The Great White North is not only an enchanting Winter wonderland and killer slopes but a mystical blend of maple leaves, sparkling lakes, lively festivals, charming cities, and breathtaking skies. Travelers of all seasons, styles, and interests can tour Canada all throughout the year, whether they’re looking to relax at a ski resort or climb the mighty Canadian Rockies.
Spring offers you cheaper accommodation, especially in the city, but the highlight of Canada, it’s lush natural landscapes, are stuck between too hot for skiing and too cold for hiking. If you’re looking to visit the Rockies, you’ll want to wait it out until Summer.
Instead, stick to the coast, staying in Vancouver or Halifax. Nova Scotia offers enchanting whale watching cruises along the Atlantic Coast. In turn, Vancouver comes alive with cherry blossoms throughout April, highlighted by the lively and diverse Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival.
This is the busiest season in Canada on either coast, stretching from June to August, with July being the most crowded. Visit on either end of the season to find cheaper accommodation and fewer tourists.
This is by far the most beautiful time to experience the Rockies. Book a night at one of the many alpine lodges in Banff to get out and explore the various lakes, waterfalls, canyons, and hiking trails. If you cross from Vancouver through the Rockies to Calgary, you may get to enjoy the lively Calgary Stampede, one of the largest outdoor rodeos in the world.
If you’re looking for culture, head on over to Quebec to explore Montreal. This French-speaking city comes alive with a variety of festivals, including Osheaga, the International Jazz Festival, and the Just For Laughs Montreal Comedy Festival (which you may have heard about in Emily V. Gordon and Kumail Nanjiani’s film, The Big Sick).
Like Spring, September to October is a transition period between too hot and too cold, but unlike Spring it’s more comfortable and spectacular. Get out to see the amazing maple leaves while enjoying affordable hotel rates. This is the perfect time to see the roaring Niagara Falls, whose cascades are beautifully framed with fall foliage. If you want to see more of the amazing fall foliage, head to Agawa Canyon. Both are easily reached from Toronto.
Autumn is also the perfect time to experience the famous Salmon Run, when salmon swim upstream to spawn while leaping over waterfalls. You may even spot grizzly bears trying to catch them from the air.
Despite the cold, Winter is a magical time in Canada, a beautiful season to see the famed Northern Lights. You’ll have to get off the beaten path in Yellowknife where you can spot the Aurora Borealis from heated viewing lodges.
If you want to see how Canadian’s make the best of the snowy season, travel to Quebec for the Ice Festival, when artists create amazing sculptures (even castles)!
If you really want to get into the Canadian spirit, try to grab tickets to an NHL game for one of the liveliest experiences in the country.