Nothing motivates kids to eat their fruits and veggies more than harvesting them personally. Happily, at least half a dozen pick-your-own orchards near Ottawa are vying for your attention, and at most of these family-oriented places, a visit isn’t just about bringing home the apples—it’s an event.
At Mountain Orchards (south of the city in Mountain, ON), most of the fun happens on weekends, when you can buy freshly made cider doughnuts (yum!), frolic among the stacks of straw, and hitch a wagon ride out to the orchard. There’s also a corn maze and nature trail.
Kilmarnock Orchard is located on the Island of Kilmarnock, overlooking the historic Rideau River and Rideau Canal system. You can pick your own fruit, and an apple shop also sells tempting pies, jams, jellies, honey, mustards, candy apples (weekends only) and freshly squeezed apple cider. The orchard is open to school groups, with a guided tour that includes a wagon ride, butter and cider making lessons, and a goodie bag.