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Top 10 Places to Visit in Canada’s Top 10 Places to Visit in Canada

Canada is a diverse country with cities of every size, each with their own unique attractions. With summer here, it’s time to think about the best vacation spots that Canada has to offer. Here are our picks for the ten best places to visit in the country.


10. Cavendish, Prince Edward Island

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With beaches, dunes, and sandstone cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, Cavendish, P.E.I is one of the most scenic places in Canada. Cavendish is Prince Edward Island’s largest seasonal resort area, with cottages, golf courses, parks, and campgrounds for nature-lovers and other outdoor enthusiasts. For those interested in the cultural history of the area, the Green Gables Heritage Place attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year to see the settings that inspired Lucy Maud Montgomery’s beloved Anne of Green Gables.


9. Winnipeg, Manitoba

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Winnipeg boasts a flourishing arts scene, complete with high-quality music, theatre, and ballet, along with a host of festivals during the hot summer months. Bring your appetite, because Winnipeg’s dining options are surprisingly varied for a city of its size, with a new generation of young chefs catering to diverse taste buds and serving up a multitude of cuisines. Be sure to check out the Forks, where the Red and Assiniboine Rivers meet, as well as the restaurants and shops of the historic Exchange District.


8. Saanich, British Columbia

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Only 7 km away from Victoria, Saanich is home to the Northeastern half of the University of Victoria campus, giving it all the vitality of a university town. Mild weather and great scenic beauty add to its appeal, with woodlands and farms surrounding the area, and camera-ready mountaintop views overlooking the city. The ecologically diverse landscape has tremendous recreational potential, with the highest number of parks per capita of any municipality in the province. The largest is Mount Douglas Park, with its majestic firs and cedars, lush trails, sandy shores along Cordova Bay, and the glorious 213-metre summit with its magnificent views of Saanich, nearby Victoria, and the mountains of Washington State. Don’t forget to pack your camera!


7. Nahanni National Park Reserve, Northwest Territories

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A protected area of the Mackenzie Mountains, Nahanni National Park centres on the South Nahanni River, lined by four spectacular canyons. A dream-come-true for wilderness travelers, the region spans three ecozones, and is home to ten endangered species. Plunging 90 metres at the beautiful Virginia Falls—more than Niagara!—the South Nahanni offers arguably the most diverse views of any river on the planet, and is a premier destination for canoeing, kayaking, and whitewater rafting. A national treasure, Nahanni needs to be experienced by all serious adventure-seekers.


6. Québec City, Québec

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With Old World charm in its cobblestone streets and historical architecture, Québec City enchants over 4.5 million tourists annually. Rich in history and culture, the capital city of La Belle Province offers more than just sightseeing. Food-lovers will find much to savour at the many eateries, bakeries, and pastry shops. If you visit in August, be sure to check out the New France Festival, a celebration of Québec’s colonial history, complete with period costuming, re-enactments, parades, concerts, and other activities.


5. Banff, Alberta

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Nestled among the Rockies, the resort town of Banff is located in one of the most visited national parks in North America and worldwide. The gorgeous mountain scenery, hot springs, and hiking trails are picture-perfect for an outdoor getaway. Just outside of town is the Cave and Basin National Historic Site, with its eye-popping mountain views and warm mineral springs. Whether your recreational pursuits include camping, canoeing, kayaking, fishing, hiking, swimming, or more, Banff provides an ideal backdrop for your summer adventures.


4. Vancouver, British Columbia

Vancouver, British Columbia

One of the most culturally diverse cities in the nation, coastal Vancouver offers a mix of urban excitement and natural beauty. Surrounded by the Pacific Ocean and densely forested, the thousand-acre Stanley Park borders the downtown area and provides a nearby escape from city life into lush greenery, complete with forest trails, beaches, and lakes. Mountain hiking trails, harbour cruises, and horse-drawn carriage tours give sightseers memorable views of everything the landscape has to offer, while downtown Vancouver scores high for its dining, nightlife, and shopping experiences.


3. Calgary, Alberta

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With its thriving and diversified economy and multicultural population, Calgary has grown into a major city and a booming tourist destination. The famous Calgary Stampede has helped develop Calgary’s unique character, drawing over a million visitors per year for its ten days of events every July, including one of the biggest rodeos in the world. On the cultural scene, the Sled Island Music and Arts Festival has been celebrating local and international talent every summer for growing audiences since its beginnings in 2007. Expect the city to keep upping its game in the years to come.


2. Toronto, Ontario

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Right now is a good time for Canada’s most populous city. A major cultural centre and home to events like the Toronto International Film Festival, the city has a wealth of world-class music, film, theatre, fashion, entertainment, nightlife, and cuisine. This month, the World Pride festivities come to North America for the first time in Toronto, making it the venue for one of the biggest summer celebrations in the country. And Toronto’s momentum won’t end there: 2015 will see the arrival of the Pan Am Games, and the completion of the new 5.45-hectare CIBC Hamilton Pan Am Soccer Stadium.


1. Montréal, Quebec

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It’s hard to compete with summers in Montréal. From the world-renowned Jazz Festival to Just for Laughs, or from Grand Prix weekend to Osheaga, the city truly has something for every taste. Main thoroughfares like Sainte-Catherine Street and Saint-Laurent Boulevard are a heady mix of high-end and gritty, making the edgy nightlife arguably the most exciting in Canada. The Old Port is a popular tourist spot perfect for sightseeing and pedestrian excursions, while Parc Jean-Drapeau provides everything from outdoor recreation, nature trails, and sporting events to amusement park rides, electronic dance parties, and much more. Rich in culture, cuisine, art, entertainment, fashion, style, and character, Montréal offers an endless variety of experiences for visitors.


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