Nordik Spa Nature – A Guide to Ottawa’s Luxury Spa Escape

Written By: The Planet D

Just a 20-minute drive from downtown Ottawa is a quiet forest oasis known as Nordik Spa Nature. It is the largest spa in North America with 10 outdoor hot and cold baths, 9 saunas, relaxation areas, restaurants, and treatment rooms offering body treatments to ease away any tension or stress.

Nordik Spa Ottawa is actually located in Chelsae Quebec, but it is included in many an Ottawa itinerary. It is based on the Scandinavian spa experience going through cycles of experiencing heat, cold and rest. Some of the best times to enjoy a Scandinavian spa is during the dead of winter when you can really take advantage of the hot and cold cycles.

The saunas and steam rooms give you the heat, the winter air makes for a natural cold cycle, and the many mediation rooms and tranquil lounge areas offer rest.

Nordik Spa Nature

winter at nordik spa nature
You must visit Nordik Spa Nature in Winter. Credit: Nordik / Photolux

Note: Cameras and Cell phones are not allowed in Nordik Spa. We had permission to film on the grounds before opening and then put our cameras away. Some photos in this post are courtesy of Nordik Spa. 

Tips to Enjoy Nordik Spa Ottawa

Arriving early is a must to the Nordik Spa. When we shared our experience on social media, many people told us it was overcrowded when they were there. That was not the case for us. Getting into the pools at 9:00 am sharp gave us an entire morning of seclusion. We didn’t notice the crowds until leaving at about 2 pm.

We have also heard that weekdays and evenings are much quieter than during the day.

Tip: I would avoid any time between 2-5 pm if you want to be free of crowds. The property is huge and even if there are people in one pool, chances are you can go to another for solitude.

Nordic Spa Amenities

  • 10 baths
  • 9 Saunas
  • 1 Infinity Pool
  • 1 Salt Water Floating Pool – Kalla Treatment
  • 3 Restaurants
  • Indoor and Outdoor Lounges
  • Several Treatment rooms

Spa Day Passes Include

nordik spa ottawa pools
Nordik Spa photo by Dave

Day passes start at $65 and include access to the saunas, baths and relaxation areas. There are food packages, wine and cheese packages, massage packages and extra sauna and bath experiences. You can spend the entire day and evening at Nordik Spa Nature here and never get bored. In fact, you’ll feel complete peace and calm.

What to Pack for Nordik Spa Nature

Entrance to the Nordik Spa in Ottawa
Photo by Dave before spa opened
  • Be sure to pack your own flip flops and bathing suits.
  • You can bring your own robe or you can rent one for the day.
  • One towel is provided, but I would suggest bringing a second towel.
  • A water bottle (no glass allowed) is a good idea as well.
  • We also recommend sunglasses and sunscreen.
  • Lip balm is a bonus too as it is all outdoors and you’ll be sitting in outdoor baths.

Nordik Spa Nature Experience

ottawa nordik spa exeperience
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

After setting the tone for the rest of our visit inside the Källa Treatment, we felt relaxed and ready to experience the rest of the spa. We were determined to make the most of the treatments. I’ve been suffering from a frozen shoulder for years and Dave has severe sciatica problems, so this spa was just what the doctor ordered. So we followed the advice of the Thermal Treatment Cycle.

The Thermal Cycle Guide

The Thermal Cycle is based on a 2000 year tradition founded in the Nordic Countries of Scandinavia.

  • 5-15 minutes of Heat
  • 10 – 15 seconds of cold
  • 20 minutes of rest


thermal cycle nordik spa
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

I will not lie. Our favorite part was the heat part and we definitely overdid our amount of time in the saunas and hot pools. The heat experience happens in different saunas – dry and wet or steam. There are nine saunas to choose from.


nordik spa ottawa waterfall
Deb pretends to enjoy the cold plunge

Cold can be going into the plunge pools or dipping under cold waterfalls. In the winter it can simply be relaxing outside by the fire. We tried our best and managed to pop into a few cold spots. Other than Deb standing under a waterfall for Dave’s photographs, we most likely didn’t get the full recommended 10 seconds.


Nordik Spa Ottawa Infinity Pool
Deb really is enjoying the warm infinity pool

With 10 baths to choose from, we had our pick of places to relax. Our favorite was the infinity pool. It is a stunning large pool overlooking the property. This is the one spot in the spa where you can talk freely, and enjoy a drink or snack.

There is even a Biergarten with a snack bar beside the infinity pool. The rest of the grounds are for quiet meditation and relaxation which we greatly appreciated.

Quiet Areas and Mingling Areas at Nordik Spa

the biergarten at the Nordik Spa Ottawa
Many relaxing areas at Nordik Spa – photo by Dave

From warm pools to lounge chairs and meditation rooms, Nordik Spa offers several areas to meditate. After only a quick dip in the infinity pool, we tired of the chatter and made our way to the quiet areas. When going to a spa, I love just being in the moment. It isn’t often in life that you are forced to relax, but at Nordik Spa, it’s easy to let go and be one with your thoughts. This was more our speed. 

outdoor hot tub at nordik spa ottawa
Deb looks over the infinity pool

As waterfalls cascaded nearby, we melted away in the warm pools taking in the misty air of the rainy day. Can we just stay here forever?

The Saunas

We decided to start with the hottest first and went into the Maa Sauna. It’s the hottest of them all at 95-100 degrees and is a place to quietly meditate. We only lasted a few minutes in this one before escaping to the warm outdoor air in search of a more tolerable sauna.

The Tuli Sauna

The Sauna in the Nordik Spa Ottawa
Photo by Dave before Nordik Spa opened

This meditative sauna is less hot at 85 degrees and its octagon shape around the wood stove made for a comfortable experience. To sit on the teak wood bringing our legs up to our chest as we let the heat radiate down our spines was heavenly. I could have sat here forever. But 15 minutes is the max, so we ducked outside to cool down.

Aromi Sauna

russian spa aromatherapy
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

Our next stop was the Aromi Sauna where a therapist brought in a snowball infused with lemongrass to fill the room with aromatherapy. She set it on the hot rocks and as it melted in the heat, we felt rejuvenated by the smell and relaxed by the heat.

My favourite saunas are the wet saunas where you pour water over hot rocks to create vapour. This sauna lets steam creates temperatures reaching over 100 degrees in the largest sauna on the property.

Russian Sauna

The Nordik Spa’s Russian Sauna is a unique experience. This type of sauna combines the dry nordic saunas with the hot steam baths of hammams. You can also book a 1 hour experience that involves 4 steps. 

  1. Infusion with birch veniks – birch broom is infused with essential oils.
  2. Exfoliation with salts and essential oils prepared on site – same as above
  3. Whipping ritual with birch veniks – striking participants gently, firmly, and deftly with a birch broom
  4. Celebratory Aufguss ritual – final ritual

Aufguss Ritual

aufgus ritual spa nordik
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

The Aufguss Ritual is amazing. Don’t miss doing this. We missed it our first visit to the Nordik Spa, but once we managed to go again, we never missed it after that! It happens every 2 hours starting at 11:00 am/

It’s a Finnish ritual where a therapist pours water infused with essential oil over hot stones. As the aroma releases, the therapist swings a towel to music intensifying the heat as you feel the benefits of scent and stone. The therapy lasts 15 minutes and it is announced by a gong.


exfoliation at spa
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

After doing the Aufguss Ritual, we went over to the salt pools where we exfoliated our skin with aroma salts before having a cool shower. We stuck to our heat, cold, relax ritual by going to one of the warm outdoor tubs to relax after our cool shower.

Cold Pools

The cold pool at Nordik Spa Ottawa
This is a cold pool – Photo by Dave before Spa Opened

I could only manage to get into the cold pool up to my waste.  It cooled me off quickly, but I felt guilty not following the program, so I did a quick dip under the cool waterfall to bring down my body temperature.


Lounge at Nordik Spa Ottawa
Photo taken before spa opened with permission

Feeling invigorated from the cool, it was time to seek out a meditation room that felt comfortable. Wrapping up in our robes, we found a quiet spot to chill out. Dave is great at meditating and I am working on clearing my mind. It was raining outside, so we opted to relax in one of the indoor rooms over the many lounge and patios.

Our favourite was the Tellura Room where we lay on heated stones in silence. The heat felt incredible on my back. We constantly sought out quiet meditation rooms that were gently heated with stones or wood. But there are pavilions, hanging beds, and rooms with lounge chairs, or the bar by the pool. However you want to relax, there’s a space for you.

Treatments at Nordik Spa

kalla treatment nordik spa ottawa
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

Källa Treatment

A highlight of our visit was spending 40 minutes in the Källa Treatment. Källa is an indoor saltwater pool dug into 5 metres of rock consisting of 10 tons of Epson Salt. It’s an extra $45 but it is worth it. 40 minutes in here is equivalent to 3 hours of sleep.

We went to the salt pool first thing in the morning and had it all to ourselves. It is calm and quiet with soft music playing above and below the surface of the water. With the same density of the Dead Sea, it is your time to lay in the water at zero gravity.

kalla floating bath
Floating in zero gravity – Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

If you have any sore muscles or stress, it instantly melts away as all tension releases from your body as you get lost in the luxurious experience. We let our minds drift feeling as if we went into a trance floating effortlessly through the pool. If you have never had the chance to experience what it’s like to float in the Dead Sea, this is the next best thing!

Spa Treatments

spa treatments spa ottawa
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

We didn’t do a spa treatment at Nordik Spa, so we cannot comment on how good they are.

  • But you can book treatments from deep tissue massages to Thai massages.
  • They offer facials, foot treatments and detoxifying treatments as well.

You can be sure we will definitely be back again and try a massage.

Dining at Nork Spa-Nature

dining at nordik spa
Photo Credit : Nordik / Photolux

There are four restaurants to choose from at the Nordik Spa and you can eat while still relaxing in your cozy robes. You can dine on by the infinity pool while enjoying a glass of wine, beer or cocktail with snacks like grill cheese or tacos. You can share a cheese plate and wine at the Panorama or have lighter fare at the Mezz Cafe.

Food at nordik spa ottawa
Our veggie burger  at Bistro Restro – Photo by Dave on iPhone, cell phones are allowed in Bistro

We ate at the Bistro Resto where they had a good selection of salads and vegetarian cuisine, and also offered gluten-free and locally sourced food. Don’t worry, if you want beef, a burger or chicken, they serve that too.

What to bring to Nordik Spa

What to bring to the Nordik Spa Ottawa
Photo by Dave
  • Bathing Suit
  • Towel – One is provided, but it’s nice to have a second for after your shower when leaving
  • Robe – You can rent a robe for the day $12 or bring your own
  • Flip flops
  • Refillable water bottle
  • Sunglasses

What is Provided at Nordik Spa Nature Quebec

  • Lockers
  • Towels
  • Wrist Bands – Provided to unlock your locker and get you into treatments you paid in advance for.

Spa etiquette

Nordik Spa Ottawa Pool
Photo by Dave

There are three different areas of the Nordik Spa. Be sure to respect privacy and quiet. No cell phones or cameras are allowed.

  1. Quiet area – for meditation and relaxation
  2. Whisper area to relax and enjoy quiet conversations
  3. socializing area for conversations and drinks by the pool.

Nordik Spa Prices and Opening Hours

  • Monday- Thursday 9 am – 11 pm
  • Friday and Saturday 9 am – midnight.
  • A visit to Nordik Spa starts at $65 Canadian Dollars per person
  • Access to Källa Treatment is $45
  • Spa Treatments start at $105
  • Banya Treatment $55
  • Visit Nordik Spa for more details.
It was heavenly at the Nordik Spa Ottawa
Nordik Spa photo taken by Dave before opening hours

Our time at Nordik Spa-Nature was heavenly. It was amazing to be able to turn off for a few hours with nothing else in the world to worry or think about. We just focused on our health and well-being and it set us up beautifully for our Ottawa adventure in the week ahead. If you are visiting Ottawa, make sure to put Nordik Spa in Chelsea at the top fo your list!

Nordik Spa Ottawa NAture
The Nordik Spa Ottawa – photo credit: Nordik / Photolux

Our trip to Ottawa is in partnership with Tourism Ottawa. All opinions are our own. Visit their website for more information on travel to Ottawa.

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About The Planet D

Dave Bouskill and Debra Corbeil are the owners and founders of The Planet D. After traveling to 115 countries, on all 7 continents over the past 13 years they have become one of the foremost experts in travel. Being recognized as top travel bloggers and influencers by the likes of Forbes Magazine, the Society of American Travel Writers and USA Today has allowed them to become leaders in their field.

Leave a Comment

11 thoughts on “Nordik Spa Nature – A Guide to Ottawa’s Luxury Spa Escape”

  1. Wow ,the spa looks amazing.The overall settings here are mind blowing are attractive from the image.I think this would be the best place for relaxation.Thanks for sharing such a luxury spa.

  2. I love luxury travels, so this spa in Ottawa looks like the perfect destination. The setting is amazing, the location superb and it looks like also the services offered. Thank you for sharing your experience.
    Now I am using my guide to research flights, because I like to tavel with all comforts, but why to spend more than enough?!
    Congratulations for the blog

  3. it seems that you enjoyed this luxury trip, even this time me too planning to go somewhere like this and want to enjoy vacation. thanks for sharing good place for spa.

  4. I was at the Spa Nordik a few years back and I swore I would return with my husband. The first time it was a girls getaway with my two daughters and a good friend. We spent the day relaxing and catching up. It has to be the best Nordic spa experiences that I’ve ever had. I love the different pools, the steam baths, the cold water plunge pools but the best was the infinity pool sipping on a cocktail. Just amazing. I need to go back!