Petawawa (population 18,000 in 2021) is the largest town in eastern Ontario's Ottawa Valley. Petawawa is on the south shore of the Ottawa River, and exists primarily to support the CFB Petawawa military base. The town can serve as a gateway to the eastern parts of Algonquin Park, but Petawawa also offers canoeing opportunities in-town, on the Ottawa and Petawawa Rivers.

Understand Edit

History Edit

 
Emerald Necklace Trail and the Petawawa River

The earliest settlement in the Petawawa area was inhabited by the Algonquin First Nation. The name Petawawa originates from a local Algonquin language word, biidaawewe, meaning "where one hears a noise like this".

In the late 19th century, the area was surveyed and settled by emigres from Scotland, Ireland and Germany. The land was unsuitable for crops, but the heavily forested surroundings were useful for logging. The Canadian military acquired land in the area in 1905, which later became Canadian Forces Base Petawawa. An internment camp was set up at the Militia Camp in Petawawa from December 1914 to May 1916; it also housed German prisoners-of-war during World War II.

CFB Petawawa is one of Canada's largest ground forces bases with members deployed throughout the world on various missions supporting the United Nations in peacekeeping or the War on Terror.

Climate Edit

Petawawa has a humid continental climate with long, cold, snowy winters and warm summers.

Visitor information Edit

  • Town of Petawawa
  • 1 Visitor Information - Petawawa Civic Centre, 16 Civic Centre Rd. M-F 9AM-4:30PM.

Get in Edit

 
Map of Petawawa

By car Edit

 
Petawawa River

The main way in and out of town along Highway 17 (Trans-Canada Highway).

By bus Edit

By plane Edit

There is an airport in Pembroke (YTA IATA) with no scheduled flights. The closest major airport is Ottawa (YOW IATA).

Get around Edit

  • Take a walk along the Emerald Necklace trail system
  • Drive around town. Maps are available at Town Hall, 1111 Victoria St.

See Edit

  • 1 CFB Petawawa Military Museum, 63 Colborne Rd (CFB Petawawa), +1 613-588-6238. M-F 11AM-4PM. A tank, a helicopter, a wide selection of artillery, vehicles, tanks, weaponry, exhibits about regiments stationed here. By donation.
  • 2 Petawawa Heritage Village, 176 Civic Centre Rd, +1 613-633-6287. late May-end Aug: Tu-Sa 10AM-4PM. Archives and collections cover the German immigrant settlement era, reaching back to the traditions and teachings of the First Nations people. The village includes several replica and restored historic buildings, such as a blacksmith, school house, and train station. Adults $7, students $5.

Do Edit

  • 1 Algonquin Trail (Ottawa Valley Recreational Trail). The Ottawa Valley Recreational Trail passes through town, generally following Petawawa Blvd. In addition to cycling and walking, ATV's and snowmobiles also use the trail, subject to permits. South of Petawawa, the trail continues through Pembroke, Renfrew, Almonte, and Carleton Place before ending near Smith's Falls, about 170 km (110 mi) south.
  • 2 Barron River Provincial Park. Flowing out from Algonquin Park, the Barron River is a protected waterway for canoeing, kayaking and fishing. The 3 Black Bay Boat Launch is a short distance east of park's boundary. Not that only the south shore forms part of the provincial park; the north shore is part of the military base.  
  • 4 Centennial Park, Park Dr. Beautiful park along the Petawawa River. Two playgrounds. Washrooms. Many good spots for a picnic. Provides access to the river for canoes and kayaks, including nearby whitewater paddling.
  • 5 Petawawa Point Beach. Swimming and recreational facilities at the Petawawa and Ottawa Rivers. Public boat launch, and canoe, kayak, and SUP rentals are available in summer.
  • 6 Petawawa Terrace Provincial Park. A 200 hectares (490 acres) nature reserve that also provides hiking trails and mountain biking routes. In winter, snowshoeing and cross country skiing are possible. The park does not provide any visitor services.  

Buy Edit

Eat Edit

  • 1 Fijisan Sushi, 3477 Petawawa Blvd, +1 613-687-8888, . Tu-Su 11AM-8:30PM.
  • 2 Kelseys Original Roadhouse, 3119 Petawawa Blvd. Casual Ontario chain serving typical pub-style dishes.
  • 3 Madameek, 1024 Victoria Street, +1 613-687-6872. M-Sa 11AM-8PM. Lebanese. Shawarma, homemade Kebeh, Fattoush salad, Tabouleh salad.
  • 4 Sunny Side Up, 1049 Victoria St, +1 613-506-3447. Tu-Su 7AM-3PM. Farm to table breakfast and lunch.

Drink Edit

Sleep Edit

  • 1 Quality Inn & Suites, 3119-B Petawawa Blvd, +1 613-687-2855, toll-free: +1-855-973-7216. Free continental breakfast, smoke-free, pet-friendly, fitness centre, business centre. From $162.
  • 2 Petawawa River Inn & Suites, 3520 Petawawa Blvd, +1 613-687-4686, toll-free: +1-800-573-9775, . Singles and doubles with kitchenettes, to full suites for long term stays. High-speed Internet included, coffee makers, fridges, microwaves, and hair dryers in every room. Pets welcome in designated rooms. From $115.
  • 3 Rantz Riverside Bed & Breakfast, 284 Rantz Rd, +1 613 687-6095. This two-storey home offers a modern kitchen, dining room, and large walk-out deck overlooking the Petawawa River. Satellite TV. 2 bedrooms. Guest shared 4-piece bath, plus 2-piece bath. Breakfast served in dining room overlooking the river. Smoking allowed outside.

Connect Edit

Free Wi-Fi and computer access is available at the 2 Petawawa Public Library.

Go next Edit

  • Algonquin Provincial Park ― the Sand Lake access point, near Barron Canyon and Achray Campground in the eastern part of the park's periphery, is about 35 km (22 mi) from the center of town.
  • Mattawa ― a smaller town on the Ottawa River, with additional opportunities for outdoor adventures, and access to the northern parts of Algonquin Park.
  • Pembroke (Ontario) ― a short drive to the southeast, the next city on the Trans-Canada Highway.
  • Ottawa ― Canada's capital, about 160 km (99 mi) along the Trans-Canada.
Routes through Petawawa
North BayMattawa  W    E  PembrokeOttawa


This city travel guide to Petawawa is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.