Mer Bleue Bog in Ottawa

Explore for Zero: Ottawa’s Mer Bleue Offers Free Outdoor Adventures

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Nestled in the heart of Ottawa, Mer Bleue offers a serene and picturesque escape into nature, completely free of charge. This conservation area is a treasure trove of natural beauty, providing an array of activities that allow visitors to immerse themselves in the tranquility of the outdoors without spending a dime. Whether you’re a hiking enthusiast, a cross-country skiing aficionado, or someone who enjoys a peaceful walk amidst stunning landscapes, Mer Bleue has something special for you.


Mer Bleue is renowned for its extensive network of trails, spanning over 20 kilometers, suitable for hiking, cross-country skiing, and snowshoeing. Key highlights include:

  • Trail 51, beginning at parking lot P20 and connecting to Trail 50, which is accessible from parking lot P23.
  • The Dewberry Trail, a one-kilometer trail suitable for all ages, accessible from parking lot P23.
  • Trail 53, offering year-round access for winter activities, with its entrance at parking lot P21.
  • The Mer Bleue Bog Trail, a family-friendly route with a universally accessible boardwalk, starting from parking lot P22.

The area is equipped with free parking, outhouses, picnic areas, and limited wheelchair-accessible facilities, ensuring a comfortable visit for all. Beyond recreation, Mer Bleue is a vital climate research site, monitoring the impact of wetlands on carbon dioxide and methane levels.

Fun Facts:

  • Mer Bleue stands as the largest bog in Canada’s Capital Region and the second-largest in southern Ontario.
  • It holds international significance under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands and is recognized as a provincially significant wetland and life science area.
  • The bog supports a rich diversity of bird species, including the rose-breasted grosbeak and green heron, making it a haven for birdwatchers.
  • Its history stretches back beyond the establishment of the National Capital Commission, with efforts to preserve its natural state against development pressures.
  • The area’s past as a prestigious spa resort at Carlsbad Springs adds a layer of cultural history to its natural beauty.

Mer Bleue Conservation Area is a testament to the beauty and diversity of Ottawa’s natural landscapes, offering a plethora of free activities for those looking to explore the great outdoors. Whether you’re drawn to its scenic trails, interested in its role in climate research, or simply seeking a peaceful retreat, Mer Bleue welcomes visitors with open arms. Don’t miss the chance to experience one of Ottawa’s most cherished natural attractions, where adventure and discovery await at no cost.

For more information: Mer Bleue – National Capital Commission (

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