Dow’s Lake Gardens’ Self-Guided Tour

A. Commissioners Park Gardens
Address: Queen Elizabeth Dr & Preston Street, Ottawa ON K1P 1B1
Services for Visitors: Parking $ (available across from the Dows Lake Pavilion, at the corner of Preston St. and Queen Elizabeth Driveway) – Washrooms (available in Dows Lake Pavilion) – Bicycle Racks – Wheelchair Accessible – Child-Friendly – Dog Friendly (on leash) – Eating Areas
Description: Follow the winding pathways, and take in the explosion of colour in (gardens filled with over 250.000 tulips. In summer, the tulips are replaced by thousands of annual flowers, which create beautiful scenic views with Dows Lake in the background. Located at the corner of Preston Street and the Queen Elizabeth Driveway, Commissioners Park extends over 8.95 hectares. It was built from the 1920s to 1950s on the site of a former lumberyard owned by J.R. Booth.

B. Dow’s Lake Pavilion Boardwalk Garden
Location: Dow’s Lake
Address: 1001 Queen Elizabeth Dr, Ottawa, Ontario K1S 5K7
Services for Visitors: Parking $ – Bicycle Racks – Washrooms – Wheelchair Accessible – Child-Friendly – Café and Eating Areas
Description: Dow’s Lake Pavilion offers an ideal scenic location to enjoy Ottawa’s historic Rideau Canal. Come walk the boardwalk and experience the charm of one of Ottawa’s best-kept secrets as the Dow’s Lake boardwalk is decked out with beautiful annual color.


C. SPAO Photosynthesis Garden
Location: SPAO (School of Photographic Arts in Ottawa)
Address: 77 Pamilla St, Ottawa, ON K1S 3K7
Services for Visitors: Street Parking – Washrooms – Wheelchair Accessible
Description: Photo-Synthesis Garden is a unique outdoor exhibition space that introduces audiences to temporal and botanical elements to the photographic arts. The images are suspended above a crop of edible plants that will grow and die acting as a parallel to the seasonal cycle depicted in the images. This living installation can be visited several times for a deeper understanding of the work over the next few months.

• EarthBound – outdoor installation by Ottawa-based artist and SPAO alumni, Barbara Brown. EarthBound imagines the human body in relation to the growth patterns of the earth. Brown’s work serves as a monument to all those who have come before us, with an underlying awareness that death feeds life. As a challenge to the idea of land/body opposition, these earth-informed figures dwell in the space between past and present, life and death, the natural world, and our own sense of self-existence beyond our own consciousness. Throughout the duration of the exhibition, the work bridges memory with grief and suggests a path towards the long process of healing. In these unprecedented times, our grief can build and compound, often without release. From fallen soldiers of the past to our friends, family, and neighbours, all of us are part of this cycle; we are bound to the earth; we are nourished by it and finally, return to it.
Exhibition Dates: until Friday, October 15
Viewing Times: Sunrise to Sunset!

D. ‘Share The Flame’ Olympic Garden
Location: south of Princess Patricia Way at Prince of Wales Drive, Ottawa, ON
Address: 450 Queen Elizabeth Dr, Ottawa, ON
Services for Visitors: Parking $ – Washrooms (nearby) – Child-Friendly – Dog Friendly (on leash) – Café and Eating Areas Nearby
Description: Alongside the Rideau Canal, down from the Lansdowne Gardens you will find the Olympic Garden. Like our athletes, the tulips and other flowers in this garden are outstanding performers. Commemorating the 1988 Olympic torch relay, Olympic Flame tulips provide the backdrop to Vilem Zach’s sculpture “Share the Flame”. In the spring, “Olympic Flame” tulips are paired with “Jan Seignette,” a tulip with reversed colours surrounding the bronze statue bearing an Olympic torch.
A two-kilometre stroll along the Rideau Canal from Commissioners Park will lead you to this garden.

E. Lansdowne Park Gardens
Address: 1525 Princess Patricia Way, Ottawa, ON K1S 5J3
Services for Visitors: Parking $ – Bicycle Racks – Washrooms – Wheelchair Accessible – Child-Friendly – Café and Eating Areas
Civic Gardens
Description: A vibrant celebration of Ottawa’s horticultural heritage, raised beds display a variety of plants and themes, with 7 beds of plants of Indigenous importance. 2017 plantings mark a centennial celebration of the start of the Victory Garden initiative.
Heirloom Orchard
Description: Lansdowne Park features more than 800 trees, including an orchard of 37 heirloom apple trees. The best time to visit the orchard is in early summer while the apple trees are in full bloom, or late summer (July/August) when the apples have formed.


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