There’s more to Canada than ice huts, Eskimos and snow mobiles. This sprawling country is full of fun and exciting attractions.
Here’s 5 of my top picks for places you need to add to your Canada travel itinerary:
1. Horseshoe Falls:
Just a hop, skip and jump across the American border you’ll find Niagara Falls’s little cousin, Horseshoe Falls. The “horseshoe” shape of this natural wonder makes for a great panoramic shot from the Skylon Tower which is a major dining hotspot for locals and tourists alike. Make sure to call two days in advance if you want to enjoy the falls from the Skylon though; its very busy and the food’s spectacular! Niagara and Horseshoe Falls are both around 2 hours south of Pearson Airport and the town is like a mini Las Vegas with tons of gambling establishments, museums (including Ripley’s) and dining and accommodations to fit any budget.
Quebec is very colonial — the architecture and way of life is so different here than anywhere else you’ll find in all of North America. Quebec and its “Quebecois” inhabitants are very welcoming to tourists (except Montreal, which is very urban and snooty, if you ask me anyways.) You’ll find festivals going on in all the big hotspots like Quebec City and Laval, on almost any given weekend. If you’re looking to practice your French but can’t afford to hit Paris this year, Quebec is the second largest French speaking place in the world next to France’s capital.
Many people think of New York when asked what’s the most culturally-diverse city in the world. That honor, in fact, goes to Toronto and its many subsections. Spring and summer are festival seasons and you’ll find everything from Caribana in the summer to the world-renowned Toronto Art Exhibit in the fall. This summer is particularly awesome, since the city will be holding the Pan Am Games, with many events offering as low as a $20 (CAD) admission fee. This city is all about festivals, with one happening every weekend. Looking for the best cuisine in the world? Head to the Distillery District and choose your favorite type of contemporary or traditional fare. It’s all there!
4. The East Coast:
“Eyez da bae dat builds da boat, Eyez da bae dat sails her…”
“Hawz it goin dere?”
“Pleez-ta meetcha friend.”
The Irish settled this place a hundred plus years ago and you’ll find much of the East Coast will bring back that keen sense of Irish nostalgia if you’ve ever been to the island. They do lots of fishing down here, though over-fishing and strict regulation has slowed much of the industry down and forced many locals to head west for work. However, this is one of the most gorgeous places in Canada when it comes to oceanside views, sprawling green lands, and massive cliff faces lining the coast. Head to the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton for an awesome, seemingly endless drive that contains awesome views and fresh seaside air. Stop at one of the many parks (anywhere) down there and strike up a conversation with the friendly locals. Halifax, Nova Scotia is a very modern city in the East Coast and you’ll find modern dining, amenities and night life that’s on part with most other urban cities around the world. My suggestion for food? Eat some fresh lobster and crab for sure dere bae!
5. British Colombia:
The Canadian Rockies are the cathedrals of North America. Be sure to visit the Fairmont Chateau on Lake Louise which gives a taste of old Europe. In addition to visiting Vancouver, it’s worth while to take a ferry to the capital of Victoria.
Visit the wax museum and the colorful Butchart gardens outside of the city.
Cap off your trip with high tea and crumpets at the Empress Princess Hotel and Tea House to see what life was like in the British Empire during the 19th century.
The waiters and even the ladies take this event very seriously which can be evident by the clothes they wear. If time persists you can go whale watching at certain times of the year as well.