Ahh summer… The time of year when it’s okay to relax and be lazy! It’s the perfect time to enjoy a cold one by the water in a comfy chair. What better place to enjoy a waterfront view then somewhere you can call your own? Owning your own cottage has become increasingly more popular year after year. When you own a cottage, you can have the ability to create your own “staycation”. COVID-19 has also taught us that you can have lots of fun right in your own backyard, so why not make that yard located on waterfront!
Not sure where to look for a cottage in the capital region? Check out our list of the top 10 best cottage locations near Ottawa!
Are you not quite financially ready to take on a cottage yet? Check out these awesome 10 places you can rent along the Rideau System instead! Or if camping is more your thing, you will love these 10 campsites near Ottawa too!
The following cottage locations are listed from closest to farthest away from downtown Ottawa
Location: 50m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $746,883
Mississippi Lake is located just south of Carleton Place. It offers 55km of shoreline with lots of beautiful waterfront lot locations such as McDiarmid’s Shore, Lake Park, Rathwell’s Shore, Gardiner’s Shore, Petrie Shore, Pretties Island, Cooke’s Shore and McCulloughs Landing. Mississippi Lake is home to an abundance of wetlands and wildlife. The lake features stunning sunset vistas and a boater’s playground for all of the cottages along the shoreline. There are 6 boat launches around the lake and lots of great fishing spots. One thing to be aware of when purchasing a cottage on the Mississippi is that there are a few areas on the flood plain. You will want to make sure that the property you are purchasing is not located in the flood plain and should ask the listing agent if the property has ever been flooded.
Location: 50m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $729,113
The Madawaska River is 230km long and stretches from Source Lake in Algonquin Park all the way to the Ottawa River in Arnprior. There are many riverside towns along the way which make for great cottaging locations! A few notable towns near Ottawa include Arnprior, Burnstown, Springtown, and Calabogie. This waterway provides deep, clear water for swimming, boating and fishing. There are sandy beaches as well as large open lakes along the way. The Madawaska is a quiet river to own a cottage on because of less boat traffic and fewer properties along the water’s edge. You will also find lots of wildlife and nature along this picturesque waterway!
Location: 1hr Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $767,530
Perth has a few small lakes and rivers with waterfront cottage opportunities. The notable lakes near Perth include Otty Lake, Black Lake, Pike Lake, Christie Lake and of course, the Tay River and Canal. None of these lakes are relatively large, but they do offer a quiet landscape with great swimming and fishing. The Tay River flows from Lower Rideau Lake all the way to Christie’s Lake and goes through the town of Perth along the way. This means that you can actually boat from the Rideau system all the way into the town of Perth by way of the Upper and Lower Beveridges Lockstations. Though there aren’t a lot of cottages along the Tay River, many people love to bring their boats, kayaks or stand-up paddleboards along the route.
Location: 1hr, 5m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $1,054,740
Calabogie Lake is a large round lake measuring 6.5km long and 4km wide. The lake has deep water and beautiful vistas. It is situated along the Madawaska River system as it flows through either side of the lake. Calabogie has lots of great waterfront properties available to enjoy. The town of Calabogie is both a summer and winter destination due to Calabogie Peaks ski resort. There are 2 golf courses on either side of the lake and in the winter, snowmobilers love to zip across the lake.
Location: 1hr, 10m West of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $690,167
White Lake is located between Arnprior and Calabogie. This large lake has a shoreline just short of 100kms in length. The natural lake is mostly untouched making it highly desirable for its peaceful surroundings. There aren’t a lot of roads that go around this large lake, which means that a few cottages are water-access only. This means you can only get to them by means of a boat or by foot. There are 2 public boat launches at either end of the lake for putting your boat in. The town of White Lake has a small general store with an LCBO & Beer Store. There is also The Kitchen restaurant which offers delicious take-away meals and ice cream!
Location: 1hr, 23m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $879,731
Arguably the number 1 most desirable cottage destination near the city of Ottawa is the Rideau Lakes. Made up of Big Rideau Lake, Upper Rideau Lake, Newborough Lake & Opinicon Lake, the Rideau Lakes are part of the Rideau system of rivers and waterways. The desirable part of this waterway is of course the fact that you can boat from Kington to Ottawa, and beyond! This means you can have larger boats and yachts because of the deeper waterways. Not to mention that you can go for bigger adventures in your watercraft! There really is a lot to love about the Rideau Lakes, however, the properties can be fairly pricey. There are lots of cottages that are water access only – meaning you cannot drive to them, and these ones are still affordable. But, much less accessible.
Location: 1hr, 30m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $788,487
Sharbot Lake is another very popular cottage destination. Located just south of Highway 7, this 9.5km lake is filled with waterfront cottages around the shoreline. The Lake features an abundance of islands and bays making for great waterfront property locations. Sharbot Lake is split into 2 large water basins, which are connected by a small bridge under the causeway in the town of Sharbot Lake. The town has a public boat launch, a marina, a grocery store and a few restaurants.
Location: 1hr, 40m Southwest of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): $938,371
Charleson Lake is a very large lake with over 160kms of shoreline. The lake is very deep, measuring 91m in the middle. Because of this, this waterway is great for swimming and boating, which has made it a wonderful cottage destination! With so many shorelines, there are tons of great waterfront properties along the way. Many people also take advantage of the 100+ islands and have water-access cottages as well. Charleston Lake Provincial Park resides on the southwest side of the lake and offers camping amongst the beautiful rocky Canadian Shield and wildlife. The lake has 2 boat launches at both the north and south ends of the lake and the town of Athens is less than a 15-minute drive for groceries and restaurants.
Location: 1hr, 13m Northeast of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): N/A
We are lucky to live so close to the province of Quebec which also offers lots of great cottage locations such as Lac-Simon. Located less than 10 minutes from Chénéville, Lac-Simon offers stunning rolling hill landscapes with clear, calm waters. There are lots of sandy shorelines for swimming as well. Lac-Simon features tons of waterfront properties all the way around it. There are also campgrounds and a golf course that surround the lake. It is the picture-perfect summertime destination!
Location: 1hr, 15m North of Ottawa
Average Sale Price (2021): N/A
Lac-Heney is another great summertime playground. This lake is much quieter than Lac-Simon which means fewer waterfront properties and a more peaceful cottage experience. This lake is known for its great bass and northern pike fishing. The landscape surrounding Lac-Heney is much like Lac-Simon with rolling hills and stunning scenery with an abundance of wildlife. Because of the quieter aspect of this lake, canoeing and kayaking are encouraged due to fewer motorized boats. Reconnect with nature at Lac-Heney!
Looking to purchase a waterfront cottage in Quebec? We are not licensed in this province, however, we are happy to give you a great referral agent who knows the area well! Contact us today for more info!
In conclusion, we hope you enjoy our list of the 10 best cottage locations in the Ottawa area!
If you are ready to take the plunge and purchase your first cottage, be sure to speak with your mortgage broker to ask questions about how much money you need for your down payment and if you can afford to own a second dwelling. Once you have been pre-approved, give us a call, we would love to help you find your dream cottage!
Not able to purchase a cottage but looking for some exciting things to do this summer in Ottawa? In addition to this post, you may want to check out Ottawa’s best beaches, our safe & fun summer bucket list, Ottawa’s best patios, and 10 day trips from Ottawa!