Winter in Ottawa always feels like the longest season—so when the sap starts running, we all heave a collective sigh of relief. It’s finally time to celebrate spring with a classic family tradition, a trip to the sugar bush.
The king of all sugar bushes is Fulton’s Pancake House and Sugar Bush, about an hour west of Ottawa Centre. We go for their traditional breakfast served in the barn-style cafeteria.
Once you’re stuffed full of sausages, beans and all the pancakes and maple syrup you can eat, there’s plenty to explore at this sugar bush with nature trails (including a short loop perfect for little legs), horse-drawn carriage rides, face painting and live music on the weekends. Don’t forget to hit the shop on the way out to pick up your syrups and maple mustard for home.
An extra half hour down the road, Wheelers Pancake House and Sugar Camp offers another great family experience. There’s a network of nature trails here, two of which are stroller-friendly once the snow melts. Kids will enjoy the play structure, the maple taffy and meeting the free-range sheep. Here’s a tip: during the Easter weekend, they host a free egg hunt.
All of these activities are just a warm-up to the main event—eating in their spacious, airy lodge, which comes complete with table service. We love their giant pancakes—so big, they’re guaranteed to make your kids’ eyes bug out. There’s also French toast and homemade maple sausages on the menu, and Wheelers can accommodate many allergies with their gluten-free, egg-free and dairy-free pancake options.
Good to Know: Neither Fulton’s nor Wheelers accept reservations in the sugar season, so arrive early for the best service. Wheelers accepts VISA, but Fulton’s is cash only. Both are open daily between 9 am and 3 pm.
Don’t worry—we know there are lots of sugar shacks to visit near the city, so here’s our roundup of The Best Sugar Shacks in Ottawa.