outdoor wedding venues ottawa
When I began researching outdoor wedding venues near Ottawa & Gatineau after moving to Canada in 2014 I realised that a lot of couples were still getting hitched in those big, fancy ballrooms downtown despite being surrounded by some of the most amazing outdoor spaces I’ve ever seen!
OK, so those wedding venues with the huge chandeliers and purple uplights can be pretty impressive but I felt my photography was far more suited to wedding venues that had a more relaxed vibe and were a part of the Canadian landscape.
If Evelyne and I were getting married again – hey, we may renew our vows some time! – we’d definitely want to invite the people we like most to a place that lies on a lake or has a view of the countryside. So, naturally, as a photographer, I’m far more drawn to wedding venues such as Stonefields or Adelina than the Marriott Hotel (sorry Marriott peeps!). Then we have the gorgeous Le Belvedere and places like the lovely Strathmere.
Strathmere has three great wedding venues situated on its picturesque 200-acre property in Ottawa, including a 150-year-old restored barn, an airy and tranquil Garden House, and a beautiful fieldstone farmhouse. Each venue sits on its own acreage offering complete privacy to every couple.
This venue has been host to small intimate weddings from 15 to 65 guests, and larger celebrations up to 250 guests and is a great location for wedding photos too. It has trees! I like trees.
Adelina is another outdoor wedding venue close to Ottawa. With tons of great photo ops, this is a place I could shoot at again and again and never feel like I was repeating myself. I know I can get an amazing variety of great wedding photos at Adelina every time.
This beautiful location, centred around an old pinewood barn, feels truly special and is quite unique in the Gatineau / Ottawa area. The family-owned venue was created using reclaimed wood from the land to build benches and a few other pieces creating a special ambience that guests will absolutely love. Michèle & Greg transformed this simple country setting into a breathtaking wedding venue for their own wedding after they failed to find anywhere that fit their vision.
Just 45 minutes from downtown Ottawa and nestled in the heart of the Gatineau Hills, The Ark could well be the perfect setting for your outdoor wedding and indoor wedding reception. How does this sound?
– A grapevine covered cedar arbour
– Green grass surrounded by hardwood forest
– Colourful gardens and wooded paths
– A 2,000 square foot banquet hall and dance floor.
Your ceremony could be followed by an outdoor pig roast and bonfire, or fully formal, sit-down, catered dining affair, followed by speeches and dancing, or anything in between.
The choice is yours.
Being from the UK, I’ve been kinda spoilt when it comes to outdoor wedding venues. Back there we have SO many cool wedding venues with outdoor areas for a ceremony. But we do not have the Canadian landscapes. I can’t think of a single venue in the UK that compares with Stonefields. I’ve never been anywhere in England that has the same vibe as Adelina.
I recently had a conversation with another wedding photographer and asked, if she was to hold her wedding all over again, where would she choose as her venue. She’s shot at so many venues, the choice must be difficult, but she immediately said Stonefields.
Easily one of Ottawa’s best outdoor wedding and event destinations, this 120-acre heritage farm, complete with its stone farmhouse, lovingly restored turn-of-the-century reception barn, and country gardens, offers a breathtaking backdrop for elegant country weddings.
A picture-perfect outdoor ceremony site but Stonefields also has the farmhouse and pub for the wedding party preparations before hosting your guests for cocktails and celebrating in style under sparkling chandeliers in the Stonefields Loft. This is one venue you definitely need to see in person.
Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm
Located just minutes from downtown Ottawa, Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm has quickly become one of the National Capital Region’s favourite venues for weddings.
Towering maples surround the quarried fieldstone house built in the 1850s and the wooden barn and other log outbuildings are vivid reminders of the venue’s heritage in agriculture. Follow the trails through acres of Maple bush, Cedar groves and Meadows where you might be lucky enough to view some of the local wildlife.
With a varied mix of country gardens, wooded glades and other unique settings, Stanley’s Olde Maple Lane Farm is a great location for those unique, one-of-a-kind photos.
Cumberland Heritage Museum
The Cumberland Heritage Village Museum offers a uniquely vintage experience making it another worthy outdoor setting for a wedding. A mixture of historic buildings, lush green space, and colourful gardens provides a nostalgic backdrop for wedding photos too.
Bean Town Ranch
When listing my favourite outdoor wedding venues near Ottawa I could hardly ignore Bean Town Ranch with its natural log hall and spectacular lakeside terrace. They also have a log chapel, an open-air pavilion and even a private cottage for you to enjoy. The capacity is 150 guests for a sit-down dinner and the lakeside terrace can accommodate another 75 evening guests during warmer months. When you have venues like this, why would you want to be stuck in some downtown ballroom?! Each to their own and all that….
Canada Agriculture and Food Museum
Located at just a short, 10-minute drive from Ottawa’s downtown core, Canada Agriculture and Food Museum is well-versed in all things country!
Here, you’ll find a few unique reception buildings with modern amenities that are perfect for smaller weddings of up to 100 people. The venue also offers a scenic, outdoor ceremony location known as ‘The Meadow,’ which comes complete with white cloth-covered hay bales for your guests to sit on. This property also offers the beautiful Ornamental Gardens, which provide a fantastic, colour-filled backdrop for summer wedding photos.
Temples Sugar Bush
Temples Sugar Bush is located a short drive west of Ottawa between Carleton Place and Perth, just minutes from Highway #7. This authentic two hundred seat timber frame building is surrounded by forests and gardens, making it another amazing setting for a country wedding, through all four seasons.
Le Belvedere is a very popular location for outdoor weddings and it’s easy to see why. Just check out this video clip for proof.
Located 30 minutes north of Ottawa just outside of the town of Wakefield, Quebec, Le Belvédère is a family run business with deep roots in the hospitality industry. From the time Le Belvédère was simply a dream unfolding, to being warded multiple times as one of Ottawa’s top wedding venues, it offers the most state of the art facility while completely surrounded by the tranquillity of nature. Their amenities include a beautiful outdoor terrace with a capacity to host weddings of up to 200 people.
Evermore provides an exquisitely maintained farmland of rolling vistas, rustic outbuildings and professional catering of delicious dishes made fresh and on site using the farm-to-table philosophy.
Their lovingly restored barn and stunning courtyard provide an idyllic setting for a rustic wedding, while a full-service kitchen and professional chef prepare amazing meals to accommodate all palates.
This historical property, the childhood home of Dr. James Naismith – inventor of basketball, holds a picturesque backdrop of sprawling farmland, comfortable lounging areas and impeccable landscaping sure to make your wedding day one to remember.
There are so many amazing outdoor wedding venues near Ottawa, I wonder why anyone would want to get married indoors! And I haven’t even mentioned or anywhere in Mont Tremblant yet!
But what if it rains I hear you cry!
Most venues have a couple of options for inclement weather. It just depends how “inclement” the weather is! In the event of a very light shower, get the umbrellas out. But if it is more than just a light mist, almost every venue has a Plan B and will set something up indoors or under a marquee. At The Ark, they say that in 7 years of business they’ve only had to move everything inside once (an April wedding) and that turned out just fine. It was actually kind of fun in fact.
When I moved to Canada I hoped to be shooting amazing weddings with gorgeous backdrops of lakes, mountains, vineyards and forests. Recently that’s been happening more and more. And yeah, I’m still thinking about our vow renewal!
If you’re planning your own outdoor wedding, whether that’s near Ottawa or somewhere else entirely, I’d love to hear from you. Please drop me an email via the Contact page.
Below is a short slideshow of some of my favourite recent wedding photos… Take a look. And turn the sound up!
I’m a Brit living in Quebec with my wife, Evelyne and our three boys! Evelyne and I met in the Alps in 2003 when Evelyne thought she was a cool snowboarder and I thought I was a superstar DJ. We got married in 2007 in Cornwall, England and moved to Canada in 2014.
I photographed my first wedding in 2006 and have now shot almost 500 weddings, mostly in Canada & the UK, but I absolutely love travelling anywhere in the world. I enjoyed it when I started but love my job now more than ever.