is one of Ottawa's most affordable markets. Homes for sale in Orléans include detached properties, semi-attached townhouses, and condos listed between $400,000 and $800,000. Luxury new construction properties are also available, though these are priced up to $1.5 million, if not more.

Orléans Amenities

  • Joe & Lily's NoFrills
  • Shenkman Arts Centre
  • Princess Louise Falls
  • Landmark Cinemas
  • Rôtisserie St-Hubert
  • Queenswood Ridge Park
  • Maple Ridge Elementary

Ottawa's Outstanding Neighbourhoods

Navigating through Ottawa's best neighbourhoods reveals a tapestry of communities, each with its own identity and charm. From vibrant, bustling areas to tranquil, scenic spaces, this city has a neighbourhood to match every preference. Homebuyers can hone in on one that presents a viable cost of living in Ottawa for their budget and resonates with their lifestyle and needs. Explore these top neighbourhoods in Ottawa and start your journey to finding a place that feels like home.

Thinking about moving to Ottawa? Contact MetroCity Property Group of eXp Realty at (613) 733-9494 to reach a local real estate agent who can help you find your Ottawa dream home today.

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