Sheryl Harms

Written by Sheryl Harms

Modified & Updated: 01 Jun 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett


The ByWard Market is a vibrant and historic district located in the heart of Ottawa, Canada’s capital city. With its bustling atmosphere, rich history, and diverse mix of shops, restaurants, and entertainment options, the ByWard Market has become a must-visit destination for locals and tourists alike. This iconic neighborhood is not only a hub for delicious food and unique shopping experiences, but it also showcases the rich cultural heritage of Ottawa. From its charming cobblestone streets to its stunning architecture, there is no shortage of captivating sights to explore and discover in this lively district. In this article, we will delve into 15 fascinating facts about the ByWard Market that showcase why it is such a beloved and iconic landmark in Ottawa.

Key Takeaways:

  • ByWard Market is a vibrant and historic destination in Ottawa, offering a diverse range of experiences from fresh produce and unique crafts to lively nightlife and cultural events.
  • With over 600 businesses, the market is a year-round hub of activity, featuring live entertainment, rich cultural experiences, and a paradise for food lovers.
Table of Contents

The ByWard Market is Ottawa’s oldest continuously operating farmers’ market.

Did you know that the ByWard Market has been serving the local community for over 200 years? Established in 1826, it is Ottawa’s oldest and most vibrant farmers’ market. With its charming atmosphere and diverse offerings, the market attracts locals and visitors alike. From fresh produce and artisanal goods to unique boutiques and delicious dining options, the ByWard Market is a must-visit destination in Ottawa.

ByWard Market is home to over 600 businesses.

Spanning across several blocks, the ByWard Market is a bustling hub of activity with over 600 businesses. From specialty shops and boutiques to restaurants, cafes, and galleries, this vibrant district offers something for everyone. Whether you’re searching for one-of-a-kind souvenirs, trendy fashion pieces, or delectable culinary experiences, you’ll find it all within the ByWard Market.

The ByWard Market hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

One of the reasons why the ByWard Market is so captivating is its calendar of events. From lively music festivals and cultural celebrations to art exhibits and food tastings, there’s always something happening in this vibrant district. The market continually embraces the spirit of community and entertainment, ensuring there’s never a dull moment for residents and visitors to Ottawa.

ByWard Market offers an incredible selection of fresh produce.

If you’re a food lover, you’ll be delighted to discover the wide array of fresh produce available at the ByWard Market. From locally grown fruits and vegetables to organic meats, cheeses, and artisanal products, the market is a haven for culinary enthusiasts. Strolling through the colorful stalls, you can pick up ingredients for a delicious home-cooked meal or simply savor the freshness and quality of local produce.

You can find unique and handmade crafts at ByWard Market.

The ByWard Market is not just about food and shopping; it’s also a treasure trove of handcrafted items and artistic creations. From intricate pottery and handmade jewelry to stunning artwork and stylish home decor, the market showcases the talents of local artisans. Exploring the market’s charming alleyways and hidden corners will lead you to fantastic finds that you won’t find anywhere else.

ByWard Market is a popular nightlife destination.

As the sun sets, the ByWard Market transforms into a vibrant nightlife scene. With its lively bars, pubs, and nightclubs, it attracts both locals and tourists looking for a fun night out. Whether you’re in the mood for live music, dancing, or simply enjoying a refreshing drink with friends, the ByWard Market offers a diverse range of nightlife options to suit every taste.

The ByWard Market is home to historical landmarks.

The ByWard Market boasts a rich history, and it is dotted with several notable landmarks. One of the must-see attractions is the Notre-Dame Cathedral, a stunning Gothic Revival church that stands proudly in the heart of the market. Additionally, visitors can explore the heritage buildings that have been preserved over the years, providing a glimpse into Ottawa’s past.

ByWard Market is a paradise for food lovers.

If you consider yourself a food enthusiast, the ByWard Market will be your ultimate paradise. It offers a diverse culinary experience with its wide selection of restaurants, cafes, food stalls, and specialty shops. From international cuisines to local delights, you can indulge in everything from fine dining to street food, satisfying your taste buds with every bite.

The ByWard Market features vibrant street art.

As you wander through the streets of the ByWard Market, you’ll be captivated by the colorful and vibrant street art on display. From larger-than-life murals to intricately designed graffiti, the market is a canvas for local artists to express their creativity. The street art adds to the unique and vibrant atmosphere of the district, creating a visually stunning experience for all visitors.

ByWard Market offers a rich cultural experience.

With its diverse range of shops, eateries, and events, the ByWard Market reflects the multicultural fabric of Ottawa. Here, you can discover a blend of different cultures, taste exotic flavors, and experience the vibrant traditions of various communities. The market truly embodies the spirit of inclusivity and cultural exchange, making it a captivating destination for locals and tourists alike.

The ByWard Market has been a meeting place for generations.

For over two centuries, the ByWard Market has been a gathering spot for residents of Ottawa. Generations have come together in this historic district to connect, celebrate, and create lasting memories. Whether it’s enjoying a meal with family and friends, attending a community event, or simply taking a leisurely stroll, the market holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Ottawa.

ByWard Market offers unique shopping experiences.

When it comes to shopping, the ByWard Market provides an array of unique and eclectic options. From trendy fashion boutiques and designer stores to antique shops and vintage finds, you can discover hidden gems and one-of-a-kind treasures. Embrace your inner fashionista or unleash your inner collector as you explore the diverse shopping experiences that the market has to offer.

The ByWard Market is a year-round destination.

Regardless of the season, the ByWard Market is always alive and bustling. Throughout the year, the market remains a vibrant destination, adapting to each season with unique events and offerings. Whether it’s exploring the frosty winter wonderland, enjoying the blossoming beauty of spring, or soaking up the warmth of summer, the ByWard Market welcomes visitors with open arms every day of the year.

ByWard Market is a popular spot for photographers.

With its charming cobblestone streets, historic buildings, colorful stalls, and vibrant atmosphere, the ByWard Market is a photographer’s dream. Whether you’re an amateur shutterbug or a professional photographer, you’ll find countless opportunities to capture stunning images in this captivating district. From architectural wonders to candid street captures, the market offers endless inspiration for photographers of all skill levels.

ByWard Market is a hub of live entertainment.

From street performers and live music to theatrical performances and cultural festivities, the ByWard Market is a hub of live entertainment. As you stroll through the bustling streets, you’ll encounter talented artists showcasing their skills and entertaining the crowds. The lively and dynamic atmosphere of the market ensures that there’s never a dull moment, making it an exciting destination for those seeking entertainment and cultural experiences.


ByWard Market in Ottawa is a true gem that offers a rich history, vibrant atmosphere, and an abundance of attractions. Whether you’re a foodie, history enthusiast, or simply love to explore unique landmarks, ByWard Market has something for everyone. From its origins as a local farmers’ market to its current status as a bustling hub of activity, this vibrant neighborhood is a must-visit destination.

With its varied selection of restaurants, boutique shops, and lively entertainment options, ByWard Market is a true centerpiece of Ottawa’s cultural scene. Its iconic landmarks, such as the Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica and the National Gallery of Canada, offer a glimpse into the city’s illustrious past.

So, if you’re planning a visit to Ottawa, don’t miss the opportunity to experience the captivating charm of ByWard Market. Wander through the bustling streets, indulge in delectable cuisine, and immerse yourself in the rich history and culture that this iconic neighborhood has to offer. You won’t be disappointed!


1. What is ByWard Market?

ByWard Market is the oldest and largest outdoor farmers’ market in Ottawa. It is a bustling neighborhood known for its vibrant atmosphere, diverse culinary offerings, boutique shops, and historic landmarks.

2. What are some must-visit landmarks in ByWard Market?

Some must-visit landmarks in ByWard Market include the Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica, the National Gallery of Canada, and the Bytown Museum. These landmarks offer a glimpse into the rich history and cultural heritage of the area.

3. Are there any food options in ByWard Market?

Yes, ByWard Market is a food lover’s paradise. It offers a wide range of culinary delights, including gourmet restaurants, cozy cafes, and international cuisines. Be sure to try the famous BeaverTails pastries and sample the local maple syrup.

4. What is the best time to visit ByWard Market?

ByWard Market is vibrant throughout the year, but it is especially lively during the summer months. The warm weather brings outdoor patios, street performers, and various festivals to the neighborhood. However, it is worth visiting at any time of the year, as each season offers its own charm.

5. Is parking available in ByWard Market?

Yes, there are several parking lots and street parking options available in and around ByWard Market. However, it can get busy during peak hours and weekends, so it’s advisable to arrive early or consider using public transportation.

Exploring the captivating facts about ByWard Market in Ottawa is just the beginning of your journey. Why not embark on a virtual adventure to Slottsskogen, where you'll uncover eight astounding facts about this Swedish gem? From its rich history to its stunning cultural attractions, Slottsskogen promises to enchant and inspire.

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