When you offer a safe place to hide to an exiled royal family – well, let’s just say they will want to thank you. That is exactly how Ottawa became friends with Holland’s royal family during WWII. In thanks, Princess Julianna sent 100,000 tulip bulbs to Canada. The beautiful bulbs signified a lasting friendship. The Dutch Royal Family still sends 10,000 bulbs each year. Today Ottawa celebrates the arrival of spring with the Ottawa Tulip Festival.

Taking place between May 12-22th this year, a million tulips in 50 varieties burst forth annually in gardens and public places all over the capital. Pink Impressions, Golden Apeldoorn and in 2017 the Canada 150 tulip, which is red and white, will bloom in abundance. Over half a million people flock in to see the vivid bursts of colour in the flowerbeds, on riverbanks and near museums.

Painters will be creating their versions of the tulip beds. Clowns and vendors line the streets. In the new Aberdeen Tulip Garden, children can get their pictures taken with princesses. Cirque de liberation animators, buskers and musicians are everywhere, creating a celebratory atmosphere. A World War II encampment, vintage military vehicles and re-enactments remind visitors and citizens alike about the reason for the festival.

Bring your loved ones and spread a blanket on the TD Place soccer field. When darkness falls, the skies will come alive with tulip fireworks set to music. Take a ride along the Rideau Canal on one of the boats and see the tulips from the water as they flank the banks and sidewalks. Bring your camera (if you can bear to pull your eyes away from the scenery) because the photo-ops are amazing here.

Great viewings are at Commissioner’s Park and Dow’s Lake and along Queen Street. Ottawa is full of life and wants you to join in and CanadaStays can help you find the perfect Ottawa condo rental to best suit the needs for your family or friends. Plan your visit fall getaway today and rent an Ottawa condo rental today!

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