Numerous local coffee stops in Ottawa make your bike ride more enjoyable. Let’s take a look at some of Ottawa’s local coffee shops that are easy to reach on a bike.
One of the great things about cycling in the Ottawa – Gatineau region is the greatly improved bicycle infrastructure, thanks to the strong cooperation between cycling advocates at Bike Ottawa and planners and politicians at City Hall. A connected network is slowly taking shape: you will find hundreds of kilometers of pathways, new cycling bridges and even some protected intersections, making cycling increasingly popular and safe.
Some cyclists in Ottawa cycle to set new personal records, but the majority is less in a hurry. Destination cycling is becoming popular and coffee breaks, patio lunches and snacks are a big part of the joy of cycling. Let’s face it, all those calories you have burned off need to be replaced at that bakery, right? Not to mention coffee. Coffee!
For the longest time, the choices in Ottawa were the large coffee chains, serving traditional coffee, but more recently a noticeable number of independent local coffee shops have popped up all over the city with Bridgehead, the grandmother of locally owned places leading the pack. Independent coffee shops are so popular, there is now even a coffee fest (in March) for the “coffeenaisseurs”.
For example, recently established on Bank St in downtown is Little Victories Coffee, a coffee shop that roasts their own coffees on their Loring Falcon roaster. Little Victories Coffee is a small, independent specialty coffee roaster owned and operated by two coffee professionals – one roaster and one barista. Our Bike & Food tour stops at Little Victories too and we can guarantee you will enjoy the place.
Also in downtown, you can find lovely places such as the ‘Ministry of Coffee’ at the south end of Elgin and ‘Morning Owl’ on Bank St in the downtown area. Try one of the lunch sandwiches at Morning Owl. You won’t be disappointed. Also on Elgin is Happy Goat, another hip place in downtown.
Just west of downtown, on Preston, is Simply Biscotti, only a block off the separate Trillium bicycle pathway. It serves great coffees, homemade desserts and sandwiches. You won’t go wrong there with a nice cup of espresso. Barely a kilometer north along that same pathway you will find popular ‘Art-Is-In Bakery’ in an industrial setting at ‘City Centre’. Some of our favourites are croissants and sticky buns made with the finest New Zealand Butter.
Just a block west of the Trillium Pathway, you’ll find another Happy Goat in an old warehouse. On Wellington Street West in Hintonburg is another Ministry of Coffee. Notice the bike parking right across the street at Bridgehead, where the city has converted 1 car parking spot into 12 bike parking spots. Further west is another ‘Simply Biscotti’ in Westboro. Stop by for their great desserts.
On the east side of downtown at the Rideau Falls you can find the recently opened ‘Terrace on the Falls/La Taverne Sur La Chute’, serving Bridgehead coffee with fab patio views over the Ottawa river and the Gatineau hills across the river. If you are lucky you might even see a group of people in a large canoe travelling on the mighty Ottawa river. Next door are the offices of the Canadian Geographical Society, with regular exhibits and lectures, always worth checking out. There is plenty of bike parking there and if you forgot your lock, you can bring your bike on the patio.
On your way to Rideau Hall, you should meander through one of the older neighbourhoods of Ottawa, New Edinburgh, founded by Thomas McKay, who built Rideau Hall, now the home of the Governor General. Union Street Kitchen Café on Union St is yet another little gem serving great coffees, sandwiches and desserts. The large groups of German cycling tourists who we take on tours, stopped by last fall and fully approved.
Want to bike to some of the destinations we mentioned? Escape Bicycle Tours & Rentals offers a multi hour tour through Ottawa showing many city highlights. Some of our tours include a stop at one of the coffee places. If you rather go on a discovery yourself, Escape Bicycle Tours & Rentals offers a large choice of hybrid and comfort bicycles and e-bikes for rent and gives you a customized map on how to get to those places. We recommend you book in advance.