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Best places to visit in canada for 2023.

From the cosmopolitan streets of Toronto to the snow-capped peaks of the Canadian Rockies, our neighbor to the north features a diverse set of vacation destinations that are beautiful year-round. Deciding which one is perfect for your next getaway can be difficult. That's why U.S. News considered several factors, such as affordability, entertainment options and diversity of hotels and resorts, as well as user votes and expert opinions, to compile this list of the best places to visit in Canada. Vote for your favorite spot below to have a say in next year's list.

Jasper National Park

Vancouver, canada, niagara falls, quebec city, prince edward island, gros morne national park, victoria & vancouver island, cape breton highlands national park, mont-tremblant, okanagan valley.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Nestled amid the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, this tiny mountain town in Alberta appeals to both nature enthusiasts and luxury seekers. Visitors can spend their days skiing or hiking in Banff National Park (one of Canada's most beautiful national parks and home of the glacier-fed Moraine Lake) and floating down the Bow River on a canoe before retiring to one of the area's several opulent hotels for some spa therapy. Then, for incredible views of the Rockies, take a ride on the Banff Gondola. Meanwhile, daytrips to popular attractions like the Columbia Icefield, Yoho National Park and Lake Louise cannot be left off of your itinerary.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

As the largest national park in the Canadian Rockies, Jasper is ripe for exploration. When you're not hiking through Maligne Canyon, whitewater rafting down the Athabasca River or snapping photos of Spirit Island, you can enjoy a bird's-eye view of the picture-perfect scenery from the Jasper SkyTram. Or, take in the beauty of Jasper National Park while driving along the Icefields Parkway. Keep your eyes peeled for the 53 species of mammals that call this Alberta park home, including black bears, elk and bighorn sheep.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

A trip to this British Columbia city, which sits approximately 145 miles north of Seattle, is all about embracing the outdoors. Vancouverites spend their days skiing on Grouse Mountain, swimming at Kitsilano Beach and strolling through the sprawling Stanley Park. Plus, Vancouver offers plenty of cultural attractions, including museums, art galleries and outdoor markets (a tour of Granville Island is a must-do). If you're not afraid of heights, walk across the Capilano Suspension Bridge, which is positioned 230 feet above the Capilano River.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Travel to this iconic destination in southeastern Ontario to see and capture photos of its namesake world-famous tourist attraction . View Niagara Falls from above during a helicopter tour, or see them up close on the Maid of the Mist boat tour. Or, for a unique perspective, admire the thunderous falls from behind with the self-guided Journey Behind the Falls experience. After you've taken in the splendor, check out the area's other top attractions, such as the Niagara Glen Nature Centre, which offers a variety of hiking trails. When you've had your fill of nature, head to nearby wineries or test Lady Luck at the casinos.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Referred to as the "small city with a big backyard," Whitehorse – the capital of Canada's Yukon territory – shines with all of its outdoor activities. Explore Miles Canyon, which is accessible from Whitehorse on foot (a nearly 10-mile loop trail connects the city directly to this natural wonder). After, head north to the Yukon Wildlife Preserve, where you'll find all kinds of animals, including arctic foxes, elk, muskox and bison. Even though this region gets notoriously cold, you might want to time your visit around the first couple of weeks of winter for a chance to witness the northern lights.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

A trip to Europe may not be in your budget, but a visit to Québec City could be. This Canadian city charms visitors with its picturesque centuries-old buildings that make up Old Québec – a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Meanwhile, the aromas of freshly baked bread and brewing espresso fill the cobblestone streets of the Quartier Petit-Champlain with the essence of Paris. Once you've gotten your fill of the city, take a trip to Montmorency Falls Park to marvel at its 272-foot-tall waterfall. Plan your visit for winter when the city comes alive with twinkling lights, festivals and cold-weather activities – just remember to pack your down jacket .

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Take adventure travel up a notch with a visit to Whistler. In winter, this resort town in British Columbia (about 75 miles north of Vancouver) boasts everything from cross-country skiing and snowboarding to bobsled rides and bungee jumping. Travelers can spend their downtime in Whistler Village enjoying the après-ski scene, perusing locally owned shops or strolling through Whistler Olympic Plaza. Meanwhile, visitors in town when the weather is warmer can go hiking, fishing, horseback riding, kayaking and more. Plus, summer travelers will love exploring Brandywine Falls Provincial Park, home to the 230-foot-tall waterfall from which the park gets its name.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Home to rolling green hills, sandy beaches, red sandstone cliffs and a delicious bounty of seafood (this is where PEI mussels come from, after all), Prince Edward Island is the place to travel for a relaxing respite from Canada's more adventure-driven destinations. When you're not hiking the trails at Prince Edward Island National Park, perfect your swing at one of the island's golf courses or visit the Green Gables Heritage Place, where the 1908 novel, "Anne of Green Gables" was inspired. And be sure to keep an eye out for PEI's seal population (four kinds call the island home either full or part time).

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

This UNESCO World Heritage Site encompasses nearly 700 square miles of land on Newfoundland's west coast. Its top activity is undoubtedly hiking through the Tablelands. Here, you'll traverse exposed earth mantle, a rust-colored landscape that was created millions of years ago by a collision of tectonic plates. Also save time for a boat ride on Western Brook Pond, which is a glacier-carved, landlocked fjord that features cascading waterfalls measuring 2,000 feet. After getting a taste of nature, learn about the region's history at the Lobster Cove Head Lighthouse.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Montréal is a city of juxtaposition: Skyscrapers rub elbows with Old Montréal's 17th-century architecture while the familiar sounds of English intermingle with the foreign buzz of French – the official language of Québec province. Visit Old Montréal to get a taste of Europe (think: beautiful architecture and cobblestone streets), including its own Notre-Dame Basilica, a grand Gothic Revival-style church that offers self-guided tours along with an evening sound and light show. Then head to modern attractions, such as the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts. Meanwhile, if you're visiting during the warmer months, don't miss out on the Montréal Botanical Garden and the scenic Mount Royal Park.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

While Montréal and Québec City honor Canada's French roots, Victoria pays tribute to the country's British heritage. Many pay a visit to Victoria, British Columbia's capital city, for afternoon tea, a tour of the beautiful Parliament Buildings or a history lesson at the Royal BC Museum. Others are interested in visiting Vancouver Island's wineries to sample local vinos. Meanwhile, animal lovers enjoy the abundance of marine wildlife that call the waters surrounding Victoria home. In fact, there are nearly 80 orca whales in Victoria's waters. What's more, since Victoria is one of the most sustainable urban destinations in North America, visitors can feel good about the impact of their trip.   

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

"Big" doesn't even begin to describe this Ontario city. With cultural pockets like Greektown, Little India and Koreatown all within city limits, Toronto has the ability to transport visitors around the globe. Take it all in with a ride up the 1,815-foot-tall CN Tower, or enjoy a quintessentially Canadian experience at the Hockey Hall of Fame. Then, head to the St. Lawrence Market to sample gourmet goodies before checking out the nearby Harbourfront Centre. And if the weather is right, plan a visit to the Toronto Islands, where you can relax on the beach, go kayaking or enjoy an afternoon bike ride.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The star of this national park on Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Island is the world-famous Cabot Trail – one-third of which runs through the park. As you drive the winding highway, which is considered one of the world's most scenic drives, you'll pass forested river canyons, rural fishing villages and plenty of lookout points for admiring Nova Scotia's serene landscape. Prefer to explore the park on your own two feet? There are 26 hiking trails to choose from, as well as opportunities for kayaking, mountain climbing, camping and more.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Located a little more than 80 miles northwest of Montréal in Québec's Laurentian Mountains, Mont-Tremblant is best known for its skiing, specifically Mont Tremblant Ski Resort, which occupies the highest peak in the mountain range. But warm-weather visitors are equally enchanted by its Parc national du Mont-Tremblant, which boasts six rivers and 400 lakes and streams, not to mention countless hiking trails and beaches. Water sports, fishing and mountain biking are all popular here thanks to the area's diverse landscape.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Stretching across more than 150 miles, the Okanagan Valley is home to 86% of British Columbia's vineyard acreage and features more than 200 world-class wineries. There are also a variety of subregions in the valley, each promising its own unique experiences and grape varietals. If you are looking to combine wine tasting with outdoor pursuits, visit the Naramata Bench. This area is packed with wineries and offers everything from kayaking to mountain biking. No matter which area you visit, you'll enjoy spectacular views that rival those of the world's best wine regions .

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Kluane National Park and Reserve

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Saint John, New Brunswick

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

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8 Great Places Across Canada to Visit This Summer

Get lost in the outdoor regions and bustling centers of the great white north..

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White and red lighthouse at Covehead, Prince Edward Island

From outdoor excursions to city exploration, summer in Canada’s got plenty in store for you.

Photo by Tobias Negele/Shutterstock

With Canada covering 6,204,391 square miles and encompassing three oceans—and a huge variety of landscapes and cultures between them—there is plenty to see and do in the country. That’s especially true in the summer, when the sun reveals all sorts of spots hidden during the winter.

It’s hard to whittle down such an immense and diverse country to just a handful or two of places, but here are eight of our favorite locations to spend a summer in Canada.

1. Prince Edward Island

Canada ’s smallest province, Prince Edward Island is a delicious summer cocktail of sweeping coastal views, red sandstone cliffs, and pristine beaches blended with fresh maritime cuisine and welcoming towns.

While many of the island’s beloved sand dunes suffered severe erosion as a result of Hurricane Fiona in 2022, the opening of the Canadian Centre for Climate Change and Adaptation in St. Peters Bay provides reason for hope. Explorers can also enjoy the Island Walk , a 435-mile route opened in 2021. Circumnavigating the perimeter of the island, it takes in beaches, PEI’s red dirt roads, scenic viewpoints, and ocean paths. With 32 sections, it’s easy to jump on and off for a bit of exploration and culinary indulgence in foods like lobster rolls.

Where to stay

  • Book now: The Great George

Plan to stay in Charlottetown? The Great George has 54 rooms and suites spread among 17 restored heritage properties in the city’s historic district.

Beluga whales surfacing above the water in Churchill.

In the summer, thousands of beluga whales head to the Churchill River Estuary.

Courtesy of Travel Manitoba

2. Churchill, Manitoba

It’s not only polar bears that are worth seeing in the “polar bear capital of the world.” In summer, 60,000 beluga whales—the highest concentration in the world—migrate to places like the Churchill River Estuary in Hudson Bay.

To get up close to the whales, it’s possible to kayak among the congenial creatures, but imagine being able to view them from beneath the water. Beginning summer 2023, visitors will be able to thrill at the animals’ subaquatic behaviors aboard the Matonabee , Lazy Bear Expeditions’ brand new vessel featuring 12 submerged windows. On a coastal boat tour, it’s possible to see many other local animals on the shore, such as Arctic foxes and Arctic hares. Polar bears can sometimes be seen, too, sunbathing on boulders, swimming in the water, or rolling in fields of wildflowers.

  • Book now: Lazy Bear Lodge

Lazy Bear Lodge is a cozy log cabin made of timber reclaimed from a boreal forest fire and recycled wavy glass windows from a 19th-century Hudson Bay Trading Post.

Rays of the setting sun over the North Saskatchewan River and Terwillegar Park Footbridge in Edmonton, Alberta

The North Saskatchewan River has been important for the livelihood of the Indigenous people in the area.

Photo by Rita Petcu/Shutterstock

3. Métis Crossing, Alberta

Canada’s first major Métis cultural destination, Métis Crossing, is a gathering place and interpretative center for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people alike, the perfect place to foster cultural understanding and reconciliation.

Summer visitors can learn traditional Métis crafts such as beading, ribbon skirt-making or embroidering from Knowledge-Keeper Lilyrose Meyers. Outdoor activities include a guided visit to the wildlife park, home to elk, horses, and three types of bison; stargazing and Métis storytelling; or paddling in a replica Voyageur canoe down the North Saskatchewan River, just as Indigenous fur traders once did. It was also one of AFAR’s places to go in 2022 .

  • Book now: The Lodge at Métis Crossing

Overnight guests can camp in traditional trapper tents or bed down in style at the Métis-designed 40-room boutique lodge , opened in December 2021. Beginning summer 2023, amateur astronomers will be able to contemplate the stars from the comfort of their beds in the new sky watching dome accommodations .

Aerial image of Halifax, Nova Scotia

This summer, spend time in Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia.

Photo by Russ Heinl/Shutterstock

4. Halifax, Nova Scotia

Cities may not be top of mind for travelers seeking the great outdoors. Mild-weathered Halifax , however, is an exception to that rule. With gorgeous beaches (some with surf schools), provincial parks, and islands aplenty in and around Halifax, this city of 420,000 comes to life in summer.

These days, however, the former Atlantic backwater is upping its sophistication game as its foodie, wine, and craft brewery and distillery scenes grow. Recently, $200 million of private investment in the region brought a major makeover and expansion of the waterfront district. Unveiled in November 2021, the Queen’s Marque is a premier arts, dining, and shopping destination with world-class galleries and public art installations. Dining and drinking options include Drift , a refined, contemporary take on classic Atlantic Canadian dishes; Peacock , an intimate bistro and wine bar; Bar Sofia , showcasing Argentinian and Peruvian dishes; and Daryâ , a restaurant highlighting eastern Mediterranean flavors.

  • Book now: Muir Halifax

An AFAR 2023 Stay List pick , the Muir Halifax is Atlantic Canada’s first five-star boutique hotel. It even offers guests private tours of Halifax’s coastline aboard its 36-foot yacht or high-speed 24-foot motorboat.

Aerial view of the Aerial Fundy Trail Parkway

The Fundy Trail Parkway is part of the UNESCO-recognized Fundy Biosphere Reserve.

Photo by Nick Hawkins/Tourism New Brunswick

5. The Fundy Trail Parkway, New Brunswick

You’ve likely heard of Cape Breton Island’s Cabot Trail . But what about the Fundy Trail Parkway ? Built over a 25-year span and completed in 2021, the Parkway is not only a beautiful 18-mile drive along the Bay of Fundy’s rocky coastline but also a nature park. The park encompasses five beaches, four waterfalls, 22 miles of hiking and cycling trails, and almost two dozen scenic lookouts and observation decks.

Take a First Nations–guided walk in the bay’s tides (the highest in the world) to discover the history and culture of Wolastoq and Mi’kmaq peoples and learn about their stories and traditional medicines. Over at Cape Hopewell, wander the Hopewell Rocks, 600 million years old, and—if you dare—kayak among these astounding geological formations after dark—and at high tide—with Baymount Adventures .

  • Book now: Beach Street Inn

Anchor yourself in the Bay of Fundy at the new Beach Street Inn in the small fishing village of St. Martin’s. The stay features homey touches like a terrace, a garden, and in-room fireplaces.

Mount Assiniboine, Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park

Part of the Canadian Rocky Mountain UNESCO World Heritage site, Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park features a mountain nearly 12,000 feet tall.

Photo by Alex Gorey/Unsplash

6. Kootenay Rockies, British Columbia

With three mountain ranges, six national parks, and 47 provincial parks, there is no shortage of natural beauty in the remote Kootenay Rockies of British Columbia, the first region in Canada to implement a community-driven strategy to build a clean transportation network in a rural setting. Mountain towns bearing names like Golden, Trail, Fernie, and Revelstoke are becoming increasingly trendy among alpine ski fanatics, backcountry skiers, hikers, and nature-loving creatives and the food scene has followed suit.

There is much for outdoor enthusiasts to do here: Go mountain biking on steep trails. Splash around waterfalls. Soak in hot springs. Spot birds and mammals by kayak or canoe in the water world that is the Columbia Wetlands in summer. Visit Boo, a 20-year-old orphaned grizzly bear, at the Kicking Horse Grizzly Bear Refuge .

In Golden, thrill seekers will appreciate Golden Skybridge , a new outdoor adventure park spread around the rim of a rock canyon. Opened in 2021, the park is home to two suspension bridges, the highest in Canada, dangling above a deep abyss.

  • Book now: Heather Mountain Lodge ; Purcell Mountain Lodge

Get an immersive stay within British Columbia’s natural splendor and savor gourmet cuisine at Heather Mountain Lodge or Purcell Mountain Lodge —the latter only accessible by helicopter.

Niagara Falls, Canada

Especially with Niagara-on-the-Lake’s summertime activities, its proximity to Niagara Falls is only the beginning to this destination’s offerings.

Photo by Edward Koorey/Unsplash

7. Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario

Ontario’s Niagara peninsula is home to the border-crossing Niagara Falls , but there’s more to the region than the natural wonder: sun-splashed rolling vineyards and award-winning wineries, the sandy beaches of Lake Erie, soothing spas, championship golf courses, scenic hiking and cycling trails, and pretty towns and villages. The crown jewel of these is Niagara-on-the-Lake, a town of 18,000 with boutique shops, lovingly maintained Victorian buildings, cast-iron planters cascading with flowers, and, of course, the acclaimed Shaw Festival .

Founded in 1962, the Shaw is an international destination for theater lovers. The season runs until November, with this year’s lineup featuring 13 plays, including The Playboy of the Western World , The Amen Corner , Prince Caspian , and The Shadow of a Doubt . The Spiegeltent, open only in summer, will run Mother, Daughter and The Game of Love and Chance . Another outdoor performance space will put on other shows and events.

  • Book now: 124 Q Hotel & Spa ; Riverbend Inn & Vineyard

In the Old Town, try the newly revamped and expanded 124 Q Hotel & Spa . Housed in a Georgian mansion, the Riverbend Inn & Vineyard is a good bet for those wanting to be surrounded by vineyards.

Waterfront of Kamouraska, Quebec

The sweeping landscapes of Kamouraska are in eastern Quebec.

Photo by darengd/Unsplash

8. Bas St. Laurent, Quebec

Quebec is not only about Montreal and Quebec City . On the south shore of the St. Lawrence River lies the Bas Saint-Laurent (the Lower St. Lawrence), a distinctive maritime region east of Quebec City.

No trip along Route 132 is complete without a stop in Kamouraska. Dubbed le doux pays (“the sweet land”), by locals, Kamouraska is a picturesque tableau of meadows and farmlands sweeping down to the river, colorful Victorian homes with gabled roofs and wraparound verandas, and a main street lined with attractive boutiques and restaurants.

Also worth stopping for along the way are cities and municipalities like Notre-Dame-du-Portage, Saint-Pascal, and Sainte-Flavie, the gateway to the Gaspésie. Sainte-Flavie features the Centre d’Art Marcel Gagnon , a quirky art gallery whose exterior resembles a Gaudí confection. The beachfront, meanwhile, is the site of Le Grand Rassemblement ( The Great Gathering ), an art installation made of 80 concrete sculptures fixed into the water.

Whale watching is popular here. Tours are available from Croisières AML and depart from Rivière-du-Loup.

  • Book now: Auberge du Portage

The Auberge du Portage resort has an outdoor heated saltwater pool, tennis court, a walking trail, and a patio perfect for drinks at sunset.

The Best Hawaiian Islands to Visit for Different Kinds of Travelers

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30 Best Summer Travel Destinations in Canada

Explore The Great White North


Explore The Great White North

Explore the Great White North

Whether you're into outdoor adventures  and wildlife, sprawling music and food festivals, historical and cultural landmarks, spectacular wineries, or a relaxing beach vacation , there's a Canadian destination sure to appeal. We spoke to Canadian travel writers to help track down the must-visit destinations, as well as what to do and where to stay when you get there. From beautifully diverse national parks to bustling cityscapes, these are the best spots to visit in Canada this summer.

Tofino, British Columbia

Tofino, British Columbia

Summer is particularly special on Vancouver Island and Tofino  offers the ideal escape from city life. From Tofino, you can take in gorgeous mountain and ocean views from the charming Wickaninnish Inn  or nestled in the forest adjacent to a beach at Green Point Campground .

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, British Columbia

Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, British Columbia

If you're looking for Pacific Ocean kayaking adventures, whale- or bear-watching boat tours, beachcombing, soaking in a hot springs cove, or hiking the rugged West Coast Trail in the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve , this West Coast destination on Vancouver Island makes for the perfect getaway to connect with nature.

Alaska Highway, Yukon

Alaska Highway, Yukon

For sparsely populated territory and strikingly beautiful wilderness, head north to Yukon. "We're often guilty of only thinking of the provinces as places to travel and explore within Canada, but the North has a lot to offer as well," says Caleigh Alleyne, Toronto-based travel journalist and editor of Travel and Design . "Yukon is connected through the Alaska Highway, making it a really accessible place to road trip and to enjoy the natural beauty of Northern Canada."

Kluane National Park and Reserve, Yukon

Kluane National Park and Reserve, Yukon

Along the Alaska Highway, nature lovers will appreciate stopping for the towering mountain ranges of Kluane National Park and Reserve  as well as glaciers and icefields. Home to 17 of Canada's 20 highest peaks, the park is renowned for its wilderness recreation, including hiking, backcountry camping, rafting past glaciers on the Alsek River, and mountaineering through some of the largest icefields outside of the polar ice caps. Not up for climbing? Book a flightseeing tour for a bird's-eye view of the ice fields.

Bowron Lake Provincial Park, British Columbia

Bowron Lake Provincial Park, British Columbia

For a truly Canadian summer experience, hop in a canoe on the world-renowned Bowron Lake Canoe Circuit , which encompasses a chain of lakes, waterways, and connecting portages near the Cariboo Mountain Range. "The best canoe trip we have ever done was on the Bowron Lakes in northern British Columbia," says Canadian travel bloggers Dalene and Pete Heck, who've chronicled their Bowron Lake canoe adventures on HeckticTravels . "The lakes form almost a perfect square route and offer up so much stunning scenery. We'd do that trip again in a heartbeat."

Vancouver, British Columbia

Vancouver, British Columbia

Get some fresh air at Vancouver's sprawling Stanley Park , a green oasis in the middle of the city and North America's third largest park. The urban park's hiking trails offer scenic views of water, mountains, and majestic trees along its famous seawall. Vancouver also has plenty of cultural attractions — from city tours and art galleries to lively outdoor markets and quirky neighborhoods like Granville Island , a former industrial area now filled with artsy shops, cafes, and bookstores. In the summer, free seasonal festivals and art walks, as well as public gardens and beaches, keep things affordable.

Friends Enjoying a Snowball Fight with a Male and Female in the Foreground Hugging Each Other, Surrounded By Bits of Snow

Whistler, British Columbia

World-class alpine skiers frequent the slopes of this well-known Canadian resort town in the winter, but Whistler  is also a destination for hikers, bikers, and thrill-seekers in the summer. Two hours north of Vancouver in the Coast Mountains, the town boasts everything from bear tours and record-breaking gondola rides to whitewater rafting and bungee jumping, plus hiking and biking trails. Visitors can also unwind lakeside along sandy beaches or in the village bistros, or visit Wanderlust Whistler , a celebration of mindful living. Bonus: chalets and chateaus are usually a steal this time of year.

Kelowna, British Columbia

Kelowna, British Columbia

In the heart of Okanagan Valley, Kelowna's many outdoor attractions and food and wine scene  draw visitors from all over. People flock to the shores of Okanagan Lake as well as the region's more than 40 wineries within a 20-minute drive of town. Book a full-day tour of the valley's vineyards or embark on a self-guided wine trail to sample a range of highly-ranked wines like Riesling, the region's specialty. Pro tip: Visit in August to pick your own ripe peaches and plums at local fruit orchards.

Banff National Park and Jasper National Park, Alberta

The Canadian Rockies

Visiting the Canadian Rockies is a no brainer for outdoor adventure seekers. Banff National Park — Canada's first national park — and Jasper National Park (in addition to their less visited neighbor Yoho National Park ) are prime mountain destinations, where visitors can spend their days hiking, biking, and camping in some of the world's most breathtaking mountain scenery.

Golden, British Columbia

Golden, British Columbia

After exploring the Rocky Mountain peaks, opt to stay in nearby Golden — conveniently located in the middle of six national parks — for a true mountain town experience. "For a fun group trip, you can't beat spending some time in the mountains. While the Rocky Mountains (Banff National Park and Jasper National Park) should be number one on your Canadian bucket list, heading west to Golden, Revelstoke, and Rossland, British Columbia will give you a more authentic mountain experience," travel writer Caleigh Alleyne says.

Canadian Badlands, Alberta

Canadian Badlands, Alberta

Dinosaur Provincial Park  is ripe for exploration. You can search for and often find (but not pocket) real dinosaur bones. More than 150 full dinosaur skeletons and more than 50 species have already been unearthed here, which is why it's been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. For spectacular views, hike the Badlands Trail , which winds through hoodoos, pinnacles, and sandstone ridges. Later, make the two hour drive to the Royal Tyrrell Museum , which houses one of the world's largest displays of full dinosaur skeletons.

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

With the South Saskatchewan River flowing through Saskatoon , water is an integral part of city life. Run, walk, or bike along the riverfront Meewasin Trails  or explore the city of bridges via paddleboard, canoe, kayak, or aboard a Prairie Lily riverboat cruise. The city is also an unexpected hotspot for foodies. "This city in the Prairies has really ramped up their food scene in the last few years with the opening of Ayden Kitchen and Bar and Little Grouse on the Prairie, led by Top Chef Canada Winner Chef Dale Mackay. This has spurred a culinary movement within the city," says travel expert Caleigh Alleyne. Other notable restaurants include Odd Couple and The Hollows.

Inuit Culture in Arviat, Nunavut

Arviat, Nunavut

Discover Canada's Inuit culture and art — from hunting and fishing to sewing and crafts like soapstone and antler carving Z — on Arviat , one of the most accessible Inuit communities in Nunavut. Travelers can chat with Inuit elders in their homes, see traditional music performances, and try customary meals like Arctic char, tuktu (caribou), and muktaaq (beluga whale). Arviat is also rich in wildlife, including pods of beluga whales, which are often spotted in the many small bays near the community.

Fundy National Park, New Brunswick

Fundy National Park, New Brunswick

Get a taste of Atlantic Canada culture and explore miles of untouched coastline — and the world's highest tides — from Fundy National Park  or The Hopewell Rocks, where you can walk around the famous "flowerpot rocks" at low tide then watch them slowly disappear. Walk the otherworldly sea floor at low tide or paddle in a kayak as the waters rise 12 metres high. Unique camping options feature comfy yurts with a skylight dome to take in the starry nights.

Churchill, Manitoba

Churchill, Manitoba

As the "polar bear capital of the world," Churchill, Manitoba  deserves a spot on animal lovers' bucket lists. Churchill is one of the few human settlements where polar bears can be observed in the wild, even in the summer, and more than 57,000 belugas gather in the region between mid-June to mid-September. While there aren't any paved roads leading into the tiny town, the plane or train ride may well be well worth the expense. In the summer, you can snorkel or kayak alongside belugas in the Hudson Bay and Churchill River.

Toronto, Ontario

Toronto, Ontario

Canada's largest city is a multi-cultural destination bursting with things to do year-round, especially in the summer. Its many diverse neighborhoods, enticing green spaces, and a thriving food scene make it an attractive city for a weekend or week-long getaway. In the summer, Toronto-based travel writer Caleigh Alleyne likes to stick around. "For hiking, I go out to the Bruce Trail, biking in Niagara Parks along the Niagara Parkway, camping in Algonquin Provincial Park, festivals — there are so many in and around Toronto," she says. "And you can't beat the Distillery District in Toronto for outdoor dining."

Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario

Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario

Just outside of Toronto, city dwellers and visitors can embark on even more unique adventures. The wilderness of Algonquin Provincial Park  offers plenty of family-friendly outdoor activities — from camping to canoeing and mountain biking. The Algonquin Logging Museum gives visitors a glimpse into the history of logging.

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Plan a family vacation to Niagara Falls  this summer to witness North America's iconic waterfall. Hop aboard a cruise boat to get up close with the American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and Horseshoe Falls, plummeting over the 188-foot drop at up to 68 mph. If you have some time to spare, taking a combination tour between Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls is also a great way to see the Niagara area. Other popular attractions include the 175-foot-high Niagara Skywheel , a stroll near the water on the self-guided White Water Walk , and the Butterfly Conservatory at the Botanical Gardens.

Ottawa, Ontario

Ottawa, Ontario

When it comes to history and culture, Canada's capital Ottawa has much to offer. The Canadian War Museum and Parliament Hill (don't miss the summer Changing of the Guard  ceremonies) will appeal to history buffs, while the National Gallery of Canada is a draw for art aficionados, and the Rideau Canal and Gatineau Park is often a hit with nature lovers. At the ByWard Market, foodies can try a truly Canadian pastry, Beavertails , from the original location.

Eastern Townships, Quebec

Eastern Townships, Quebec

The Eastern Townships of Quebec (Montreal's cottage country) are a collection of small towns and villages along the U.S. border revered for their foodie culture and outdoor excursions. "One of the most Canadian things you can do is plan a summer weekend away at 'the cottage.' There are a number of areas within driving distance of major cities where Canadians will go to get away from the city and enjoy some time in nature," says Toronto-based travel expert Caleigh Alleyne. It's possible to taste your way through the region's farmers markets with local cheeses, milk bars with old-fashioned sundaes, and vineyards — Quebec's only wine route  offers a taste of renowned ice wines, rosés, and ciders.

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal, Quebec

Montreal  is packed with tons of arts and culture for a European-esque experience, particularly for those traveling alone. "There's always a festival or something going on in the city," says travel blogger Caleigh Alleyne. "There is also a range of accommodation options perfect for any budget and delicious restaurants to try," Check out the Notre-Dame Basilica and roam the Montreal Botanical Gardens, then head to the city's major cultural district, Quartier des Spectacles , for activities and seasonal fests.

Quebec City, Quebec

Quebec City, Quebec

"For the ultimate romantic getaway, I'd recommend going to Quebec City, where you are transported back in time wandering along romantic cobblestone streets," says travel writer Caleigh Alleyne. For those in the U.S. and Canada, Quebec City is a budget-friendly alternative to a European vacation. Explore the French Canadian city's cobbled streets, cathedral spires, and top-notch cuisine. Notable sights in Quebec's capital include the castle-like Chateâu de Frontenac, Notre-Dame de Québec Basilica, and the historic neighborhood of Old Quebec. This summer, visitors can catch a new free circus show  outdoors from July 16 to September 1.

New Brunswick

New Brunswick

For a budget-friendly destination, Canada travel expert Caleigh Alleyne suggests planning a trip to a province like New Brunswick . "New Brunswick is stunningly beautiful, but filled with smaller, more affordable cities," she says. "You can get the best of both worlds heading to the Bay of Fundy to explore a natural wonder while staying in quaint cities like Saint John, Moncton, or Fredericton to explore the cultural activities and markets."

Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island

With its rolling green hills, red sandstone cliffs, and fresh seafood, Canada's smallest province, Prince Edward Island, makes for a relaxing getaway destination. Explore the house that inspired the setting of the book "Anne of Green Gables"  and the first lighthouse to receive the SOS from the Titanic, or try activities like clam digging and lobster boat tours. Hike woodlands or cycle a seashore path in Prince Edward Island National Park, which features over 25 miles of coastline with beaches, wetlands, and forests for kayaking, picnicking, and bird watching.

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Start your day at the Halifax Seaport Farmers' Market , the oldest continuously operating farmers' market in North America, then learn about the city's seafaring history — including its role in recovering artifacts from the Titanic — at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. For adventure just outside the city, visit Peggy's Cove, a fishing village with an iconic lighthouse, then embark on the Lobster Trail  for a taste of Nova Scotia's incredible seafood. Consider a guided Voyageur canoe journey  in Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site, too.

Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia

Cape Breton Island  might just be Canada's best kept secret. The scenic Atlantic spot is consistently lauded for its seafood, sprawling coastline, and dramatic cliffs. For an abundance of scenic overlooks, drive the 185-mile Cabot Trail or take a guided bicycle tour. The coastal highway winds through the island's diverse seaside communities while hugging the rocky northern shoreline and looping inland through Cape Breton Highlands National Park before passing along the salmon-filled Margaree River.

Newfoundland and Labrador

Newfoundland and Labrador

Summer is an ideal time to visit Newfoundland and Labrador . "Small fishing villages are sprinkled along the coast, offering you a glimpse into their long-standing culture in these regions," says Canadian travel journalist Caleigh Alleyne. "It's best to visit in the summer, as many of the restaurants and tourist attractions are only open seasonally. Summer is when the weather is best and the towns are in full bloom." Want to hike? The rust-colored Tablelands in Gros Morne National Park  or the island's boreal forest in Terra Nova National Park  are great options.

Auyuittuq National Park

Auyuittuq National Park

Ever wanted to snowmobile or snowshoe around the Arctic Circle ? While you may not be able to bring your summer clothes, visit this northern corner of Canada in (relatively) warm weather to see waterways teeming with narwhal and ringed seals, and you may actually see wildflowers.

Tobermory, Ontario

Tobermory, Ontario

Four hours north of Toronto, you'll find Tobermory  on the Bruce Peninsula. The seaside town has the turquoise waters and beaches of Bruce Peninsula National Park  and the Fathom Five National Marine Park — the freshwater scuba capital of the world — which is home to more than 20 historic sunken wrecks.

Elk Island

Want to get up close and personal with some wildlife that may remind you of the Old West in the U.S.? Located 35 minutes east of Edmonton, Elk Island  is a bucolic refuge for bison, elk, and more than 250 bird species. Elk Island National Park is also an escape for city-weary visitors who want to picnic by day and camp by night.

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Whether it’s the winter, spring, or summer that you’re visiting, there’s no denying the beauty of Canada’s offerings. Comprising a total of 10 provinces and three (3) territories, there’s no shortage of places to visit and things to do. 

While we’re known largely for our winters, our summers are just as good, if not better… If you’re lucky enough to have the autonomy to choose when to visit, the summer months are the superior choice! 

With that said, in this article, we’ll share with you the best Canadian cities to visit this summer or any summer for that matter. It goes without saying that each city discussed in this article is a beautiful destination no matter when you visit. However, who doesn’t want to explore when the sun is shining, and the temperatures are hot?! 

Below are the top five (5) Canadian cities to visit in the summer! 

Montreal, QC

Toronto, ON

Calgary, ab, victoria, bc, charlottetown, pei.

Aerial view of Montreal one of the top Canadian cities to visit this summer 2022.

Located about 250km east of Quebec’s capital city sits the more popular city of the two… Montreal! If it’s culture, cuisine, and bilingual conversation that you’re after, Montreal is the city for you.

While it’s just as beautiful during the winter months, Montreal is an incredible city for exploratory walking, allowing you to truly ingest all that it has to offer its guests. From summer festivals and outdoor patio pints to historic hikes and culinary heroics at some of the best restaurants in Canada, Montreal won’t disappoint. 

It’s a European masterpiece of a city that just so happens to be found in the country of Canada; no need to worry about that costly overseas plane ticket! If that’s not unique, I don’t know what is! 

Some must do Montreal Experiences

A look at skyscrapers and condominiums in downtown Toronto, Ontario, one of the top Canadian cities to visit this summer

Often described as the New York of Canada, Toronto is as popular a destination as any for those looking to travel to Canada, especially during the summer months due to its action-packed, event-intensive schedule. 

First, it’s arguably the biggest sports city in the country. With three 3 major sports teams in the Toronto Blue Jays (MLB), Toronto Maple Leafs (NHL), and the Toronto Raptors (NBA), there’s no shortage of sporting events to go to.

Second, when there are no games scheduled, the sports stadiums themselves are typically sold out by major music concerts by the likes of the largest musical talent the world has to offer. 

Lastly, when in Toronto, you can’t forget about the party scene. From beach festivals to rooftop cabana parties, you’ll have no trouble making the most of those summer evenings. Oh, and be sure to snap a picture or two of the CN Tower at night; it’s awe-inspiring, to say the least…

Popular Toronto Tours

Beautiful skyline of Calgary during Stampede at sunset, Alberta, Canada

There’s nothing quite like summer in Alberta, whether in Edmonton, Calgary, or elsewhere… As the sunniest city in Canada, it makes sense to put Calgary atop your list of Canadian destinations to visit during the summer! 

Withstanding its evident weather, Calgary also boasts the largest trail network in all of North America; for those who enjoy walking and hiking, I think I’ve just made your decision on which city to visit. 

Finally, we can’t forget the Calgary Stampede… Self-proclaimed as the greatest outdoor event in the world, the Calgary Stampede is a 10-day all-encompassing event that includes musical concerts, food and beverage vendors, a rodeo, and much more. Set around the beginning to the middle of July annually, be sure to schedule your trip around these dates, for you won’t want to miss it! 

Empress Hotel and Harbour, Victoria BC Canada

While it might come as somewhat of a surprise to see Victoria on the list rather than Vancouver, Victoria is undeniably beautiful, especially in the summer months. Not only is it just an hour’s ferry ride from the big city, which has its own benefits, but it boasts more natural landscapes than any other city in British Columbia (don’t ask a BC native, you might start an argument!). 

From summer festivals and sandy beach strolls to forest hikes and ocean kayaking excursions, the options of what to do here in Victoria during the summer months are endless.

Charlottetown is the capital and largest city of the Canadian province of Prince Edward Island, and the county seat of Queens County.

Last but certainly not least is Prince Edward Island, the smallest of the provinces discussed in this article. As such, you’ll likely have time to explore the entirety of this beautiful province should your trip be long enough. With that said, its capital city is Charlottetown, so let’s discuss…

If you know anything about PEI, you’ve likely heard of Cavendish… if not, while it’s a resort town in PEI, it’s much, much more! From its beaches and historic cultural sites to its famed music festival called Cavendish Beach Music Festival, it’s likely where you’ll want to spend most of your time…

Apart from that, PEI is unique in that it’s primarily farmland, boasting incredible open landscapes and beaches. Go kayaking, hiking, or driving through the long-stretched roads off the beaten path.

Whatever you choose to do, even if it’s absolutely nothing, you’ll surely enjoy every second of it! 

Your Canadian Summer Vacay Awaits!

Whether you’re already in the midst of planning your Canadian excursion or if you’re still in the consideration stages of planning, you’re likely still pondering what time of year is best to explore this amazing country… If so, you might want to consider the summer months which typically span from June to September!

While it’s the peak season for most provinces, and though the prices may be somewhat inflated. As a result, the cost of a Canadian summer is more than worth it in the end. Sure, Canada is a winter wonderland that is beautiful in its own right… But, who are we kidding?! Summer is the best season of them all, no matter which country you’re visiting! 

While the above cities are certainly some of the best for summer travel, there’s certainly more where that came from! 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

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7 Best Places to Visit in Canada During Summer

I’m just back from my summer trip to Canada, and oh my gawd , it was beautiful to see in the sunshine. Berrr-utiful. 

This was actually my fourth time in Canada, which seems pretty crazy, but this was the time I fell in love with the country – maybe because this time, it was summer? 

Summer in Canada

Canada is well known for its winter slopes and ski jumps , but under all that ice and snow there are loads of amazing things you can see and do in the warmer months too. The real problem is working out just where, across that vast expanse of a country, to actually go and how to fit it all in.

Let me help… 

1. Montreal in summer

Fancy a little French twist to your Canadian vacation?

Canada in the summer

Montreal is the heart of the French-speaking region of Quebec and home to the country’s best servings of poutine. When you’re not walking the cobbled streets looking to line your belly with the fries and cheese curd dish, you can also tick off famous sites like the Notre-Dame, Montreal Biodome and Mount Royal.

Visiting this Canadian city in summer also means you can lay out on the Jean-Dore Beach, ride along Lachine Canal and make sure you’ve sufficiently piled on the pounds by grabbing gelato at the Atwater Market. I did an awesome food tour when I was here, which led me to some of the best falafel I’ve ever experienced. 

I’ve written an entire guide to how to spend a weekend in Montreal , click to check it out!

Are you looking for the best activity in Montreal?

  • Explore Montreal neighborhoods such as Little Italy and Mile End with a local guide, stopping at bars, restaurants, bakeries, and delicatessens with this food tour
  • Immerse into the atmosphere of Old Montreal via this Small-Group Walking Tour
  • See all the landmarks of Montreal and discover Montreal’s history with this small group guided tour

2. Toronto in summer

Toronto mixes city break with beach bum vibes and even has an area east of the city aptly named ‘The Beaches’ with four to choose from. From skyscrapers to sunbathing, jump on a tram downtown and quickly find yourself on Queen Street East where you can chill by the Lake Ontario shoreline, explore the hipster shops or listen to the sweet sounds of The Beaches International Jazz Festival.

Canada in the summer

Should you find yourself back in the city centre, look up an outdoor movie screening, head to one of the many food fests or simply walk the pretty waterfront.

I went for a meal up the CN Tower, the icon of the city. It was October when I was in Toronto, and the winds were definitely gale force. Made for an interesting dinner. The CN Tower rotates, so it’s the perfect way to get multi faceted views of the city.

I recently went back to the city (in 2021) and had a great time with my boyfriend exploring a weekend in Toronto with him.

Also, Niagara Falls! There are so many cool things to do around Niagara Falls from the Canada side, in the summer.

Fancy a Toronto to Nova Scotia drive ? Click the link for all the details you need.

If you’re looking for accommodation, check out the cosy units at  Precondo  in Toronto.

3. Muskoka in summer

A few hours north of Toronto, you’ll find what’s known as cottage country and it’s every bit as quaint as it sounds, making it the ideal place to unwind for a week.

Canada in the summer

Celebs have the same idea and flock to the Muskoka district to escape, but places like Wolf Den Nature Retreat Hostel and Dream Catcher B&B manage to make it affordable for the rest of us. Tick off the Muskoka lakes and waterfalls in parks like Arrowhead Provincial, Georgian Bay Islands and Six Mile Lake and, when you want to amp things up, try one of the many water activities like paddleboarding, waterskiing or canoeing.

I’ve not been here yet, but I definitely plan to be back in Canada one day soon and sounds like it’ll be a cool place to check out. Perfect combined with a trip to Toronto, right?

4. Whistler in summer

Over on the west coast, Whistler is everything for nature lovers. Just two hours north of Vancouver, this Pacific Coast Mountain location has you hiking the Valley Trail, rafting the Cheakamus River and even spotting bears. There’s also zip lining and jet boating, horse back riding and canoeing — enough activities to keep you busy for sure.

Canada in the summer

On my recent summery Canada trip I spent two nights camping here and loved, loved, loved the views, the lakes, the mountains and that sushi restaurant we went to in the centre of Whistler. Gonna dream of that for nights to come. So good.

Whistler is one of the most famous experiences in Canada , go experience it!

READ MORE: The Best Places to Visit in Autumn in Canada

Extend your stay in Whistler

  • Best Whistler accommodation: Summit Lodge Boutique Hotel Whistler (hotel, $$) Cascade Lodge (apartments, $)
  • Best things to do in Whistler Whistler Sightseeing Tour: Discover all of Whistler Year-Round! Whistler Helicopter Tour + Mountain Landing

5. Alberta in summer 

Make the childhood cowboy dream come true by heading to the ‘Texas of the North’. The western region of Alberta is home to part of the Rocky Mountains and when the sun is shining you can see them lasso in hand by doing the historic cowboy trail between the mountains and the Canadian prairie. Stay on a ranch, ride horseback and even catch a rodeo for that authentic outback experience.

Canada in the summer

Removing the hat, cram in some of the region’s other stunning places like Lake Louise, Banff and Jasper before stopping in the city of Calgary for the city’s zoo and Heritage Park. Alberta is where I spent most of my time on my recent trip, and I loved it. An absolute definite on the list if you’re planning on visiting Canada in the summer. 

6. Vancouver in summer 

Get all of the summer city vibes by alternating between Vancouver’s central hub of art and culture and the beautiful beaches of Spanish Banks and Kits Beach. You can also bike the likes of Stanley Park (bigger than NYC’s Central Park by the way), explore the art district of Granville Island or see the city from the water with a SeaVancouver tour.

Canada in the summer

For a different view, head half an hour east to Grouse Mountain where you can ride the gondola to the top of the peak and see the city below, or alternatively test your balance with a walk along the Capilano Suspension Bridge. 

I’ve been to Vancouver in both winter and summer, but it was my June visit that had me googling how I could live there. Honestly, sat down by the water on Granville Island, eating my Mexican dinner from the food market, it was just some of the best vibes I’ve ever experienced in a city.

There are loads of great things to do in Vancouver , but if you’ve only got 24 hours in Vancouver , I’ve got a guide for that too! Vancouver is a great place to pick up some souvenirs from Canada too.

7. The Yukon in summer

Now this one is the new dream for me, the Yukon. Get lost in the wild landscapes of Canada’s westernmost territory.

Dawson City in the Yukon

Here, in Canada’s smallest region, bears are thought to outnumber people and although that can sound scary, it’s totally tempered by the fact that places like Whitehorse, Miles Canyon and Kluane National Park are so beautiful in the summer.

READ MORE: 29 Things to Do in Whitehorse

But it’s not all about the nature, sacred to the aboriginals and steep in the story of the gold rush, you can get that dose of history with a visit to places like the Dawson City Museum and SS Klondike before unwinding in the natural mineral pools of the Takhini Hot Springs.

I went to Dawson City in Canada in the summer, for the Dawson City Music Festival . It was wonderful being so far north in the lands of the Midnight Sun. Although it did mean there was no end to the party, which was dangerous! 

Watch my video on YouTube  to see the West Coast in June!

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Canada in summer

Seeing Canada in summer was incredible. I fell in love with the ranches in Alberta, the views in Whistler, the food and city of Montreal and the vibe of Vancouver. Canada has definitely moved up a few spots on my favourite countries list, and I hope you get to visit in the summer one day soon.

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Hi, I'm Vicky! I wrote this. I love a bit of adventure, will try anything once, and have a strong passion for the local food and drink, whatever it may be. I'm here to help inspire you to travel to places a little out of your comfort zone, or at least to explore the usual destinations in a different way. Stay, have a look around, and if you have any questions – let me know below.

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Canada Crossroads

Canada in summer: Best places to visit in Canada in summer

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If you’re looking for an amazing summer destination, look no further than Canada! With its endless outdoor activities, beautiful scenery, and friendly locals, you’re sure to have a great time. Whether you’re interested in exploring the vast wilderness or hitting up some of the country’s top tourist destinations, the best places in Canada in summer will delight you! 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Canada has some of the world’s most beautiful scenery and a ton of festivals are being held all year round thanks to its multiculturalism. 

From the stunning Rocky Mountains in the west to the vibrant cities of Toronto and Montreal in the east, Canada has something for everyone.

Canada in summer welcomes you to many outdoor activities from hiking, and biking, to literary fests by the river banks – everything to make an epic summer vacation!

Canada in summer: Months, temperatures, and more

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

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Summer is the perfect time to visit Canada! The weather is warm and pleasant, and there are plenty of fun things to do. In this post, we’ll tell you all about the best places to go in summer in Canada as well as some useful travel tips to get your trip ready!

Let’s begin with the basics – months, temperatures, the possibility of rains, etc. 

Summer months in Canada: June , July , and August

Now the summertime in Canada is a beautiful thing. The sun is shining, the days are long and the temperatures are perfect for enjoying all that this great country has to offer. 

Canadian summers are generally warm or hot but can vary by region.

Summer temperatures : Average high temperatures generally range from 22 to 30 °C (71.6 to 86 °F) . In some of the interior destinations, it could also exceed 40 °C (104 °F).   

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

In most of Canada, it reaches its hottest point during July and August when temperatures often exceed 30°C (86°F). 

While humidity is at its peak in the summer months, it’s still very comfortable in most regions. 

Summers are also a rainy period in Canada. The wettest month is actually in the middle of the summer season in July. 

Why visit Canada in the summer? Why Canada is a great place to visit in the summer

There are plenty of reasons to visit Canada in the summertime! 

The weather is warm and welcoming, there are tons of outdoor activities to enjoy, and the cities come alive with festivities and special events. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Here are just a few of the reasons why you should visit this amazing country this season.

If you like the outdoors, there are beautiful national and provincial parks with endless hiking trails. Canada is home to different natural wonders like the Rocky Mountains, Athabasca Glacier adventure, the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick, to the midnight summer sightings! 

Canada’s national parks provide many different activities such as canoeing, kayaking as Lake Louise in Alberta , or Emerald Lake in British Columbia ; and camping during the summer months. Canada has many lakes and rivers ideal for swimming. 

There are also lots of festivals and great local culture in every city. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Canada celebrates its National Day – Canada Day – on July 1st, every year, and it is one of the biggest celebrations in all of Canada! The festive activities include art shows, food vendors, parades, and live entertainment at several different venues across the country. 

Then there are music, food, and literary fests in various provinces and Canadian cities like the Jazz festival in Montreal, the Greek food festival in Toronto, and the literary fest in Saskatoon – lots of things to choose from! 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

So you see, there’s not a bad thing about Canada in the summer. The only downside is that you’ll want to stay for weeks and months on end! 

What to do in Canada in summer?

Canada is a wonder of nature waiting to be discovered. If you’re visiting a big city, check out what festivals are happening during your stay. 

Just about every city also has great neighborhoods for walking around in, so take advantage of the lovely patio weather and enjoy local delicacies and festivals! 

Toronto in summer

Toronto is one of the most popular destinations in Canada during the summer season. There’s always something going on, from music festivals to film screenings to street art tours. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Here are just a few of the top things to do in Toronto during the summer:

  • See the sights of Toronto’s downtown core on a Harbourfront Centre Waterfront Tour. The one-hour water tour lets you go behind the scenes of Toronto’s harbor to learn about its industrial past.
  • Stop by St. Lawrence Market for some tasty treats and unique shopping. This market is home to some of Toronto’s best restaurants, so be sure to grab some tasty street food! Or hit the cool Kensington Market
  • Take a stroll or bike ride through High Park. This large park has something for everyone, from playgrounds and hiking trails to ponds and gardens.
  • Head to Nathan Phillips Square for some people watching and shopping. This popular square is home to a great selection of restaurants and shops, along with weekly events.
  • Catch a concert or festival like the TD Toronto Jazz Festival (June), featuring multiple stages with dozens of artists from around the world!
  • The popular Caribana festival (Toronto Caribbean Carnival) takes place in July and is a major Caribbean celebration featuring costumes, music, and live concerts over several days. 
  • The Taste of Danforth Festival is one of the most exciting street festivals in all of Canada. This two-day celebration in August features over a million people walking the streets, enjoying multicultural food and live music.
  • The Harbourfront Centre is located right on the shore of Lake Ontario and includes a variety of activities throughout the summertime (like cruises, picnics, and kayaking)

From Toronto, you can also embark on day trips to enjoy the mighty Niagara Falls or Niagara-on-the-Lake vineyards . 

At Niagara Falls, you can go ziplining, soak in views from the Skylon Tower, and enjoy a boat tour! 

Niagara Falls and boat full of people on the river in mist major Canadian American landmark

For a laid-back activity, pack a picnic lunch and take a leisurely stroll along the Niagara River Recreation Trail.

The famous annual Shaw Festival takes place in Niagara-on-the-Lake, from April to December. This event brings together theatre performers from around the world, showcasing plays by or in the spirit of George Bernard Shaw. 

For epic weekend getaways from Toronto, head to Bruce Peninsula National Park and opt for camping or stay in style in a yurt. 

The Canadian Rockies in the summer: Banff National Park & beyond

The Canadian Rockies are home to some of the most spectacular natural landscapes in the world. Summers are a great time to visit for great hiking, camping, and backcountry experience. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

It is also an awesome time to enjoy an epic Canadian Rockies road trip when the weather is favorable for a drive, and you get epic views everywhere you go. 

Keep in mind, that this is also one of the peak seasons to visit the mountains, so do book your accommodation ahead of time!

Here are just a few of the top things to do when planning your trip:

  • Enjoy a road trip from Banff to Jasper National Park via the Icefield Parkway with stops in Lake Louise, admire dramatic mountain peaks, and greet wildlife along the way. Banff is one of Canada’s best national parks for summer sightseeing!
  • Visit Banff’s many hiking trails. There are tons of incredible trails around the area, so you’ll never run out of places to explore during your visit!
  • Snap photos of Lake Louise. This pristine lake is surrounded by mountains on all sides – so you won’t be able to resist capturing photos of this picturesque destination! You can also go on a hike (Agnes Tea House).
  • See the world-famous Banff Springs Hotel. This stunning hotel features jaw-dropping architecture and luxurious suites fit for royalty!
  • Wander through Johnston Canyon before going on a guided tour of the Icefields Parkway. This famous drive is home to some of Alberta’s most spectacular mountain views!
  • Enjoy a picnic or two by Lake Minnewanka, Two Jack Lake (Banff), or Pyramid and Patricia Lake (Jasper)
  • Head to Vermilion Lakes for a leisurely canoe trip. 
  • Go whitewater rafting along with the Kicking Horse River, perfect for both beginners and experienced rafters.
  • Hike around Spray Valley Provincial Park. This park is home to a variety of wildlife, making it a perfect destination for nature enthusiasts during the summer months!
  • Make your way to Yoho National Park in British Columbia , and enjoy canoeing on the stunning Emerald Lake.

Camping is one of the best ways to fully appreciate Canada’s wilderness areas. 

If you live near or are visiting Calgary, Alberta, then there are several campgrounds that are open year-round where you can enjoy views of some of the most majestic mountains on earth. 

Some of Canada’s Rocky Mountain campgrounds open in May and remain open until September or October depending on weather conditions.

Prince Edward Island in summer

Prince Edward Island is one of Canada’s most picturesque provinces – and one of its best-kept secrets! 

Here are just a few top things to do on this beautiful island:

  • Go on a history walk of Charlottetown , and learn about its past. Visit one of the city’s many local art galleries, then relax over a cup of coffee or ice cream in the downtown area!
  • Enjoy fresh oysters at the Tyne Valley Oyster Festival. This festival takes place every July-August in the Tyne Valley on Prince Edward Island.
  • Take a day trip to Cavendish National Park. This coastal park features miles of beautiful beaches, making it one of Prince Edward Island’s most popular summer destinations!

Montreal in summer

Montreal is one of Canada’s most vibrant cities. It’s also home to some of the country’s best summer festivals, so you won’t want to miss out on these hot-weather festivities here!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

  • First off is the incredible Montreal International Jazz Fest (June/July). This world-famous festival features thousands of musical acts, ranging from well-known international stars to local up-and-comers!
  • Go on a stroll in Old Montreal , and sit at the Plaza de Armas soaking in the sun!
  • Climb up to Mount Royal viewpoint, and watch the sun go down over this beautiful city.
  • Enjoy summer festivities and seasonal tours/events at the Old Port of Montreal
  • Check out The Just for Laughs Festival (July). This world-famous comedy festival is full of fun, laughter, and big names in standup!
  • Join the party at The Formula One Grand Prix race (June). Taking place over three days each summer, this event draws thousands of visitors from around the world!

Halifax in summer

Halifax is a vibrant, historic city with an incredible natural harbor. It also has a strong community spirit and lots of history–from its colonial days all the way up until now! 

So naturally, the best way to experience the beauty of Halifax in the summer is by exploring its landmarks. Plus you can also relish fresh seafood at every corner of this amazing city. 

  • Head to Nova Scotia to enjoy the Halifax International Busker Festival. This top-notch festival has been wowing visitors with its incredible street performers. It runs for six days over Nova Scotia’s Natal Day long weekend at the end of July/beginning of August.
  • Take a tour of the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. This impressive fortress has been standing since 1749, making it one of Canada’s oldest attractions!
  • Visit nearby Peggy’s Cove for incredible views of the Atlantic Ocean. This picturesque fishing village is one of Nova Scotia’s most popular attractions, so you’ll need to arrive early to avoid crowded roads.
  • Check out Alexander Keith’s Brewery for a taste of Nova Scotia’s finest beer. This brewery is home to one of the oldest brew houses in Canada, so you’ll be able to enjoy quality brews that have been aged to perfection!

Calgary in summer

Calgary is one of Canada’s fastest-growing cities – and for good reason! With so much to see and do, it’s no surprise that Calgary is a great place to spend the summer.

Calgary Stampede - Canada Bucket list

  • Check out the Calgary Stampede (second week of July)! This annual rodeo festival draws visitors from all over the world. Join in on daily parades, exciting midway games, and delicious food stalls galore!
  • Spend a day at Calgary’s Heritage Park Historical Village. This living history museum features dozens of historical buildings straight out of western Canada’s past.
  • Stroll through Prince’s Island Park, Calgary’s most beautiful riverside locale. This incredible city park is the perfect place to spend an afternoon by the river.
  • Enjoy Canada Olympic Park attractions. This world-class park is home to one of North America’s most popular ski hills, and hosts a ton of events in the summer as well! 
  • Visit Calgary Zoo, one of the finest in the province of Alberta
  • The annual Calgary Folk Music Festival in July celebrates roots, world, and folk music with artists from around the globe performing on multiple stages across the river. This event is held at Prince’s Island Park! Here you may even find seasonal events and food trucks in and around the RiverWalk area in the summer.
  • One of Canada’s largest festivals, GlobalFest in August celebrates worldwide culture with a series of fun family events. This event includes a multi-day international fireworks competition and over 100 different shows and activities!

Victoria in summer

Summer on the west coast of Canada is always a delight. Let’s start with the capital city of British Columbia. Located on Vancouver Island, Victoria is named after Queen Victoria of England, and it is one of Canada’s most beautiful and historic cities! 

Girl in Victoria in the summer in Canada

Here are just a few of the amazing things to do in the summer,

  • Take a walk through the ornate Parliament Buildings. You can join a free guided tour, or enjoy a nice picnic or a photoshoot on the grounds!
  • Stop by the Empress hotel for a royal afternoon tea
  • Head over to the Fisherman’s Wharf and eat some seafood, while enjoying the breeze
  • Visit the world-famous Butchart Gardens. This jaw-dropping garden was established over 100 years ago and features an incredible variety of flowers and plants from around the world!
  • Go on a whale watching tour from the harborfront of Victoria 

Beyond Victoria:  

From Victoria, you can also drive to Tofino and the Pacific Rim National Park. The drive is for 3.50+ hours, and it is known for its ancient rainforest, marine life, and varied ecosystem. Tofino is great to go surfing! 

You can go wine-tasting at the world-famous Okanagan Valley (fly or drive 8+ hours). This massive stretch of southern British Columbia is home to dozens of wineries, guaranteeing a great time for lovers of local vino!

Vancouver in summer

Whether you’re visiting Vancouver for business or pleasure, there’s always something new and exciting to do in the city!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

  • Wander around Vancouver’s Stanley Park. With 1,000 acres of lush greenery and beautiful landscapes, this is one of the largest parks in North America!
  • Bike along the iconic Seawall of Vancouver 
  • Enjoy the sun and sand at the Kitsilano Beach
  • Check out Granville Island for quality shopping and delicious dining options galore.
  • Visit the Sun yat Sen Gardens 
  • Climb the Tree Tops or walk across the Capilano Suspension Bridge in North Vancouver
  • Enjoy hikes at the Lynn Suspension Bridge
  • Venture to nearby Grouse Mountain for some of the best views in all of Canada. This picturesque mountain is home to a small ski resort and countless hiking trails – and the view from the top is incredible!
  • From Vancouver, Whistler is a 2-hour drive away. In the summer you won’t be able to ski but you can go mountain biking, hiking and enjoy the resort town, making it a perfect family vacation idea!

During the summer months, you can also enjoy music festivals in the city. More information here

Quebec City in summer

Canada is home to some of the world’s oldest and most historically significant buildings, and how about a city with a vibrant European flair? 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Here are just a few highlights:

  • First, just get lost in the lanes of historic Old Quebec City. The European-style architecture makes this area feel like the streets of Europe, not North America!
  • Stand at the impressive Citadelle de Québec in the heart of Old Québec City. A visit to this historic landmark is a must!
  • Snap a photo of the iconic Fairmont Le Château Frontenac (this is the world’s most photographed hotel)
  • Discover Canada’s rich history at Pointe-à-Carcy. This beautiful historic site features displays about what life was like for early settlers in Québec City, including a typical family home and a village shop.
  • Every year in July, Quebec City celebrates an outdoor musical event, called Festival d’été de Québec. It is an 11-day festival that pulls in a lot of crowds and international musicians. 
  • Located in Quebec City is Montmorency Falls, which is a perfect visit on a warm summer day! 

Winnipeg in summer

Winnipeg is home to some of Canada’s most incredible festivals in the summer months, but it also features plenty of scenic attractions and unique things to do!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

  • Spend a sunny afternoon at The Forks National Historic Site . Touring this site will give you a great understanding of how Winnipeg has changed over the years!
  • Enjoy the exquisite artwork at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. This gallery is home to over 14,000 pieces of art, making it one of Canada’s biggest galleries!
  • Go on a guided tour of the Manitoba Legislative Building. This beautiful building features an incredible dome ceiling and unique architecture that you won’t want to miss out on!
  • Stay at The Fairmont Winnipeg hotel. This luxurious hotel is home to incredible amenities, including a spa and fitness center, plus delicious dining options!
  • Take part in the celebrations – like the Winnipeg Folk Festival (July), Fringe Festival (July), Red River Exhibition, Íslendingadagurinn, or Icelandic Festival of Manitoba (which takes place in Gimli, an hour from Winnipeg) , to name a few. 

Saskatoon and nearby areas in Saskatchewan in summer

We lived in Saskatoon for 3.50+ years, and summers in the river valley were beautiful – that’s where we really enjoyed the little joys of life! 

University Bridge Saskatoon

Here is what to see and do in Saskatoon and nearby areas,

  • The Saskatoon Pride Festival in June is a celebration of all aspects of diversity in the community, welcoming everyone to join in the festivities. The event includes a parade, live entertainment, and plenty of local food!
  • Pack your sunscreen and head west for Saskatchewan’s Wanuskewin Heritage Park. This historical site features some of the oldest human settlements in Canada!
  • Check out the Saskatoon Exhibition, Saskatchewan’s largest agricultural exhibition. Held every summer, this event features fun activities for all ages!
  • Saskatchewan’s arts and literary festival called the Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan begins in early July and runs to late August every summer. This festival is set on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River. 
  • Taste of Saskatchewan , an annual summer festival of food and fun!

Edmonton in summer

Edmonton is home to many family-friendly summer activities, including Canada’s largest outdoor farmer’s market! 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

  • The Old Strathcona Farmers Market in Edmonton features over 150 vendors selling locally grown fruits and vegetables, artisanal bread, meat products, and much more.
  • The Edmonton International Fringe is a 10-day theatre festival that takes place in August/September. With hundreds of shows happening each day at multiple venues, this is the largest Fringe festival in North America!
  • The Edmonton International Street Performers Festival (sometimes known as StreetFest) in July is one of Canada’s most unique festivals. This outdoor celebration features over 350 artists performing on Sir Winston Churchill Square in downtown Edmonton! Various forms of street performance art are celebrated throughout the 10-day event (including buskers/busking, dance, comedy, magic, and more)!

Cape Breton Island in summer

Cape Breton is an awesome place to visit in Canada in the summer. Visitors can enjoy hiking in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, swimming at stunning beaches, and biking on Cabot Trail.  

Plus, there are lots of events happening in Cape Breton through the summer months!

Beautiful rugged coastline scenery in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia along the Cabot Trail on the Atlantic Ocean in Maritime Canada

Cape Breton is located in the province of Nova Scotia. 

When in NS, you must visit the Fortress of Louisbourg, a historic site. This restored 17th-century French settlement features some of the oldest preserved buildings in Canada! It is also the first observatory in Canada (to stargaze and enjoy the dark skies in Canada in the winter).

Fundy National Park in summer

Fundy National Park, New Brunswick in the summertime is a sight to behold! 

Take in the fresh ocean air and enjoy one of New Brunswick’s many outdoor activities. There are hundreds of kilometers of trails for hiking, biking, or cross-country skiing. 

At the end of a long day, relax with a picnic by one of the park’s lovely lakes.

Ottawa in summer

Ottawa offers many different summertime festivals and events.

One of the highlights of summer in Ottawa is the Tulip Festival in May/June. This annual celebration features over a million tulips blooming at Commissioner’s Park, as well as other displays across the city!

Change of guards in Ottawa - Canada interesting facts

  • Many people visit Ottawa to take in the lovely scenery from Parliament Hill. Each summer, the Hill hosts a series of concerts and Canada Day celebrations. Visitors can also enjoy tulips, trees, and lovely gardens while taking in some spectacular views!
  • The Rideau Canal is another highlight of Ottawa in the summertime. Thanks to the world’s longest skating rink (7.8 km or 4.8 miles), this UNESCO World Heritage Site attracts thousands of visitors each year even in the summer.
  • The Ottawa Fringe Theatre Festival in June is a 10 day celebration of theatre! 
  • The Ottawa Jazz Festival takes place in August. This celebration of music is held for 3 days and features dozens of artists from around the world.
  • The Canada Day celebrations are Ottawa’s largest event taking place on July 1st. Locals and visitors alike take to the city for this national holiday to enjoy live entertainment, fun activities, and fireworks over the famous Parliament Hill!
  • The Tim Hortons Ottawa Dragon Boat Festival takes place in June and features teams paddling their dragon boats to the finish line. This exciting event also includes live entertainment, an international food festival, charitable activities, and more!

Yukon in summer

Many people come to Whitehorse Yukon to enjoy a number of outdoor activities including fishing, canoeing, and swimming. The weather during this time is also optimal for an epic road trip on the Alaska Highway. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The Whitehorse Canada Day Celebration in July/August is one of the biggest events in all of Yukon! This free event features live entertainment, activities for kids, food booths, and fireworks at midnight.

The Yukon River is a wonderful place to go canoeing or for a refreshing swim in the summertime!

A must-visit is the Kluane National Park in summer. It is a true highlight of Canada’s natural beauty. Visitors are able to see wildlife, hike mountain trails and relax in the park’s serene atmosphere!

The Midnight Sun Festival held in June invites visitors to attend a wide range of events including concerts, theatrical shows, sports tournaments, and more. 

The Dawson City Music Festival takes place in July every year and showcases North American artists of varying genres.

Yellowknife in summer

Travelers visit Yellowknife year-round but there are plenty of great outdoor attractions during the summer months. 

The city features an excellent network of trails that visitors can use for hiking, biking, and walking tours. Hikers are rewarded with great views of the surrounding landscape!

While visiting Yellowknife, don’t miss a chance to travel to and explore Fort Smith! This charming village features friendly locals and lots of outdoor activities including biking, hiking, and camping on the Slave River. 

Summertime in the N.W.T. is a wonderful time to experience Canada’s north! Visitors can enjoy great outdoor activities, take part in exciting festivals and events and get a glimpse of local life up north.

What to pack for Canada in summer? Canada Travel Tips

Depending on where your summer is taking you, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes time to pack for your trip. 

In the city, you’ll need comfortable clothes and shoes for exploring on foot. You’ll also want appropriate clothing for whatever activities you have planned, such as swimming or hiking. 

Girl in Waterton Canada in June

If your plans include camping, be sure to pack clothing suitable for hiking and cooking over an open fire. And don’t forget the bug spray!

If you’re spending your summer at the cottage, then you’ll need to pack for a mix of activities that include swimming, boating, and maybe hiking.

Along with your regular clothes, be sure to bring sturdy shoes or sandals for wading in the water.

Now, here is what you must pack for Canada in summer,

  • Tops (shirts, blouses, etc)
  • Dresses and skirts
  • Bottoms (pants, shorts, etc)
  • Lightweight waterproof jacket
  • Light cardigan
  • Walking and/or hiking shoes
  • Moisture-wicking socks
  • Toiletries (sunscreen, cold cream or moisturizer, etc.) 
  • Electronic essentials
  • Travel documents (visa, tour and hotel bookings, insurance, etc.)

All of the items are available on Amazon Prime so they can be at your door in two days or less!

Good To Know:

  • Canada’s peak tourist season is in the summer. So expect crowds in popular destinations. We highly recommend booking flights, hotels, and tours ahead of time to avoid disappointment. 
  • The best time for cottage rental is in July and August when the weather is at its most comfortable.  
  • You can hang out/eat on the outdoor patio and balconies from June onwards throughout the summer. 
  • There are farmer’s markets, farm side selling of berries, sunflowers, etc all set up in the summer months for people to enjoy. 
  • You can easily spend a day exploring Canada’s major cities without once needing to use a car – multiple public transit options are available for getting around conveniently and affordably. Just make sure to keep hydrated and take advantage of washrooms whenever you’re able.
  • Before heading out to camp, be sure all your gear is packed and ready to go. This includes items such as sunscreen, bug spray, a flashlight or headlamp (in case the power goes out), toiletries, water bottles, and plates.
  • Canada’s major cities are home to a variety of free summer activities ! Check out what your city has to offer by searching online or asking at your local library. Concerts, outdoor cinemas, and festivals are all great ways to enjoy summer in the city.

Should you visit Canada in the summer?

Absolutely yes! There’s always something exciting going on in Canada during summertime.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Canada is home to countless incredible summer events and festivals each season. Make the most of your vacation time by attending some fantastic Canadian celebrations in the sun!

Summertime is the perfect time to visit Canada and enjoy all that this great country has to offer. From music festivals, and Canada Day celebrations to outdoor concerts and fireworks displays, there’s always something exciting happening in Canada during the summer months! 

So pack your bags and head on over for an unforgettable Canadian vacation experience!

Pin: Beautiful places to visit in Canada during summer

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Mayuri K is an Indian Canadian traveler, writer and photographer based in Alberta. She moved to Toronto as a student in 2009, and has been calling Canada home ever since. She started the blog - Canada Crossroads - to share her travel and living experiences in the Great White North!

A History graduate and an MBA, Mayuri is a destinations marketing expert. She loves traveling with her husband, Salil and soaking in experiences across Canada, India and Europe.

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18 Best Places to Visit in Canada

Written by Lana Law Updated May 11, 2023

Author Lana Law has lived in British Columbia, Alberta, and Manitoba, and currently resides in Ontario.

Canada's cities and towns offer travelers a diverse choice of experiences, from chic, cosmopolitan centers to mountain resorts and maritime cities. Determining the best places to visit may depend on your interests and the type of trip you're hoping to create.

Kayakers on Waterfowl Lake in Banff National Park

In the heart of the country is Toronto, Canada's biggest city and the highlight of Canada's arts and cultural scene. Nearby, Niagara Falls is a must-see attraction for visitors to Canada that never disappoints. In the neighboring French-speaking province of Québec, Montreal is known for fashion, culture, and history.

In the West , Vancouver and Victoria offer two very different perspectives on West Coast cities, but each has something unique to offer. The mountain towns of Whistler and Banff are places to immerse yourself in beautiful mountain scenery and enjoy a little of the great outdoors.

Eastern Canada has a culture all of its own, with a rich maritime heritage and friendly people. And scattered throughout the country are other popular cities and lesser-known gems to explore. For ideas to help plan your Canada itinerary , see our list of the best places to visit in Canada.

1. Vancouver

2. niagara falls, 4. montreal, 5. banff national park, 6. st. john's, 8. victoria, 10. québec city, 11. whitehorse, 12. whistler, 13. charlottetown & prince edward island, 15. kelowna, 16. revelstoke, 17. winnipeg, 18. churchill, map of places to visit in canada.


Highlights : Unlimited outdoor activities, amazing natural beauty, Stanley Park, Granville Island

For beauty, climate, a fun atmosphere, and plenty of things to do, you can't go wrong planning a trip to Vancouver . Set on the shores of the Pacific Ocean and backed by snow-capped mountains, this is an active city, where locals enjoy the outdoors year-round.

Sunbathers can bask on the beaches in summer, and skiers can hit the nearby ski resorts in winter. At any time of year, you can walk the seawall or stroll through the towering trees in Stanley Park , enjoy fine dining or a casual meal while watching the sunset, or find fabulous shopping, from the markets of Granville Island to the high-end shops in the city center.

If you are spending more than a couple of days in the city and looking for some interesting outings, take a day trip from Vancouver to some of the nearby hotspots such as Whistler , Victoria , or some of the small towns in the mountains or Fraser Valley.

Niagara Falls

Highlights : One of the world's natural wonders, boat tours, lookout at the edge of the falls

Canada's most famous natural attraction, the majestic Niagara Falls has been drawing sightseers almost since its discovery. The great wall of water pounding over the falls is an amazing sight, and the view and access afforded visitors are astounding. You can literally walk up to the edge of the falls, separated only by a cast iron railing, and see the water as it disappears over the crest.

In 2021, the Niagara Parks Commission opened the 115-year-old Canadian Niagara Power Company generating station. After years of painstaking renovations and rehabilitation, this fascinating building displays its old generators and electrical equipment. New in 2023, visitors can now descend beneath the building and walk through former water tunnels, ending up at the river's edge below the falls.

The city that has developed here, also named Niagara Falls, has been greatly influenced by the people and atmosphere the falls have created. Stuntmen and daredevils have been tempting their fate on the falls throughout the decades, and as a result, a carnival-style atmosphere has come to define this unique city. Just a short drive from Toronto , Niagara Falls is easy to reach, and the city is a fun place to spend a day or two.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Niagara Falls, Canada

Toronto skyline

Highlights : Dynamic downtown with great dining, views from the CN Tower, waterfront trails

As Canada's largest city, Toronto is the country's cultural hot spot, with ballet, opera, symphony, and Broadway shows. It's also home to the landmark CN Tower . Add extraordinary shopping, fine dining, and fantastic museums, and there is no end to the entertainment.

In recent years, Toronto's waterfront has experienced ongoing development and now boasts beautiful walking areas, restaurants, and in summer, outdoor concerts and cultural performances.

Just outside the city center, in either direction from downtown, are beautiful beaches , perfect on hot summer days. In winter, a public skating rink springs to life outside city hall, and unique winter events, including the popular Winterlicious add to the fun. You can find ski resorts near Toronto as well.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Toronto

Old Montreal

Highlights : Historical old town area, waterfront park, fantastic dining, French vibe

Montreal is a unique city, with a beautiful old historic district dating back to the 1600s and a modern city center with extensive underground shopping. Old Montreal is the main tourist hub, with cobbled streets and fantastic old buildings, a perfect place to lose yourself as you wander up and down the historical streets. In and around Montreal are a fine assortment of wonderful parks and beaches .


Montreal is also home to a large number of fashion designers, and high-end boutiques line the historic streets, along with quaint hotels and restaurants. Located in the French-speaking province of Québec , Montreal has its own cultural identity, but English-speaking visitors will have no trouble communicating with anyone in the tourist industry.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Montreal: Best Areas & Hotels

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Montreal


Highlights : Incredible alpine scenery, glaciers, Lake Louise, skiing, and historic hotels

The charming mountain town of Banff, in the stunning Banff National Park, is a must-visit destination for anyone looking to explore the Rocky Mountains and see some of the most beautiful scenery in Canada. This is undeniably a tourist town, catering to international travelers from all over the globe.

In summer, the turquoise lakes, including Lake Louise and Moraine Lake , set below glacier-capped mountains are a glorious sight. One of the best ways to experience the landscape is to drive the Icefields Parkway, which runs through the park to Jasper National Park. For those looking for a bit more adventure and exercise, consider tackling one of Banff's best hiking trails . These classic routes take you to some of the most impressive sights in the park.

In winter, skiers and boarders descend on the area to enjoy the slopes of Lake Louise Ski Resort and Sunshine Village Ski Resort , two of Canada's best ski resorts .

Consider staying in Banff at the luxurious and historic Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel , or perhaps choose another one of the best resorts in Banff . That way you don't even need to leave town to enjoy a gondola ride to the top of a mountain for dinner, soak in a hot springs-fed pool, find fabulous shopping, discover lovely walking trails, and possibly see elk and woodland caribou that frequently make their way into town.

  • Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Banff National Park
  • Best Campgrounds in Banff National Park

St. John's

Highlights : Historic city with colorful buildings, friendly locals, and views from Signal Hill that are not to be missed

In Canada's far eastern province of Newfoundland and Labrador is the historic and friendly city of St. John's. This is the main gateway for air travelers to the island of Newfoundland, but many people come simply to enjoy the city.

Colorful buildings line the sloping streets that run along hills, with views out over the harbor. The city also has numerous historic sites and attractions, including and Signal Hill , George Street , but the real appeal is the vibrant atmosphere, the people, and the maritime culture that makes this city so unique from mainland Canada.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in St. John's, Newfoundland


Highlights : Parliament Hill, winter and summer festivals, historic 19th-century Rideau Canal

As Canada's national capital city, Ottawa is home to some outstanding national museums and historic sites, as well as Parliament Hill , and it enjoys a beautiful setting along the Rideau Canal . It is also a small city, making it easy to navigate and fun to explore.

Summer is a wonderful time to visit, with a whole host of events held throughout the season, including the Tulip Festival in spring and the always lavish Canada Day Celebrations on July 1st.

In winter, when the weather is cold enough, the canal transforms into a 7.8-kilometer-long skating rink and in February, the annual Winterlude celebrations draw huge crowds. There is no bad time to visit Ottawa, and it is only a few hours by car or train from Toronto.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Ottawa


Highlights : Beautiful harbor, mountain views, beaches, hiking and walking trails

British Columbia's beautiful capital city Victoria, has a quaint, small-town atmosphere, perhaps due to its island location. Set at the southern tip of Vancouver Island , the city has a mild year-round climate, with wet mild winters and warm, glorious summers. Victoria is one of the warmest places in Canada in winter , attracting Canadians from colder parts of the country from late fall until spring.

Views around the city are stunning in every direction, looking out over the harbor, south over the Strait of Juan de Fuca to Washington State, or across to the mountains on mainland British Columbia .

Victoria at night

Most of the tourist activity is focused around Victoria's Inner Harbour , where the Parliament Buildings and the historic Fairmont Empress Hotel are located. A stroll along the waterfront on a sunny day is gorgeous. Just outside the city center are beaches and lovely coastal areas , as well as parks and hiking trails .

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Victoria, British Columbia


Halifax : Friendly locals, 19th-century architecture, and stunning views from the Citadel

Halifax is a great city for anyone looking for an introduction to Canada's Maritime Provinces. The Halifax waterfront is the main tourist hub in the city, particularly during the summer months, with a few historic buildings and plenty of activity. Overlooking the city is the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site , one of the city's main attractions.

Outside the city are a number of small coastal villages that offer a good glimpse of life in the Maritimes. One of the most famous villages is Peggy's Cove , home to the most photographed lighthouse in the Maritimes. A little further afield are Lunenburg and Mahone Bay , also well worth a visit. Taking a day trip from Halifax is highly recommended.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Halifax

Québec City

Highlights : Beautifully restored 17th-century architecture in the Old Town, winter fun at the Carnival de Québec in February

Like Montreal, Québec City is loaded with history and located in the French-speaking province of Québec. This is the provincial capital and a city with a history dating back to the early 1600s. The old buildings and curving cobbled streets make this one of Canada's most charming capital cities.

One-third the size of Montreal, Québec City is also relatively small and easy to navigate. While summer is the busy season, the famous winter carnival, the Carnival de Québec attracts huge crowds and is the city's most well-known event.

Accommodation: Where to Stay in Québec City: Best Areas & Hotels

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Québec City


Highlights : Klondike gold rush history, northern lights in season

A visit to Whitehorse offers a chance to see life in Canada's far north. This is the capital of the Yukon and also a gateway to areas farther north, including Alaska and the beautiful Nahanni National Park .

The city's history dates back to the Klondike gold rush, when prospectors made their way through here on their route to Dawson City. Many of the city's attractions offer insight into the gold-rush days, and beyond the city limits are some beautiful natural areas to explore. If you are lucky, the night sky will come to life with a display of northern lights .

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Whitehorse


Highlights : World-class ski resort, Olympic history, views from the gondola, Cloudraker Skybridge

Whistler has long been known as a world-class ski destination and was the site of many of the skiing events during the 2010 Winter Olympics hosted by Vancouver. Despite this reputation, Whistler is an equally impressive and popular summer destination, with hiking, biking, golfing, and many other activities on offer.

The village has grown over the years and is now a vibrant, high-end resort town with a great selection of hotels, restaurants, and shops.

The Whistler-Blackcomb mountains are famous for their incredible terrain and bring in skiers from around the world. The Peak-2-Peak Gondola , which joins the two mountains, is an 11-minute, 4.4-kilometer-long ride, with spectacular views, and is open to skiers or non-skiers year-round.

The resort has recently added the new Cloudraker Skybridge near the top of the Peak Chair. This 130-meter metal bridge spans a small alpine valley and ends at the Raven's Nest. The viewing platform provides 360-degree views of the surrounding area, including world-famous Black Tusk.

  • Read More: Top Things to Do in Whistler

Lighthouse in Cavendish National Park

Highlights : Small town charm, PEI National Park, incredible beaches nearby

If you are going to visit Charlottetown , you might as well take the time to explore the whole province of Prince Edward Island . PEI is a summertime playground, with beautiful beaches and interesting historic sites, including the fictional home of Anne of Green Gables in Prince Edward Island National Park .

Charlottetown is the capital and main city but has an almost small-town feel, with numerous Victorian-style heritage buildings. PEI is small enough that you can see the whole island on even a short vacation. Many visitors, particularly families, rent beach houses or cottages on PEI during the summer months.

Surfers in Tofino

Highlights : Huge beaches; surfing hotspot; cool, funky town; old-growth forest hiking nearby

The unofficial surfing capital of Canada , the small town of Tofino on Vancouver Island is one of the most unique places to visit in Canada and draws a mixed crowd of visitors.

People come here to surf, hike in the old-growth forests , and enjoy the huge beaches in and around Pacific Rim National Park . This is also a great place to see wildlife, kayak, storm watch in November, and relax at one of the luxurious resorts or set up camp under towering trees at a cozy campground .

The town itself is tiny and has an end-of-the-world type feel about it, but you can find fine dining at some of the lodges or a few of the restaurants around town. A handful of stores, galleries, and coffee shops give the town a special character.

Despite the town's small size, the area feels big. With so much to see and do, you'll want to plan at least a few days here, although it's easy to fill up a week or more. Not far away is Ucluelet , another small town, which you can easily visit on an outing from Tofino.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Things to Do in Tofino


Highlights : Lake Okanagan waterfront, beaches, golfing, downhill skiing in the winter

In the interior of British Columbia is the lovely city of Kelowna. This city is a favorite spot for Canadians but less well-known internationally.

Picturesquely set on the shore of Lake Okanagan and surrounded by rolling mountains, Kelowna draws tourists during the summer months, when it's possible to hike, golf, or enjoy the lake at one of the many wonderful beaches in town.

Renting a houseboat to explore the surrounding waters is a popular summer vacation in this area. In winter, the surrounding mountains are a hotspot for skiers, with the popular nearby ski resorts of Big White and Silver Star , two of British Columbia's best ski resorts , within easy reach.

Just down the lake from Kelowna is the picturesque small town of Penticton , home to some of the best beaches in the Okanagan.

  • Read More: Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Kelowna and the Okanagan

Ski touring at Revelstoke

Highlights : A historic mining town, epic resorts and heli-skiing in the winter, mountain biking in the summer

The adventure town of Revelstoke is one of the best places to visit in Canada for adventure. Although it's a favorite destination among Albertans and British Columbians, it is still undiscovered on an international scale, making it a good place to escape the crowds associated with sightseeing destinations like Banff and Lake Louise.

Beautiful mountain scenery surrounds this small town in the interior of British Columbia, but much of the appeal comes from the activities available for outdoor lovers.

In winter, skiers come here to enjoy skiing at Revelstoke Mountain Resort , one of the best ski resorts in British Columbia , or to go heli-skiing in the Purcell Mountains. In summer, mountain biking and hiking are the most popular things to do. Nightlife here has been expanding over the last number of years, and you can find plenty of places to frequent after a day of skiing or hiking.

Biking in Winnipeg

Highlights : The Forks Market, historic 19th-century buildings, Museum for Human Rights

This thriving city in the prairies of Central Canada may not be the first image that jumps to mind when thinking about the best places to visit in Canada, but if you are traveling in summer, Winnipeg is worth a stop. Surrounded by fields, many of which glow yellow in summer with canola or sunflowers, and set along the Red and Assiniboine Rivers, the city is surprisingly scenic.

The dynamic and fun Forks Market , at the confluence of the two rivers, has restaurants, and outdoor walking trails (a skating rink in winter) and is one of the first places tourists should visit. Also in this area is one of Canada's premiere museums: the Canadian Museum for Human Rights .

Within a couple of hours of the city is Grand Beach , one of Canada's best beaches set on the shore of Lake Winnipeg, and the Whiteshell Provincial Park , an area of boreal forest with some of Manitoba's best lakes and rivers. People come here to camp, hike, or spend time at a cottage.

  • Read More: Best Attractions & Places to Visit in Winnipeg

Polar bear in Churchill

Highlights : Up close and personal encounters with polar bears

The small town of Churchill is the place in Canada to see polar bears in their natural environment. These huge beasts roam the tundra just outside of town in search of their next meal when the ice is out on Hudson Bay. Tours in specially created vehicles called Tundra Buggies will take you out into the vast wilderness to see the bears safely and comfortably.

Nearby and also worth visiting is one of Canada's most famous and rarely visited National Historic Sites, the Prince of Wales Fort. Dating from 1731, this massive stone structure is fun to explore, and after your visit, you'll be glad you weren't one of the men stationed here.

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Areas and Regions to Visit in Canada: If you want to extend your travels beyond the best cities and towns in Canada and tackle a region, you can find some interesting destinations. In Eastern Canada, consider the Gaspé Peninsula , a picturesque region in Quebec that juts into the St. Lawrence River. On the West Coast, Vancouver Island offers remote stretches of wilderness, small towns, and incredible hiking trails and campgrounds . To experience Canada's far north, have a look at the beauty of Nunavut .

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

10 Best Summer Destinations in Canada

Are you ready for a canadian adventure this summer.

The best summer destinations in Canada include lakeside towns and natural landscapes, all of which are great for a wide range of land and aquatic adventures. Ample daylight also brings with it plenty of opportunities to whip out your camera for stunning snapshots. 

Summer in Canada is normally from June through August, though you can enjoy pleasant weather earlier or later in other parts of the diverse country. From charming towns rich in French heritage to scenic hiking trails and vast peninsulas where you can spot whales right from the coast, here’s where to start your Canadian adventure this summer.

Niagara Falls, Ontario

Waterfall cruises, beautiful parks, and wine country.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Niagara Falls is best experienced in summer when the magnificent waterfalls are at their shimmering best. In warm and bright weather, the thundering falls gleam in all their glory and longer daylight hours allow you to take it all in on a misty, close-encounter cruise – just don’t forget your poncho.

The height of summer, July or August, is when the nightly Niagara Falls Fireworks show takes place with spectacular pyrotechnics lighting up the sky against the backdrop of the falls. Other summer fun includes the Niagara SkyWheel as well as the Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens and Butterfly Conservatory. There is beautiful countryside to explore near Niagara Falls too. Rent a bike and explore the region on 2 wheels, stopping at pretty towns, wineries, and quaint restaurants along the way.

Muskoka, Ontario

Gorgeous lakes and the great outdoors of cottage country.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Muskoka, with its lakes, rivers, and forests, make up Ontario’s beautiful cottage country. It’s easily among the best summer destinations in Canada and a mecca for outdoorsy types. It offers many choices of parks and lakeside beaches for camping, as well as waterfalls to claim as a reward after a scenic hike. You can even paddle to some of the majestic falls by canoe or kayak.

Clamber through Muskoka’s forest canopies at a treetop park or whizz down forest trails on a mountain bike. Milder, but no less exciting, adventures include boat cruises through Honey Harbor in Georgian Bay, passing dramatic rocks and thousands of pine-forested islands. For an unforgettable experience, you can take to the skies and enjoy the bay from a whole new perspective by seaplane.

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Victoria, british columbia, historical sightseeing with beautiful flora and fauna to admire.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Victoria is the beautiful capital of British Columbia. The city's many attractions are even more glorious in the summer sun. The Butchart Gardens, particularly the rose gardens, reach their peak bloom between June and August. Not to mention, there are the Night Illuminations that transform the gardens into a dazzling fantasy land. At Victoria Butterfly Gardens, you can admire nature’s artistry through pearlescent chrysalides and colorfully patterned wings.

Summer also gives Victoria Harbor its sheen as its iconic little ferries put on a show every weekend – be amused by their amazingly choreographed “dance moves” on the water. Enjoy window shopping down Johnson Street. You can also take in views of historic buildings on pleasant strolls around the harbor and Chinatown. At Fisherman’s Wharf, have lunch with seals in view, or go on a Salish Sea adventure to see whales and orcas. Read more…

Nanaimo, British Columbia

Fun adventures, from the harbor to the mountains.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Nanaimo is a harbor city on the east coast of Vancouver Island that offers wonderful discoveries under bright blue summer skies. Downtown Nanaimo is a pleasure to stroll through, all the way down to the beautiful Harbourfront Walkway with its fishing piers. You might spot crabbers hauling their bounties or seaplanes taking off and landing. Adventure awaits at the marina where you can go for a whale-watching tour.

Not far from the city are great trails for hiking and mountain biking. Find mysterious ancient stone etchings on hikes through the unique Petroglyph Provincial Park. The Doumont Trails offer MTB cyclists exciting forest singletrack and cross-country rides with ramps for some big airtime. Explore beyond Nanaimo with a boat out to Newcastle Island for even more nature adventures.

Okanagan Valley, British Columbia

Enjoy verdant views of vineyards, lakes and forests.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The Okanagan Valley and its mountain resorts may lure skiers, but the region is a favorite Canadian destination for summer getaways. The main town of Kelowna on the eastern shore of Okanagan Lake is home to picturesque local vineyards and orchards as well as lakeshore parks and pine forests. Lake kayaking, hikes and wine testings are all within reach.

Okanagan Lake is a summer haunt for beachgoers, offering over 30 beaches that each have their own sets of appeals, ranging from water sports to playgrounds for family fun. Summer also brings plenty of cultural highlights to its towns. Kelowna itself regularly hosts summer music concerts and festivities in its parks and select wineries.

Charlevoix, Quebec

Scenic rides through a biosphere reserve.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Charlevoix is a World Biosphere Reserve that’s home to several national parks and farmlands. The parks serve as great summer hiking destinations. Among the most popular is the Acropole des Draveurs trail, which rewards you with spectacular views of the Malbaie River. Getting to this region is also a big pleasure – the hour-long drive from Quebec City follows the sea-like Saint Lawrence River, with a breathtaking backdrop of rolling hills.

Another great way to take in the region’s beauty is by riding the Train de Charlevoix that runs between Beauport and La Malbaie, with a stop at Baie-Saint-Paul. Consider yourself lucky when you spot cetaceans breaching the river’s surface along the journey. In Baie-Saint-Paul, Parc du Gouffre is a popular riverside summer campground. A small tributary of the left bank of Saint Lawrence, Rivière du Gouffre is a wonderful place to kayak.

Quebec City, Quebec

French canadian heritage surrounded by the great outdoors.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Quebec City is among the oldest cities in North America, founded by a French explorer in 1608. To this day, it still proudly wears its French heritage on its sleeve through impressive architecture, such as Place Royale and the Notre-Dame-des-Victoires Church with its lasting Saint Geneviève chapel. A stroll along the cobblestoned streets of   Old Quebec under summer skies will feel like traveling through Europe.

Beyond the UNESCO World Heritage Site, there’s plenty of ways to enjoy the great outdoors. Not far are city parks like the Plains of Abraham – great for a scenic picnic. Further afield, numerous hiking trails take you through lush valleys with breathtaking cliffs overlooking the Saint Lawrence River. A popular option is the Bras-du-Nord trail, which rewards you with spectacular waterfalls at the end of your hike. Read more…

Gaspesie, Quebec

Vast national parks for summer adventures.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Gaspesie, also known as the Gaspe Peninsula, is a prime destination for outdoor adventures in Quebec’s Bas-Saint-Laurent region. The vast peninsular area offers some of the most scenic journeys in Canada, with its fine combination of verdant mountain views and the Gulf of Saint Lawrence seascapes. You can explore charming towns and villages, as well as picturesque lighthouses (which are great spots to look for breaching whales) along the extensive coast. Some have quiet yet spectacular strips of beaches to relax on.

Upland, the hills are home to 4 national parks with forest trails leading you to refreshing falls such as the Saint-Anne Waterfall. For a quick hike, try the Mont Albert trail where the summit plateau rewards you with great panoramas of the surrounding valleys. Canyoning, canoeing, rafting, kayaking, and even hang-gliding are among the many fun summer activities you can do in Gaspesie.

Jasper, Alberta

Exceptional summer hikes through the canadian rockies.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Jasper is a laidback mountain town and a great home base for exploring the Canadian Rockies, with access to beautiful mountains and alpine lakes. Jasper National Park is the largest of its kind in the Rockies. Naturally, there’s plenty of action within the park itself to try in summer. Near town, you can hike to Pyramid Lake, kayak Lake Edith or Lake Annette, or take a boat tour in Maligne Canyon.

Southeast of Jasper, one to tick off many a bucket list is the Icefields Parkway, which is magical to traverse through even in the summer sun. An unofficial rite of passage when visiting Jasper is riding the Jasper Skytram – Canada’s highest and longest guided aerial tramway, at over 2,000 meters above sea level and lasting about 7.5 minutes.

Banff, Alberta

Alpine action and scenery that’s best enjoyed in summer.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Banff National Park, with its breathtaking alpine lakes and forests, is spectacular in summer. Longer daytime hours mean pleasant weather, day and night. To make the most of the balmy weather, popular activities include camping, lakeside picnicking, mountain trekking and canoeing. Whatever your itinerary, don’t miss a gondola ride to Sulfur Mountain.

Summer is the best time to golf at the world-famous Fairmont Banff Springs Golf Course. As long as you’ve bagged a permit, exceptional fishing experiences await at the Bow Rive or Lake Minnewanka. The Bow River itself is a playground for paddling adventures – you can canoe from Castle Junction to Banff or from Bow Falls to Canmore. You can also trot and take in the beauty of Banff’s backcountry by horseback, with pine-forested valleys and historic tea houses to discover along the way. Read more…

This article includes opinions of the Go Guides editorial team. compensates authors for their writing appearing on this site; such compensation may include travel and other costs.

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

27 Incredible Places to Visit in Canada This Summer

Canada is filled with incredible places to visit during the summer, ranging from stunning beaches, soaring mountains, beautiful parks, and so much more. With the warm summer weather, outdoor travels are an absolute must. If you’re from Canada, you’ll know the summer passes way too quickly. Before you know it, it will be snowing again! Take advantage of the season and visit some incredible places the country has to offer.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

With so many wonderful summer destinations, it can certainly be challenging to decide where to go! And so, a group of travel bloggers has come together to recommend their favourite places to visit in Canada this summer. Surely, they will inspire you to add more places to your bucket list!

Continue reading to discover the best places in Canada to visit this summer!

**Please note that this blog post uses affiliate links. If you make a purchase through my link, I will receive a small commission at no cost to you.

Table of Contents

Places to Visit in the West Coast of Canada in Summer

Recommended by Daniel of Destinationless Travel 

Whistler is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). People hanging out at the beach in Whistler.

When it comes to epic summer destinations in Canada few are as popular or well known as Whistler. Although famous for world-class skiing,  Whistler is home to a huge range of bucket list things to do  in the summer too.

For many, your days will be spent at one of the lakes around town. The most popular for a beach day is Lost Lake where you’ll find crowds of people of all ages relaxing at the beach. Take a walk around the lake and take a plunge off the floating jetty or take a paddleboard and explore. Regardless it’s a fun day out.

For the adrenaline junkies, you simply have to get yourself a day pass on the gondola and try some downhill mountain biking. The trails here are epic and even the most experience can find one to test their skills. Of course, if you have no experience you can still give it a go, or, take a ride on one of the many trails around town. Just head to a bike rental store, grab a bike and a map and explore.

After all the riding it’s likely you’ll be thirsty and hungry. A favorite spot of mine is Whistler Brewing . The brewery is located a short drive from the center of town and they brew some delicious Canadian craft beer. The brewery also has a hearty menu with lots of pub classics. My favorite though? The bigger than your face nachos. Seriously it’s huge and will easily feed two people.

The above activities really stick to a typical budget in Whistler, however for those who want to spoil themselves a floatplane tour around the mountains is a must. This unique experience has you taking off and landing in lakes all while enjoying a classic scenic flight with breathtaking views.

With the above activities and so much more it’s no wonder people love Whistler in summer! 

Where to Stay in Whistler:

  • One of the top-rated and fancy places to stay in Whistler is the Westin Resort & Spa . It’s perfect for a weekend getaway!
  • For a stunning boutique hotel experience with colourful rooms, check out Summit Lodge Boutique Hotel .
  • For more places to stay in Whistler, check out , , or VRBO .

Bowen Island

Recommended by Dean and Laynni of Routinely Nomadic

Bowen Island is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). View of the harbour with boats.

While Canada has plenty of winter attractions, it really comes to life in summer. And what better place to visit on a balmy summer day than a gorgeous island just off the Pacific Coast? Little Bowen Island meets all the requirements for a perfect day trip (or longer if you have the time) – spectacular scenery, a convenient location by car or public transport, beaches, hikes, water sports, and a great selection of shops, restaurants and bars, most of which are found right in  beautiful Snug Cove .

Located just a 20-minute ferry ride across from Vancouver’s Horseshoe Bay terminal , Bowen Island is particularly popular with hikers. This lush island is laced with nice hiking trails, many of which start right at the harbour. Iconic Mount Gardner is accessed via several different trails and provides incredible scenic lookouts of the mainland (on a clear day, all the way to Mount Baker), Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast and the Pebble Beach Sea Walk is a pleasant stroll with amazing views and a cute little lighthouse at the end. Also, if you ask around near Snug Cove a local might help you find the famous Driftwood Mastodon. Then, once you’ve worn yourself out, you can choose from a number of cozy beaches.

Tacos, hot dogs, and ice cream are among the favourite choices along the pleasant harbour and there are many interesting shops and galleries for those looking for a memento of their time on Bowen. Whether you are looking to get active or just soak in some island ambiance, Bowen Island is a great choice.

Where to Stay on Bowen Island:

  • A popular place to stay on Bowen Island is Gibsons Garden Hotel . It is located nearby Sunshine Coast Museum and Gibsons Marina.
  • The Bonniebrook Lodge boasts a colourful exterior and cozy rooms to enjoy.
  • For more places to stay on Bowen Island, check out , , or VRBO .


Wells Gray Provincial Park

Recommended by Debbie of

Wells Gray is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). Aerial view of the waterfall.

One of the best places to visit in British Columbia, Canada during the summer is the waterfall paradise of  Wells Gray Provincial Park . There is so much beauty to be found in its dramatic peaks, alpine meadows, and clear lakes. With 41 named waterfalls and 5000km² of the mostly untouched Canadian wilderness, Wells Gray Park is an outdoor lover’s paradise.

Several of the waterfalls are accessible with a short walk or hike from the parking lot. The most popular falls are Helmcken Falls, Spahat Falls, Moul Falls, and Dawson Falls. Helmcken Falls is the fourth largest waterfall in Canada and its power and beauty will take your breath away. You can walk behind Moul Falls and feel the power of mother nature.

Wells Gray is also home to the most easily accessible alpine meadow in British Columbia, through the Trophy Mountain trail. You can also join a wilderness safari, take an aerial tour , enjoy the beauty of boating on Clearwater Lake, or take a refreshing dip in a clear lake on a hot summer day.

The best way to experience the beauty of Wells Gray Provincial Park is by camping. If you are not the camping type, you will also find several lodges nearby for a more luxurious stay.

When you witness the power of nature at Wells Gray, you cannot help but feel an overwhelming sense of wonder.

Where to Stay Near Wells Gray:

  • To best experience the beauty of the park, book a camping site . Then, you’ll wake up super close to the trails!
  • For a beautiful cabin stay, Wolfwood Guest Ranch is a great option. The cabins are definitely charming!
  • For more places to stay near Wells Gray, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Luke of Wild About BC

Squamish is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). Man overlooking the water from the mountains.

The town of Squamish, an hour north of Vancouver on the west coast of Canada, is the ultimate outdoor playground. It seems that everybody here spends their days outside exploring the amazing places right on their doorstep. In the summer months, Squamish is buzzing with people who are all eager to get out and hike, rock climb, windsurf, mountain bike, camp and so much more.  

Squamish is located along the Sea to Sky Highway , between Vancouver and Whistler, and is nestled in amongst spectacular mountain ranges at the end of Howe Sound. It is a beautiful part of the world and is an epic place to get out and explore. There are some iconic hikes here, the most popular of which is the Stawamus Chief Trail . A short but steep hike will take you to the top of the cliffs overlooking Squamish town where you will get jaw-dropping views out over Howe Sound and the surrounding mountains.

It doesn’t really matter what activity you are into, as Squamish is pretty much guaranteed to offer it and there are few places that are this beautiful for you to enjoy spending time outdoors in the summer. As everything is located so close to the town centre you can finish off your day with some food and drinks on one of the many sunny patios in town. The perfect end to a summer’s day.

Where to Stay in Squamish:

  • Located in the town is Howe Sound Inn & Brewing Company . Here, you can enjoy beers while admiring mountains in the distance!
  • For a top-rated stay, check out Squamish Highlands Bed and Breakfast .
  • For more places to stay in Squamish, check out , , or VR B O .

Vancouver Island

Recommended by Campbell and Aysha of Stingy Nomads

Walking along Vancouver Island

Vancouver Island, the largest island off the west coast of North America, is famous for its wild beaches, beautiful forests, rich diversity in marine life, and exciting activities on land and in the water. Blessed with beautiful old-growth forests, mountains, and surrounded by a spectacular coastline, exploring the incredible hiking trails in summer is very popular.

The West Coast Trail is Canada’s most famous multi-day hike. It is a tough one-week backpacking trail, camping and carrying all your supplies hiking along the coast. Hiking this trail on the beach and in the forest, you can see amazing wildlife, including bears, whales, orcas, otters, seals, and more. The Juan de Fuca trail is another multi-day hike on the coast. The beautiful trail and beaches are easy to reach by car and can be done as day hikes from the city of Victoria.

Whale watching is one of the best things to do from Vancouver Island in summer. Orcas (killer whales), Humpback whales, Pacific grey whales, and minke whales are some whale species that can be seen on whale watching tours from Vancouver Island. May to October is the best time for whale watching. California sea lions, harbor seals, dolphins, and a variety of birds are usually seen during these excursions.

Victoria , the capital city of British Columbia is a beautiful city and a very popular tourist destination. Don’t miss the spectacular gardens, seafront parks, museums, eateries, and craft brewers. It is awesome to get into the water in summer around Vancouver island with some amazing ocean sports like kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, surfing, and scuba diving.

Where to Stay on Vancouver Island:

  • For a stunning waterfront stay, Waters Edge Shoreside Suites will surely catch your eye.
  • Kingfisher Oceanside Resort and Spa is a dreamy oceanfront resort that boasts an incredible garden.
  • For more places to stay on Vancouver Island, check out , , or VRBO .

Okanagan Valley

Recommended by Bailey from Destinationless Travel

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The Okanagan Valley is a beautiful region in British Columbia that really comes to life in the summer months. This valley is famous for its beautiful lakes include the “lake of many colors” Kalamalka and the large Okanagan Lake. Lakeside beaches fill with vacationers enjoying the warm weather and sunshine while out on the water you’ll find tons of speed boats, houseboats, and pontoon boats.  

The main cities within the Okanagan are Kelowna and Vernon. Although Kelowna is the larger of the two, there are still plenty of  things to do in Vernon  with both cities boasting craft breweries, distilleries, boutique shopping, cafes, and a seemingly endless number of restaurants.  

On top of the vibrant holiday vibe and beaches, the Okanagan is famous for wine. That’s right, it is wine country with vineyards pretty much as far the eye can see. You can join one of the many wine tours in the area or simply visit cellar doors on your own and do some wine tastings. Many of the vineyards also have lake views which are simply stunning.  

If you’re not a fan of wine there are also craft cideries around and plenty of fresh fruit to pick too. U-pick farms are all over the Okanagan Valley and not only make for a fun activity, but also is a cheap way to grab local fresh fruit such as strawberries and raspberries.  

Where to Stay in Okanagan Valley:

  • For a colourful and stunning retreat, Manteo at Eldorado Resort is sure to leave you speechless.
  • If you’re looking for a more affordable stay that is still stunning and has a pool, check out Prestige Vernon Lodge .
  • For more places to stay in Okanagan Valley, check out , , or VRBO .

Salt Spring Island

Recommended by Cecily of Groovy Mashed Potatoes

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Unwind on Salt Spring Island, a free-spirited island known for its stunning nature, artisan culture, and sustainable, locally grown food. The bohemian island is located between Vancouver and Vancouver Island and is reachable by ferry or floatplane. You will have gorgeous views of the neighbouring islands and the ocean on your way to Salt Spring. Summer is the perfect time to visit the creative island. Warm sunny days make it easy to enjoy all of the  fun things to do on Salt Spring . 

The best way to explore the island is by car. First browse the Saturday Market, where you will find tons of vendors selling locally made products. Next, visit the Salt Spring Island Cheese Farm for a delicious goat cheese tasting. Afterward, continue to Garry Oaks and Salt Spring Vineyards for a wine tasting. At Salt Spring Vineyards order a glass of their bubbly, purchase some picnic ingredients, and sit outside for a picnic along the vineyards

If you’re not a wine drinker, check out Salt Spring Island Ales for a beer tasting in the forest or Salt Spring Wild Cider for a cider tasting with views overlooking the farm and valley.

One of the best activities to do during summertime is a kayak tour to Chocolate Beach. The 3-hour tour takes you to a white-crushed shell beach on a tiny island. Look out for the “loo with a view”!

Where to Stay on Salt Spring Island:

  • For a nature-filled stay on a private beach, Cusheon Lake Resort is a great choice.
  • The Cottages on Salt Spring Island boast charming rooms and are located in a popular area for canoeing.
  • For more places to stay on Salt Spring Island, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Me

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Chilliwack is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer due to the beautiful mountain views and stunning flower fields. It is home to the Chilliwack Sunflower Festival , which is hosted on a farm that has many different types of flowers that bloom during the summer. It is a popular spot due to the many varieties of sunflowers that are really picturesque with mountains in the distance. There are plenty of photo spots where you can capture the perfect shot of the family or for Instagram!

Chilliwack is also home to a number of stunning parks and lakes to explore. A popular lake to visit is located within Chilliwack Lake Provincial Park which is a hotspot in the summer for swimming. As with many of the amazing places to visit in the Canadian Rockies , there are plenty of nature-filled hiking trails in this area as well.

Where to Stay in Chilliwack:

  • For a budget-friendly stay in the area, Travelodge Hotel is a good bet.
  • Located a bit outside the city centre is Harrison Hot Springs Resort & Spa , which is a great spot for a relaxing getaway.
  • For more places to stay in Chilliwack, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Lotte of Phenomenal Globe

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Vancouver is a must-visit on any BC itinerary and a great summer destination in Canada. Due to its location on the Pacific Ocean, Vancouver has a moderate climate, and even during summer, the city is a very pleasant place to be.  

There are lots of things to see and do and you could easily spend a week in Vancouver if you have the time. Any  Vancouver itinerary  should include a visit to Gastown, Vancouver’s oldest neighborhood. Admire the Steam Clock, shop for souvenirs at the cute boutique stores, or grab a drink and a bite at one of the many restaurants and bars.  

Next up is Granville Island where you can browse the abundance of fresh produce and delicious snacks at Granville Island Public Market. Be sure to take the Aquabus here, this isn’t just a convenient way to get to Granville Island but a fun activity in itself.  

Another highlight is beautiful Stanley Park, where you can stroll along the Sea Wall, admire the view and check out the art along the way (A-maze-ing Laughter statue and the Inukshuk).  

If you are looking to stay in downtown Vancouver, the St. Regis Hotel is very nice. Purebread is a lovely little bakery selling all sorts of buns, cakes, bread, and more. Pholicious and Ramen Gojiro are excellent places for lunch/dinner.  

Where to Stay in Vancouver:

  • Blue Horizon Hotel is a top-rated place to stay in the heart of Vancouver.
  • For a lovely boutique hotel, the Georgian Court Hotel is a great choice.
  • For more places to stay in Vancouver, check out , , or VRBO .

Haida Gwaii

Recommended by James of Travel Collecting

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Haida Gwaii, a remote archipelago off the coast of British Columbia between Vancouver Island to the south and Alaska to the north, is a truly magical place to visit. The islands, called the Queen Charlotte Islands until 2010, are home to the Haida first nations people and the Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve. The islands are often shrouded in mist, covered in clouds, and surrounded by swells, and the season to visit them is short (really just summer!), but they are incredibly beautiful no matter what the weather.

To learn about the Haida people, visit the Haida Heritage Center in Skidegate, where there is a cultural center and the Haida Gwaii Museum, which focuses on the culture, history, and contemporary life of the Haida people.

Another reason to visit Haida Gwaii is for the nature. There are hundreds of tiny islands covered in lush forests.  They can only be accessed by boat or seaplane. A really great way to experience the southern islands is to  take a multi-day sea kayaking trip around Gwaii Haanas . On this trip or a boat cruise, you will possibly see dozens of bald eagles and osprey. There is also a good chance of seeing humpback whales, orcas, and seals swimming around and right up beside you. 

To top off your trip, you won’t want to miss SG̱ang Gwaay Llanagaay (formerly called Ninstints) on Anthony Island. It is located at the southern tip of the archipelago. This UNESCO World Heritage-listed site is incredibly remote, but worth every effort it takes to get there. The site of an abandoned Haida village has the most impressive collection of totem poles in situ in the world. Some have fallen over and are being left to slowly return to nature, while many others are still standing. They are lined along a stony beach and gazing out to sea like guardians over a mystical land. Being there and walking among them is a truly awe-inspiring experience.

Where to Stay in Haida Gwaii:

  • For a relaxing and unique experience, opt to stay in one of the cabins in Haida Gwaii .
  • If you’re looking for a cozy bed and breakfast, Cacilia’s Best & Breakfast is well-rated.
  • For more places to stay in Haida Gwaii, check out , , or VRBO .

Yoho National Park

Recommended by Michelle of The Wandering Queen

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

One of the best places to visit in  Canada over the summer  is Yoho National Park, located near Banff National Park. This small but impactful national park is astounding! It is the second oldest national park in Canada and is protected due to the Burgess Shale sites that have fossils from 540 million years. But the fossils are not what most people come to see in Yoho. Most people come to experience the charming and well-known lake called Emerald Lake. This lake is a stunningly bright green-blue lake with surrounding mountains and beautiful evergreen trees. 

Another fun thing to do is to visit the remarkable Takakkaw Falls. This waterfall is around 373 meters, making it the 2nd tallest waterfall in Canada! Just make sure to drive carefully to the area as the road is exceedingly windy. You can also visit the beautiful lake called Lake O’Hara, but you need to make a reservation with a shuttle bus to take you to the lake. This is to help protect the sensitive alpine area and to keep the lake pristine. No matter what you do in the park, you will enjoy it! The jaw-dropping surrounding mountains, lakes, and waterfalls will make you fall in love with this one-of-a-kind national park. 

Where to Stay near Yoho National Park:

  • The best way to experience Yoho is definitely by booking a campground . Then, you can experience waking up in the middle of the mountains and head out hiking right away!
  • Alternatively, located right in Yoho National Park is Emerald Lake Lodge . There are rooms with wood-burning fireplaces and even an outdoor hot tub!
  • For more places to stay near Yoho National Park, check out , , or VRBO .

Places to Visit in the Prairie Provinces of Canada in Summer

Lake louise.

Recommended by Ben of Ticket 4 Two Please 

Beautiful view of Lake Louise in summer.

Lake Louise is one of the premier summer destinations to visit in Canada and for good reason – the serene blue water, flanked on all sides by imposing mountain faces, is truly a sight to behold. Located in the heart of Banff National Park, Canada’s first-ever National Park, Lake Louise has been a tourist destination for well over a century and continues to attract people en masse to this day. 

Although the winters in Lake Louise are mesmerizing, with an abundance of skiing and snowshoeing opportunities, it is the summers in Lake Louise that truly showcase the beauty of the surrounding area. 

There are many hikes and walks available in Lake Louise but the world-renowned Agnes Teahouse Trail should be on every visitor’s bucket list. The simple out-and-back style trail winds its way through the trees before reaching Lake Agnes, where you will find the world-famous teahouse nestled cozily on the shoreline. Having refreshed with a rejuvenating cup of hot chocolate from the teahouse, you should make your way back down the mountainside to experience Lake Louise’s signature activity – canoeing. 

Canoeing on Lake Louise , in one of the iconic red canoes, has evolved into a trademark venture for any visitor to Banff National Park. Paddling across the lake, watching the sunset over the mighty Victoria Glacier, is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that simply cannot be missed. 

Lake Louise is a destination brimming with astounding beauty and natural allure and is certainly one of the best places to visit in Canada during the summer.

Where to Stay in Banff:

  • The best way to experience Banff is definitely by booking a campground . Then, you can experience waking up in the middle of the mountains and head out hiking right away!
  • Alternatively, Canalta Lodge is a stunning mountainside lodge with incredible views.
  • For more places to stay in Banff, check out , , or VRBO .

Waterton Lakes National Park 

Recommended by Katja of Globetotting  

Great view of the park, overlooking the water in summer.

There are so many wonderful places to visit in Canada during the summer months but one of the best destinations is undoubtedly Waterton National Park. Located 260km from Calgary in Alberta, the park borders Montana’s Glacier National Park in the USA and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and UNESCO Biosphere Reserve.  

What is particularly special about Waterton – in addition to the stunning scenery – is that it still feels relatively undiscovered. Compared to some of the more famous parks in Alberta, including Banff and Jasper, Waterton is very lowkey. The small town of the same name sits within the park itself and is made up of just a handful of streets and family-run shops and restaurants. 

There are lots of  things to do in Waterton Lakes National Park  but it’s especially well known for its hiking opportunities. Crypt Lake Trail is the most famous – and challenging – hike in the area. Waterton Lake is the deepest lake in the Canadian Rockies measuring 500ft deep. The waters are chilly, even during the height of summer, but still ideal for windsurfing, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding. Another fun activity is to take a boat trip with the Waterton Shoreline Cruise Co. 

Other summer activities include cycling, wildlife watching, horse riding, and the annual wildflower festival. And don’t miss afternoon tea at the Prince of Wales hotel , the enormous Hitchcockian hotel that dates back from the 1920s.  

Where to Stay Near Waterton Lakes National Park:

  • Located within walking distance to the lake, Aspen Village boasts cozy suites with full kitchens to enjoy.
  • Prince of Wales Hotel is a stunning 1920s hotel with beautiful lake views.
  • For more places to stay near Waterton Lakes National Park, check out , , or VRBO .

Jasper National Park

Stunning view of a glacier lake. best places to visit in canada in summer | canadian destinations

Jasper National Park is a stunning place in Canada to visit this summer due to the amazing hikes through mountains and forests. A trip to the park will have you wanting to plan another trip back right away. Located in the Canadian Rocky Mountains , Jasper boasts glacier lakes, snowy mountain tops, wild animals, waterfalls, and so much more.

One of the best hikes in the park is the Valley of the Five Lakes . During this hike, you will pass by 5 stunning lakes that have different shades of blues and greens. This family-friendly hike is bound to leave you speechless. Head here early to experience the trails with few people around before heading to another destination within the park.

Nearby waterfalls include Sunwapta Falls and Athabasca Falls – two frequently recommended places to visit in the park, especially in summer. After exploring waterfalls, head into the main town for a bite to eat and shop around. Check out Jasper Brewing Company for some good local beers!

If you’re feeling like an excursion in the mountains, be sure to check out the Maligne Lake Cruise to Spirit Island.

Where to Stay Near Jasper National Park:

  • The best way to experience the park is definitely by booking a campground for a couple of nights.
  • Alternatively, Jasper Inn & Suites is a highly rated hotel located in the heart of the park.
  • For more places to stay near Jasper National Park, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Sunetra of GlobetrottingSu

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

A must-visit place during a Canadian Rockies summer itinerary is Lake Peyto. The brilliant blue of this lake has to be seen to be believed; no photoshop or color enhancement is required. The hike up to see the dazzling glacier-fed blue water of Lake Peyto surrounded by the huge alpine mountains should be on every traveler’s bucket list in Banff National Park. Although a year-round destination, it is best to visit in summer to avoid snow and ice on the trail as well as seeing the stunning color of the lake in peak summer.

For many visitors, this is one of the iconic views of the Canadian Rockies and hence the hike is very popular among the visitors in summer. From the parking lot at Bow Summit, an easy 1.9-mile hike will bring to one of the most breathtaking views in the Canadian Rockies. The wooden platform overlooking the stunning lake gets very crowded in summer. A lot of people choose to go to the opening just below the platform, but that also gets pretty crowded! Nonetheless, it’s a spectacular view and an absolute must for your Banff itinerary.

To have uninterrupted views of Lake Peyto without the crowd, head further ahead until the path splits into three paved paths. Look for the fourth option on the right that is a narrow dirt path through the forest and is virtually flat. A trail of 10-15 mins walk will bring you to an open expanse where you are greeted by what many consider to be one of the best views in Canada. Grab a snack and take it all in. With views this majestic, you may not want to leave!

Where to Stay Near Lake Peyto:

  • The best way to experience the park is definitely by booking a campground . Then, you can wake up in the middle of the mountains!
  • If you’re not into camping, Canalta Lodge is a stunning mountainside lodge with incredible views.
  • For more places to stay near Lake Peyto, check out , , or VRBO .

Places to Visit in Central Canada in Summer

Bruce peninsula national park.

Tobermory is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). View of the grotto in Bruce Peninsula National Park.

Bruce Peninsula National Park is definitely one of the best places to visit in Canada during the summer. With the incredible weather, swimming and hiking around the park are desirable and certainly alluring due to the park’s beauty. The park is a popular spot for camping during the summer, with campsites selling out far in advance. Due to the park’s popularity, be sure to arrive around opening time on a day trip to ensure you can purchase parking.

Between the amazing hikes and views of Georgian Bay, you won’t want to leave Bruce Peninsula National Park! People who visit love to go canoeing, scuba diving, and more. There are plenty of tours that bring you to boat wreckages or to Fathom Five National Marine Park .

In the nearby town, Tobermory, there are plenty of cute local shops and restaurants open to explore as well.

Where to Stay in Tobermory:

  • For a simple and convenient place to stay, Adventure the Bruce Inn is a great choice.
  • Camping at the park is very popular as well, but campsites have to be reserved well in advance!
  • For more places to stay in Tobermory, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Emma of Emma’s Roadmap

Ottawa is one of the best places to visit in Canada in summer (and really all year round!). View of parliament.

The capital of Canada is amazing to visit during all seasons but the summer months will give you a little bit more possibilities that’ll make your trip just great! Besides government-related activities such as visiting parliament hill with the house of commons and Senate, summer is perfect to discover Ottawa on the water! At the heart of Ottawa, you’ll find several cruise companies advertising their roundtrips on the Ottawa river . You can take shorter cruises of one hour to longer cruises of several hours. Whatever you’ll choose, I’m sure the water view and slight breeze will be very welcome in summer!

Another great summer activity to do in Ottawa is to visit Byward Market. This market in the center of Ottawa is for a large part outdoors so perfect to stroll around on sunny days! Buy some local crafts or taste some freshly baked goods and foremost, enjoy the atmosphere!

To visit  Ottawa  it is best to reserve multiple days to explore the city. Of course, a quick day trip is possible, but to really see the city and explore it to the fullest you’ll need at least 2 or 3 days. Some other great activities you could do in summer during your stay are visiting one of Ottawa’s beaches (yes, there are beaches!) as well as nearby provincial parks!

Where to Stay in Ottawa:

  • The most popular and luxurious stay in Ottawa is definitely at the Fairmont Chateau Laurier . The hotel looks just like a castle!
  • Located in the Byward Market area, the Andaz is a top-rated place to stay.
  • For more places to stay in Ottawa, check out , , or VRBO .

Gorgeous waterfalls in Canada | best places to visit in canada in summer | canadian destinations

Hamilton is one of the best places in Canada to visit this summer due to the overwhelming number of waterfalls concentrated in the area. There are over 100 waterfalls in this area, located along the Niagara Escarpment. In a single day, you can visit many of them and embark on beautiful nature hikes in the perfect summer weather.

The best recommended waterfalls to visit in summer in the city of Hamilton include:

  • Albion Falls
  • Webster Falls

Conveniently located just over an hour away from the city of Toronto, it makes for a great day trip from the city. After hiking and exploring waterfalls, head to the downtown area. It is filled with charming boutiques, cafes, and restaurants featuring many different cuisines.

If visiting for a couple days, be sure to check out the nightlife as this city has some great bars and clubs to visit!

Where to Stay in Hamilton:

  • For a hotel located right in the heart of downtown, Homewood Suites is a highly-rated option.
  • Within walking distance of multiple waterfalls is the Best Western .
  • For more places to stay in Hamilton, check out , , or VRBO .

Prince Edward County

Beautiful sunflower fields in summer in Canada

Prince Edward County is one of the most amazing places to visit in Canada during summer due to the stunning nature and amazing wineries in this county. Located only about 2-hours from the city, it makes for a perfect day trip from Toronto . On a trip to PEC, you can visit two beautiful parks – Sandbanks Provincial Park and Presqu’ile Provincial Park . At both places, visitors will find wonderful hiking trails and views of the water.

Prince Edward County is definitely known for wineries and vineyards. With the perfect summer weather, plenty of visitors take advantage of the outdoors and visit some of the over 40 wineries in the county! Most places offer small bites and cheese boards to enjoy while you taste a large variety of different wines. Be sure to try ice wine, which is a specialty of Ontario!

Where to Stay in Prince Edward County:

  • Not only is Newsroom Suites located in the centre of wine country, but it’s also a cute B&B! It’s one of the best-rated placed to stay in the area. Check out availability and book your stay .
  • The Lakeside Motel boasts a waterfront location with a stunning pool to enjoy during your stay.
  • For more places to stay in Prince Edward County, check out , , or VRBO .

Best places to visit in Canada in summer | Canada summer destinations | cities to visit | parks to visit

Toronto is definitely a great destination in Canada to visit during summer as the big city is full of life during this season. Visitors love to explore High Park for nature walks and picnics, along with visiting the shops along King Street or Queen Street in the downtown core. During the summer months, it’s a perfect time to go bar-hopping and visiting one of the restaurants or patios. A Toronto bucket list sure isn’t complete without enjoying a cocktail on one of the amazing Toronto patios!

The waterfront is a popular place to visit with paths, beaches, bike trails, and more along the way. Be sure to check out Amsterdam Brewhouse, which is a brewery located right on the water. Try to get a patio seat to overlook the lake while tasting different varieties of beer!

When visiting Toronto, there are plenty of day trips to take from the city with hiking opportunities. There are a lot of waterfalls within a day trip distance from Toronto and plenty of beaches to explore.

Where to Stay in Toronto:

  • The Fairmont Royal York is a dreamy hotel located right in the heart of downtown across from Union Station.
  • The Broadview Hotel is right nearby a few great breweries. They also have a really neat rooftop bar with great views of the city!
  • For more places to stay in Toronto, check out , , or VRBO .

Niagara Falls

Recommended by Mayuri of ToSomePlaceNew

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

One of the amazing places to visit in Canada is Niagara Falls in the summer . This is the optimum time to see the mighty falls in their full glory. Although summer months are peak seasons to visit Toronto and the Niagara Region, planning a trip in the early morning hours is key to having a good time.

We recommend booking boat tours to see the Falls up close and personal, in advance and prior to your visit. Many activities such as ziplining, horse carriage rides, and helicopter tours are best explored in the summer.

There are short trails and green paths that you can enjoy a nice stroll, or set up a picnic spread in the afternoon with a book!

During your summer trip to Niagara Falls, the town of Niagara of the Lake is a nice place to hang out, visit local cafes and shops. If you are extending your trip in the area, do stop by a vineyard and go on a wine tasting tour. 

The Entertainment District is another spot where you can spend your time in the Falls region. There are bowling alleys, patios, bars with live music, Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks, and Ripley’s Believe It or Not Museum. 

Evenings in Niagara are best spent in the Skylon Tower taking in the illuminated lights on the falls, and dining at the revolving restaurant.

Where to Stay in Niagara Falls:

  • The Sheraton Fallsview Hotel is definitely a top pick, boasting stunning views overlooking the falls.
  • Similarly, the Hilton is one of the most stayed at hotels in Niagara Falls.
  • For more places to stay in Niagara Falls, check out , , or VRBO .

Montreal buildings - best places to visit in canada in summer | canadian destinations

Montreal is one of the top places to visit in Canada in summer due to the great events and outdoor activities offered during the season. It’s a great city to explore on a day trip or for an extended weekend getaway.

Visitors flock to the old city center to eat bagels and crepes, taste delicious local coffee, and explore the waterfront. The buildings in this area have beautiful architecture and there are a lot of statues and monuments around to discover. On the waterfront, there is a giant Ferris wheel and various attractions to enjoy!

The city is known as a big party city and is home to a long strip of bars and clubs to visit. Plenty of places offer outdoor patios to enjoy drinks in the warm summer air. After visiting the bars, be sure to head to a local poutine shop to taste some of the best poutine around!

Where to Stay in Montreal:

  • Hotel Place d’Armes boasts stunning rooms and is located right in Old Montreal.
  • Similarly, located in Old Montreal is the charming Lofts du View-Port .
  • For more places to stay in Montreal, check out , , or VRBO .

Recommended by Carine and Derek of We Did It Our Way

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The summer is an amazing time to visit the province of Quebec. The weather warms up, the days get longer, the local produce offering is incredible and there’s a ton of beautiful places to visit. One of our favorite places to visit in the summer is the Saguenay Lac-St-Jean area . 

Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean is north of the St-Lawrence river, about a 4-5 hour drive from Montreal. The Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean area is the third-largest region in Quebec and well worth the visit. There’s so much to do here, especially in the summer where you can spend all your time enjoying the great outdoors.

The Saint-Jean region is known for its beautiful bike paths. The most popular one is the Blueberry Route, a 256-kilometer pathway that goes all the way from the estuary to up and around the lake. Its name is no coincidence either. There are a ton of blueberries to pick along the route so if you’re looking for a delicious snack, don’t be shy to stop and pick some. This region is famed for its delicious berries.  

In the region, you can also find many amazing things to do in the summer – The Fjord du Saguenay national park is amazing for hiking or canoeing. If you’re looking for a multi-day hike, check out the Ouiatchouan hiking trail where you can see an amazing waterfall that bears the same name as the trail. You can also visit the Val Jalbert ghost town or one of the many museums in the area. Plus, there are a ton of small cute towns that are worth the trek. They all have something unique to discover. 

Finally, if you’re looking to just chill out, well, you’re in luck. The Saguenay Lac-Saint-Jean region has some of the best beaches in the province. The best ones are located around the lake. So bring your cooler, towel, and a good book, and you’re all set to enjoy the calmest waters the province has to offer!

Whatever you’re looking to do this summer, make sure you stop and enjoy everything the Saguenay Lac-Saint-Jean region has to offer. 

Where to Stay in Saint-Jean:

  • For a stay in a charming bed and breakfast, Auberge la Courtepointe is an excellent choice.
  • Motel Blanche d’Haberville is located right in the town of Saint-Jean-Port-Joli and is a popular stay!
  • For more places to stay in Saint-Jean, check out , , or VRBO .

Places to Visit in the Atlantic Provinces of Canada in Summer

Cape breton.

Recommended by Cailin of Nova Scotia Explorer

View overlooking the water.

Nova Scotia is at its best in the summer months with warm ocean breezes, sandy beaches, and wilderness to explore. One of the most popular places to visit in the summer months is the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton. The Cabot Trail is a loop trail on the north-western coast of Cape Breton stretching 298km. This scenic drive takes you in and out of coastal towns and fishing villages along with stunning views through Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

If you don’t have much time, you can drive the Cabot Trail in a day but to really enjoy it it is recommended to spend a night or two exploring. It is also often debated that driving clockwise is better than counterclockwise for the views but both directions have their merits. 

In the summer there are plenty of trails to hike along, as well as beaches to swim at and places to enjoy picnics and camping. During summer, all of the Cabot Trail campgrounds are open as well as local tourist sites, restaurants, and businesses. Summer is also the ideal time to go whale watching in the Ingonish area of the Cabot Trail. Be sure to also stop at one of the many roadside cafes and restaurants to enjoy the local seafood, fish and chips, chowders, and more.

Where to Stay in Cape Breton:

  • Holiday Inn Sydney boasts waterfront views and a large indoor pool.
  • If you’re looking for a spot close to Sydney city center, Cambridge Suites is a great choice.
  • For more places to stay in Cape Breton, check out , , or VRBO .


best places to visit in canada in summer | canadian destinations

Charlottetown is a charming city and the capital of Prince Edward Island. The city is located along the southern coast, making it a perfect summer destination as you can hang out along the water. It is home to many stunning churches, historical houses, monuments, and more. Though Charlottetown is the capital city, it really has a small-town feel to it!

Peakes Wharf and Confederation Landing is located along the water and is a great spot for lunch and to explore different shops. Visitors also enjoy checking out the art museum and heading to local restaurants to try some of the delicious local seafood.

Where to Stay in Charlottetown:

  • Fairholm Boutique Inn is a stunning hotel that boasts really charming rooms in the heart of Charlottetown.
  • For a top-rated hotel located downtown, the Holman Grand Hotel is a great choice. It’s even connected to a shopping mall!
  • For more places to stay in Charlottetown, check out , , or VRBO .

St. John’s

best places to visit in canada in summer | canadian destinations

St. John’s, Newfoundland is a great place in Canada to visit in summer. It is Canada’s most eastern city and is located right on the water. There are plenty of things to do in and around the city, including hiking, visiting museums, shopping at local boutiques, and exploring art galleries.

It’s no surprise that there’s great seafood in this coastal city! Visitors love trying fish and chips at local restaurants around the city before heading out to one of the city’s many bars. You can also head out whale watching, go shipwreck diving, and even spot puffins!

Where to Stay in St. John’s:

  • For an affordable stay at a high-quality hotel, Jag Boutique Hotel is a great option.
  • The Hilton Garden Inn is always a safe choice and this one even has a pool!
  • For more places to stay in St. John’s, check out , , or VRBO .

Places to Visit in the Northern Territories of Canada in Summer

Recommended by Samantha of A Truthful Traveler

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

If you’re looking for long and warm summer days, Whitehorse is the best place in Canada to find them. Whitehorse, Yukon is located far North in Canada, above British Columbia, and to the East of Alaska. It is one of the best places to visit in the Yukon territory!

Whitehorse is the capital of the territory of Yukon, and it is located close to the Southern boundary. Its Northern location means that there are almost 24 hours of sunlight in the summer. The sun never fully sets starting from the summer solstice all the way to the Fall. This gives you extra time to sightsee, and there is no lack of things to see and do in this area of Canada.

If you love history, the SS Klondike will take you back through time to when Whitehorse was an integral part of the Gold Rush. The ship carried cargo up and down the river for many years. Today it sits just outside of the main part of the city. For nature lovers, a visit to a part of the Yukon River called Miles Canyon is a must. The steep rock walls line the beautiful teal water, and you can hike the surrounding area or canoe/kayak the river. 

The warm summer weather and the never-ending days make Yukon such an amazing place in Canada to experience between the months of June and September!

Where to Stay in Whitehorse:

  • For a top-rated bed and breakfast, check out Hidden Valley Bed and Breakfast .
  • Midnight Sun Inn is located in the heart of downtown and is highly rated.
  • For more places to stay in Whitehorse, check out , , or VRBO .

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Aren’t there so many amazing places to visit in Canada in summer? Thanks to my fellow travel bloggers, I’ve certainly added a few more places to my bucket list! I hope reading about these stunning places have inspired you to do the same.

Read more: 19 of the Absolute Best Day Hikes in Canada

What are your top places to visit in Canada during summer? Let me know in the comments!

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Exploring Sunwapta Falls, Jasper National Park

best cities to visit in canada in the summer


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Canada is certainly a fabulous country to visit. I’m lucky enough to have been to all 13 provinces and territories and I’m still far from having seen everything, but it’s good to always have something else to see.

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Wow, that’s so amazing! I hope to visit all provinces and territories in my lifetime. There are so many amazing places to visit!

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Steve Collins

Really enjoyed the collab, brings awesome perspectives from all across the country!

It was a lot of fun putting it together!

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So many good places. I’ve been to most of the west coast and Rockies places so I really need to work my way east a bit. There are lots of beautiful destinations in Canada yet to explore. I enjoyed discovering my own country last summer and looks like that’s on the table again this year. But it’s not a bad place to be stuck

Amazing!! I want to explore more of Canada as well. This collab definitely added some places to my bucket list!

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oh my goodness, this is such an amazing roundup of places. All look beautiful, but would really love to explore the Squamish area and Bruce Peninsula National Park on my next Canada trip. I’ve only been to Toronto and the areas around Banff, so I have a lot more exploring to do!

Bruce Peninsula National Park is definitely one of my top 5 places to visit in Canada!

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Alison and Don

This is a fantastic compilation! I’m in Vancouver, and this really inspired me to go away this summer – even if only for a few days – Whistler or one of the islands. As soon as we can that is; still Covid-restricted here 🙁 Alison

I hope things clear up enough to head out on some outdoor adventures!

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Canada is such a beautiful country filled with so much natural wonder. I loved the Canadian Rockies, but I would like to see the Atlantic side near Newfoundland. Great guide! 🙂

So many beautiful places to visit! 🙂

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I love Vancouver Island! Been a few times and wish I had time to see more. Now I have more Candadian destinations on my list- thanks for sharing.

So many amazing places to visit!!

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Krystianna Pietrzak

Amazing post! I’m from VT and have literally never been to Canada, even though I’ve always wanted to. Will definitely save this for later!

I hope you can visit one day! Lots of places to explore.

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I definitely need to get back to Canada! So much to see!!

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The Best Things to Do in Canada

How to Enjoy the Summer in Canada

By Matthew G. Bailey Leave a Comment

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Crescent Falls Alberta

Last updated: September 1, 2020

Summer in Canada might be short, but it’s also incredibly beautiful. Whether you’re looking to get outdoors or explore one of Canada’s world-class cities, the summer is the most comfortable time to visit. Summer in Canada is also the most popular time to visit, not only due to the pleasant weather but also due to the wide range of activities, including city tours, water sports, hiking, road trips and more.

However, this also means that summer in Canada is the busiest time to visit. Even though winter in Canada is remarkably beautiful, it’s also a much more difficult time to visit, due to the cold weather and the slippery roads. Most tourists visit during the summer to avoid the harsh weather and enjoy the super long days of a Canadian summer. This means that accommodation prices are often higher, tourist attractions are busier, and costs are generally more expensive all across the board.

Either way, a summer in Canada should not be missed. Whether it’s kayaking one of our millions of lakes, exploring our vibrant downtown cores, or simply enjoying a bright sunny day that doesn’t end until close to midnight, there’s a reason why both Canadians and visitors can’t wait for the warmer months to arrive.

things to do in st johns nfld

What’s the Weather like During Summer in Canada?

Officially, the summer in Canada runs from June 20th – September 22nd, but how warm it is will largely depend on where and when.

Depending where you go, it can be very hot. Canada is a land of weather extremes. Whereas the winter in Canada can be as cold as -40 Celcius, the summers can be as hot as +40 degrees Celcius. Some of the hottest regions around Canada include interior British Columbia, southern Alberta, and even major cities such as Winnipeg, Toronto, and Montreal. Coastal cities, such as Victoria and Halifax, are often milder in all seasons, which make them popular places to visit for those who don’t like high heat. Generally speaking, summers in Canada are either warm or hot.

The hottest cities would be places like Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Winnipeg, Calgary, and Vancouver. The prairies, such as southern Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba can be very hot in the peak summer months, whereas southern BC, such as Kelowna and Osoyoos, are some of the hottest regions in the country. In fact, they’re deserts! At the same time, the weather can fluctuate immensely on a day-to-day basis. Living in Calgary, I’ve seen 38 degrees Celcius one week and just 15 degrees Celcius the next week. But if you truly prefer milder climate, you’d probably prefer coastal cities such as Victoria, Halifax, and St. John’s – just to name a few.

One of the nice things about visiting Canada in the summer versus the winter is that you don’t need to prepare nearly as much. In the winter, you really need to make sure you have very warm clothing when exploring the outdoors, and when it comes to road trips, you need to be prepared to drive over snow and ice. The summers, however, are similar to everywhere else. Many days you’ll be able to get by with shorts and a t-shirt, but you’ll always want to have at least one sweater and some sort of jacket and/or rain jacket.

Canada is a massive country, so in terms of the best preparation, you’ll need to decide where you’re going first. The summer weather in the Yukon will be quite different than the summer weather in Ontario. Both will be nice but Ontario will certainly be hotter.

Devil's Thumb Lake Louise

What are the Most Popular Summer Activities?

For those into the outdoors, summer is the best time to visit Canada. With the weather at its best, there’s a lot of outdoor activities going on, whether it’s hiking in the mountains or paddling around a lake. However, it’s also a great time to visit cities as there’s much more life in the summer with people walking around, many festivals, and more.

Home to more wilderness than practically anywhere else in the world, it’s no secret that Canada is a prime place for hiking. From coast to coast to coast, there are so many opportunities, including rugged coastal hikes, epic mountain hikes, incredible forest hikes, and so much more. You can hike in the badlands of Saskatchewan or hike to the summit of one of the Rocky Mountains . No matter what province you visit, there’s a hike worth doing.

Paddle Boarding on Lake Louise

Paddle Sports on the Water

With more water than any other country on Earth (we have 70% of the world’s freshwater and more coastline than any other country), there’s no shortage of opportunities for paddling, whether it’s canoeing, kayaking, or stand-up paddleboarding. Each and every province and territory has options for paddling. If it’s the ocean you’re looking for, you’ll want to go to British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, or Newfoundland. If its lakes, all provinces will have a plethora of opportunities. If you want to paddle around tall mountain peaks, head to western Alberta or the eastern side of BC where you’ll find the Canadian Rockies.

Just like paddling, there are many opportunities for getting out on a motorized boat as well, whether its in the ocean or on a massive lake. Whether you’re looking to rent your own or go on a tour, there are all sorts of possibilities across the country. Some examples include sailing in Nova Scotia, taking a cruise near Quebec City, and taking a boat tour on Okanagan Lake . These are just three of the hundreds of fun boating opportunities available.

Another popular way to enjoy Canadian water is to go white water rafting on one of the many incredible rivers across the country. We’ve done a fair share of rafting ourselves, including the Kicking Horse River in BC, the Bow River and Kananaskis River in Alberta, the Ottawa River in Ontario , and the Shubenacadie River in Nova Scotia . This is an exhilarating way to get outdoors and enjoy the natural scenery.

Whale Watching Vancouver Island Port Renfrew Canada

Whale Watching

With more coastline than any other country on Earth, there’s also a plethora of opportunities for whale watching in Canada . Whether you’re looking to see Humpback Whales, Orca Whales, Grey Whales, and many others, they can be found in many provinces from west to east. Vancouver and Vancouver Island are the best places to spot Orcas, whereas Quebec, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia are great places to spot Humpbacks. However, most whales can be found throughout the country at various times throughout the season. You can even get up close and personal with Beluga Whales in Churchill , Manitoba. How cool is that?

Grizzly Bear eating Salmon in British Columbia

Wildlife Sightings and Tours

Canada is a wild place and that means lots of wildlife as well. In fact, if you’re on a road trip, camping, canoeing, or hiking, you’ll most likely spot them on your own. For example, we always see elk when we visit Jasper, Moose when we visit Newfoundland, and Big Horn Sheep when we’re driving through the mountains. We’ve also seen bears around Nordegg , wolves near Radium Hot Springs, and deer almost everywhere we go. There’s also a plethora of wildlife tours and paid attractions. For example, we went on a grizzly bear tour from Campbell River on Vancouver Island, which took us up into the inlets of British Columbia to see Grizzly Bears eating salmon out of the river. We also spent the night with wolves near Montreal , Quebec. If you’re into seeing wildlife, Canada is the place to be!

Helicopter Tours

While helicopter tours also run during the winter months in some locations, the most popular time to go is during the summer when the weather is at its best. There are so many helicopter tours from coast to coast to coast, including helicopter flights over Niagara Falls , the Rocky Mountains, major cities such as Toronto, and so much more! It’s a really great way to see both cities and natural attractions, giving you a birds-eye view like no other.

Things to do in niagara falls. Best Views of Niagara Falls is a helicopter ride.

Canada is wildly popular for fishing. After all, we have millions of lakes, hundreds of rivers, and more coastline than anywhere else on Earth. Whether you’re looking to catch a cod in Newfoundland, hook a salmon off the coast of Vancouver, or catch a variety of trout in one of the many lakes throughout the country, there’s no shortage of opportunities. Both cast fishing and fly-fishing are considered world-class.

Another popular activity is biking. This includes both road bikes and mountain bikes. For tourism, mountain bikes are often the most popular because most people want to enjoy biking on outdoor trails. You can rent bikes in most tourist destinations, as well as cities, allowing you to explore an area on your own or join a tour. One of our favourite places to rent a bike is in Vancouver, as we love to bike around Stanley Park. For the adventurous, you can also rent mountain bikes at many ski resorts, but you have to be quite skilled to mountain bike down a mountain without getting hurt. Regardless, whether you’re looking to peddle around a city or a forest, there’s something for everyone.

Crowsnest Pass Golf Club

For those into golf, Canada has hundreds of world-class golf courses all over the country. Whether you’re looking to drive the ball while surrounded by the Rocky Mountains or putt next to the ocean, there’s a golf course for you.

Another popular activity, especially for locals, is tubing down the rivers that go through the many towns and cities. We live in Calgary and one of our favourite summer activities is tubing down both the Elbow River and the Bow River. But Calgary isn’t the only place to go tubing. It’s a very popular activity anywhere you find a relatively calm and safe river surrounded by beautiful scenery. Some of these places have now created rentals and tours for tourists, whereas others are completely local and would require you to buy a tube and go on your own. Perhaps you could join Meetup and find locals who will take you down. There are also Airbnb Experiences!

what to do in halifax - busker festival

Summer Festivals

Perhaps one of the greatest things about visiting Canada during the summer is the vast amount of festivals spread out across the country. After all, Canadians only have about three months of solid summer weather and we like to enjoy it as much as possible. Whether you’re looking to witness one of the world’s biggest rodeos at the Calgary Stampede or enjoy one of North America’s premier Folk Festivals in Winnipeg, there is a festival for everyone.

Some popular festivals include:

  • Montreal International Jazz Festival
  • Quebec City Summer Festival (FEQ)
  • Ottawa Blues Festival
  • Just for Laughs Montreal
  • Edmonton International Fringe Theatre Festival
  • Calgary Stampede
  • Winnipeg Folk Fest
  • Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto
  • Toronto International Film Festival
  • Shambhala Music Festival, BC

Although city tours can be found throughout the year, they’re certainly much more popular when the sun is out and there’s no snow on the ground. Whether you’re joining a tour or doing your own self-guided tour around one of Canada’s great cities, the summer is the best time to do it. Stroll the streets of Old Montreal while munching on a bagel, walk around Old Quebec while admiring the only walled city north of Quebec, or walk along the seawall of Vancouver’s Stanley Park. No matter where you go, touring a city or a town during the summer is a wonderful thing to do.

Little Beehive hiking in Lake Louise

Canada Summer Vacation Ideas

From coast to coast to coast, summer in Canada is home to a variety of unique experiences for each and every person who visits. It’s quite hard to give our favourite place, as we have so many, but here are some ideas below.

The Canadian Rockies

One of the most visited places in all of Canada is Banff National Park . Located just an hour away from Calgary, Banff and the surrounding area has been attracting people for a century. Once you see it, you’ll know why. Towering granite mountain peaks, bright turquoise lakes and rivers, and lush pine forests make for one of the most beautiful destinations on Earth. Throw in a smorgasbord of outdoor activities and one of the most famous road trips on Earth – the Icefields Parkway – and its easy to see why this place has become so popular.

Known as one of the most beautiful cities on the planet, Vancouver is a very popular place to explore. Why? Well, because it’s surrounded by both mountains and the ocean! This combination makes it such a beautiful city, unmatched in every way. It’s also one of the most densely popular cities in North America, which makes it feel alive with so many things to do, places to see, and an incredible array of restaurants and bars. Throw in the fact that you can get out on the ocean or go hiking in the mountains on the same day, and its easy to see why Vancouver is so sought after.

Butchart gardens things to do in victoria

Vancouver Island

One of our favourite places to explore is Vancouver Island. There’s just so much to do, including both the charming city of Victoria BC and the incredible natural attractions the rest of the island has to offer. When we visited in 2017 during our 150-day road trip, we went on a grizzly bear sightseeing tour from Campbell River, went scuba diving in Nanaimo, went surfing in Tofino, had one of the most spectacular whale watching trips of our lives near Port Renfrew, and hiked the incredible cathedral grove. Throw in a delightful walk around Butchard gardens in Victoria, and you’ll see why Vancouver Island is such an incredible place to visit.

Kelowna and the Okanagan Valley

One of the most popular places in BC for Canadians to visit (especially Albertans) is Kelowna and the Okanagan Valley. Home to massive Okanagan Lake, Kelowna and area is a very popular place for boating. It’s also home to some of the best wineries in the country, making it a great destination for those who love the outdoors, love being on boats, and love sampling all sorts of wine.

things to do in kelowna

Montreal and Quebec City

For those looking to get a taste of Europe within Canada, you’ll want to head to Montreal and Quebec City, two cities that are only a 3-hour drive apart. Montreal is the most cosmopolitan of the two, so if you’re looking for a big city with lots of shopping, epic nightlife, and a lively atmosphere, Montreal is bound to please. But Quebec City is also a great place to visit. Not only is it a UNESCO World Heritage site thanks to its walled city, but there are so many things to do around the city, including incredible whale watching in Tadoussac .

Cabot Trail Canada Road Trip, Nova Scotia

Newfoundland and the Maritimes

Newfoundland is easily one of our favourite provinces in all of Canada. We love it so much and try to go back every year or two. The people, the landscapes, the music, the food, and even the charming little houses are just so unique to the rest of Canada. It’s home to the oldest English-founded city in North America and is such an incredible place for outdoor attractions, including hiking, whale watching, fishing, and more. But even if you don’t go all the way to “The Rock”, the Maritimes are also an awesome place to visit, whether it’s partying in Halifax , paddling around Hopewell Rocks in New Brunswick , or eating your way through Prince Edward Island .

Northern Canada

Canada’s north, which we consider to be the Yukon , the Northwest Territories , and Nunavut are certainly best to visit in the summer. That’s not to say that the winter doesn’t present its own beauty and fun activities, but the summer is just easier and more predictable, especially if you’re hoping to do a road trip. Whether you’re visiting the wild-west-looking town of Dawson, driving the incredible Dempster Highway to Inuvik, or taking a once-in-a-lifetime Inuit tour in Nunavut, Canada’s north is about as wild as it gets.

best things to do in dawson city

Where Will You Spend Summer in Canada?

I hope by now that you have decided to experience the summer in Canada. The hardest decision will be where to go. Whether you decide to explore the popular cities of Vancouver, Montreal, and Toronto, or explore the vast wilderness, Canada is bound to become your favourite place for experiencing the warm sunny months from June – September.

Want more summer? Check out these articles below:

  • Things to Do in Saskatchewan
  • Interesting Facts about Canada
  • Exploring Tuktoyaktuk 
  • Things to Do in Winnipeg

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About Matthew G. Bailey

Matthew G. Bailey is the founder and editor-in-chief of Must Do Canada. Growing up in Alberta to a mother from Quebec and a father from Newfoundland, Matt spent his childhood playing hockey under the Northern Lights and hanging out in the forest before moving to Calgary and travelling to more than 250 cities spanning 42 countries and 6 continents. He loves travel, learning new things, playing sports, writing, making videos, photography, and scuba diving. You can also find him at .

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16 Best Cities to Visit in Canada

Last updated on October 5, 2023 by Touropia Editors - 1 Comment

Canada is a very unique country. It is vast — the second largest country in size in the world. Yet it is very sparsely populated. Its cities range from large, cosmopolitan cities like Toronto in Ontario to small outposts such as Whitehorse, the capital of the Yukon Territory.

Many of the best cities to visit in Canada are gateways to magnificent wilderness areas and exciting recreational facilities, including some of the best ski resorts in the world.

In this post, we'll cover:

16. Whitehorse


This small city is the capital of the Yukon. It is also its only city. Situated on the banks of the Yukon River, Whitehorse is a great jumping-off point for those who want to explore Canada’s vast wilderness, especially since the two main highways in the territory — the Alaska and the Klondike — intersect in this small city.

While in Whitehorse, make sure to check out the Yukon Wildlife Preserve, where you can see some of the many creatures that are native to the area, including caribou and Dall’s sheep.


Regina, which is the capital of Saskatchewan, prides itself on its dedication to the fine arts. It is home to the Mackenzie Art Gallery, which has a collection of more than 4,000 pieces of art, and also to the Regina Symphony Orchestra, the oldest continuously performing orchestra in the country.

Regina also plays hosts to numerous festivals and events throughout the year, including its Queen City Pride. Regina also boasts a natural history museum and a science museum.

14. Toronto


If you enjoy visiting exciting and vibrant cities, you’ll love Toronto , which is also Canada’s largest city and the capital of Ontario. It is also a very cosmopolitan one, where more than 140 languages are spoken.

It is, in fact, the most multi-culturally diverse city on the planet. Currently, Toronto is undergoing an urban revitalization, so you’re likely to find many new and rising out of former industrial areas. Plus, you’ll never be bored in Toronto as it attracts numerous big events, including the well-known Toronto International Film Festival. While in Toronto, make sure to check out one of Canada’s most iconic landmarks, the CN Tower, currently the 3rd tallest tower in the world.

13. Victoria

Victoria BC

The capital of British Columbia is one of Canada’s most picturesque cities, with mountain or ocean vistas visible throughout many of its neighborhoods. Located on Vancouver Island, it is also a city that still boasts a wild side — elephant seals and whales can be found in the waters surrounding the city.

While in Victoria , make sure to check out its scenic Inner Harbour. Here, you will find numerous places to eat, and it is also a wonderful place to enjoy a cup of afternoon tea, a throwback to Victoria’s British heritage. Also adding to the city’s very British feel are double-decker buses and many horse-drawn carriages.

12. Calgary


Located in Alberta, this city is famous for its western flavor and, most notably, for its world-famous Calgary Stampede, a huge ten-day rodeo that bills itself as the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth. Calgary , which is Alberta’s biggest city, is also considered a gateway to the Rocky Mountains and is often the jumping-off start for adventures to two of Canada’s most famous parks, Banff and Jasper.

While in Calgary, take time to visit the Heritage Park Historical Village, Canada’s largest living history museum where you can experience what life was like in the area between the 1860s and the 1950s. Another interesting site that is located approximately 90 minutes south of Calgary is the Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, an archaeological site where Native Americans hunted buffalo by stampeding them over a cliff.

Parliament of Canada

Ottawa, which is located in Ontario, is the capital of Canada and so — not surprisingly — it is blessed with numerous attractions, including the Parliament buildings and many world-class museums.

One of Ottawa’s most popular tourist attractions is its Rideau Canal. In the summer, the Rideau Canal is popular with boaters and in the winter, it becomes one of the largest outdoor skating rinks in the world. Outdoor activities, such as hiking and white water rafting on the Ottawa River, are very popular in this city.

10. Edmonton


The capital of Alberta is located way up north, which means during the summer, it enjoys very long days of sunshine. Edmonton is also a bit of a quirky city. It is, for example, home to the world’s first UFO landing strip. Edmonton is also home to more traditional sites , including Fort Edmonton Park, a living history museum that explores the history of the area from 1759 to the 1920s.

And for wildlife lovers, there is Elk Island National Park, a refuge for bison and elk, that is located within easy driving distance from Edmonton.

9. Saskatoon


If you love the outdoors, Saskatoon has a lot to offer you, including several provincial parks and the Beaver Creek Conservation area, one of the few remaining short grass prairie sites left in the province.

A favorite activity for visitors and residents, alike, is a riverboat ride down the South Saskatchewan River through the Meewasin Valley. Love art? Then check out the Mendel Art Gallery, which houses many significant works of art and is the 16th largest public art gallery in Canada. Saskatoon is also the home of the University of Saskatchewan and the largest city in the province of Saskatchewan.

8. St. John’s

St. John's

St. John’s has two big claims to fame. One, it is the oldest city in North America and, two, it is the most easterly point in North America. But St. John’s, which is located in Newfoundland and Labrador, is also one of the best places to visit in Canada for many other reasons. For example, the waters off of its coast are home to a large population of whales, including minke, humpbacks and blue whales.

While in St. John’s, make sure to check out its charming Quidi Vidi neighborhood, which was once a historic fishing village.

7. Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls, the city, is not just a great place to stay while visiting one of the most beautiful waterfalls in North America. It is also a fun place to visit. You’ll find numerous attractions for adults, including casinos and wineries, and plenty for kids to enjoy, including an indoor waterpark, the Guinness World Records Museum and several mini-golf courses. And, of course, there are the stunning falls, which you can see aboard a boat or fly over in a helicopter.


If you’re searching for a city that understands fun, then you’ll want to visit Halifax , which is located in Nova Scotia. This city has more pubs and clubs per capital than just about any other city in Canada.

But the city isn’t just about drinking. It is also home to several interesting attractions, including Fisherman’s Cove, a 200-year-old restored fishing village, and the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. Halifax is also close to the Bay of Fundy, which is considered one of the seven natural wonders of North America and boasts the highest tides on earth.


Just like its namesake in England, Ontario’s London is also located on the Thames River. One of the best ways to discover what London has to offer is by hopping aboard a double-decker that will take you on a two-hour tour of the city’s historical sites and museums.

While in London, consider checking out the Fanshawe Pioneer Village. This is an open air museum that will show you what life was like in the area between the years 1820 and 1920, as well as the development of the City of London, which was founded in 1826.

4. Winnipeg


Winnipeg, which is the capital of Manitoba, is a very multicultural city, where more than 100 different languages are spoken. It is also the largest city in the province. Winnipeg also prides itself on its flourishing art scene and has even sometimes been referred to as the “cultural cradle of Canada.”

It is home to the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and hosts many festivals, including Folklorama, which is a two-week celebration of different cultures. While in Winnipeg, make sure to head over to The Forks, which is a popular shopping and entertainment district in the city.

3. Montreal


Montreal, which is located in Quebec, is a Canadian city that has blended the old with the new and the French with the English. Its picturesque Old Montreal district boasts cobblestone streets and some buildings that date back to the 17th century. It is, in fact, one of the oldest urban neighborhoods in all of North America.

But Montreal is more than just its past. It is also a city of skyscrapers, boasts a lively nightlife and an Underground City. The latter is a series of office buildings, hotels, residential and commercial buildings that are all connected by underground tunnels, which can be very convenient during Montreal’s often bitter winters.

2. Quebec City

Quebec City

This city, which dates back to 1608 and is the capital of the province of Quebec, is very picturesque and charming. It also boasts a wonderful old town — Old Quebec — where you can walk cobblestone streets past well-preserved 17th- and 18th-century buildings. Old Quebec is the only walled city north of Mexico.

Quebec City is also home to the Citadelle of Quebec, which is an active fort and museum. The Citadelle is also the largest British fortress ever built in North America.

1. Vancouver


Vancouver, which is located in British Columbia , is one of the most culturally diverse cities in Canada. This mixing pot of cultures has helped make Vancouver into a culinary wonderland. In addition, this city’s microbrewery scene is also on the rise. Vancouver also boasts an excellent aquarium and several lovely parks, including Queen Elizabeth Park and Stanley Park.

See also: Where to Stay in Vancouver

The New York Times once called this vibrant city “Manhattan with mountains.” While the description is lovely, it forgets that Vancouver is also a seaport blessed with eight public beaches on the ocean and one on a lake.

Map of cities in Canada

Map of cities in Canada

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July 17, 2021 at 11:12 am

What about Hamilton, many water falls, heritage village, lion safari and park etc

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15 Best Places to Visit During The Summer Vacations in Canada

Canada is a great destination for a summer vacation given its pristine landscapes, diverse cities and range of multigenerational entertainment. Its top attractions include national parks, beaches, zoos and aquariums, museums, amusement parks, and even rodeos.

Woman standing on a hill and looking at the ocean and rugged coastline

Many people visit Canada during the winter to ski and take part in other fun winter activities. Yet, when summer arrives, Canada has even more to offer. It has warm temperatures, charming cities, and incredible outdoor recreation. Are you wondering about the best summer destinations in Canada ? Don't worry! Canadian Train Vacations is here to help you. Our travel experts can help you plan the best Canada summer vacations , arranging transport, hotels and excursions.

Waterfront towns amid natural landscapes are among the best places for a summer vacation in Canada . They offer breathtaking natural landscapes and a variety of land and water activities. Ample daylight in summer also means abundant opportunities to pull out your camera and take stunning photos . For a more urban vacation, s ummer is an ideal time to visit the country's cities, with their cultural attractions, including summer festivals.

Canada is a fantastic place to visit any time of year, but it's especially welcoming in summer. Here are some of the best places to vacation in Canada in summer .

1. Cape Breton Island

During a summer vacation in Canada on Cape Breton Island, you'll enjoy the coastal life, eat fresh seafood, and admire the scenery. The Cabot Trail is an excellent place to view the ocean and spend some time outdoors. Guided bicycle tours are another enjoyable way to explore this area. You can also see the area's natural wildlife on a guided boat cruise to observe the bird and whale populations. Condé Nast Traveler readers named Cape Breton the best island in North America.

One of the best ways to experience Cape Breton is on a Canadian Train Vacation, as many excursions leave from Halifax. To get to Cape Breton Island, one can take the Canso Causeway from mainland Nova Scotia, a Marine Atlantic ferry from Newfoundland, or fly into J.A. Douglas McCurdy Airport, Sydney. Maritime Bus provides service to Whycocomagh, North Sydney, Port Hawkesbury, and Baddeck from the mainland.

View of river winding through valley, mountains and Atlantic coastline from the Franey Trail

2. Victoria

Victoria is on magnificent Vancouver Island, British Columbia, is one of the best summer vacation places in Canada. This coastal city can only be reached by ferry or plane. The capital of British Columbia, it is ideal for foodies and those looking for exciting cultural experiences. It is known as "the Garden City" because of its many well-kept green spaces, such as the massive Beacon Hill Park.

Visit the Butterfly Gardens, where kids can interact with geckos, tropical birds, flamingos, and hundreds of free-flying butterflies. Take a stroll down Johnson Street and do some window shopping. Summer festivals abound in this city, including a beer fest, a vegan festival, and a Fringe festival. With its oceanside location, Victoria is home to some amazing whale-watching tours.

This place also has historic buildings. Climb the 87 steps to the top of Craigdarroch Castle's Tower for the best view in Victoria. It has Canada's oldest lighthouse on the West Coast.

View of inner harbour and Fairmont Empress hotel in Victoria

3. Saskatoon

While coastal havens in Canada almost always get all the recognition, Saskatoon in the prairies is also worth visiting. With its city-meets-country vibe, Saskatoon is the ultimate spot for the urban-but-outdoorsy family. Foodies love this area due to the many local farms that provide natural foods and homegrown goods, especially berries in the summer.

Visit the Western Development Museum to learn about pioneer life and enjoy a ride on the Prairie Lily riverboat to view the sights. This area is also home to Grasslands National Park, a popular destination for family holidays. You can travel to Saskatchewan by road, plane, ferry, rail, or bus. Make a point of visiting this location during the summer.

a couple walks over an open grassy hill in the prairies

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4. niagara falls.

Summer is a great time to visit the dazzling Niagara Falls — every traveler's bucket list should include a visit to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls. The combined flow rate of the three waterfalls (Bridal Veil Falls, American Falls, and Horseshoe Falls) is the highest of any North American waterfall. The SkyWheel, water cruises, the casino, and other popular attractions in Niagara Falls provide chances for romance or family fun.

Niagara Falls can be seen in various ways thanks to diverse activities. You can see the gushing waterfalls from every angle imaginable, from helicopter tours and underground mazes to boat rides. There are also many wineries in the area to visit.

Niagara Falls is a 1.5-hour drive from Toronto along the QEW highway.

Aerial view of Niagara Falls during daytime

5. Prince Edward Island

If you ask a Canadian what are the best places to vacation in Canada in the summer, they will probably say Prince Edward Island. Walking along the red sand beaches, with their unique old lighthouses, you'll feel like you've stepped into a postcard. The gorgeous Cavendish Beach on Prince Edward Island is yet another popular summer destination in Canada. You can go clam digging or take part in a lobster dinner.

You can also take a walking tour of Charlottetown, where guides dressed in period costumes will offer you a history lesson on this Canadian city. Another cultural activity is going to a production of "Anne of Green Gables," the long-running musical at the local arts festival.

Popular outdoor activities on this Island include kayaking, golf, standup paddle boarding, and parasailing.

There are three options for getting to Prince Edward Island. You can drive across the Confederation Bridge from New Brunswick, take a ferry from Nova Scotia, or fly into Charlottetown Airport.

sandy beach and red sand dunes at Prince Edward Island National Park, sunny day

6. Alaska Highway, Yukon

This summer, take a trip along the Alaska Highway through the Yukon for a faraway and wild Canadian adventure. This long stretch of road, also known as the ALCAN Highway, connects the United States to Alaska, passing via Yukon and British Columbia along the way. It's a memorable scenic drive filled with hot springs, small towns, mountain ranges, and wildlife viewing opportunities.

There are numerous breathtaking views of high mountains and massive ice fields along the way. You can go mountaineering here, explore the vast ice fields, and take a flightseeing trip to view the ice fields below.

A car drives down the Alaska Highway with towering mountains in the distance and fall colours

Tofino is another popular summer destination in British Columbia, and it's a great place to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life. This West Coast destination has something for everyone, whether you're looking for sand dollars on the beach, want to hike old-growth rainforest in Pacific Rim National Park, try catching a wave on a surfboard, rest in the hot springs cove, go whale watching, or join a bear-watching boat tour.

It's also fun to kayak in the Clayoquot Sound, go deep-sea fishing, and visit the Tofino Botanical Garden in this part of Canada. Tofino is a beautiful place to visit, with charming inns and campgrounds if you want to rough it. It's one of the best summer vacation places in Canada.

A group of surfers walk across a sandy beach in Tofino

Halifax, in Nova Scotia, is jam-packed with family-friendly activities. When you take a trip to Halifax in the summer, you can enjoy spectacular water views, plenty of local history stories, and delicious seafood. Take the view from Citadel Hill, where actors dressed in costumes will give you a history lesson.

Also, public gardens are nearby, which are ideal for a summer picnic. Stroll down the boardwalk for a scenic view of the water and let the kids play in the ship-themed playground. The Discovery Centre, Nova Scotia's only hands-on science centre, will also appeal to children. Trips to Peggy's Cove are widely known among visitors to experience the picturesque neighborhood along the rocky coastline with its iconic lighthouse and the fishing village culture.

If you want to enjoy some delicious lobster, crab, and fish dishes, go to Salt Shaker Deli in Lunenburg, a World Heritage Site, about an hour and a half outside Halifax. You can travel to Halifax by air, ferry, cruise, or land.

An aerial view of star-shaped Citadel Hill National Park and the core of downtown Halifax next to the ocean

9. Whistler

Although most people associate Whistler with the famous ski resort, it is also an excellent summer destination. Whistler, located in British Columbia in the Coast Mountains two hours north of Vancouver, provides a genuine Canadian west-coast mountain encounter.

Whistler has it all for nature lovers. At the base of the Blackcomb Mountains, there is a family adventure zone. You can hike the Valley Trail, spot bears, and even raft the Cheakamus River in this Pacific Coast Mountain location. There's hiking, mountain biking, zip-lining, horseback riding, jet boating, and canoeing — plenty to keep you busy. When it's time to unwind, take a break from the adventure and head lakeside to sandy beaches with concession stands, play areas, and BBQs. Whistler Village offers a vibrant night life, with restaurants, pubs and dancing.

To reach here, fly into a primary airport such as Seattle (SEA), Vancouver International (YVR), or Bellingham (BLI), then transfer to Whistler.

Woman and man hike on alpine trail through wildflowers, Whistler

10. Quebec City

Quebec City, the capital of Quebec, is one of North America's oldest cities, founded in 1608 by a French explorer. It is famous for its walled Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The downtown area maintains a charming vintage vibe thanks to majestic architecture and cobbled streets.

The castle-like Chateau de Frontenac and the charming buildings of the Old City boast a European charm. The city still proudly wears its French heritage on its sleeve today, as evidenced by impressive architecture such as Place Royale and the Notre-Dame-des-Victoires Church, which houses the Saint Geneviève chapel.

City parks, such as the Plains of Abraham, are nearby and ideal for a scenic picnic. Away from the city, numerous hiking trails lead through lush pastures with stunning cliffs overlooking the Saint Lawrence River. At the Aquarium du Québec, you can interact with polar bears, seals, and walruses. You also can devote the day to The Baie de Beauport, the city's beach. Prepare to be captivated by Canada's French capital.

View of Chateau Frontenac and Quebec City skyline at sunset

11. Alberta Badlands

The Alberta Canadian Badlands, which include Dinosaur Park, is a one-of-a-kind destination in Canada. There have been numerous discoveries of dinosaur bones here, helping to make it a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The Badlands Trail provides excellent views of unusual rock structures, such as hoodoos and pinnacles. To learn about dinosaurs, visit the Royal Tyrrell Museum, which is filled with profound dinosaur skeleton exhibits.

The Canadian Badlands are a 35,000-square-mile area unlike anywhere else on the planet. Horseshoe Canyon, antiquity pictograph and petroglyph engravings, and sandstone boulders are also must-sees in the area.

Person and their dog hiking in the badlands of Drumheller

12. Montreal

Art and culture are abundant in Montreal in Quebec, another popular summer destination in Canada. When the weather is nice, this bilingual city has plenty of festivals, culinary events, and restaurants with outdoor seating to visit. Meanwhile, music lovers can attend the International Jazz Festival and other local music events.

You can also visit famous sites such as Notre Dame, the Montreal Biodome, and Mount Royal. Visiting Montreal is an excellent way to get a taste of Europe without needing to travel there. Make a pit stop at Atwater Market for some gelato. Montréal is reachable by plane (via the Montréal-Trudeau International Airport), car, train, boat, and bus.

View of a busy street in Old Montreal

13. Fundy National Park

Summer days are spent at Fundy National Park, where visitors enjoy a pristine coastline and the world's highest tides.

This New Brunswick park offers a taste of Atlantic Canadian culture and numerous outdoor activities, such as kayaking at low tide and yurt camping. While in the area, you should also visit the Kouchibouguac National Park, Fort Beauséjour - Fort Cumberland National Historic Site, Carleton Martello Tower National Historic Site, and Andrew's Blockhouse National Historic Site.

Fundy National Park is situated on provincial Highway 114 near Alma, New Brunswick. There is no direct public transportation to or from the park, so you must drive here.

A person stands on a boardwalk viewpoint and looks at a waterfall in a lush forest

14. Toronto

Toronto is a famous vacation destination all year, but it's a must in the summer if you like festivals, concerts, and sporting events. Toronto combines urban and beach bum vibes, and there's even a neighborhood east of the city called 'The Beaches,' with four beaches to choose from. Summer markets in Toronto offer farm-fresh produce and one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

Throughout the summer, Toronto comes alive with various events, such as Blue Jays home games and food festivals. The Bruce Trail is one of many excellent places for hiking, and Niagara Parks is ideal for biking. The Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) operates easy-to-navigate the city's subways, buses, and streetcars.

Toronto Island ferry cruises past the Toronto city skyline

15. Jasper National Park

Jasper is a relaxed mountain town that serves as a great foundation for discovering the Canadian Rockies, with easy access to stunning mountains and alpine lakes. Views abound as hikers travel from Mount Edith Cavell's peaks to Maligne Canyon's caverns. Hike to Pyramid Lake, kayak Lake Edith or Lake Annette, or take a boat tour through Maligne Canyon. With over 2.7 million acres to explore, visitors can see wildlife from caribou to wolverines to moose.

The Icefields Parkway, southeast of Jasper, should be on everyone's bucket list with its dramatic views of several glaciers.

The Via Rail train service can take you to the town of Jasper. Jasper does not have a public transportation system.

Person in a canoe paddles across the turquoise water of Maligne Lake and looks towards the mountains

Frequently Asked Questions

Where should i go for a summer vacation in canada.

Tofino, Cape Breton, Prince Edward Island and Toronto are some of best place to vacation in Canada in the summer.

What is the prettiest place in Canada?

Alberta offers the most distinct natural landscapes in Canada, with Rocky Mountain and rolling grasslands, dry badlands, and vast swaths of boreal woodland. The province is also home to two of Canada's most famous national parks, which include beautiful lakes and glaciers.

Which destination is best for a summer vacation in Canada?

Muskoka is Ontario's beautiful cottage country, with its lakes, rivers, and forests. It's easily one of Canada's best summer vacation spots and a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.


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The Exploring Family

Summer in Canada: The Best Places to Visit

Canada is the world’s second largest country in terms of land mass, and is home to a diverse natural breathtaking landscapes. From the snow covered mountains in the West, expansive Canadian prairies, to the thunderous ocean tides in the East. Canada in the Summer offers inspiring locations to visit and explore which create amazing Canadian road trips opportunities.

I wear the Maple Leaf on my clothing and love the colour RED , and will tell anyone that I am proud to be Canadian which is why I thought it was important to start teaching my daughter while she is young about the great country she was born into and allow her to experience the The Best Canada Family Travel Ideas . 

Discover new and exciting places within our own backyard and explore the scenic and majestic wonders that this amazing country offers. From coast to coast we have included a location from every province making sure to offer you the Best Places of Canada to visit during the summer months.

Checkout this Canada Packing Listing for All Seasons to make sure you have everything you need!

Table of Contents

Places to visit in Canada during Summer – Your Guide to Canadian Travel

Canada has limited warm weather, so Summer is the best time of year to explore the amazing outdoor adventures in Canada. Outdoor travel in Canada is a must during the Summer Season. From the West Coast to the East Coast, you are sure to find an amazing outdoor experience to enjoy the natural landscape of the beautiful country of Canada.

So plan your next adventure using our guide and get out and explore some unique and incredible places that Canada has to offer this summer.

What is the weather like in Canada in the Summer?

June to August is the best season to visit Canada as it offers the best weather for outdoor fun from kayaking, camping, treetop trekking, hiking beach days, local attractions, and much more! Canadian love to be outside in the summer months of June to August and enjoy varying levels of humidity and temperatures. Temperatures in Canada in the summer range from 60-95 ° F (16 ° C-35 ° C).

When does Summer Start in Canada?

Summer officially starts on June 21st in Canada and we consider the months of June to August to be Summer in Canada. July is the hottest month of the Summer in Canada, and overall the hottest month of the year for most parts of Canada.

Who knows how to explore Canada in Summer better than locals who have experienced it?

Get Ready for the Best places to Visit in Canada Summer, as we explore the best activities and where to stay to help you to plan the ultimate trip to visit locations in Canada this summer.

North America offers lots of tourism cities perfect to visit with kids for a family vacation. Whether you are looking for a 24 hour stop, a stay cation, or inspiration for a long weekend trip then leave it to our local experts to give you great travel advice. We include travel ideas that can be long road trips, a quick weekend away or a longer vacation that requires a flight within Canada this summer.

All of our advice is written by locals who have visited the locations themselves and experienced what they are suggesting. Our locals help uncover amazing experiences, top exploration tips and give advice you won’t find in your traditional city guide books. So why not plan a trip to one of these amazing places to visit in Canada for a summer vacation!

A Map of the Beautiful Places to Checkout this Summer in Canada

Most beautiful places to visit in Canada during the Summer

  • Lake Louise. Alberta

Banff, Alberta

Ice fields parkway, alberta, 1000 islands, ontario, tofino, british columbia.

  • Chetichamp, Nova Scotia

Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia

Cavendish, prince edward island, whitehorse, yukon.

  • Fort Providence, North West Territories

Magdalen Islands, Quebec

  • Quebec City, Quebec

Montreal, Quebec

  • Eastern Townships, Quebec

Alma, New Brunswick

Grasslands national park, saskatchewan.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Lake Louise, Alberta

Lake Louise is found in the heart of Banff National Park , Canada’s oldest National Park, and is one of the best places to visit during the summer in Canada.   Tourists have been flocking to the shores of Lake Louise since the late 1800s when the first hotel was erected and visitors continue to make the journey to Lake Louise to this day.  Of the many activities you can do in Lake Louise in summer, the undoubted highlight is canoeing on Lake Louise . The iconic red canoes allow you to discover every corner of the magnificent glacier-fed lake – it really is a once-in-a-lifetime experience within the Canadian Rockies.  On top of canoeing, Lake Louise is also home to a number of magnificent hikes and walks. Hiking to the famous Lake Louise Teahouses during the summer months cannot be missed. The Teahouses themselves offer a selection of over 100 different varieties of teas as well as some of the best chocolate cake found anywhere in Alberta.  Summer is also the best time to visit Lake Louise if you are itching for a glimpse of their most popular residents – the Grizzly Bear. Lake Louise Ski Resort is open throughout the summer months and the sightseeing gondola ride offers you the best chance of seeing the majestic animals grazing in the meadows below the Gondola.  Lake Louise is certainly one of the best places to visit in Canada and never is this more apparent than in the summer. Checkout our Full Guide to the Best Places in Alberta to Visit with Kids .

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

The Icefields Parkway is the main highway that runs between the Town of Banff and the Town of Jasper, in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. It is the perfect place to visit during summer in Canada. Here, you’ll find so many incredible places to stop along the way , including famous lakes, hikes, and amazing views. 

Some of the most noteworthy places to stop are the Peyto Lake Viewpoint, Bow Lake, the Columbia Icefields, and Sunwapta Falls, although there are many others and you will be tempted to stop at them all! Learn more about all of the Best Places to Visit in Alberta!

If you’re interested in hiking, complete the Parker Ridge Hike along the way. It is a relatively short hike that will provide you with views of the surrounding mountains in one direction, and the Saskatchewan Glacier in the other. You’ll even see some wildflowers on the trail here during the summer months!

Summer is the perfect time to drive the Icefields Parkway as the snow will have melted, wildflowers will be out, and the waterfalls and lakes will be thawed, meaning if it’s too hot out you can take a glacial dip. This road is rated as one of the most beautiful drives in the world, and therefore it cannot be missed during summer in Canada!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Summer truly is one of the best times to visit Banff National Park. The extra long days and warm temperatures offer up plenty of activities that allow visitors to get the most out of the spectacular mountain scenery.

It’s the best time to visit the stunning mountain lakes, whether it’s by hiking to a lake or getting on the water. Moraine Lake, one of the most visited places in Banff National Park, is a fun place to go for a canoe in Banff. Lake Louise also offers visitors an opportunity to canoe below towering mountains.

For travelers who enjoy water sports, there are several lakes for  stand up paddle boarding in Banff National Park  and the surrounding area. Johnson Lake is a small lake that’s perfect for an easy paddle and even a swim on an extra hot summer day. Nearby Two Jack Lake and Minnewanka Lake are ideal for more experienced paddlers since they are larger and the wind can get quite strong.

Canmore is a neighboring mountain town, a short 20 minute drive away, that has more options for stand up paddleboarding either at Quarry Lake or on the Canmore Reservoir. Quarry lake, like Johnson Lake in Banff, is a great place to have a picnic, let kids play on the small beach and even go for a swim.

With plenty of options for getting out on the water, the only challenge travelers will have is choosing where to go. Checkout our Full Guide of the Top Things to do with Kids in Banaff!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

If you are travelling anywhere within southern Ontario, you’re only a short distance from some of the most beautiful vistas in the province. The  1000 Islands  are the perfect place for outdoor summer adventures, on land or on the water.

Paddle Around the 1000 Islands on a Kayaking Adventure

One of the most iconic outdoor activities to do in the 1000 Islands with kids , is to go on a kayaking adventure.  1000 Islands Kayaking  provides guided kayaking tours that are beginner-friendly. Choose from either full or half-day tours, overnight kayak/camping adventures, or self-guided kayak rentals. 1000 Islands Kayaking provide guests with all the gear necessary, including dry bags, lunch, snacks, water, and safety equipment. Spend the day paddling around the islands, admiring the million-dollar cottages, natural coves, and the beauty of the area.

Go for a Hike in Thousand Islands National Park

Thousand Islands National Park is made up of several properties including a few islands and three spaces on the mainland, where numerous trails can be found to suit all types of hikers. Landon Bay is the most popular area for hiking in Thousand Islands National Park, offering easy hiking trails with incredible views. The Lookout Trail, at only 0.5 km from the parking lot, provides visitors with spectacular views of Landon Bay and the 1000 Islands in under half an hour. The Jones Creek Trails are also quite popular. The trails are short and relatively flat, but still have incredible views of old-growth forests, wetland habitats, and the surrounding waters.

Canada in the Summer

In British Columbia, Tofino is a popular surfing spot and truly spectacular sunsets. The area’s natural beauty is a big draw, with rain forests, mountains, and beaches nearby. The best time to visit is during the summer when the weather is at its warmest and driest. Tofino has plenty of things to do, whether you’re looking for an adventurous outdoor experience or a more relaxing getaway. For nature lovers, there are hikes and kayaking trips to be enjoyed, while those who prefer something a bit more exciting can go surfing, whale watching, or storm watching. The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is also located in the area and offers visitors a chance to learn more about the region’s ecology and history. In addition, there is a popular hike to the Canso Plane Crash site, but don’t wear your best shoes as the trail can get quite muddy. Tofino is also home to  some great restaurants  and bars, making it the perfect spot to enjoy a meal or a drink after a day out exploring. Wolf in the Fog is the most popular restaurant in Tofino and requires reservations months in advance, especially during spring and summer. So if you’re looking for an unforgettable Canadian adventure, be sure to add Tofino to your list!

Checkout our Full List of Weekend Getaways from Vancouver! Or if you have some extra time in the area checkout our ideas for How to Spend 48 Hours in Vancouver with Kids!

Canada in Summer

Cheticamp, Nova Scotia

Chéticamp is a traditional fishing village on the famous Cabot Trail, that’s known as a worldwide leader in preserving Acadian culture. If you’re wanting to explore Cape Breton in the summer, then Chéticamp, Nova Scotia is the perfect spot to spend a few days. There’s lots to see in the village itself, and it’s conveniently close to great hiking trails, beaches, and the Cabot Trail. Summer is the best time to visit, because from June through to the end of August the weather is the warmest it gets, and there is less chance of rain. Chéticamp is located just outside the west coast entrance into Cape Breton Highlands National Park. This makes it the perfect home base for going on day trips into the park to go hiking, explore the coast, and admire the forest, mountains, rivers and valleys of the Cape Breton Highlands. In the village of Chéticamp, you’ll find plenty of restaurants (including Seafood Stop, which has the best lobster!) as well as Les Trois Pignons , a museum where you can learn more about Acadian history and culture. Be sure to also stop by the Museum of the Hooked Rug and Home Life to learn about rug hooking, a tradition that originates in the area, and has been done since as far back as the 1930s.  

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Few places in Canada compare to the beautiful Annapolis Valley, Nova Scotia. Known as Atlantic Canada’s richest agricultural region, you’ll find thriving orchards, vineyards, and fields in the summertime, nearby the world-famous Bay of Fundy. From Halifax, drive west on Highway 101 through the valley—from Windsor to Digby.

The Annapolis Valley is truly an outdoor lover’s paradise. Hike Cape Split for an iconic half-day adventure on the upgraded 16-km loop. Witness spectacular views from the established lookouts over the Minas Basin and Scots Bay. Cape Split’s trailhead is about an hour from Wolfville. Don’t miss the best view of the valley at The Lookoff along the way.

Did you know you can explore the Annapolis Valley on your bike? The 110-km Harvest Moon Trail follows an old rail bed through the valley, beginning at the Grand-Pré National Historic Site. Enjoy refreshment at the Annapolis Cider Company in Wolfville or get your caffeine fix at Berwick’s North Mountain Coffee. You’ll want a mountain bike for this rugged journey. 

How about exploring the valley from the water? Grab your canoe or kayak and paddle along traditional Mi’kmaq territory on the Annapolis River. Through forest and farmland, start in Middleton and overnight at the Bridgetown Family Camping. The next day, continue on to Dunromin Campground for a pleasant stay not too far from Annapolis Royal.

The Annapolis Valley’s weather ranges from 20-25°C during the day in the summer, with the odd 30-degree high. When the temperatures rise, head to one of the many beaches for that cool sea breeze. You’re never more than 60 km away from the ocean anywhere in NS! Visit in July or August for your best chance to miss the rain.

Canada in the Summer

One of the best places to visit during the summer in Canada is Prince Edward Island. From the rolling fields, wide open spaces, endless beaches, campgrounds, National parks, and seafood galore, PEI is an outdoor lover’s paradise.

Prince Edward Island is a small island in eastern Canada, the smallest province in the country. A scenic island, PEI is home to rolling hills, long beaches, red cliffs, and fresh seafood. From tip to tip, the island is approximately 225 km long. One of the best ways to experience Prince Edward Island is by road trip. You can explore the whole island or choose to road trip around only part of the island.

For a single-day road trip around central PEI, start in Charlottetown. Visit the farmer’s market, try fries from a fry truck, and grab ice cream from the famous Cow’s Creamery. From Charlottetown, head to Cavendish, where you will find the Green Gables Heritage Place and red sand beach within Prince Edward Island National Park. Once done, head to Northern Rustico for a delicious seafood dinner on the coast. Complete your day by heading back to Charlottetown. 

Despite its small size, PEI offers a variety of activities, including bicycling the Confederation Trail, exploring small towns, and seeing the iconic red cliffs in Cavendish at Prince Edward Island National Park. A must-try food in Prince Edward Island is fries made from fresh-cut PEI potatoes, especially from a fry truck; they are delicious. 

Cavendish, PEI is a great place to visit in the summer. There are plenty of things to do, and the weather is always nice. You can go to the beach, go to one of many entertainment venues, or visit some of the local attractions. The people are friendly and welcoming, and there is always something going on. I would highly recommend visiting Cavendish in the summer! People come to visit Cavendish in the Summer to enjoy beaches and breathtaking scenery, and for world class lobster dishes. Cavendish, Prince Edward Island is the summer capital of Prince Edward Island. Tourists flock to this small town on the north shore of the smallest province in Canada. Cavendish is world-famous as the setting of Anne of Green Gables and Lucy Maud Montgomery’s novels. You can visit the home that inspired Green Gables, called the Green Gables Heritage Place. You can learn all about the life of Lucy Maud Montgomery in the once small farming community. If you are a fan of the books you will love visiting this site. Golf lovers will also enjoy playing a scenic round on the Green Gables Golf Course as they enjoy the view of the sand dunes in Prince Edward Island National Park and enjoy the ocean breeze as they play this challenging course among the beautiful Canadian landscape. Cavendish has one of the best beaches on the island, and one of the best beaches in Canada. Cavendish Beach is a long, wide, sandy beach that is great for swimming, sunbathing, picnicking, and beachcombing and is often very busy during the summer months of June, July and August. The waves are usually gentle and there are lifeguards on duty in the summer. If you enjoy water sports such as kayaking, paddleboarding, sea-doos or para-sailing then head to the Cavendish pier to rent some water sports equipment. Plus get some fabulous island ice cream at “ Cows Creamery ” on the Cavendish Boardwalk. If you are looking for some more fun you can go to a water park, mini-golf, or a mini amusement park. Don’t forget to stop at visit Prince Edward Island’s oldest lighthouse Point Prim Lighthouse .

There are numerous incredible parks and beaches to visit during the summer in PEI. Whether you choose to laze around at Cedar Dunes Provincial Park and play on a red sand beach (right next to the haunted West Point Lighthouse !), listen to the sand sing to you at Basin Head Provincial Park, or take a 700-metre floating boardwalk through parabolic sand dunes to soft, white, sandy beaches at Greenwich Beach, there are endless options to enjoy PEI’s 1100 km of coastline. Prince Edward Island has beautiful summer weather and Cavendish is the best part of the island to spend it! Summer is the best time to visit as the weather is optimal for outdoor activities, beaches are swimmable, and PEI is at its finest. Something about the summer brings out the best that PEI has to offer. Prince Edward Island is a fun summer destination for all ages. 

Summer is prime time to visit for lobster season – so if you love seafood, you’re in luck! From restaurants in downtown Charlottetown to seaside shacks, there are endless options to have lobster any way you want it. If you’re an early riser, you can even catch the fishermen leaving the harbour at dawn with their lobster traps; it’s quite a sight to see! The best spots to watch this are at Malpeque Harbour and North Rustico Harbour.

Whether you choose to lay on the beach enjoying the sunshine and ocean breeze, finding lonely lighthouses, strolling through charming Charlottetown, or relaxing at one of the many campgrounds, there is no shortage of outdoor fun in Prince Edward Island during the summer.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

If you plan on making your way to the Yukon, the northwestern territory in Canada, you will at some point pass through Whitehorse. Whitehorse is not only the capital city of the Yukon but also the main transport hub. Although you can visit Whitehorse any time of year, summer is the best time to fully take advantage of its outdoor activities. Known as the “Wilderness City”, there is no shortage of places to explore. Adventure seekers can paddle the Yukon River or hike and bike the more than 700 kilometres of marked trails. There are camping and overlanding opportunities at sites and in the backcountry. Animal lovers and families will love exploring the Wildlife Refuge, which offers a look at many local species that have been rescued or are being rehabilitated. Downtown Whitehorse has much to offer as well. This bustling Capital City isn’t all business, there are many historic buildings, museums, boutique shops and restaurants to discover. Summer is the only time to head to Shipyards Park and experience an artisan market. Here you can pick up a jar of Fireweed Jelly, which is a local favourite made from Yukon’s flower Fireweed. Fireweed can be seen growing all over the Yukon, Whitehorse included. Kids will love touring the S.S. Klondike, a retired paddlewheeler seen next to the Yukon River as soon as you enter Whitehorse. Learn the history of these amazing ships and their importance in the Yukon before highways and roads were built. Hotels are plentiful in the downtown area, but be sure to book your summer accommodations early, as they can fill up. Few cities offer untouched wilderness and modern amenities but Whitehorse in the summer has it all. If your in the Yukon, I encourage you to checkout Dawson City with Kids .

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Fort Providence, North West Territories:

The Mackenzie River is well known for its amazing freshwater fishing. The North West Territories is a vast land, with a small population.  The Northwest Territory is located several hours from Northern Alberta but it is worth the drive to enjoy the beautiful rugged Canadian landscape. Fort Providence is a small community of just over 700 people. Small in size, this community is primarily inhabited by the Dehcho First Nations. The beauty of this community is in the people, the rugged land, and the amazing fishing opportunities. Recently a 1.1-kilometer bridge was constructed that spans the Mackenzie River at the entrance of Fort Providence. The Deh Cho Bridge replaced a ferry that was used to cross over, as well as an Ice Bridge. Before the bridge was constructed, the community would be without a road out of their community for 3-4 weeks out of the year. During this time, all supplies had to be flown in.  Wild bison are a common sight on roadsides around the community. These amazing and enormous beasts are listed as a threatened species in the NWT. If you desire to see Bison from your vehicle, Fort Providence is a great place to go.  The primary reason many people visit Fort Providence is for the Jackfish and Pickeral fish. The best fishing usually happens immediately after ice breakup (usually the beginning of June), and in July.  Fort Province has several campgrounds where fishing is allowed from the shore.  Enjoy crossing the bridge, and seeing the harsh beauty of an uncorrupted land. This land is completely under frost and snow during the spring, winter, and fall months so summer is the best time to go.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Situated in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the Magdalen Islands (Îles de la Madeleine) are somewhat of an anomaly. The windswept archipelago is part of the province of Quebec but is geographically closer to the maritime provinces of Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. 

A summer cruise service operates from Montreal, but the most popular approach is to take the daily year-round ferry service from Souris, Prince Edward Island to Cap-aux-Meules, the administration centre and largest settlement on the islands. Enjoy live Acadian music during the five-hour crossing; the prospect of seeing whales adds to the appeal. 

The six main inhabited islands are stitched together by dunes, bridges, and causeways. Route 199 stretches 100 kilometres from Île du Havre Aubert at the southern tip to Île de Grosse Île. 

The islands are a haven for cyclists, foodies, hikers, and windsurfers. Cyclists are welcome, as evidenced by extra wide shoulders reserved for cyclists on Route 199, lockable storage sheds at overnight accommodation, bike parking racks, and shuttle services with bike carriers. Several cycle shops offer bike rentals and stock a range of cycling gear. Tourisme Îles de la Madeleine describes several cycling routes on its website and sells an official cycling map at the tourist information centre in Cap-aux-Meules.

To make the most of a  visit to the Magdalen Islands , make the tourist information centre your first stop for information on events, where to eat, and opportunities to learn about Acadian culture, history, and music. Don’t miss La Grave at Havre Aubert, site of the first Acadian settlement. Musée de la Mer des Îles de la Madeleine overlooking the settlement is superbly curated. For a top-notch dining experience, enjoy a range of culinary delights from the impressive menu of Les Pas Perdus in Cap-aux-Meules.    

Summer in Canada

Summer is the perfect time to visit Montreal! The city has more than 30 festivals to attend, everything from International Jazz fest to the Osheaga, Montreal’s take of Coachella.

If music is not your thing, then, we also have a Just for Laugh festival where you can see your favourite stand-up comedians, Comicon, several film festivals, and circus, theatre and dance festivals. The majority of the festivals are FREE and take place at the Places des Festivals (Quartier des spectacles), a downtown area designed specially to hosts events all-year-round. Montreal is also famously known for being the home of Cirque du Soleil, and often runs shows in the summer under the big tent.

If you visit Montreal in the Summer, be sure to check out the Port of Montrel known as Old Montreal that is home to many shops, and amazing bars, restaurants and outdoor patio or terraces, for visitors to enjoy! Montreal has a pretty neat history in regards to the Prohibition Era and is still home to some secret speakeasies such as The Coldroom, Clandestino or Nhau Bar. Visitors can also checkout neat attractions Downtown Montreal such as the Grande Roue de Montréal which stands as Canada’s largest observation wheel and offers an aerial view of the City. Or you can simply stroll along the river or rent a bike and checkout the local heritage buildings in Port Montreal and learn about its vibrant history in the Fur Trades.

Another great reason to visit Montreal during summertime is that Montrealers love to spend time outside whether it is doing a picnic at the park or at Mount Royal. If your adventourous and enjoy the outdoors you may be interested in checking out the Zipline, Pirate Theme Park, Ropes Course, and Labrinth Escape room that are all close to each other in Old Montreal.

The summer months are also the best time to go shopping as there are several street fairs throughout the city with great deals! The city is also the host to international events such as the F1 Montreal Grand Prix or The Loto-Québec International Fireworks Competition where you can see breathtaking fireworks! If you like theme parks, then a visit to La Ronde is a must-do!

If you have kids or are an animal lover I highly recommend checking out Ecomuseum Zoo which showcases local animals found in Quebec in their natural setting. Ecomuseum Zoo provides ” a natural and environmentally-responsible environment, and a close-up look at Québec’s many animal species”. When we visited last summer my daughters favourite animals was the river otter, as they had a very cool exhibit that allows you to view the otter above and below the water and even has a tube that kids can crawl through that runs through the tank. Ecomuseum is located about 30 minutes from Downtown Montreal. Montreal is a vibrant Canadian City offering so much for tourists of all ages to enjoy and explore!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Exploring the Eastern Townships of Quebec in Summer

Quebec’s Eastern Townships region are located only 1.5 hours from Montreal, or 3.5 hours from Ottawa. They’re the perfect getaway in the summer in Canada. That’s when the outdoor spaces are best enjoyed, no matter what you’re looking to do. 

Some of the best towns to stay in are Orford, Magog, Coaticook, Sutton and Eastman. They offer great choices of accommodations, from hotels, cabins and even campgrounds. 

Warmer weather means you can enjoy some of the best beaches in Quebec. The Eastern Townships have beautiful beaches sprinkled all around the cute towns. Magog, Orford, Lac Brome, Coaticook and so many others have lovely beaches where you can cool down from the summer heat. 

Another great thing to do in the summer in Canada’s Eastern Townships is to go hiking. This region has four different national parks to choose from, each offering something different. The best one, with the most hikes and beaches all in the same area is the Mont-Orford national park. But there are many other free hikes in the area as well, like Mount Pinnacle. 

If you’re looking to relax, you’re in luck, because the Eastern Townships are home to some of the best outdoor spas. You can enjoy Scandinavian style pools and treat yourself to a massage. 

If you prefer enjoying amazing wine and cheese, the Eastern Townships have you covered. There is a wine route that will take you to stunning vineyards where you can taste their offering. You can also grab some local artisanal cheeses along the way, for the perfect 5-à-7 treat. If you’re not too much into wine, there is also a microbrewery route where you can try the best locally crafted brews. 

Whether you’re looking for adventure, time spent in the great outdoors, a relaxing or a foodie getaway, the Eastern Townships have some of the best things to do in the summer in Canada.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Quebec City

Québec City, located on the St. Lawrence River, is the capital of the Canadian province of Québec.  Québec is mostly French-speaking and is one of Canada’s easternmost provinces.    

Summer is the perfect time to explore the open-air attractions of Old Québec, the historic center of Québec City.  Old Québec is one of the most intact fortified towns in North America, and is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Aficionados of military history will want to visit La Citadelle de Québec, an impressive star-shaped citadel, and the Plains of Abraham, a colonial battle site.   Stroll through the grassy expanse of the Battlefields Park with its historic fortified towers and incredible river views. 

At the heart of Old Québec, you’ll find Place d’Armes.  This central plaza features a Gothic fountain topped by the Faith Monument, and is bordered by the spectacular Château Frontenac on its south side.   This magnificent hotel is the most famous landmark in Québec City and is said to be the most photographed hotel in the world.

Take some time to visit the oldest church in Canada, the Notre-Dame de Québec Basilica-Cathedral.  Its architecture is in the neoclassical style, and the interior of the cathedral features stained glass and ornate gilded décor.

If you have a car, you’ll definitely want to make the short drive to Montmorency Falls.   Take a hike and enjoy some spectacular views of the waterfalls.  The more adventurous travellers can even take a zip line ride over the waterfall!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Alma, New Brunswick is located about 1 hour away from Moncton and the Village of Alma is located on the Bay of Fundy and welcomes visitors from around the world every summer to experience the true Maritime culture. Alma is a small fishing community , where lobster and scallop fishing are an important industry in Alma’s Tidal harbor. Alma is located a few minutes from Hopewell Rocks and right at the entrance to Fundy National Park making it the perfect summer destination to explore the sea and the forests of New Brunswick all in one location. Enjoy a stroll on the Alma Wharf, kayak in the Bay of Fundy, or stop in at Tipsy Tails or for Fundy Takeout for the best Fish and Chips you will ever eat! If you are a beer drinker be sure to stop in at the local brewery, Holy Whale Brewery located in an old church offering a quaint experience and great beer flights. Located right next door is Buddha Bear Coffee Roastery if your looking for a coffee rather than beer!

Alma is the perfect outdoor destination as you can hang out on the beach and watch the tide rise throughout the day, watch the fishing boats or go explore the Bay of Fundy National Park. The Bay of Fundy National Park. Experience Atlantic Canada culture as you explore Fundy National Park and enjoy hiking the pristine forest trails, visiting boardwalk trails, or exploring waterfalls deep in Acadian forests – its a beautiful treasure in the the Atlantic Coast. If your lucky you may even catch a local music performance in the park in the summertime.

If your visiting Alma, then you need to plan to make a trip to Hopewell Rocks . The Hopewell Rocks is a collection of massive rock formations that look like tall flowerpots along the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick, Canada. Sculptured by tidal erosion, the rocks stand between 40 – 70 feet in height and are an iconic New Brunswick landmark. With the extreme tidal range in the Bay of Fundy, you can walk on the ocean floor during low tide; the only place in New Brunswick to walk on the ocean floor without scuba gear or paddle in a kayak as the waters rise up to 12 m or more through the day. In Hopewell Rocks Provincial Park, there are activities for everyone from families to adventure seekers. Activities include walking on the ocean floor, hiking trails to viewpoints, and kayaking the Bay of Fundy during high tide. Additional park amenities include a playground, gift shop, and an area with picnic tables. With park entry passes valid for two days, you have plenty of time to explore Hopewell Rocks Provincial Park. Summer is the best time to visit as it provides ideal weather to experience both high and low tide at Hopewell Rocks. The beach is open within the park, and you can walk on the ocean floor with the rocks during low tide. The ocean floor is inaccessible during the winter months, and the open season is limited in spring and fall due to weather; summer is the best time to visit the Hopewell Rocks.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

On the Opposite Side of the Bay of Fundy

The Bay of Fundy is one of the best summer locations in Nova Scotia. This area of Nova Scotia has the highest tides in the world, and it is spectacular to see this! There are lots of activities to do in the summer to experience these dramatic tides. There are also lots of great places to go glamping in Nova Scotia . Tidal Bore Rafting is a great activity to cool off from the summer heat, and a really fun and unique experience in Nova Scotia.  Begin your journey by riding in a Zodiac boat down the river looking out for bald eagles, and go swimming and sliding down the mud banks.  Then when the tide starts to come in, ride down the river through the high waves.  The Tidal Bore Rafting Resort offers this adventure and has accomodations with a pool and restaurant to relax in afterwards. Walking on the ocean floor is another incredible way to experience the Bay of Fundy.  At Burntcoat Head Park , when the tide is low, walk along the red sand and up close to the islands.  The land formations are interesting shapes, and it feels like another world! When the tide starts to come in, watch the water levels rise by up to 50ft and the ocean floor disappear entirely. 

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Known as the “Land of the Living Skies”, the prairie province of  Saskatchewan  is often overlooked as a must-see destination in Canada. However, Saskatchewan is extremely scenic with active sand dunes, golden wheat fields, gorgeous boreal forests, an incredible chain of lakes, with the bonus of having the most unique National Park in Canada.

Grasslands National Parks can be found in Southern Saskatchewan and runs all the way to the US border with Montana. At over 900 square kilometres, the park is huge and definitely a must-see in summer!

What makes Grasslands National Park so special? The park is not only dedicated to preserving prairie grasslands, is home to wildlife that can’t be found anywhere else in the country, but it is also the darkest Dark-Sky Preserve in Canada, making it perfect for summer stargazing. Grasslands National Park is also perfect for camping. With summer temperatures ranging from 15 C (60 F) in May, to the mid-30s C (90-95 F) in July and August (cooler in the evening), it’s actually quite a comfortable experience.

The park has two separate campsites, with options for both front and backcountry camping, as well as several oTENTiks for those who prefer glamping. With hiking and wildlife spotting opportunities available as well, there is plenty to keep busy with at Grasslands National Park.

And be sure to check out the Badlands Parkway. This scenic 11 km road travels along a historic escarpment trail, with westward views across the prairies. Along the way, there are several stops that not only have stunning viewpoints, but also have signs providing a wealth of information about the history, the land, and its peoples.

Looking for that perfect Instagrammable location to document your time at Grasslands? Be sure to search for Parks Canada’s red chairs which can be found along the Badlands Parkway!

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Canada is often known for its frozen winters. Although the country’s winter landscape is a sight to behold, the city of Winnipeg in Manitoba province is an excellent spot for a summer trip. It’s the capital of Manitoba and gets its name from Winnipeg Lake. The general summer climate of this city is warm and humid with lots of sunshine. It’s mainly because of its location in the western part of the country, also known as the Canadian Prairies. Being a metropolitan city, Winnipeg boasts some architectural wonders. The whole region is beautifully decorated with parks and recreational areas. It’s a fun place for people of all ages. Summers are the best time to explore this up-and-coming travel destination. The top priority spot on your Winnipeg bucket list must be the Forks. It’s a 6000 years old trading center that holds the glorious history of indigenous people as well as the European settlers. Today, this area also houses a few excellent museums, a beautiful footbridge, and the regular market. Visit the Assiniboine Park Zoo to see polar bears in front of your eyes. It’s a must-visit destination when traveling with kids according to local blogger The Holiday Story . Of all the museums, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights is the most important one. It’s the best place to learn about the history of Canada and its people.  There are many more impressive spots in Winnipeg apart from these few like the Trappist Monastery Ruins, Manitoba Legislative Building, St. Boniface Cathedral, etc. It’s a place with many charms. Traveling the city and checking out its beautiful nooks and corners will make your summer worthwhile.

From Coast to Coast we have found the Best Places to spend your Summer in Canada, especially if you are looking for an outdoor adventure. Canada offers lots of outdoor adventures from hiking, paddling, camping and everything in between however the summer months are the best months to visit Canada due to the warmer weather. We have highlighted one place from each province to make sure we cover the vast country of Canad a.

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

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The Best Times to Visit Canada, According to Local Experts

Here's when to visit Canada, whether you want to ski, hike, see the northern lights, or spot wildlife.

With its thriving Indigenous experiences, exhilarating outdoor adventures, bustling urban hubs, and a prime location (it's one of only two nations bordering three distinct oceans), Canada is an exceptional four-season destination that warrants multiple visits.

"At Pan Pacific Whistler, we are privileged to have two properties in the heart of Whistler village, nestled between the mountains, which is the perfect location for exploring the area year-round," says Julie Lanteigne, general manager of both Pan Pacific Whistler Mountainside and Village Centre . "Steps from the hotel, guests can access the gondolas to Whistler Blackcomb ’s alpine terrain, which is world-renowned for skiing and other winter sports, as well as hiking and mountain biking in the summer. In the spring and fall, our team enjoys hearing about the adventures guests experience at lower elevations, including visiting glacier-fed lakes, waterfalls, and golf courses, before returning to the hotels to relax in the heated outdoor pools or exploring the many incredible culinary options at our doorstep in the village."

Scott Shymko/Getty Images

Depending on the type of adventures you’re seeking, the seasons can typically be described as such:

  • High Season: June to mid-September is best for hiking, biking, seeing wildlife, and exploring lakes.
  • Shoulder Seasons: April to May and mid-September to October are best for spring flowers and fall colors, respectively. 
  • Low Season: November to March is best for skiing and winter adventures.

christiannafzger/Getty Images

Best Times to Visit Canada for Skiing and Winter Activities

While Canada's "low season" falls in the winter, the opposite can be said if you’re chasing knee-deep powder in the Alberta Rockies, British Columbia, or Quebec. "Out here, January and March are the optimal times for deep snow and sunshine on British Columbia's Powder Highway ," says Matt Mosteller, senior vice president of Resorts of the Canadian Rockies . "Whether it’s in the bowls of Fernie Alpine Resort , the rocky chutes of Kicking Horse Mountain Resort , or the highest vertical terrain in North America at Revelstoke Mountain Resort , those are my favorite months to seek out fresh powder."

Away from traditional ski resorts, Canada can justifiably be considered the birthplace and reigning champion of heli-skiing thanks to industry pioneer Canadian Mountain Holidays (CMH), which runs numerous lodges across British Columbia. Out on the coast, award-winning Bella Coola Heli Sports holds a prominent presence in the majestic Coast Mountains, with several lodges and a new yacht-based heli-skiing experience. Beyond downhill skiing and snowboarding, December until March is best for ice fishing, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and winter festivals like SnowDays in Banff and Lake Louise, Carnival in Quebec City, and Festival du Voyageur in Winnipeg.

Rory Fuller/Travel + Leisure

Best Times to Visit Canada for Hiking

Canada completed the world's longest recreational, multiuse trail network in 2017. The 15,000-mile Trans Canada Trail joined an impressive portfolio of paths from coast to coast, most of which are best enjoyed in the summer. July and August are safe bets across the country for no snow and warmer temperatures, and spring (April-June) tends to have the most bugs and be the wettest. Consider hut-to-hut hiking via The Alpine Club of Canada or taking an Indigenous-led hike with Indigenous Tourism Alberta , Indigenous Tourism Quebec , or the many others across the country with Destination Indigenous . 

Best Times to Visit Canada for Northern Lights Viewing

The mesmerizing northern lights , also known as aurora borealis, are best observed during winter nights. Although they can occasionally be seen across Canada, heading further north increases your chances of catching a glimpse. In the far north, the intriguing phenomenon of the midnight sun graces the summer months, while its counterpart — the polar night — dominates the winter as the sun barely rises above the horizon.

Because of this, ideal months for northern lights viewing tend to range from late fall to late winter. Their otherworldly luminous dance has significant Indigenous meaning , and to understand this and have a better chance at spotting them, book an Indigenous-led northern lights trip with a company like Who What Where Tours in the Yukon, Adventures Inuit in northern Quebec, or in Churchill, Manitoba, the polar bear viewing capital of the world. "There is more activity in the north and it's dark for longer periods of time," says David Daley from Wapusk Adventures . "As long as you have clear skies and darkness, we have aurora 300 nights a year here in Churchill. We have some awesome aurora mid-August till mid-September, when it gets dark again."

Rory Fuller/Getty Images

Best Times to Visit Canada to See Wildlife

With a shoreline lapped by the gentle waves of three distinct oceans and a varied topography that changes from one province to another, Canada is home to a rich array of wildlife. Whether in the Pacific, Arctic, or Atlantic oceans, the cetaceans, bears, and marine life are uniquely different in each environment, especially when the Arctic Ocean thaws come spring.

"The thrill of going on an expedition is never knowing what you’re going to find, but June through September in northern Canada [offers] pretty fantastic chances to spot some of Canada's most elusive and wonderful species," says Martin Aldrich, manager of key partnerships and strategic planning at Adventure Canada . "During this period, the region is at its most vibrant, coming to life with species like beluga whales, narwhals, bears, and Arctic foxes, all taking advantage of the long days and abundant food sources of the Arctic in summer.

He adds, "When I think of my own experiences with Arctic wildlife, an exhilarating summertime polar bear spotting immediately pops into my mind. A mother and cub were spotted on the sea ice just off the ship’s bow. They were cautious, but curious, and we all watched in awe as they navigated the ice flow, jumping between chunks to get closer to us. They moved close enough that I could see the warmth of their breath as they exhaled while perched on the frigid sea ice. Then, after a while, they gracefully slipped into the water and swam off. The spectacle of wildlife adds so much to the experience of travel in Canada, from the majesty of polar bears to the elusiveness of narwhals, it's what we're known for, and responsibly viewing wildlife on adventures through Canada is truly unforgettable."

South of the Arctic, a significant portion of Canada's wildlife relies on hibernation and/or migration for survival, making their appearances more predictable throughout the year, with the summer months often being the best time for viewing. On the western coast, these natural cycles play a crucial role in both the animals' lives and the likelihood of observing them. The salmon migration, occurring from late August to late October, is particularly noteworthy as these fish travel from the ocean to rivers for spawning.

This event attracts black and grizzly bears, who seize the opportunity to feast on salmon before retreating into winter hibernation. Found only in British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest, the Kermode bear (or spirit bear) is the rarest in the world and holds significance for coastal Indigenous communities. Although many believe the polar bear is the only white bear in the world, the Kermode is also a shade of white, but more closely related to the black bear. To maximize your chances of spotting a Kermode bear, consider booking a stay at the Spirit Bear Lodge or embarking on an expedition with Maple Leaf Adventures . 

A&J Fotos/Getty Images

Best Times to Visit Canada for Foliage

Regarded as many Canadian’s favorite season, autumn is a celebration of bountiful harvests, the changing seasons, and vibrant foliage that reflects off the lakes and rivers. While the amber shades of fall can be found throughout Canada, there are some top places to enjoy it.

In the north, the mountains, and the prairies, fall is quick, sometimes lasting only three weeks. While the trees turn beautiful shades of gold in the Rockies, predicting their timing and planning a trip around this shift can be difficult.

For a more predictable display of fall colors, Ontario and Quebec are prime options, with the foliage lasting upwards of two months in September and October. Consider traveling on Via Rail from Quebec City to Montreal, as the train passes through trees adorned with golden hues.

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41 Best Places To Visit In Canada in 2023

Gravatar for Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)

Written by Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)

Updated: September 18, 2023

Savvy New Canadians content is vigorously reviewed for accuracy by our team of qualified fact checkers.

Canada is a beautiful country with many spectacular vistas, exciting activities, and distinct cultural experiences, and it has something new to offer everyone.

The Great White North offers many notable and beautiful places, including the Banff National Park, Niagara Falls, Vancouver, Quebec City, and Nova Scotia’s gorgeous coastlines.

If you’re looking for recommendations on the best places to visit in Canada, keep reading!

Key Takeaways

  • Vancouver, Niagara Falls, and Montreal are some of the best places to visit in Canada for the first time.
  • Some of the must-sees for nature lovers are The Rocky Mountains, Whitehorse, and Gros Morne National Park.
  • A few of the best places to visit in Canada for couples are Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Tofino, Vancouver Island, and Niagara-on-the-Lake.
  • Some of the best places to visit in Canada for families are Mont-Tremblant, Halifax, and Ottawa.

Best Places To Visit In Canada For the First Time

1. vancouver, bc.

One of the best places to travel to in Canada for the first time is Vancouver, British Columbia.

Some must-visit places are the Capilano Suspension Bridge, Granville Island, and Stanley Park.

Explore Vancouver Aquarium or stroll along the Seawall, and remember to shop on Robson Street and sample local fare and beverages.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

2. Toronto, ON

Toronto, Ontario, is a dynamic metropolis with vast culture, culinary, and entertainment options, perfect for first-time visitors to Canada.

Visit the CN Tower, the Royal Ontario Museum, or stroll around the Distillery District.

The most incredible time to visit is between May and October when the weather is nice, and there are many festivals.

3. Whistler, BC

Skiing, snowboarding, hiking, and mountain biking are favourite year-round activities in Whistler, British Columbia.

Whistler also organizes events throughout the year, such as the Crankworx mountain biking festival in August and the Whistler Film Festival in December.

If you’re into skiing, the best skiing conditions are found during the winter sports season from December to February.

4. Niagara Falls, ON

Canada’s Niagara Falls in Ontario is a must-see location, especially for first-timers.

The Maid of the Mist boat excursion, Journey Behind the Falls, Niagara Fallsview Casino, and Niagara SkyWheel are just a few of the attractions in Niagara Falls.

Also available are tours of the adjacent Niagara-on-the-Lake wineries and the Niagara Parks Botanical Garden.

The most fantastic time to travel is between June and August when it’s warm outside, and you can see the majesty of the falls under the bright sun.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

5. Churchill, MB

Churchill, Manitoba, is the “Polar Bear Capital of the World” and an excellent vacation spot for nature lovers.

In Churchill, you can take guided trips to see the bears and other species, including arctic foxes and beluga whales.

When polar bears gather along the shore in October to wait for the sea ice to build, it is the perfect time to travel.

Churchill is a fantastic location to watch the Northern Lights as well.

The neighbourhood museum and historical center also offer visitors the chance to learn about the history and culture of the region.

6. Quebec, QC

Quebec City, QC, is a picturesque and historic Canadian location and is one of the best places to visit in Canada for couples and families for the first time.

Quebec City is a fascinating historic city with a wide range of things to do, like strolling around the cobblestone streets of Old Quebec, seeing the Chateau Frontenac, and dining on French Canadian cuisine.

Explore the iconic Old Quebec City, walk along the Saint Lawrence River, and see the beautiful Montmorency Falls.

The Aquarium du Quebec, Valcartier Vacation Village, and the Musée de la Civilisation are among family-friendly attractions.

May through October, when the weather is moderate and celebrations like the Quebec City Summer Festival and Winter Carnival are held, is the perfect time to come.

Related: Best Places to Live in Quebec

7. Montreal, QC

Montreal, Quebec, combines traditional charm with contemporary comforts renowned for its extensive history, diverse culture, and delectable cuisine.

The Notre Dame Basilica, Old Montreal, Mount Royal Park, and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts are all must-see landmarks.

The Montreal Botanical Garden and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts are also two must-see sights.

In Montreal, you can enjoy regional specialties like poutine and bagels while exploring the exciting nightlife.

The summer months of June to August are the greatest because the city hosts many festivals and outdoor activities during this season.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

8. Calgary, AB

The Calgary Stampede, the Glenbow Museum, and the Calgary Tower are just a few of the city’s many attractions.

July is the best time to visit because the weather is excellent. The town comes alive with the famed Calgary Stampede, a 10-day celebration of Western history, including rodeos, music, and other activities.

If you prefer milder weather and winter activities, December is also an excellent time to visit for skiing and snowboarding in the neighbouring Rocky Mountains.

Best Places To Visit In Canada For Nature Lovers

9. banff, bc.

Banff is one of Canada’s top destinations for those who enjoy the outdoors because of its breathtaking scenery and diverse animals.

Some of the best outdoor activities suitable to try are mountain biking at Banff National Park, gondola trips, and swimming in hot springs.

It’s great to go trekking and wildlife-watching from May to September, and the best months for skiing and winter sports are December through February.

10. The Rocky Mountains, BC, and AB

The Rocky Mountains are one of the top places to visit in Canada for nature enthusiasts since they provide beautiful landscapes and outdoor activities.

Visit Yoho and Banff National Parks in British Columbia for hot springs, hiking, and skiing.

You may also enjoy breathtaking views of Columbia Icefield, Icefields Parkway, and Lake Louise in Alberta.

From June through September, when the weather is moderate and most attractions are open, is the ideal time to travel.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

11. Jasper National Park, AB

Jasper National Park in Alberta, Canada, offers more than 1,200 km of hiking paths, including the well-known Skyline Trail and the beautiful Canadian Rockies, glaciers, and turquoise lakes.

Among the must-sees in the park are Maligne Lake, Athabasca Falls, and the Columbia Icefield.

Jasper also has plenty of wildlife, including bears, elk, and bighorn sheep.

12. Whitehorse, YK

Whitehorse in the Yukon Territory is a must-visit location for nature lovers, providing a wide range of outdoor pursuits in the adjacent parks and lakes, including hiking, riding, and kayaking.

The best places to visit include Kluane National Park, Fish Lake, and Miles Canyon.

You can also swim in the Takhini Hot Springs, see the Northern Lights, and visit the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre to learn about the region’s indigenous culture.

13. Cape Breton Highlands National Park, NS

Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia, is one of the best places to visit in Canada for nature lovers because it also offers breathtaking views of the coast and the hills.

The Skyline Trail hike, a gorgeous drive along the Cabot Trail, and stargazing camping are some of the most remarkable things you should try.

The most significant time to visit is during the summer months of June to September when the weather is pleasant and the park is filled with wildlife.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

14. Gros Morne National Park, NL

Gros Morne National Park in Newfoundland and Labrador is a must-visit for outdoorsy people as it offers stunning natural features such as fjords, mountains, and beaches.

Numerous activities are available, such as walking trails, boat tours, and wildlife viewing, and take advantage of exploring the Tablelands, a remarkable geological structure only present here.

The best times to go are during the summer months of July and August when the park is open and the weather is nice.

15. Big Muddy Badlands, SK

Canada’s Big Muddy Badlands is a must-see attraction for outdoor enthusiasts. On a trek or guided tour, you can discover the unusual scenery of hoodoos, canyons, and sandstone formations.

Also, take advantage of the opportunity to visit the T.rex Discovery Center to explore dinosaur fossils and historical outlaw hideouts, view the magnificent sunsets, and observe the stars in the reserve of the dark sky.

The months of May through October are the warmest and driest for travel. Discover the unusual scenery of hoodoos, canyons, and sandstone formations on a trek or guided tour.

16. Cathedral Grove, BC

Cathedral Grove is a magnificent old-growth forest on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, where you can experience a lot of flora and fauna.

You can explore the towering Douglas fir trees on the different hiking trails, some over 800 years old.

Bring a camera to capture the beautiful view, and remember that pets are not permitted in the park to protect the natural habitat.

Visit the place during the summer months, June to September, because the weather is dry and mild.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

17. Red Sands, PE

Prince Edward Island, Red Sands is a breathtaking natural wonder renowned for its brilliant red dunes and immaculate beaches.

Hiking along the dunes, swimming in the glistening seas, and soaking in the breath-blowing views of the Atlantic Ocean are just a few of the best things to do in Red Sands.

The ideal season is June to September, when the weather is nice and dry.

18. Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, BC

The Capilano Suspension Bridge Park is a well-known British Columbia, Canada, tourist destination.

You can cross the suspension bridge in the area, go on a treetop adventure trip, and explore the park’s numerous paths and exhibitions.

However, going between September and November is remarkably suggested, as the park’s colourful autumn foliage is a sight.

Bring your camera and some comfy walking shoes!

19. Algonquin Provincial Park, ON

Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada, boasts many outdoor activities like camping, hiking, canoeing, fishing, and animal viewing.

In addition, you can participate in various ranger-led activities, explore the park’s numerous lakes and rivers, and take advantage of its picturesque drives and lookouts.

Fall, notably September and October, is the finest time to visit the park because the leaves are at their most colourful, and the temperature is milder.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

20. Lake Louise, AB

Lake Louise is a beautiful destination with various activities like hiking, canoeing, and horseback riding during summer and skiing and snowshoeing during winter.

Some notable destinations you should visit include the Lake Louise Ski Resort and the Banff National Park.

The ideal time to visit is usually in July when the weather is excellent and the lake has thawed.

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Best Places To Visit In Canada For Couples

21. haida gwaii, bc.

Are you looking for a romantic getaway in Canada? Head to Haida Gwaii, an archipelago located off the coast of British Columbia.

There are plenty of activities for couples, such as guided tours to learn about the Haida culture and heritage, scenic hikes through Naikoon Provincial Park, relaxing on the beaches, and indulging in fresh seafood.

Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy kayaking, fishing, and wildlife watching.

And be sure to take advantage of the area’s unique and awe-inspiring totem poles.

22. Bay of Fundy, NB

Outdoor enthusiasts frequently travel to New Brunswick’s Bay of Fundy, which is noted for having the most significant tides in the world.

Once you visit the Bay of Fundy, you can take in traditional celebrations, seafood feasts, and breathtaking sunsets over the bay during this season.

June through September are ideal for travel since the weather is warm and dry, and outdoor pursuits like hiking, kayaking, and whale watching are in full flow.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

23. Tofino, Vancouver Island

On Vancouver Island, the lovely town of Tofino is one of the best places to visit in Canada for couples, with breathtaking beaches and sunsets.

You may dip in the neighbouring natural hot springs, explore the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, and eat some regional food.

The best months are May through September since the weather is moderate and many outdoor activities like surfing, hiking, and whale watching are available.

24. Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON

Niagara-on-the-Lake is a lovely town in Ontario famed for its wineries, historic buildings, and gorgeous streets.

The town holds several festivals and events, such as the Shaw Festival, the Niagara Jazz Festival, and the Niagara Grape and Wine Festival.

The best time to visit is from May through October, when the weather is moderate.

25. Waterton Lakes, AB

You can engage in various outdoor pursuits at Waterton Lakes in Alberta, Canada, including hiking, kayaking, fishing, and wildlife viewing.

June through September are ideal for travel because the moderate weather and various activities are accessible.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

26. Fogo Island, NL

You can engage in various and unique outdoor activities on the lovely and distinctive Fogo Island.

Hiking, bird viewing, fishing, and learning about the customs and culture of the area are a few of the top activities.

While fall (September-November) offers stunning fall foliage and cultural events like the Fogo Island Partridgeberry Harvest Festival, summer (June-August) offers warmer weather and more outdoor activities.

27. Aurora Village, NT

The best place in Canada to see the Northern Lights is Aurora Village, providing the most fantastic display of colours as it dances over the sky.

You can also go dog sledding, snowmobiling, and ice fishing in the winter in Aurora Village.

The ideal time to go is from mid-August to mid-April, when the evenings are longer and the sky is more transparent.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

28. Cape Breton, NS

Hiking, kayaking, and whale viewing are popular outdoor activities on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia.

If you like Celtic music and culture, the Celtic Colors International Festival in October is a must-see event highlighting the island’s rich cultural past.

The most significant time to visit depends on your interests, although the summer months of June through September provide the most pleasant weather and activities.

Best Places To Visit In Canada For Families

29. squamish, bc.

Families can enjoy plenty of activities in Squamish, including the Sea to Sky Gondola with its breathtaking views, outdoor adventures like hiking and mountain biking, and even rock climbing and zip-lining.

You can also visit the Britannia Mine Museum to learn about the area’s mining history or tour the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre to learn about the local indigenous culture.

Also, remember to explore the beautiful parks and trails, such as Shannon Falls Provincial Park.

30. Mont-Tremblant, QC

Mont-Tremblant is located in the stunning Laurentian Mountains, making it one of the most fabulous destinations in Canada to visit with family for a fun outdoor trip.

It is an excellent place for a family getaway, including ziplining, mini-golf, hiking, biking, beach swimming, and other water sports.

The winter months of December to March are ideal for skiing and other snow activities in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec.

image showing the Beautiful fall colors in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

31. Ottawa, ON

Ottawa, Canada’s capital, contains numerous family-friendly attractions, including the Rideau Canal, the Canadian Museum of History, and Parliament Hill.

The ideal month to visit is up to you. However, July and August feature the warmest weather and the most events, such as the Ottawa Bluesfest and the Canadian Tulip Festival.

32. Halifax, NS

Halifax, Nova Scotia, is a picturesque marine city with many activities to entertain visitors, family-friendly attractions, and stunning environments.

You and your family should visit the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, the Halifax Public Gardens, and the Atlantic Maritime Museum.

For a more immersive experience, visit Peggy’s Cove or go on a whale-watching tour for a day vacation.

July is the most fantastic month since the weather is bright and sunny, and events such as the Halifax International Busker Festival and the Halifax Jazz Festival are held.

Related: Fun Things to Do in Nova Scotia .

33. Charlottetown, PEI

The picturesque city of Charlottetown, which serves as the capital of Prince Edward Island, is well-known for its Victorian architecture, thriving culture, and stunning natural surroundings.

While in Charlottetown, families should check out the historic Confederation Centre of the Arts, the Anne of Green Gables Heritage Site, and the lovely Victoria Park.

A stroll along the Waterfront or a seafood feast at a nearby restaurant is not to be missed.

June through September are ideal for travel since the weather is moderate and the island is bustling with celebrations, events, and outdoor activities.

image showing the View of Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada from the sea

34. Kelowna, BC

Visitors can engage in various activities, including hiking, water sports, vineyard tours, and more.

The Okanagan Lavender & Herb Farm, Kangaroo Creek Farm, and Myra Canyon Adventure Park are some of Kelowna’s top Canadian destinations for family vacations. ,

May through September are ideal for travel because of the pleasant, sunny weather.

Check out the best places to visit and fun things to do in Kelowna.

35. Yellowknife, NT

Outdoor pursuits are abundant in Yellowknife, North-west Territories, including dog sledding, ice fishing, and aurora viewing.

The top Canadian destinations for families include Banff National Park, Niagara Falls, and Quebec City because they provide fun family activities and breathtaking landscapes.

When the Northern Lights are visible, November and March is the ideal time to travel.

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Best Places To Visit In Canada During the Summer

36. victoria, bc.

The warm, sunny weather and low chance of precipitation make July the best month to visit Victoria, British Columbia.

Some of the top tourist destinations in Victoria, Canada, include Butchart Gardens, Beacon Hill Park, Craigdarroch Castle, and the Royal BC Museum.

Summertime activities include kayaking tours, whale-watching excursions, and the Galloping Goose Trail cycling.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

37. Vancouver Island, BC

Hiking, kayaking, wildlife watching, and beachcombing are just a few activities on Vancouver Island, BC.

Tofino, a surfer’s paradise with sandy beaches, and Victoria, the provincial capital noted for its quaint streets, gardens, and museums, are two of Canada’s best places to visit during the summer.

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is a must-see for its magnificent beauty and diverse marine life.

June through September are ideal for a visit because the weather is warm and outdoor activities fully flow.

38. Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island is a lovely maritime province in Canada well-known for Anne of Green Gables, its mouthwatering seafood, and its breathtaking shoreline.

Charlottetown, Cavendish Beach, and Green Gables Heritage Place are a few of the top destinations in Canada to visit in the summer, which can give you a taste of the island’s past, present, and natural splendour.

The island’s peak season in August is the most incredible month to visit because the weather is excellent, and the beaches are ideal for swimming.

39. Okanagan Valley, BC

A stunning place to visit in the summer is the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia.

The gorgeous Okanagan lakes, including Lake Okanagan and Kalamalka Lakes, and the towns of Kelowna, Penticton, and Vernon are some of the best places to visit in Canada during the summer.

You can also take advantage of nearby farmers’ markets, festivals, and outdoor performances during the summer.

When the weather is warm and the valley is bustling with outdoor activities like wine tasting, hiking, boating, and swimming, June through August is the best time to visit.

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

40. St. John’s, NL

Hiking, whale watching, and historic buildings are fun things to do in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

Take advantage of the opportunity to see Signal Hill, the vibrant homes of Jellybean Row, and the breathtaking views of Cape Spear.

August is ideal for travel because of the pleasant temperatures and several festivals and events, like the George Street Festival.

41. Saskatoon, SK

Saskatoon, a city in central Saskatchewan, has many recreational opportunities, including the stunning Meewasin Valley Trail, the Western Development Museum, and the Saskatoon Farmers Market are all tourist options.

Saskatoon is best visited in June when the weather is pleasant and the city is buzzing with outdoor events like the Saskatoon Jazz Festival.

Toronto, Ontario, is the most popular tourist destination in Canada. The CN Tower, the Royal Ontario Museum, and the Art Gallery of Ontario are just a few of its well-known tourist destinations. The city also has a thriving nightlife, a diversified cuisine culture, and hosts many festivals all year long.

There are many lovely provinces in Canada, each with unique attractions. British Columbia is one of the most visited provinces, nonetheless. The Rocky Mountains, the Pacific coast, and the lovely city of Vancouver are just a few of its breathtaking natural vistas. Visitors can engage in various activities like skiing, hiking, kayaking, and discovering the region’s rich culture and food.

Different seasons will be more or less ideal depending on what you want to do while in Canada. December through February is the best time to visit Alaska for winter sports and to view the Northern Lights. June through September are ideal if you like warmer weather and want to enjoy the outdoors; July and August are the busiest and friendliest.

Niagara Falls and Banff National Park are Canada’s most visited attractions. The spectacular marvel of Niagara Falls is one of the main reasons for its annual influx of tourists. Visitors flock to Banff National Park for its breathtaking mountain views, excellent skiing, and seemingly endless hiking trails.

Canada, the second largest country in the world, could be too big to see in a week. However, you can still have a wonderful time by visiting some of the country’s most famous cities and landmarks, such as Toronto, Montreal, and Niagara Falls.

  • Cheap Countries to Visit From Canada
  • 21 Best Things to Do in New Brunswick
  • 12 Best Apps for Booking Cheap Flights
  • 51 Best Things To Do in Canada

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Enoch Omololu, MSc (Econ)

Enoch Omololu, personal finance expert, author, and founder of Savvy New Canadians, has written about money matters for over 10 years. Enoch has an MSc (Econ) degree in Finance and Investment Management from the University of Aberdeen Business School and has completed the Canadian Securities Course. His expertise has been highlighted in major publications like Forbes, Globe and Mail, Business Insider, CBC News, Toronto Star, Financial Post, CTV News, TD Direct Investing, Canadian Securities Exchange, and many others . Enoch is passionate about helping others win with their finances. You can read his full author bio .

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  • 40 Best Places To Visit In Canada That Will Leave You Spellbound


23 Mar 2023

The best places to visit in Canada are proof that the country has a heart bigger than its size when it comes to satiating the wanderlust of every type of traveler. You would happily agree with us once you see them with your own eyes. Be it the lakes, the gardens, or the cities as a whole, Canada has got it all that would make your holiday worthwhile! Explore the cosmopolitan Toronto streets and the mountains of the Canadian Rockies. There are a whole lot of destinations that you can visit in this second-largest country in the world. Canada will mesmerize you with its vibrant landscapes, raw nature, and soul-filling culture. No wonder, people often flock to Canada for a dose of adventure and exuberance. Take a look at these places in Canada so that you know which ones you need to put on the top of your list!

40 Best Places To Visit In Canada In 2023

Canada is a country that has half of its land covered in forests, which should come as no surprise as one-tenth of the total forests of the world are in Canada. Thinking about exploring Canada? Here is the perfect list of the great places to visit in Canada on your trip. Take a look at the best places in Canada and choose which ones are you going to explore on your trip!

  • Niagara Falls : An Elegant View
  • Whistler : Your Perfect Ski Resort
  • Quebec City : Explore The French Influence
  • St. John’s : An Artist’s Retreat
  • Tofino : A Water Lover’s Paradise
  • Churchill : Seek Tons Of Adventure
  • Old Montreal : Discover An Old-World Charm
  • Banff National Park : A Popular Destination
  • Stanley Park : The French Connection
  • Butchart Gardens : A Picture-Perfect Land
  • Okanagan Valley : A Paradise For Tourists
  • Gros Morne National Park : Explore The Geological Diversity
  • Algonquin Provincial Park : A Perfect Spot For Tourists
  • Yoho National Park : A Must Visit Destination
  • CN Tower, Toronto : For A Remarkable Time
  • Lake Louise : Perfect For Adventure Sports
  • Bay Of Fundy : Witness The Oceanic Experience
  • The Yukon : A Magical Delight
  • Garibaldi Lake : With Wondrous Sights
  • Pyramid Lake : A Picturesque Water Resource
  • Cheakamus Lake : For Stunning Views
  • Maligne Lake : Paradise For Photographers
  • Hornby Island : A Simple Slice Of Land
  • Cape Breton : An Unexplored Land
  • Forillon National Park : Hike The Untamed Trails
  • Moraine Lake : Witness The Clear Reflection Of Mountains
  • Perce Rock : Admire The Natural Beauty
  • Mingan Monoliths : Gape At The Oldest Monoliths
  • Jasper National Park : Get Ready For Adventure
  • Peggy’s Cove : Explore The Hidden Gem
  • Mount Logan : Stand On The Highest Peak In Canada
  • Osoyoos : Taste Wine & Get The Best Views
  • Columbia Icefield Skywalk : Watch The Beauty From Up Top
  • The Grotto : Haven For Adventure Fanatics
  • Montmorency Falls : Explore The Highest Falls
  • Capilano Suspension Bridge : Lap Of Nature Calls You
  • Waterton Lakes National Park : Bags All The Titles
  • Prince Edward Island:  For A Splendid Game Of Golf
  • Kluane National Park and Reserve:  For Wildlife Enthusiasts
  • Mont Tremblant:  For Skiing Activities

1. Niagara Falls: An Elegant View

Niagara Falls With Rainbow in Canada

If there is one destination you’d find in every ‘ best places to visit in Canada during summers ’ list, it is Niagara Falls . Built along the spellbinding waterfalls of the same name, this famous city is an ideal place to explore if you’re looking for a magical experience. It is indeed one of the most iconic and best places to visit in Canada . Have a great time enjoying the views and clicking pictures of the cascading falls. You’ll have an unparalleled sightseeing experience when you visit Niagara Falls at night .

Best time to visit: June – August How to reach: The nearest airport is Buffalo-Niagara International Airport which is just 30-40 minutes away from Niagara Falls. You can take a cab and reach the falls easily. Things To Do :

  • Witness the gorgeous waterfalls
  • Get your game on at the Niagara Fallsview Casino Resort
  • Spend time at the MarineLand

Location: Ontario, Canada

Must Read: 10 Vancouver Hotels For Luxury And Budget Travelers

2. Whistler: Your Perfect Ski Resort

best places to visit in Canada in winter

Home to one of the largest ski resorts in North America, Whistler is one of the best places in Canada for winter holidays! Skiing, snowshoeing, and tobogganing are few of the thrilling sports to indulge in for enjoying in this captivating snow land. So, if you are a thrill seeker, then Whistler is one of the best places to visit in Canada for you! If you’re traveling from Vancouver to Whistler , then you can call a cab that will make you reach in about 1 hour 30 minutes. You can choose from the best hotels in Edmonton for lavish stay in Canada.

Best time to visit: June – August, December – March How to reach: The nearest airport is Vancouver International Airport that is 2.5 hours away from Whistler. You can take a cab and reach Whistler easily. 

Things To Do:

  • Indulge in snowmobiling
  • Witness the town’s vibrant culture by visiting the art museums and cultural centres
  • Dine at 21 Steps or Alta Bistro

Location: British Columbia, Canada

3. Quebec City: Explore The French Influence

Romantic places to visit in Canada

Renowned as North America’s oldest walled city, and the most beautiful city in Canada and considered top Canada tourist places , which you must visit with your partner if magic, romance, and all things French is what tickles your fancy the most. Have an amazing time with your partner in the magical Quebec city. It is one of the most enchanting places to see in Canada because of art and culture scenes.

Best time to visit: June, September – December How to reach: The nearest airport is Quebec City Jean Lesage International Airport. You can take a cab from the airport to reach the city easily.

  • Visit the historic attractions like The Citadel
  • Relax at the BattleFields Park
  • Walk along the scenic Terrasse Dufferin

Location: Québec, Canada

Suggested Read:  10 Chinese Restaurants In Toronto That Serves True Flavors Of China!

4. St. John’s: An Artist’s Retreat

colored houses in St. John's Canada

When in Canada places to visit can be abundant and spoil you with its choices. One of the best places to visit in Canada with family which is popular for its jelly beaned & crayon colored houses, and being an artist’s retreat, St. John’s is like a mini San Francisco. Considered as one of the best cities to visit in Canada, you can explore the city with an open heart. Despite being the oldest city, the vibe of this place is as refreshing as that of any metro town, which is perfect for any of your holidays. Also, do not miss the Water Street when you are here!

Best time to visit: April – May, September – October How to reach: The nearest airport is St. John’s International Airport from where you can take a cab and reach the destination. 

  • Visit the Cape Spear Lighthouse
  • Learn about the local culture and history at The Rooms
  • Shop and eat at the famous Water Street

Location: Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

5. Tofino: A Water Lover’s Paradise

Tofino is a perfect paradise for water sport lover in Canada

Image Source

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

If you can’t imagine a holiday without a beach, Tofino is the place for you! It’s a paradise for water lovers and a haven for people seeking comfort in their cozy hotel rooms after spending a long day out in the town. Have a great time by the beach in Tofino. It is one of the places to go in Canada for an exotic beach time.

Best time to visit: March – May, September – November How to reach: The nearest airport is Tofino-Ucluelet Airport from where you can take a cab and reach Tofino easily.  Things To Do:

  • Explore the famous beaches like Long Beach and Chesterman Beach
  • Try the popular fish tacos
  • Indulge in kayaking and camping at Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Location: Vancouver Island, Canada

Suggested Read: Niagara Falls in Canada: A Guide To A Majestic Waterfall In North America

6. Churchill: Seek Tons Of Adventure

Polar bear capital of the world canada

If you are looking for Canada tourist places , this is the one you must check out. This small town located on Hudson Bay definitely counts as one of the top places to visit in Canada . Known as the polar bear capital of the world, Churchills is the perfect hotspot for travelers who love having a close encounter with wildlife. It is also a great destination for adventure seekers and one can enjoy underwater activities here.

Best time to visit: October – November How to reach: The nearest airport is Churchill Airport from where you can take a cab and reach Churchill.  Things To Do:

  • Swim or snorkel with Beluga whales
  • Explore Fort Prince of Wales
  • Take a Tundra Buggy tour

Location: Manitoba, Canada

7. Old Montreal: Discover An Old-World Charm

Best places to visit in canada

If you are wondering where to go in Canada , then make sure Montreal comes to your mind. Old-world charm, spectacular buildings, and horse-drawn carriages are pretty much what describes the fascinating aura of this oldest area in Montreal. For travelers in pursuit of a peaceful & unique experience, this is the perfect place to be! Have a great time with your folks in one of the best places to visit in Canada .

Best time to visit: March-May, September-November How to reach: The best way to reach Old Montreal is by opting for a ride in the metro stations. There are three metro stations on the orange line – Square-Victoria, Place-d’Armes, and Champ-de-Mars. You can get down at any of these stations to reach Old Montreal.  Things To Do In Montreal :

  • Explore the underground city
  • Rejuvenate at the Spa Scandinave
  • Take the Old Montreal food tour

Location: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Suggested Read: 10 Budget-Friendly Hostels In Canada For Enthusiastic Backpackers!

8. Banff National Park: A Popular Destination

With a spectacular view of lake surrounded with lush greenery, Banff National Park is a must visit landscape in Canada.

Chances are, you have already heard of Banff National Park in Canada a lot of times. And why not, it is amongst the top Canada destinations every traveler must visit and amongst the best things to do in Alberta , Canada. Turquoise colored lakes, spectacular glaciers, snow capped peaks, and mesmerizing landscapes, everything beautiful can be witnessed here at once. Excited to visit? You should be since it is one of the best places to visit in Canada .

Best time to visit: June-August, December-March How to reach: The nearest airport is Calgary International Airport from where you can take a cab and reach the national park easily.  Things To Do:

  • Capture the beauty of Lake Louise and Bow Lake
  • Take a ride in the Banff Gondola
  • Go for hiking or whitewater rafting

Timings: 9:00 AM to 7:00 PM every day Location: 224 Banff Avenue, Town of Banff, Alberta, Canada

9. Stanley Park: The French Connection

famous parks to visit in vancouver canada

Vancouver is one of the most famous French cities in Canada which is a popular destination among travelers. If the red-orange colored trees shown in movies have always tickled your fancy, Stanley Park is one place you have to visit in Canada. The red cedar and Douglas fir trees around with a gorgeous view of the city would not only leave you spellbound but also make you fall for nature again. Do visit the park, especially when searching for some of the famous places in Canada .

Best time to visit: Late-March, April, June-October How to reach: To reach Stanley Park, you can either take a bus or opt for a car ride in the city and reach the destination within a few minutes. Things To Do:

  • Walk through the majestic cedars and firs
  • Indulge in biking or rollerblading
  • Take a ride in the Miniature Train

Timings: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day Location: Vancouver, BC V6G 1Z4, Canada

Suggested Read: Canada Travel Tips: For A Perfect Holiday In The Largest Country Of North America

10. Butchart Gardens: A Picture-Perfect Land

Popular gardens to visit in Canada

Of all the top tourist attractions in Canada , Butchart Gardens is the best place to explore with a camera in hand. With an enchanting display of flowers around, fun boat tours, night illuminations & more, there’s a lot to see and do here that will make your holiday vibrant! Ready to capture some Instagram worthy pictures?

Best time to visit: July & August How to reach: One of the best ways to reach here is by taking bus number 75 which takes around an hour from downtown Victoria to the Butchart Gardens. Things To Do:

  • Capture the gorgeous flowers around
  • Witness the fireworks show designed by Disney
  • Indulge in ice skating

Timings: 8:45 AM to 10:00 PM Location: 800 Benvenuto Ave, Brentwood Bay, BC V8M 1J8, Canada

11. Okanagan Valley: A Paradise For Tourists

Okanagan Valley is among the best places to visit in Canada known for  its fine wineries

Known for its wineries and fruit orchards, the Okanagan is one of the best places in Canada to visit . A walk into the regions here makes you feel like you have stepped right into heaven. So, try and savor the beauty around not just with your eyes, but also with your camera. Book yourself a wine tour at one of its wineries!

Best time to visit: June-September How to reach: The nearest airport is Kelowna International Airport from where you can take a cab and reach the destination easily.  Things To Do:

  • Visit the Sperling Vineyards or Mission Hill Winery
  • Spend time at the Okanagan Lake
  • Take a tour of the Kelowna region

Suggested Read: Festivals of Canada: 10 Unmissable Extravaganzas That Will Give Celebration A New Meaning

12. Gros Morne National Park: Explore The Geological Diversity

Come closer to nature while enjoying the mesmerizing sight of Gros Morne National Park

This national park is one of the Canada points of interest you must definitely visit and explore. Geologically diverse and beautiful, it is a part of Long Range Mountains , which makes it the best place to visit in Canada for first time for a nature admirer like you! Enjoy nature walks and stroll into the wild at this stunning national park.

Best time to visit: late-May to mid-October How to reach: The nearest airport is located at Deer Lake that is just 30-minutes away from the park. From there, you can take a cab and reach the Gros Morne National Park easily.  Things To Do:

  • Walk through the Tablelands
  • Enjoy mesmerizing views from the Western Brook Pond Cruise
  • Go on a wilderness hike in the Long Range Mountains

13. Algonquin Provincial Park: A Perfect Spot For Tourists

Algonquin Provincial Park Canada

With lush green forests, enchanting rivers & lakes, this place makes for the best tourist places in Canada for anyone who loves nature. You can indulge in wildlife spotting, camping, canoeing, and more activities during your visit, which ensures you take back home more than just pictures. What more can you ask for on a vacation?

Best time to visit: Mid-September to early October How to reach: Take a taxi from any part of the city to reach Algonquin Provincial Park in just a few minutes.  Things to do:

  • Experience backcountry camping
  • Enjoy dog sledding, fishing, and whitewater canoeing
  • Indulge in wildlife spotting

Location: Ontario 60, Ontario K0J 2M0, Canada

Suggested Read: Temples in Canada: 9 Places That Are A Testament To This Country’s Diverse Culture

14. Yoho National Park: A Must Visit Destination

top canada destionations

Of all the Canada tourist places , Yoho National Park located in the heart of the Canadian Rocky Mountains falls under nature lovers must visit places in Canada. Its gorgeously massive Wapta and Takakkaw Falls make it ideal for your Canada holiday pictures. Enjoy the sight of the cascading falls.

Best time to visit: mid-May to early October How to reach: The best way to reach Yoho National Park is by taking a cab from your hotel to this place as there is no other service that you can avail of.  Things To Do:

  • Enjoy a serene drive up to Takakkaw Falls
  • Stroll along the Emerald Lake
  • Take a bike ride on the Yoho Valley Road

Location: Field, BC V0A 1G0, Canada

15. CN Tower, Toronto: For A Remarkable Time

famous places to visit in Canada

Looking for the best places to visit in Canada Toronto ? Touching and beautifying the Toronto skyline, CN Tower will be the perfect destination for you. Be it dining at the 360 Restaurant, indulging in edge walking on the glass outside, or just admiring the views of the city from the top, this iconic landmark is the most apt place to visit. Do add it to your amazing list of best places to visit in Canada for couples. You can choose from the best hotels in Toronto and explore the city’s best attractions and views on your holiday.

Best time to visit: late-April to May & mid-September to mid-October How to reach: There are several ways to reach CN Tower and the best one is to take a ride in the local bus and reach one of these stations – St West at Blue Jays Way, Queens Quay West at Rees St., and Adelaide St West at John St East Side.   Things To Do In Toronto :

  • Indulge in the world’s highest ‘hands-free’ walk
  • Eat at the award winning 360 Restaurant
  • Capture the beauty of Toronto from the top of the tower

Timings: 8:30 AM to 10:30 PM Location: 301 Front St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2T6, Canada

Suggested Read: 11 Best Canadian Rivers That’ll Let You Soak In The Mesmerising Nature Vibes!

16. Lake Louise: Perfect For Adventure Sports

Lake Louise Banff Canada

There is no doubt that this lake is one of the most beautiful places in Canada . Apart from admiring the turquoise lakes , the Victoria Glacier, and spectacular mountains in the backdrop, you can also indulge in kayaking or fishing in the summer which makes it an awesome places to visit in Canada in April, and snowshoeing & skiing in the winters amongst the best things to do in Victoria for an exciting vacation in Canada. So, what are you waiting for? Get ready to lose yourself by visiting Lake Louise in Canada .

Best time to visit: late-June to mid-September How to reach: The nearest airport is Calgary International Airport which is about 2 hours away from Lake Louise.  Things To Do:

  • Indulge in snowboarding at Lake Louise Ski Resort
  • Explore the village of Lake Louise
  • Attend the Ice Magic Festival

Location: Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada

17. Bay Of Fundy: Witness The Oceanic Experience

famous bay of fundy in canada

Popular for offering the famous ‘walk on the ocean’ experience, this is one of the most heartwarming Canada tourist attractions . You can witness the highest tides in the world here, and also various species of whales at the same time. This is undeniably one of the most famous places in Canada that you must explore. Excited to visit the Bay of Fundy?

Best time to visit: June – August How to reach: The best way to reach the Bay of Fundy is by opting for the railways services as it is the only way available. Things To Do:

  • Enjoy the tidal bore rafting
  • Take pictures of the whales
  • Go for golfing in the Canadian Maritimes

Location: New Brunswick, Canada

Suggested Read: 6 Surreal Lakes In Calgary You Must Check Out On Your Trip To Canada

18. The Yukon: A Magical Delight

Feel like witnessing some magical world at the Yukon in Canada

Sometimes a gorgeous sight is all you need to make your holiday magical. The dance of the northern lights in the sky easily visible from Whitehorse or Dempster Highway makes Yukon one of the best places to travel in Canada , especially during winter. So, do make sure you put this on your list and have a magical trip.

Best time to visit: May – October How to reach: To reach The Yukon, you will have to reach Vancouver first from where you can take a boat cruise to The Yukon. Things To Do:

  • Witness the northern lights in Whitehorse or Dempster Highway
  • Fly over the Kluane National Park
  • Explore the Takhini Hot Springs

Location: Yukon, NW, Canada

19. Garibaldi Lake: With Wondrous Sights

Garibaldi National Park In Canada

The turquoise waters and the snowy Canada mountains make this place a postcard-perfect beauty. While you can indulge in hiking and a lot of activities here, leaving your camera alone is something you wouldn’t want to do even for a second. Try to capture all the wondrous sights that this park has to offer. Make sure that you include it in your list and it is one of the must-visit places in Canada .

Best time to visit: July – September How to reach: The best way to reach Garibaldi Lake is by taking a taxi from your destination.  Things To Do:

  • Enjoy overnight camping
  • Experience the fun of snowshoeing
  • Relax by the lake and capture the picturesque beauty as memories

Location: Garibaldi Provincial Park, British Columbia, Canada

Suggested Read: 9 Best Beaches Near Toronto For A Unique Beach Experience In Canada

20. Pyramid Lake: A Picturesque Water Resource

gorgeous lakes in canada

If you’re looking for the best tourist places in Canada , this lake should definitely be on your list. Apart from experiences like windsurfing, canoeing, and ice skating, the picturesque beauty of this place makes it a famous tourist spot and a paradise for photographers. Do not forget your camera behind! You can choose from the best guest houses in Ottawa for a comfortable stay in Canada.

Best time to visit: October – June How to reach: The nearest airport is Reno-Tahoe International Airport from where you can take a taxi to reach the destination.  Things To Do:

  • Admire the beauty of the lake with the Pyramid Mountain in the background
  • Indulge in kayaking, canoeing, or sailing
  • Spot birds like herons, loons, and chickadee

Location: Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada

21. Cheakamus Lake: For Stunning Views

Cheakamus Lake

One of the best places to visit in Canada, the Cheakamus lake is famous amidst travelers due to the beautiful hike it offers. It is one of the best hikes that leads to stunning mountain views. The hike is relatively easy and one can enjoy lakeside picnics. It is one of the best places to visit in Canada during the summer .

Best time to visit: July – August How to reach: The best way to reach Cheakamus Lake is by driving west along Highway 1 towards Horseshoe Bay and then take Highway 99 towards Whistler. If you continue driving, you will reach the lake.  Things To Do:

  • Go hiking in Garibaldi Provincial Park along the Cheakamus lake.
  • Enjoy mountain biking on the scenic trails
  • Have a peaceful lakeside picnic with your friends and folks

Location: Garibaldi Provincial Park

Suggested Read: 10 Essential Vancouver Travel Tips For A Seamless Vacation To Canada!

22. Maligne Lake: Paradise For Photographers

Maligne Lake

One can enjoy Canada sightseeing by enjoying the scenic views the country offers to its travelers. One of the unique places to visit in Canada is the Maligne Lake which is situated at the centre of the Jasper National Park. It is a stunning turquoise coloured jewel, amidst lush green environs.

Best time to visit: May – October How to reach: The best way to reach the lake by taking a car or taxi ride as it is the only way available.  Things To Do:

  • Experience camping by the lakeside here
  • Adventure seekers can try glacier kayaking in Canada
  • Try your luck at fishing

Location: Jasper National Park

23. Hornby Island: A Simple Slice Of Land

View of an Island

Hornby Island is a rural, simple, relaxed and incredibly beautiful island located in the calm waters of Georgia Strait in Salish Sea between Vancouver Island and the mainland. The island has lots of calm waters, sandy beaches, lush forests, and miles of hiking trails bringing a huge number of tourists as it is one of the best places to visit in Canada . Visiting the island is just one of the exciting things to do in British Columbia .

Best time to visit: May – June How to reach: The nearest airport is Comox International Airport that from where you can reach the destination easily.  Things To Do:

  • Visit the beaches and parks
  • Swim and sunbathe at Helliwell Park, Whaling Station Bay and Little Tribune Bay
  • Shop at the Isla de Lerena Vineyard, and Middle Mountain Mead
  • Take part in the Hornby Festival

Location : British Columbia

Suggested Read: 11 Resorts In British Columbia That Are Perfect For A Luxury Vacation

24. Cape Breton: An Unexplored Land

View of a lush island

Image Source One of the best places to visit in Canada, Cape Breton, located in the eastern end of Nova Scotia has a rich heritage with French, aboriginal, Scottish, Irish, and English origins of the people who live here. This piece of land is undisturbed and unexplored through centuries. This is one of the best places to visit in Canada. The Cabot Trail is a roadway is the backbone of travel around Cape Breton which passed through forests and rugged coastline. You can also visit one of the popular National Parks of Canada i.e. the Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

Best time to visit: July – August How to reach: Drive from the mainland Nova Scotia through the Canso Causeway and reach the Cape Breton Island.  Things To Do:

  • Enjoy the Celtic Colours festival in mid-October
  • Play golf at the Cabot Links or Highland Links
  • Hike along the Celtic Shores Coastal Trail

Location:  Nova Scotia

25. Forillon National Park: Hike The Untamed Trails

Forillon National Park

One of the best places to see in Canada, is it tucked between the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Quebec and the Bay of Gaspe, Forillon National Park is home to several untamed hiking trails which has attracted several trekkers from not only Canada but from all around. While exploring the park, you will find several beaches, fishing villages, and steep cliffs. Moreover, there are more than 700 species of plants in the park including white and yellow birch, maple, and fir. There is no doubt in the fact that it is one of the best places in Canada for nature lovers.

Best time to visit: August How to reach: The nearest airport is Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport or Montreal or Jean Lesage International Airport from where you can take a cab and reach the National Park.  Things to do: 

  • Explore the trekking trails of this park.
  • Witness the wildlife in their natural habitat

Location:  2286 Bd de Grande Greve, Gaspé, QC G4X 6L7, Canada

Suggested Read: 8 Fun Things To Do In Winter In Edmonton To Make Your Canada Vacay Memorable

26. Moraine Lake: Witness The Clear Reflection Of Mountains

Moraine Lake

Wondering where to go in Canada? Settled in the heart of Banff National Park, Moraine Lake is around nine miles long and probably one of the beautiful places to see in Canada . The lake is filled with fresh glacial waters and is a popular spot for fishermen. The best part about this tourist spot is that you will get to see several sceneries which you can capture for memories. It is probably the best spot for photographers as the place offers mesmerizing landscapes. 

Best time to visit: Mid-June – July How to reach: The nearest airport is Calgary Airport from where you can take a cab to reach the lake. 

  • Things to do: 
  • Opt for kayaking and canoeing.
  • Explore the hiking trails.

Location:  Moraine Lake, Improvement District No. 9, AB, Canada

27. Perce Rock: Admire The Natural Beauty

Perce Rock

While exploring the majestic St. Laurence River, you will find an enormous rock which is rising out of the sea in the middle of the river. The rock is named Perce Rock and is one of the top places to go in Canada for exploring natural beauty. You can also visit the nearby Perce village and hear stories about a sea monster. It is believed that the moods of the sea when the color of the eyes of the monster changes. A trip to Canada is incomplete without exploring this place. 

Best time to visit: July – August How to reach: The nearest Canada airport is Michel-Pouliot Gaspé Airport from where you can take a cab and reach the destination.  Things to do: 

  • Mingle with the locals and get to know about the traditional stories.
  • Capture picturesque views. 

Location:  Percé, Quebec, Canada

Suggested Read: Christmas In Canada: 19 Best Places To Enjoy The Canadian Celebration

28. Mingan Monoliths: Gape At The Oldest Monoliths

Mingan Monoliths

Created 450 million years ago by nature, Mingan Islands is a group of 40 islands that are explored by true nature lovers. The most striking features of these islands are majestic limestone monoliths are rising out of the sea. Some of these structures are bare and others are covered with vegetation. If you are planning a vacation to Canada then make sure that you include Mingan Monoliths in your itinerary as it is one of the tourist attractions in Canada .

Best time to visit: July – early-September How to reach: The nearest airport is Riviere Au Tonnerre Airport that is just 40 km away. You can take a cab and reach the destination. Things to do: 

  • Explore the nearby places at your own pace. 

Location:  1010 Promenade Des Anciens, Havre-Saint-Pierre, QC G0G 1P0, Canada

29. Jasper National Park: Get Ready For Adventure

Jasper National Park

Looking for adventurous and the best places to visit in Canada ? Well, head to Jasper National Park which will not only offer amazing sceneries to capture but also various activities to indulge in. The park is home to many turquoise lakes and peaks that are worth capturing for your social media accounts. The views will appease your adventurous soul as well as put you into a state of euphoria. 

Best time to visit: March-May, September-November How to reach: The nearest airports are Edmonton International Airport (YEG) and Calgary International Airport (YYC) which are four to five hours away from the national park.  Things to do: 

  • Hike and traverse through the national park.
  • Capture amazing pictures.

Location:  Jasper, AB T0E 1E0, Canada

Suggested Read: Attend Montreal Festivals For A Super-Electrifying Vacation To Canada This Year!

30. Peggy’s Cove: Explore The Hidden Gem

Peggy’s Cove

Image Source Wondering where to visit in Canada ? Here is a picturesque place for you which is famous for its lighthouse. The lighthouse was built in the year 1915. Despite being a small place to explore, millions of travelers come to explore this place every year and spend some time to unwind. Peggy’s Cove is popular among the locals and travelers due to its delicious seafood, fishing villages and beautiful sceneries. 

Best time to visit: November – April How to reach: The nearest airport is Halifax Stanfield International Airport from where you can take a cab to reach the destination. Location:  Peggys Cove, NS, Canada Things to do:  Explore the famous lighthouse. Relish tasty seafood and visit the nearby village.

31. Mount Logan: Stand On The Highest Peak In Canada

Mount Logan

Want to get higher? Obviously altitude-wise! Then, head to Mount Logan which is the highest peak in the whole of Canada. There is doubt in the fact that it is one of the best places to go in Canada to savor some amazing views from up top. The mountain was named after Sir William Edmond Logan who was a Canadian geologist as well as the founder of the Geological Survey of Canada.

Things To Do: Trekking Location: Yukon, Canada

Suggested Read: 15 Best Places To Visit In Canada In Winter For Experiencing The True Beauty Of Snow

32. Osoyoos: Taste Wine & Get The Best Views


If you want to witness the warmest welcome in Canada then you must visit Osoyoos. It is the most beautiful stretch in the Okanagan Valley where you get the best views of Canada. In addition to this, it is one of the major wine-producing regions of Canada so you can go for a wine tasting tour. Due to all these factors, Osoyoos is always counted among the top Canada tourist spots .

Best time to visit: May – August How to reach: You can easily reach the destination by arriving at ANC Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport and from there grab a cab . Best time to visit: June – August How to reach: There are several ways to reach Osoyoos and they include car, bus or airplane. When in Osoyoos, you can hire a taxi to explore the tourist attractions. Things To Do: Sightseeing, wine tour, paddle boat Location: British Columbia, Canada

33. Columbia Icefield Skywalk: Watch The Beauty From Up Top

Columbia Icefield Skywalk

If you want to feel more alive than ever then Canada has just the right place for you. Gear up to walk on the Columbia Icefield Skywalk which is located 280 meters above Sunwapta Canyon. This one-kilometer walkway is stretched 35 meters ahead to give an amazing view of nature. This glass floor is almost as high as the CN Tower so, get ready to get this experience. This is one of the top palces to see in Canada for all adventure junkies!

Best time to visit: Any time of the year How to reach: To reach this place you will first have to reach Columbia Icefield Discovery Center from where you can avail of free shuttle services to the skywalk. Things To Do: Photography and exploring nature Location: Icefields Pkwy, Jasper, AB T0E 1E0, Canada

Suggested Read: Go Glacier Kayaking In Canada & Live Your Craziest Fantasy Ever!

34. The Grotto: Haven For Adventure Fanatics

The Grotto

Wondering where to visit in Canada for diving into water then here is a perfect solution for you. The Grotto in Bruce Peninsula National Park is the perfect place for adventure seekers as this spot gives a chance to cliff jump into crystal clear water. You will first have to hike to the cliff and then plan a jump for a thrilling experience. You will find a few adventure junkies here as it is one of the best places in Canada for a fun activity.

Best time to visit: mid-May – late-October How to reach: Hire a car to reach Bruce Peninsula National Park if you want to explore the Gotto. Things To Do: Sightseeing and nature walks Location: Northern Bruce Peninsula, ON N0H 2R0, Canada

35. Montmorency Falls: Explore The Highest Falls

Montmorency Falls

If you are planning a vacation to Quebec, then you must head to Montmorency Falls that is located just 12 kilometers away from the heart of the city. They are the highest falls in the country being 100 feet higher than the famous Niagara Falls. The best part of these falls is that you can take a good look at these falls by going for a walk over the suspension bridge. In addition to this, there are several staircases to witness the true beauty of the falls.

Best time to visit: June – September and December – February How to reach: You can reach these falls either by taking a car or bus ride from any part of Quebec. Things To Do: Sightseeing Location: 5300 Boulevard Sainte-Anne, Québec, QC G1C 1S1, Canada

Suggested Read: Christmas In Chicago: Time To Celebrate Christmas In Mud City!

36. Capilano Suspension Bridge: Lap Of Nature Calls You

Capilano Suspension Bridge

Wondering where to go in Canada to challenge yourself? Then, head to this suspension bridge in British Columbia! It is 140 meters long and 70 meters high above the river and taking a stroll through the thick green forest will make you fall in love with this place. If you have a fear of heights then you might want to skip this place. But if not then make sure that you take a walk here as it is one of the top tourist places in Canada.

Best time to visit: November How to reach: You can either take a car to reach the destination or take bus number 236 to reach bridge. Things To Do: Cliff walk, adventure activites, and sightseeing Location: 3735 Capilano Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7R 4J1, Canada

37. Waterton Lakes National Park: Bags All The Titles

Waterton Lakes National Park

One look at it and the scene might look unreal to you at first! Yes, Waterton Lakes National Park is one of the most beautiful Canadian National Parks which is why it is the only park in the whole world that has received all three designations – UNESCO World Heritage Site, Biosphere Reserve, and International Peace Park. This means that you might get to see a glimpse of cougars, bison, and wolves. Another amazing part about this place is that you can kayak your way over the border to reach Montana. If you’re still where to visit in Canada, this is the place to be.

Best time to visit: May – September How to reach: The place is located at the end of Highway 5 so you will have to drive to this highway as there are no bus services to the lake. Things To Do: Explore lakes and go for trek trails Location: AB-5, Waterton Park, AB T0K 2M0, Canada

Suggested Read: 5 Best Spots For Scuba Diving In Canada That You Must Visit

38. Prince Edward Island: For A Splendid Game Of Golf


One of the best places to go in Canada, this island is home to some brilliant golf courses where you can practice your swing or play a game amidst serene surroundings. The breathtaking landscape of this island will rejuvenate your soul and recharge you after an exhausting trip of several adventures in Canada. The lush green hills and the delicious seafood are a major attraction for this island. Look out for the adorable harp seal while you’re at it. It is also one of the best places to visit in Canada . 

Best time to visit: July – August How to reach: Whether you drive across the Confederation Bridge from New Brunswick, take a ride on the ferry from Nova Scotia, or fly in to the Charlottetown airport, you’ll find our Island easy to navigate. Visit charming towns, vibrant cities, and quaint villages. A new adventure around every turn. Things To Do: Visit scenic beaches, hiking trails, historic homes and golf Location: Prince Edward Island, Canadian Province

39. Kluane National Park and Reserve: For Wildlife Enthusiasts

best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Home to Canada’s highest peaks, the country’s largest ice field and a diverse flora and fauna, the Kluane National Park and Reserve is one of the best places in Canada to visit for adventure travelers, explorers and wildlife enthusiasts. Situated in the southwest corner of the Yukon, this park has some beautiful trekking trails on the icefield ranges of the St. Elias Mountains making it one of the best Canada tourist attractions.

Best time to visit: June – September How to reach: You can reach Kluane by driving 160 km west from Whitehorse on the Alaska Highway. Whitehorse is serviced by regular commercial flights. Take the Alaska Marine Highway ferry system to Haines or Skagway, Alaska. Things To Do: Skiing, Trekking, Hiking, Mountaineering, Bird Watching Location: Unorganized Yukon, YT Y0B 1H0, Canada

Suggested Read : 7 Places To Visit Near Abbotsford That Should Be On Your Canada Itinerary

40. Mont Tremblant: For Skiing Activities

Parc National Du Mont Tremblant

Tucked away in the Laurentian Mountains of Montreal, the Mont-Tremblant is known for skiing activities, it’s most famous for the ski resort which is situated in the foothills of Mont Tremblant mountain known to be amongst the best Canada tourist places. Mont-Tremblant also has a racing track called Circuit Mont-Tremblant making it one of the must-see places in Canada .

Best time to visit: November to February; June to August How to reach: Drive highway 93 North, then 89 North to U.S./Canada border. Follow route 133 North to 10 West towards Montreal. Follow signs to highway 15 North. Take autoroute 15 North to Saint-Jerome and Sainte-Agathe. Things To Do: Skiing Location: Mont-Tremblant, Quebec, Canada

Further Read: Top Beaches In Canada That Remain Unavoidable For The Ardent Beach Lovers

So, which of these places in Canada are you planning to visit during your holiday? Don’t think much, pack your bags and book your trip to Canada and try visiting each of the above-listed best places to visit in Canada! Do not forget to share this amazing list with your friends!

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Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Canada

What is the most beautiful part of Canada?

North America's oldest walled city doesn’t just boast a single destination abound with beauty but there are countless places to visit where you will find nature and people come together to create some stunning experiences. Some of these places are Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, and Ontario.

Where should I go in Canada for the first time?

If you are visiting Canada for the first time, we would recommend an itinerary focused on three key attractions: Banff National Park, Whistler, and Niagara Falls.

Are there any Covid-19 restrictions in Canada?

As of Feb. 28, fully vaccinated travellers won't need a pre-arrival PCR test to enter Canada. Source: Government of Canada.

Where should I spend my vacation in Canada?

If you are travelling to Canada on a vacation, assuming that the duration of your travel is longer than a week, some of the top contenders are Banff, Vancouver, and Prince Edward Island.

Which are some of the must-visit places in Canada for couples?

Jasper National Park, Banff, Niagara Falls, Vancouver, Montreal, Quebec City, Victoria & Vancouver Island, Prince Edwards Island, Yoho National Park, and Pyramid Lake are amongst the must-visit places in Canada. The mentioned places are ideal for nature lovers.

What is the best time to visit Canada?

While Canada can be visited any time during the year, the best time depends on your budget and for what you are going. While September and October offer pleasant weather & reasonable holiday expenses, the wintertime is the best for experiencing the beauty of the snow. However, if you wish to have a value-for-money holiday, the springtime, i.e. mid-March to mid-May is the best time to plan your vacation.

What is Canada known for?

The country of Canada is mostly known for maple syrup. The country is the producer of 80% of maple syrup in the world.

What is famous in Canada to buy?

Apart from the maple syrup, there are several things in Canada that you should consider buying. Some of them are 1. Canadian Ice Wine 2. Canadian sports gear 3. Woolen blanket 4. Canadian Smoked Salmon 5. Canadian sports gear

What are 3 things Canada is famous for?

Canada is an awesome place for enjoying the scenic views, winter sports like Ice Hockey, etc., and maple syrup.

What are the top 10 cities in Canada?

The top 10 cities in Canada are 1. Toronto 2. Montreal 3. Calgary 4. Ottawa 5. Edmonton 6. Winnipeg 7. Mississauga 8. Vancouver 9. Brampton 10. Hamilton

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When to visit Canada: the best festivals, activities, and weather through the year

Brendan Sainsbury

Feb 23, 2022 • 6 min read

Black father with his multi daughter and son and his caucasian ethnicity wife skying during an afternoon day in a small town in Quebec Canada. It was their first time skying. They are with their caucasian friends. The color and horizontal photo was taken in Quebec Canada.

Whether you're planning a family ski break or to make the most of the summer months, this guide to what's happening in Canada can help you plan the perfect trip © manonallard / Getty Images

Canada is primarily a summer destination: the country gets three times more foreign visitors in July than January. In a land of seriously frigid winter temperatures and – in the far north – little daylight, summer is a welcome respite when you can unlock the pleasures of 48 national parks , enjoy an abundance of festivals and dine alfresco in a host of cosmopolitan cities. There are even beaches to explore and a burgeoning wine culture to savor.   

For those not averse to a little winter chill, the snow-accustomed Canadians offer an alternative winter culture. Whistler is North America’s largest ski resort, Ottawa ’s Rideau Canal hosts the world’s biggest skating rink, and Quebec City ’s February carnival is one of the planet’s most renowned winter festivals.   

Here's our month-by-month guide to what's happening in Canada.

Elevated view of female hiker looking out from coastal forest, Pacific Rim National Park, Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada

High season sunshine in June to August attracts many tourists 

In common with most northern hemisphere countries, June to August is Canada’s bonanza season, or to be more specific, Victoria Day (late May) to Labour Day (first weekend in September). Sunny weather, snow-free landscapes, and long hours of daylight (the sun barely sets in the far north) conspire to pull in foreign tourists and huge domestic crowds. Satisfying the demand, everything is open, from museums to hiking trails to wildlife excursions. Even winter ski resorts convert themselves into summer hiking and biking destinations. Summer caveats include higher prices (count on paying 30% more), busier facilities, and more limited availability. Book ahead and come armed with a variety of options. 

Shoulder season of May, September, and October may mean some cheaper deals area available

Savvy travelers visit Canada in September. While prices and crowds fall after the Labour Day weekend, good weather usually holds until the end of the month meaning you can still hike at high altitudes, kayak in ice-free waters, and visit the beach. Early October remains snow-free in many regions and is the height of the surfing season on the Pacific coast. Fall foliage turns rust-red and sandy-brown towards the end of October and is particularly impressive in the eastern provinces: Ontario and Prince Edward Island are favorites. May is often relatively warm but snow can still linger at higher altitudes, especially in the Rocky Mountains . The Victoria Day weekend (Monday preceding May 25) usually marks the start of the summer season. From here on you can wave goodbye to any deals or discounts until September. 

Low season runs November to April, but it's prime time for snow sports 

Days are dark and temperatures are cold – really cold in the territories, the prairies, and parts of Québec . However, there is a silver lining: skiing and other associated winter sports usually kick off in late November/early December and keep going until early April depending on the weather. While prices drop in most regions, ski resorts ramp up their costs for a mini-high season, especially in the peak months of January and February. Elsewhere, November and April are the best months for all-round bargains.

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Female athlete skiing in the mountains

January is ideal for ice skating and skiing

Frozen lakes and rivers provide skating opportunities; ski resorts get big dumps of snow – some offer floodlit skiing and cozy warming huts to light up dark evenings. Key events: Ice wine festivals in Ontario and BC. 

February has winter festivals

As the freeze prevails, the Canadians put on plenty of winter festivals to keep warm. The Family Day weekend (third weekend in February) can see a mass rush to the ski slopes. Key events: Yukon Quest , Quebec City’s Winter Carnival , Winterlude in Ottawa. 

March means less snow, more hiking, and whale watching from the shore

The clocks spring forward in mid-March lengthening the evenings; Spring break (last two weeks of March) sees many Canadians flee abroad to warmer climes. In national parks and wilderness areas people start swapping their snowshoes for hiking boots. The Pacific Rim Whale Festival on the west coast of Vancouver Island celebrates all marine life. You may even be able to see gray whales from land as they pass near the coast on their northerly migration to their summer feeding grounds. Key event: Pacific Rim Whale Festival . 

April marks the end of the ski season

The ski season peters out as mountain resorts begin transitioning to the summer season in late April. Hikers and bikers hit lower altitude trails. In cities, bars and restaurants start to open their outdoor patios.  Key events: Stratford Festival , World Ski & Snowboard Festival . 

May is great for white water rafting

Bears are awake, the snow is melting in the mountains, and rugged rivers experience choppier currents – a perfect time to go white water rafting.  Key events: Canadian Tulip Festival, Manito Ahbee . 

Colorful balloons spell out PRIDE. They are held by people taking part in a parade through a city

June marks the start of summer

Canadian schools break up in late June heralding a full-on family exodus to the countryside. Hockey’s Stanley Cup Finals can have the whole country on tenterhooks. Trails are mostly snow-free but can still be wet and muddy. The LGBTIQ+ community celebrates across the country.  Key events: Montreal Jazz Festival, Pride Toronto , Alianait Arts Festival. 

July is peak tourist time in Canada

The peak month for visitors with sunny weather, long days, an abundance of festivals and pretty much everything open for business. Spectacular wildflowers carpet alpine meadows in late July. Key events: Canada Day, Calgary Stampede , Winnipeg Fringe Festival, Just for Laughs Festival. 

Summer festivities continue through August 

A continuation of July with only a minor drop in visitor numbers. The last of the snow melts in the mountains as wildlife and mosquitos come out to play. Bring bear spray and insect repellent! Key events: Edmonton Fringe Festival, Festival Acadien , Royal St John’s Regatta. 

Siblings exploring in forest

September is a little cooler

While temperatures cool slightly, the weather remains relatively reliable for most of September. Some outdoor facilities close after Labour Day, but many trails, lakes, and campgrounds stay accessible until early October.  Key events: Toronto International Film Festival, PEI Fall Flavours . 

October is the best time for surfers in British Colombia

Warmer weather can persist on the coast in early October, while the prairies and territories get an early dusting of snow. Good swells and tepid seas make this the best all-round surfing month in British Columbia. Key events: Dark Sky Festival, Celtic Colours .  

Catch the last of the fall foliage in November 

In the east, fall foliage can last well into November while, in the west, wet and windy weather has led to a growing interest in storm-watching, particularly on Vancouver Island.   Key event: Niagara Festival of Lights. 

December means more visitors to the ski resorts

By early December, most ski resorts are firing on all cylinders. This is also peak season for migratory eagle spotting in British Columbia. Big cities host Christmas markets.  Key events: Vancouver Festival of Lights, Christmas.

You might also like: The 15 most incredible places to visit in Canada    Explore Canada's great outdoors on these 11 hiking trails    21 epic experiences to supercharge your Canadian adventure   

This article was first published March 2021 and updated February 2022

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best cities to visit in canada in the summer

Lonely Planet’s Canada is our most comprehensive guide that covers all the country has to offer. Ideal for travelers who are visiting for an extended time and want to tailor their own trip. Hike the Rockies, marvel at the Northern Lights and indulge in Montreal's café culture – all with your trusted travel companion.

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