The Viceregal Lion
  1. The Governor General of Canada
  2. His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston
Rideau Hall
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Seasonal Activities

Whether you have only a few hours to take in the sights at Rideau Hall or you’re planning to spend the entire day, we have a variety of free activities that are sure to make your time with us memorable.

In addition to our seasonal offerings,Residence tours are offered free of charge throughout the year.

Doors Open Ottawa
June 3-4, 2017
10 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Although its doors are open year-round, Rideau Hall is an active participant in this annual activity. Throughout the weekend, visit the residence and learn about the history and the role of the governor general. This year, Rideau Hall’s gardens and greenhouses will also be open to the public!

Aerial view of Rideau Hall

Annual CHEO Teddy Bears’ Picnic
June 24, 2017
8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

A fun-filled day of family activities awaits you on the grounds of Rideau Hall during the Annual Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) Teddy Bears’ Picnic.

2012 CHEO Teddy Bears' Picnic

Ceremonial Guard
Pageantry, precision and colour!

  • Annual Inspection
    June 25, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.
    Join the Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada for the annual inspection of the Ceremonial Guard.

  • Relief of Sentries
    June 26 - August 24, 2017
    Daily: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on the hour
    Sentries, led by a piper, march to their posts at Sussex Gate.

Storytime at Rideau Hall

  • Launch
    June 25, 2017
    The Governor General, along with a special guest from the Ceremonial Guard and volunteers from Frontier College, will launch Storytime at Rideau Hall. There will be stories and snacks as we kick off this annual outdoor family activity that celebrates reading and literacy.

  • Throughout the summer
    June 30 - August 26, 2017
    Fridays and Saturdays, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
    Join volunteers from Frontier College, a non-profit literacy organization, under the Reading Tent for children’s stories and fun literacy activities for kids.


Rideau Hall Movie Nights
August 26 and 27, 2017

Come and see acclaimed English and French Canadian feature films, screened outdoors on alternate nights, on the grounds of Rideau Hall. Bring your blanket and settle in to watch these films under the stars.

Rideau Hall is a working residence
and official events may require unforeseen changes to your visit.

In the buildup to the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017, work will be undertaken by the National Capital Commission (NCC) to create a ceremonial site in front of the residence. Please note that Rideau Hall will be open during the rehabilitation work.

Visitors are asked to consult the directions page for information on how to access the property.

Past Events

Savour Fall at Rideau Hall
September 10, 2016
12:30 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Free admission and activities

Tour the gardens and the greenhouses, watch culinary demonstrations and enjoy tastings.

2016 Canada Army Run
September 18, 2016
9 a.m.

Cheer on the military members, family and friends

Halloween at Rideau Hall
October 31, 2016
5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Winter Celebration
January 28, 2017
12:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

This family fun day is an opportunity to experience Nordic sports and traditions, to engage in physical activity, to spend time outdoors in the fresh air and to embrace healthy living.

Stanley Cup Homecoming
March 16, 2017
2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

As part of the Stanley Cup’s 125th anniversary celebrations, take your photo with the oldest trophy competed for by professional athletes in North America, right next to the portrait of Lord Stanley himself, Canada’s 6th governor general and donor of the Cup.

Rideau Hall Skating Rink
January 28 to March 26, 2017

Enjoy this unique outdoor experience which is part of Canada’s heritage. The founding of the rink dates back to the time of Lord Dufferin, who was governor general from 1872 to 1878.

Public skating (without reservations)
Weekends: noon to 5 p.m.
*Enter by the gate located on Princess Avenue.

Group skating (reservations required)
Weekdays: 1 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Weekends: 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

* The rink is closed for the season.

Date modified: May 29, 2017