Best Places to Visit in Canada
From the cosmopolitan streets of Toronto to the mountain peaks of the Canadian Rockies, our neighbor to the north features a diverse set of vacation destinations. 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, to compile a list of the best places to visit in Canada. Vote for your favorite below to have a say in next year's list. And if you're seeking lodging, see the Best Hotels in Canada »
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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 beautiful scenery from the Jasper SkyTram. Keep your eyes peeled for the 53 species of mammals that call this park home.
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Nestled amid the foothills of the Canadian Rockies, both nature enthusiasts and luxury-seekers flock to this tiny mountain town in Alberta. Visitors can spend their days skiing or hiking at Banff National Park and admiring Lake Louise before retiring to one of the several opulent hotels for some spa therapy.
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Travel here to see and capture photos of the iconic natural attraction. With the Canadian Horseshoe Falls plummeting over the 188-foot drop at up to 68 mph, the falls are this destination's main draw. However, the area also offers a variety of other things to enjoy like museums, parks, wineries and casinos.
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While Montreal and Québec City honor Canada's French roots, Victoria pays tribute to the country's British heritage. Many visit British Columbia's capital for afternoon tea, a tour of Parliament or a history lesson at the Royal British Columbia Museum. Others are interested in sampling Vancouver Island's wineries.
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A trip to Vancouver 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 and outdoor markets (Granville Island is a must-see).
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Prince Edward Island#6 in Best Places to Visit in Canada
Home to rolling green hills, red sandstone cliffs and a delicious bounty of seafood, Prince Edward Island is the place to travel for a relaxing respite from Canada's more adventure-driven destinations. When you're not enjoying the beach, perfect your swing at one of the island's golf courses. And be sure to keep an eye out for PEI's adorable harp seals.
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A trip to Europe may not be in your budget, but a visit to Québec City could be. This Canadian city charms its visitors with the 17th- and 18th-century 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 with the essence of Paris.
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Montreal is a city of juxtaposition: Skyscrapers rub elbows with Old Montreal's 17th-century architecture, while the familiar sounds of English intermingle with the foreign buzz of French. Boulevard Saint-Laurent is a world-class shopping district by day and a popular party scene by night.
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Take adventure travel up a notch with a visit to Whistler. This Canadian resort town boasts everything from skiing and snowboarding to bobsled rides and bungee jumping. Travelers can spend their down time in Whistler Village enjoying the après-ski scene or strolling Whistler Olympic Plaza.
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"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.
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A visit to Canada's capital offers something for everyone. Places like Rideau Canal and Gatineau Park are perfect for those who love the outdoors, while attractions, such as Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica, the Canadian War Museum and Parliament Hill, will entertain history buffs. Meanwhile, foodies can't pass up a chance to peruse ByWard Market.
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Gros Morne National Park#12 in Best Places to Visit in Canada
This UNESCO World Heritage site encompasses nearly 700 square acres on Newfoundland's west coast. Its top activity is undoubtedly hiking 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. Equally impressive: a boat ride through Western Brook Pond.
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If you're a sports lover, you've come to the right place. Not only did Calgary host the 1988 Winter Olympics (which you can relive at WinSport's Canada Olympic Park), it's also the home of the annual Calgary Stampede every July. Learn why the annual stampede is tied to Calgary's past with a visit to Heritage Park, Canada's largest living history museum.
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Kelowna#14 in Best Places to Visit in Canada
No matter the season, this British Columbia resort town offers plenty to do. Summer draws families to Okanagan Lake while winter attracts travelers to nearby ski resorts. Year-round, visitors will be treated a vibrant food and wine scene. In fact, there are more than 40 wineries within a 20-minute drive of Kelowna.
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Defined by its rich maritime history and bustling waterfront, Halifax is a haven for both history buffs and foodies. Learn about the role Halifax played in recovering artifacts from the Titanic at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. Then, embark on the Chowder Trail or Lobster Trail for a taste of Nova Scotia's delicious seafood.
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