Rideau Canal Skateway is Open for 2019 Season

Photo Credit: Ottawa Tourism

The Rideau Canal Skateway is open for it 49th season from today (Sunday, December 30).

Every year during winter months, Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site welcomes visitors from all over the world to skate the 7.8 kilometers stretching from the downtown Ottawa to Hartwells Locks. The total ice surface is equivalent to more than 140 National Hockey League rinks, or more than 122 Olympic-sized hockey rinks (223,400 square metres).

The open sections varies depending on the weather and duration of the skating season also varies.

The 2.5-km section that is currently open (December 30) includes Bank Street to Pretoria Bridge, Patterson Creek and Pig Island.

If you are visiting Ottawa in January, we suggest you take a tour of the Parliament building and the Peace Tower before it closes for 10+ years.

WHEN: Skateway when open, is accessible 24 hours a day and the skating season runs from early January until early March.

Services are available in the open sections of the Skateway until 10 pm or 11 pm, depending on the day.


The total length of the skateway is 7.8 kilometres, stretching from downtown Ottawa to Hartwells Locks. The open sections varies.


Rest areas (Rideau Street, Fifth, Bronson Avenue, Dows Lake)  offers change rooms, washrooms, fire pits, food and beverage vendors, and picnic tables.

Skate Rentals are available at  Dows Lake Pavilion, Rideau (under Mackenzie King Bridge) and Fifth Avenue (between the 3rd and 4th km marker).


FREE to Skate

Skate Rentals start at  $13 for child for one hour. Sleigh rentals are also available.

For more details, see National Capital Commission Website


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