Bank Street B.I.A.
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Back to Class on Downtown Bank!

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There's no doubt that back to school is an exciting time for university and college students. We think that Ottawa is the perfect city for students; world-class diverse universities and colleges, exciting events happening all around the city, and unique neighbourhoods to explore. Downtown Bank Street is an awesome place to get everything you need for the semester - and not just books and supplies! Here is our list of the top spots you'll want to check out if you're a student this fall! (Not just students though, everyone can enjoy!)


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Readi Set Go (136 Bank St)

Readi Set Go is the perfect place to grab your school essentials - especially if you're looking for something a little different! They have an amazing selection of funky bags (all sizes!), pens, water bottles and so much more. 



Is there anything worse than needing to print that important paper and realizing you're missing ink...or maybe even a printer all together? Luckily, there's a Staples right a short bus ride or walk away from the University of Ottawa and Carleton U! They're open until 9pm on weeknights, and carry everything from Laptops to Bristol board! 


Wallack's Art

Whether you need art supplies for a school project or to de-stress from your homework, Wallack's is the best place around to get your supplies. Now, until September 28th, Wallack's is having a Back to School sale, so be sure to checkout the event soon!


Prospero (128 Bank St)

Prospero Book Company is a great stop for students looking for textbooks and personal reads! Our favourite feature at Prospero? The Book Blind Date shelf! Pick up a book without seeing the cover or reading the synopsis, and explore a whole new world.




Book Bazaar (417 Bank St)

Book Bazaar is a unique used-book store on Bank Street! Along with having a lush selection, they also carry gently used textbooks. Before you go to your campus book store and spend (what feels like) a million dollars on that Biology textbook, check out Book Bazaar! This shop is also a great escape from the crazy outside world - head down to Bank Street and lose yourself in this book wonderland. 

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Wilf & Ada's (510 Bank St)

With an all day & every day brunch menu, coffee & booze bar and cozy atmosphere, Wilf & Ada's is a sure-bet. A scratch diner, this restaurant is worth checking out with friends, and taking your parents when they come to visit!


Sansotei Ramen (153 Bank St)

This restaurant is a local hot spot! With the daily out the door line-ups for lunch and dinner, you might think avoiding the chaos is the best bet. However, the wait is WELL worth it - as Sansotei is a delicious option for ramen lovers.


A+ Sushi (202 Bank St)

If you're a fan of Sushi, you'll want to try A+ Sushi on Bank Street. Along with classic rolls, they have some special creations (like the Sushi PIZZA!) that are a MUST. Get away from that campus food and experience the best all-you-can-eat! 


Morning Owl (139 Bank St)

8:30AM lecture + 10 readings + lab work = COFFEE REQUIRED! Morning Owl is one of our favourite spots to grab a coffee and a treat, and it's also a great place to bring your books and have a study session. Close to UOttawa and Carleton but far enough away from campus, this coffee house will help you feel comfortable and relaxed as you get work done!


Arlington 5 (5 Arlington St)

Arlington 5 is a funky coffee shop located behind Wild & Ada's. Just like Morning Owl, Arlington 5 has a great atmosphere and awesome selection of drinks and bites!

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ISO Spa (464 Bank Street- entrance on McLeod Street)

University and College is a crazy time, so be sure to step away from it and take a break. If you're looking to be in complete peace and quiet, ISO Spa is a must-checkout. ISO Spa is Ottawa's only floatation isolation therapy spa downtown! 

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Bellwethers Vintage (9 Florence St)

Finding the perfect vintage item is an experience. Just off of Bank Street you'll find Bellwethers Vintage, a special little boutique. "An ultramodern collection saturated by the past and fueled by the future. Conceived by a need for sustainability, and our love of luxury and ludicrousy. 

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Pure Yoga (359 Bank St) & Astanga Yoga (200 Bank St)

Both of these yoga studio's are amazing places to try something new, or continue to develop your yoga practice. Pure Yoga  has a broad class schedule with amazing teachers, while Astanga is more focused, with meditation sessions, morning Mysore, and noon evening flow classes.

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Murals + Murals + More Murals

Downtown Bank is home to some amazing murals. From our giant butterfly, to the purple robot and woman at Snider Plaza, a walk around Downtown Bank will have you finding the perfect spot for your next Instagram post. Just don't forget to tag us @downtownbank so we can share your image!

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The Village Legacy Walking Tour

Discover the history of Ottawa’s LGBT community through the VLP’s interactive walking tour. Take the tour along Bank Street and visit sites old and new, see archival photographs and watch interviews from some of our most significant community leaders to learn about the people, places, topics and events that helped shape our community.

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Lady Dive: Ottawa by Land and Water (59 Sparks)

Lady Dive specializes in guided tours of the National Capital region of Ottawa-Gatineau. These unique multilingual guided tours of Canada’s capital let you appreciate Ottawa’s historic scenery from every possible angle. Thrill to the stunning sites on land or while rocking gently on the Ottawa River! Whether you're new to Ottawa this year or have lived here for a while, this tour is sure to show you some of the best views of this beautiful city!

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The Bank of Canada Museum

Stimulating. Engaging. Most of all, fun. Visit the Bank of Canada Museum and explore the Bank’s role in the economy and your own, very important, place in it! You don't have to be an economics student to enjoy this fantastic Ottawa feature!

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The Haunted Walk

Fall doesn't just mean back to school, it also means Halloween is fast approaching. The best Halloween activity? A Haunted Walk of Course! They feature a number of different walks (from the Old Ottawa Jail to the Diefenbunker), each one spooky and perfect for the Fall. 


Canadian Museum of Nature (240 McLeod St) 

The newly renovated Canadian Museum of Nature offers free admission on Thursday nights from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Take your learning outside of the classroom and take in the beautiful exhibitions at this museum!

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Escape Manor (201 Queen Street)

Last on our list (and in no way least) is Escape Manor! Think you and your roommates work well together? Bring them down and find out! This awesome experience is truly one-of-a-kind, and the perfect indoor activity as we head in to chilly weather.