Christmas in Bytown

This Christmas, it’s more important than ever to shop local and sustainable. Here are some of the best sustainable stores for everyone on your list.

Experience:

Nordik Spa Nature, though the thermal experiences are currently closed due to covid, their massages and body treatments are still available. They are also offering many gift certificates that can be used when the facilities reopen.

Offer the gift of learning this holiday with museum passess. All the museums in the Ottawa region have adapted to covid and are functioning with reduced capacity and tickets that must be booked ahead of time. Visit the Museum of Nature, the Canadian War Museum, the National Art Gallery, the Ottawa Art Gallery, the Canadian Agriculture and Food Museum, The Aviation Museum, and the Science and Technology Museum. (Note, the Canadian History Museum will remain closed so long as Gatineau is considered a red zone.)

Live Streamed concerts! Though in person live music is hard to find, there’s no shortage of online live music. Check out the offerings at from the National Arts Center and Ottawa Chamberfest.

Outdoors and Gear:

Bushtukah is a one stop shop for gear, from winter running and biking equipment, to toe warmers and mittens. They work hard on reducing their environmental footprint and supporting sustainable recreation.

Mountain Equipment Co-op. Though no longer Canadian owned, MEC maintains a strong commitment to environmentally sourcing their products and stocks eco-friendly brands like Patagonia. Their location in Westboro will have everything you need

Phat Moose Cycles , bicycles, bike gear, and all the winter cycling gear you could need while avoiding packed busses this winter. Located in Old Ottawa East.

For the book lovers

Black Squirrel, used and some new books in Old Ottawa South. Such a great place for gifts and really affordable! You can even sell them your gently used books. They also have great drinks.

Barely Bruised Books in Sandy Hill. Buy, sell, and trade used books. They boast a great French section and free kids books, as well as any other genre you might want.

Book Bazar, a used bookstore downtown. Buy and sell used books, they’ll also ship your orders.

And of course, the Friends of the Ottawa Public Library Associations used book sales. They’re currently not happening because of Covid-19, but once they reopen it’s a great way to get books, support our libraries, and save money.

Lifestyle

All Eco Ottawa, Canadian eco-friendly products, lots of beauty and self care products, as well as practical zero-waste items.

Terra20, beauty, cooking, cleaning, child products, and lifestyle products. They’ve got two locations, one in Hintonburg and by IKEA.

Niches, hobbies, and misc.

World Of Maps, for the traveller on your list. We can’t physically travel this year, so why not travel by map? If it’s maps related, they’ve got it.

Fabrications, the cutest sewing supply store in Ottawa. They have so many great patterns of fabric for sewing (like these Star Wars ones), as well as all the other supplies you could want.

Wabi-Sabi, which sells yarns, knitting and crocheting supplies, weaving supplies, and felting tools is a great place to shop for the crafter on your list. With a great selection on Canadian yarns and a wide variety of fibers, you’re sure to find what you need.

St. Vincent De Paul, my personal favourite place for gifts. If you have the time, browsing the shelves at St. V de P can yield some awesome treasures. Funky clothes, quirky mugs, hilarious vintage books, you name it, and there’s a chance you’ll find it there.

Beauty and Beautiful things

Beaded Dreams, an Indigenous art store. Located in centertown, this store is full of beautiful items made by Indigenous artisans. They’ve also got the supplies you need to try your hand at beading or dream catcher making.

Flock Boutique, an adorable little boutique in Hintonburg. Flock has a great selection of locally made clothes, jewelry, accessories, and gifts.

For the foodies

Aurelius Foods Co. , delicious flavoured olive oils and balsamics. These make great gifts or stocking stuffers and will even ship them for you. If you buy in person they offer free taste tests and expert advice on pairings.

Jacobson’s, a one stop shop for all the gourmet foods you could want. Located in New Edinburgh, this lovely store is full of all the cheeses, chocolates, olives, and delicious pantry essentials you could need. Their wide array of curated gift baskets will surely cater to every foodie on your list.

Ottawa Bagel Shop and Deli. A Hintonburg favourite, the Ottawa Bagel Shop sells a curated selection of fine foods along with their signature bagels. Stop in for lunch and pick up some gifts while you’re there.

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