Ottawa Beaches

“Summertime…and the livin’ is easy” … and in the lazy, hazy days of summer, Ottawa’s citizens and visitors alike flock to the Ottawa beaches.

Are you ready for some sun and sand, Ottawa style?

The Ottawa area has four official and supervised beaches. They open each year sometime in June which is when the water gets warm enough (usually) for outdoor swimming.

Here are some Ottawa beach details…

Britannia Beach

Located on the Ottawa River at Britannia Bay, 2805 Carling Ave. in Ottawa’s west end, Britannia beach is great for swimming, picnics, or just watching the boats sail by on a beautiful Ottawa summer’s day.

Britannia Beach - Ottawa

Britannia Beach offers you the following:

  • Washrooms & change rooms
  • Lots of free parking
  • Snack bar
  • Outdoor showers
  • Picnic tables / BBQ pits
  • Play areas

Westboro Beach

Westboro Beach is small and intimate with a park situated on NCC property at Kitchissippi Lookout, on the Ottawa River. This beach and park is accessible from 745 the Ottawa River Parkway.

Westboro Beach offers visitors the following amenities:

  • Washrooms & change rooms
  • Lots of free parking
  • Snack bar with tables

Westboro beach boasts a community association, providing information about beach activities, and which can be accessed here: .


Mooney’s Bay Beach

Mooney’s Bay Beach is a popular summer destination for swimmers, rowers, and volleyball enthusiasts. The beach is located on the east shore of the Rideau River just south of Carleton University, at 2926 Riverside Drive.

Mooney’s Bay Beach offers visitors the following amenities:

  • Washrooms & change rooms
  • Pay Parking – 7am until 6pm
  • Snack bar
  • Picnic tables / BBQ pits
  • Play areas, park, tennis courts


Petrie Island Beach

Ottawa’s newest beach offers a wonderful expanse of sand and spectacular views across the Ottawa River on Petrie Island, located at 727 Trim Road.

Being new, Petrie Island Beach offers visitors limited amenities, including;

  • Temporary toilets
  • Pay Parking – 7am until 6pm
  • Picnic tables


Ottawa Beaches are overseen by the City of Ottawa. During summer months the City of Ottawa supervises and tests the water quality. If a problem occurs, the beaches will be posted telling users and advising caution, as and when necessary. Sadly, during late summer most years now, the beaches are posted “no swimming” due to bacteria growth in the water. So, visit the beach for some sunbathing and playing, but before you go into the water, check the signs or the website for water quality.

The “official” Ottawa beach season ends mid-to-end August. Cooler nights tend to drop the water temperature, and marks the end of another Ottawa beach season.

For more information, please visit and follow the links to Ottawa beach information.

Do you have any comments about Ottawa’s beaches? Please let us know by using the comment box below. You never know who in might read and perhaps even take action on your suggestion! All comments are reviewed to ensure they provide value to the site and our site visitors.


  1. I’m a new user of Mooney’s Beach and have visited Westboro beach on occasion. I do enjoy the nice sandy areas both beaches offer but when entering the water this pleasure quickly disappears. Westboro isn’t terrible but there are quite a few rocks and pavement slabs (?) that need to be traversed but at Mooney’s bay as soon as you move past your needs there is almost an inundation of tall thick weeds. Swimming in deeper water is incredibly uncomfortable and it is not easy or relaxing. I’m just wondering if there is strict environmental protection for these beaches that prevent cleanup of the designated swimming areas or is it a lack of funds? Both these beaches could definitely be improved with some bottom trawling!

  2. Wayne Lenahan says

    In regards to the Ottawa beaches you have made some errors.

    As of July 5, 2015 the following beaches do not have change rooms and only have washrooms:

    Brittania: Ron Kolbus Recreation Centre – one men’s and one women’s washroom (with one toilet as far as the men’s go – standard size) and in the other building beside the beach they only have one men’s and one women’s washrooms of which in the men’s washroom (with two toilets, one large and one standard size).

    So considering the large amount of people visiting daily there you have very limited space in which to change from your clothes into your bathing suit and back).

    You would think a place as busy as this every year would build a large change room for men and women like at Mooney’s Bay Beach. Would be well worth it and accommodating for all that visit there. Nobody wants to change in a crammed toilet area, and waiting in line to get in to it in the first place.

    Westboro Beach: only one men’s and one women’s washroom. Number/size of toilets currently unknown.

    Petrie Island Beaches ( Petrie Island River beaches and Petrie Island East Bay Beach) in Orleans (East of Ottawa): only one men’s and one women’s washrooms. Number/size of toilets currently unknown.

    Mooney’s Bay Beach: Large accommodating bathroom areas for both men and women. Large accommodating change room areas (at least 10 -12 stalls) for both men and women.

    In ending why can’t they consider following Mooney’s Bay Beach and making large accommodating change rooms for Brittania, Westboro, and Petrie Island Beaches as well.

    Please seriously consider doing that for the benefit of all who visit these wonderful beaches.

    • Bill in Ottawa says

      Wayne, thanks for your kind update. Would that we had any power to make the changes you suggest. Alas, we do not!