International travel writers share stories of Ottawa with the world

GoMedia brings more than 130 travel journalists to Canada’s capital
GoMedia
GoMedia conference delegates enjoy the first evening reception on Sunday, Aug.11 at Fairmont Château Laurier. Credit: William Au Photography

It’s one thing to see a photo of Parliament Hill on a beautiful summer day. But as any Ottawa resident knows, physically standing at the base of the Peace Tower, surrounded by the city’s most iconic landmarks, is another experience altogether.

More than 300 travel journalists and tourism industry professionals from around the world now have first-hand knowledge of the magic of Canada’s capital, thanks to the tremendous success of the GoMedia 2019 travel media conference.

“There is absolutely no replacement for seeing Ottawa with your own eyes,” says Jantine Van Kregten, Director of Communications at Ottawa Tourism. “When you experience something in your own way, it stays with you.”

GoMedia
Ottawa Tourism's Corporate Communications Specialist, Julia Thomson (left), meets with a journalist during GoMedia marketplace at the Shaw Centre. Credit: William Au Photography

Blessed with beautiful summer weather over five days in August, Ottawa Tourism welcomed travel media professionals from 11 countries for a schedule of activities that showcased Ottawa-Gatineau’s beauty and varied offerings.

“As the capital, Ottawa shone on an international stage,” says Michael Crockatt, president and CEO of Ottawa Tourism. “We were able to show delegates how Ottawa is the place where they can experience Canada in one city through the diverse day tour offerings and vibrant evening receptions.”

Regional approach

Ottawa Tourism partnered with Outaouais Tourism in Gatineau to promote both sides of Canada’s Capital Region.

“We wanted to showcase the whole region because it’s part of what we have to sell,” says Van Kregten. “We have the amenities of a much larger city, with the ease of mobility of a smaller city.”

“We look forward to seeing the benefits of this opportunity for years to come.”

Fourteen different day tours were strategically designed around themes that could appeal to a diverse group. Foodies joined culinary and craft beer tours, showcasing Ottawa’s impressive hospitality scene, while historians opted for visits to different national museums.

Daily evening receptions hosted delegates at the Fairmont Château Laurier, Aberdeen Pavilion and Canadian Museum of History.

The impact of providing these rich storytelling opportunities was immediately felt, as articles professing newfound love for Ottawa have already appeared in publications in Korea, Mexico and the United States.

Crockatt is optimistic that by amplifying Ottawa’s international profile in this way, Ottawa Tourism will increasingly be top of mind to a global market. “We look forward to seeing the benefits of this opportunity for years to come,” he says.

Keys to showcasing the best of Ottawa

Partner up

Ottawa Tourism partnered with Outaouais Tourism to showcase both sides of Canada’s Capital Region

Ease of travel

Delegates moved seamlessly from the Westin to the Château Laurier and on to Parliament Hill on the first night of the conference– promoting the walkability of our beautiful city

Day Tour Discoveries

Delegates explored Ottawa with the help of 14 different themed day tours around Ottawa and Gatineau

A memorable gift – no typical takeaways!

Ottawa Tourism arranged for each delegate to be gifted a pair of red Converse sneakers, complete with #MyOttawa laces as a memorable way to highlight that Ottawa is walkable and active