Formerly the Carleton County Gaol jail, Ottawa Jail Hostel is a historic landmark that offers you the unique opportunity sleep in a former jail cell. This downtown hostel has bags of character and charm and makes a great base to explore Canada's capital.

HI-Ottawa Jail Hostel offers a unique blend of shared and private jail cells as well as traditional shared and private hostel style rooms. There’s free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, a large fully equipped kitchen and an onsite bar called ‘Mugshots’. There are also areas that are still set up as they were when prisoners occupied the jail, including death row and the gallows.

Museums, galleries, festivals, national historic sites, bustling city activities and scenic recreational paths all are located close to the hostel, and your HI membership will get you discounts at many local restaurants and businesses designed to enhance your experience.

What travellers think

Best for

  • Sightseeing
  • Unique atmosphere
  • Culture
  • Shopping

Green rating



It was really nice to stay in the HI Jail Hostel. I did always felt save and didn't worried about leaving my luggage. For valuables you can use a locker. Just the feeling to stay in a old jail was really cool. What could you do better?! There is nothing, except that it would be amazing if you get the free-nights in one of the cells for prisoners back. Maybe with a special contract. If there is a chance, please let me know -!!!-


Avatar for Luca


Sun 04 Oct 2015

The jail cell experience was fantastic so glad I got the chance to do it. Probably the most comfortable nights sleep I've had in months. The jail tour was brilliant should be mandatory for all guests :) could improve the bar situation multiple times it should've been open but the barman didn't turn up, I think that's poor hen you advertise an insure bar and it really stopped a lot of socialising opportunities in the hostel. Top marks for the breakfast superb!!


Avatar for Natalie


Sun 27 Sep 2015

Travel tips...

Attraction tip

Prenez une carte à l'entrée de l'auberge.

Avatar for Kevin


Mon 12 May 2014

Where next?

Colline parlementaire, se promener dans Ottawa.

Avatar for Kevin


Mon 12 May 2014