The Canadian War Museum
Canadian War Museum Details:
Address: 1 Vimy Place Ottawa , Ontario Canada K1R 1C2
You can visit the Canadian War Museum in downtown Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. There is easy parking on site for a fee. The War Museum is located right on the Ottawa River with direct access to Ottawa's extensive network of bike trails which can take you right into the heart of the city.
I think my favorite exhibit in the Canadian War Museum was the blown up German WWII Sturmgeschutz. You come around a corner and have that big muzzle brake staring you in the face. It was visually quite stunning. I'm guessing that this Sturmgeschutz was brought back to Canada complete, then used either for target practice or as a test vehicle to test fire various types of armor piercing anti tank rounds into in order to ascertain their effectiveness. I think that if it were damaged in combat the rounds stored within the Sturmgeschutz's hull would have detonated causing far more damage and fire than is evident on this vehicle. There were no descriptive plaques (Summer of 2005) for that display or for many of the other displays.
The Berlin Wall display with the Soviet T-72 tank is impressive too, and there are some interesting WWI trench diorama walk through exhibits that were quite well done. Don't miss the basement of the Canadian War Museum where the larger vehicles and armor are displayed. There is an interesting cutaway of a M4 Sherman Tank and you can look right inside the driver's hatch of the Soviet T-34/85 where crew comfort was certainly not a priority and a very rare Jagdpanzer IV. The Panzer Mk II is in very good condition and looks to have been restored cosmetically at some time.
The most controversial artifact on exhibit is Hitler's Mercedes Limousine . Apparently in Canada there has been a significant protest against the display of Hitler's Mercedes. Some feel the vehicle glorifies the Nazi Regime and what they stood for. Personally I feel it's a reminder of the madman our fathers fought against to make our world what it is today (but then again I'm not from Canada).
In the lower area are a number of tanks, armored vehicles, artillery, naval weapons, and other military vehicles. Since I completed these pages the museum has added a WWII German Panzer Mk V Panther tank. The cosmetic restoration the Canadian War Museum's staff did on this Panther Tank is outstanding.
If you are visiting Ottawa make it a point to visit the Canadian War Museum. Even if you are not a fan of military history you won't be disappointed.