30 best places to visit in Canada
From historic landmarks to awe-inspiring scenery, Canada is one of the most incredible travel destinations in the world. Whether you’re a Canadian looking to explore your home turf or a tourist coming here for the first time, we’re here to help you uncover it all. From stunning national parks to breathtaking ski resorts, here are 30 of the best places to visit in Canada.
1. Banff National Park
Banff National Park is a feast for the senses. Picture glacier-fed lakes with stunning backdrops of Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. There is no limit to the outdoor activities you can enjoy! Hike in the summer or ski in the winter, Banff has you covered.
Just north of Vancouver, you’ll find the former home of the 2010 Winter Olympics. Whistler is known as one of the largest (and world-class) ski resorts in Canada. Besides skiing and snowboarding, you can enjoy tons of other winter activities. If you’re visiting in the summer, enjoy many of the nearby hiking trails and lakes.
3. Niagara Falls
Is Niagara Falls not on your bucket list? Located in Southern Ontario, this natural wonder is said to be over 12,000 years old. The area has become pretty commercialized with attractions, restaurants, and a casino. But the sight of these massive cascading falls is worth the hype, which makes this one of the best places to visit in Canada.
Image source:@sickle/ Unsplash
4. Quebec City
Charming cobbled streets, rich Canadian history (dating back to the 1600s) and European-style architecture. Quebec City is one of the best places to visit in Canada. Soak up this enchanting city by foot and don’t forget to try the poutine!
The most iconic place to see the Northern Lights in Canada has to be Whitehorse. They are visible between August and April, but the best chance of seeing them is at the beginning of winter. Spend a few nights outside the city for the best possible experience!
Image source:@naoh_kova/ Unsplash
No trip to British Columbia is complete without a visit to the bustling city of Vancouver. Surrounded by mountains, the Pacific Ocean, and rainforests, it’s a hub for any outdoor enthusiast. Besides that, Vancouver has a rich First Nations culture and is known for its arts scene.
The capital city of Canada and home to Parliament Hill! There is far more to Ottawa than just that though. Spend the day gazing at beautiful Gothic architecture and discover the Rideau Canal.
8. St. Johns
Visit Canada’s most easterly, and oldest, city in Canada. This vibrant city has a lot to offer in terms of history. In fact, St. Johns has about 500 years of it! Besides that, the city has a bustling nightlife and unique culture equipped for a true Newfoundland experience.
Culturally diverse, with great nightlife, and awesome food, Toronto is a major Canadian city you won’t want to miss. Spend a day watching a Blue Jays game in the iconic Rogers Centre. Then visit one of the many unique neighbourhoods like the bohemian district of Kensington Market.
West Coast charm at its best, period. Ancient rainforests and tons of wildlife, topped with gorgeous scenery. Tofino is hands down one of the best places to visit in Canada. Located on Vancouver Island, Tofino attracts many surfers along Chesterman Beach, Long Beach, and Cox Bay. Even if you’re not a surfer, the relaxed vibes of this small West Coast town will have you recharged in no time.
Image source:Shayd Johnson / Unsplash
11. Peggy’s Cove
If you’ve seen photos of Nova Scotia, chances are you’ve seen Peggy’s Cove. The iconic landmark is the most photographed lighthouse in all of Nova Scotia. It’s no surprise why!
The most eastern, and smallest, province in Canada is Prince Edward Island. Known for its delicious seafood, red-sand beaches, lighthouses, and Anne of Green Gables! Visit the capital city of Charlottetown and learn about the beginnings of the Canadian Confederation.
13. Bay of Fundy
Located in Fundy National Park, the Bay of Fundy is tucked between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. What is it known for? It has extremely high tides, has had many dinosaur fossil discoveries, and boasts abundant marine life. Plus, those views!
Image source:Peter Lloyd / Unsplash
14. Okanagan Valley
This region in British Columbia includes four cities: Kelowna, Penticton, Vernon, and Osoyoos. It’s a hotspot, literally, in the summer months where visitors experience warm lakes, sandy beaches, outdoor water activities, and an extensive wine region.
Image source:@kymellis/ Unsplash
The first ski jump in North America is located in Revelstoke. Visitors typically come to ski or snowboard at Revelstoke Mountain Resort, but there is so much more to the area. Tucked away in the mountains, you can take advantage of hiking, mountain biking, and river rafting during the summer months.
Polar bear capital of the world? Say no more! Churchill is also one of the world’s best places to see the Northern lights. Enough said.
17. Lake Louise
No need to explain why Lake Louise is on the list of best places to see in Canada. The turquoise lakes and glacier backdrops speak for themselves.
Image source:@jfbrou/ Unsplash
18. Haida Gwaii
The Queen Charlotte Islands, otherwise known as the Haida Gwaii, is rich in wildlife and heritage. Learn about the history of the fascinating Haida Nation, while exploring ancient rainforests and sandy beaches.
19. Cape Breton Island
Canada’s #1 island, Cape Breton is definitely one of the most beautiful places to visit here. It’s best known for its traditional fiddle music brought to North America by Scottish immigrants years ago. Besides immersing yourself in Canadian heritage, Cape Breton offers beautiful hiking trails and coastal views unique to Nova Scotia.
20. Capilano Suspension Bridge
Besides being at the root of Vancouver’s history, the Capilano Suspension Bridge offers amazing rainforest views. Walk 70 metres above the Capilano River and explore other treetop activities. The best time to visit is in winter though. The park becomes lit up with thousands of lights, like something from an enchanting fairy tale.
Image source:Sean Driscoll / Unsplash
21. The Grotto
Explore the wonders of the Grotto, located in Bruce Peninsula National Park. Discover the scenic sea cave which holds stunning turquoise waters.
Besides having awesome nightlife, Montreal is not only one of the best places to visit in Canada, but also one of the best food cities in the world! Poutine, smoked meat sandwiches, and bagels are just a few of the delicacies you can enjoy. Once you’re filled to the brim, explore the historic sites including Vieux-Montreal and the Notre-Dame Basilica.
Located on Vancouver Island, Victoria is the capital of British Columbia with a history dating back to the Victorian era. The city’s British colonial heritage is seen in the impressive Victorian architecture and charming streets. Couple that with its beautiful inner harbor and ocean views, it’s no wonder Victoria is one of the best places to visit in Canada.
Image source:@tjholowaychuk/ Unsplash
24. Jasper National Park
Jasper could be considered Banff’s lesser-known but equally amazing cousin. Since it’s not as developed as Banff, you can experience more rugged trails and fewer tourists. This means you get to experience the same beautiful Rocky Mountain scenery with tons of fresh-water lakes and hiking trails nearby.
25. Muskoka Lakes
Cottage country is a way of life for many Ontarians. Just over 150 kilometres away from Toronto, many locals vacation in Muskoka when they want to escape city life. Unsurprisingly, many celebrities own properties in the area. The good news is you don’t have to be famous to visit this piece of paradise.
26. Stanley Park
In the heart of Vancouver, you can experience a natural West Coast rainforest. Covered in trees, and mountain landscapes, Stanley Park is iconic to locals and visitors alike. Explore the 400-hectare park by bike for the best possible experience.
Image source:R M / Unsplash
27. Nahanni National Park
Massive waterfalls, incredible mountain ranges, and intricate caves. This is Nahanni National Park. Located in the Northwest Territories, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is made up of over 4,000 square kilometres of rugged land to explore.
Close to epic mountains and skill hills along with beautiful national parks, Calgary makes an excellent city to explore. Whether you are passing through on your way to Banff or want to spend a full day of sightseeing, there is plenty to do. Plus if you visit in July you’ll have the chance to attend the world-famous Calgary Stampede!
Rich in history and easy on the eyes, Halifax is a must-see city for any Canadian traveller. This beautiful town used to be a refuge for pirates! If that wasn’t cool enough, Halifax has a vibrant nightlife and is home to a growing brewery scene.
Culturally diverse and popular for the IT scene, Winnipeg offers many vibrant festivals, unique neighbourhoods, and a true Canadian winter experience. It is also home to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet!