Canada is home to some of the best National Parks in the world and can be a great place for a vacation. The Canadian government created its first National Park in 1885 and currently, there are 46 parks across the country! In this blog post, we will discuss what makes these parks so great, why you should visit them, and a few other things to do while you’re there.
How Many National Parks in Canada?
Canada has 46 national parks, which are administered by the Canadian government’s Parks Canada Agency and governed by the provisions of the Canada National Parks Act.
Why Are There So Many National Parks in Canada?
Canada’s national parks are among the world’s natural gems. They represent the strength of Canada’s natural environment — a strong force that has molded not just the country’s geography, but also its history and visitors’ experiences.
National parks are formed to preserve and exhibit representative specimens of natural landscapes and natural occurrences that occur in Canada’s 39 natural regions as defined by the National Parks System Plan.
When Did the Canadian National Parks Service Start?
The organization in charge of Canada’s National Parks system was formed as the Dominion Parks Branch in 1911, becoming the world’s first national parks service. In 1998, it became an independent agency.
What is a Parks Canada Discovery Pass?
For a whole year, get unlimited visits to all national parks, historic sites, and marine conservation areas operated by Parks Canada. Your payments assist in the maintenance of Canada’s National Historic Sites, National Marine Conservation Areas, and National Parks.
How Much Is a Parks Canada Discovery Pass?
The price of a Parks Canada Discovery Pass in 2021 is Adult $ 69.19 Senior $ 59.17 Family/Group $ 139.40.
The Best National Parks in Canada to Visit
There’s plenty of adventure in Canada for both residents and tourists, thanks to its vast range of natural wonders. In the heart of Canada, there are endless possibilities for outdoor enjoyment with a wealth of activities on offer.
Canadian geography is magnificent in terms of size and beauty, providing locals and visitors with enough discoveries to last a lifetime. There are many amazing things to do in Canada’s National Parks, so let’s get started!
Canada National Parks in British Columbia
Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is located on the west coast of Vancouver Island, a three-hour drive from the ferry terminal at Nanaimo or a one-hour flight from Vancouver.
The Pacific Rim National Park is a national park located in British Columbia, Canada. The reserve area is 511 km2 and is divided into three zones: the West Coast Trail, Broken Group Islands, and Long Beach.
The park, which is located on the west side of Vancouver Island, is one of Canada’s most beloved and popular natural wonders, recognized for its long continuous beaches, lush verdant forests, and beautiful coastal views.
The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve was established in 1970 after years of negotiations between the provincial and federal governments. In 2000, it became part of the Pacific Rim National Park.
The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve encompasses Tofino in the north to Port Renfrew in the south. The Coast Mountains of the Pacific Coast Ranges, Haida Gwaii Archipelago, and Vancouver Island are all included in this natural treasure. It is Vancouver Island’s only national park that protects both the marine environment and rainforest.
This Canadian National Park is known for forest hikes along with beaches that are perfect for surfing or kayaking. There are so many things to do in Tofino along with the best Tofino restaurants where you can enjoy the local cuisine. If you are looking for a place to stay, Pacific Sands Beach Resort offers some of the best accommodations in Tofino.
The weather at this national park in Canada is quite mild throughout the year but does experience significant rainfall. If you are planning a trip to this Canada national park, be sure to come prepared using our Tofino packing list.
Top Things to do at Pacific Rim National Park Reserve:
- Hike the West Coast Trail
- Go Surfing on one the amazing beaches
- Go on an interpretive walk on the Nuu-chah-nulth Trail
WANT MORE INFORMATION ABOUT TOFINO? CHECK OUT THESE POSTS!
Kootenay National Park
Nestled next to Banff National Park and Yoho National Park in the mountains of British Columbia is Kootenay National Park. Often overshadowed by its neighboring parks, tourists sometimes miss this gem, which is such a shame since it’s easily one of the most beautiful National Parks in Canada offering a ton to do and see.
Kootenay National Park was established in the 1920s when it was decided to build a road here through the Rockies. Driving through the Kootenays is an adventure in itself.
Highway 93 runs through the middle of Kootenay National Park. At one edge of the park, you’ll find Radium Hot springs, and at the other, you’ll find an intersection with the Icefields Parkway (not far from Lake Louise.)
This stretch of road only takes about an hour to drive, however, you’re going to want to allow more time to stop at the attractions along the way.
The best things to do in Kootenay National Park include hikes, viewpoints, campgrounds, and of course, hot springs. One of the most popular attractions is Marble Canyon, a stunning deep canyon showing bright blue water.
There is a boardwalk and bridges crossing the canyon, so you can explore on a 1.6 kilometre-long loop trail – super easy and suitable for the whole family. Other popular places to visit include the challenging hike to Floe Lake, relaxing at Olive Lake, and checking out Numa Falls.
Of course, the most popular attraction in the park is Radium Hot Springs. All year long, you can visit these hot springs and soak in the natural mineral water for less than $9 per person.
Because of the close proximity to the hot springs and Kootenay National Park, most people choose to stay in the town of Radium Hot Springs (with the same name as the actual hot springs, but located a 5-minute drive away) to explore the area. There are lots of hotels in Radium and it is located right on the border of Kootenay National Park.
By Bailey from Destinationless Travel
Yoho National Park
Located in the Rocky Mountains of eastern British Columbia, Yoho National Park is one of the most beautiful national parks in all of Canada. From the pristine Emerald Lake, spectacular Wapta Falls, stunning Lake O’Hara, and towering Takakkaw Falls, Yoho National Park is filled with beauty.
But Yoho National Park offers more than just breathtaking scenery. A unique aspect of this national park, which makes it the perfect stop for children and adults alike, is the Burgess Shale.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Burgess Shale is filled with some of the oldest fossils in the world (over five hundred million years old!). And, fun fact, the fossilized life of the Burgess Shale existed when this region was straddling the equator.
Additional things you have to do in Yoho National Park include hiking the Iceline Trail, mountain biking the Kicking Horse Trail, and staying overnight at the Kicking Horse Campground (just remember to book in advance, especially if you’re visiting during a holiday or long weekend!).
Yoho National Park also has a long history (in Canadian standards); it was first established in 1886, making it Canada’s second oldest national park, after Banff.
The closest cities to Yoho National Park include Golden, BC and Banff, Alberta, meaning it’s best accessed by car. If you’re flying in, you can either arrive in Calgary or Vancouver and then drive the rest of the way to Yoho; Yoho National Park is without a doubt the perfect stop on a road trip from Calgary to Vancouver.
Overall, Yoho National Park is one of the most stunning national parks in Canada, with both breathtaking scenery and a fascinating history (both modern and ancient)!
Contributed by Mia from Walk a While With Me
Canada National Parks in Alberta
Banff National Park
Banff National Park is the oldest national park in Canada, established in 1885. It can be found just west of Calgary and consists of a range of mountains that extend into Yoho National Park to the east, Jasper National Park to the north, and Kootenay National Park to its south.
The main places to stay and get services in Banff are now in the townsite, which is in a valley between Tunnel Mountain and Sulphur Mountain.
It can be reached by car via Trans Canada Highway #1; Banff can also be accessed from Canmore to the west or Lake Louise to the north on Icefields Parkway (Highway 93).
The scenery of this Canadian national park is stunningly beautiful, from its snow-capped mountains to its turquoise lakes and jaw-dropping waterfalls. A trip through Banff National Park will make you feel as if you’re in a fairytale world.
The best things to do in Banff National Park include hiking, mountain biking, kayaking and canoeing. Canada national parks offer countless opportunities for outdoor fun. Banff National Park is known as a haven for nature lovers, so be sure to bring your camera along!
Lake Louise in winter or any time of year is spectacular and is a must-see destination. Nearby Moraine Lake, hiking up to Lake Agnes Teahouse, the Fairmont Banff Springs and the town of Banff itself should all be on your itinerary.
Top things to do in Banff National Park:
- Explore Cave and Basin National Historic Site
- Hike any of the famous trails to explore on foot
- Relax at Banff Upper Hot Springs
- Explore the park on horseback
Jasper National Park
Jasper National Park can be found in the Canadian Rockies, just west of Edmonton. This Canadian national park is Canada’s largest park and covers more than 11,000 km².
The Rocky Mountains are one of the most spectacular mountain ranges on Earth. They can be seen throughout Jasper National Park, with its topographical beauty enhanced by glaciers and icefields that can be found at the Columbia Icefield.
In fact, Jasper National Park is home to some of Canada’s highest peaks, including Mount Robson which stands 4050m tall. This Canadian national park offers some amazing opportunities for hiking and camping in summer and skiing during winter.
Jasper has magnificent views and exciting experiences to offer. Adventurers may go on great hikes, bicycle down challenging inclines or ride their bikes up the side of a mountain. For a more laid-back experience, take in one of the area’s numerous picturesque drives, picnic beneath towering summits, and see unique animals. Winter activities include snowshoeing, skiing and ice skating.
The best things to do in Jasper National Park:
- Experience the night sky and go stargazing in the fall
- Spotting wildlife like grizzly bears, bighorn sheep and wolves are a regular occurance
- Go camping in the rugged backcountry for an epic adventure
- Stay at Jasper Park Lodge for the ultimate in Jasper luxury
Waterton Lakes National Park
Waterton Lakes National Park is one of the most underrated, and one of the most beautiful National Parks in Canada. The Park borders Glacier National Park in Montana and is in the southwest corner of Alberta.
What makes Waterton Lakes National Park unique is that it has a UNESCO World Heritage site, an international peace park, a dark sky preserve, and a biosphere reserve. There is also no other National Park within Canada that has successfully protected as much wildlife within the small area that is Waterton Lakes National Park.
Waterton is full of incredible animal sighting opportunities, breathtaking mountain views, waterfalls to chase, and places to explore by hiking. It is a wonderful destination for families, as well as those seeking some thrilling adventure.
Waterton also has a charming waterfront town lined with shops and restaurants. While you wander the town it is common to run into deer and bighorn sheep.
The Prince of Wales Hotel is an iconic hotel that has stood on a bluff overlooking Waterton Village and Valley since 1927. You can enjoy high tea fit for royalty as you enjoy the panoramic landscape views. There are also plenty of campsites available to sleep under the stars.
Summer is the most popular time to visit Waterton Lakes National Park, though there is plenty of adventure year-round. Calgary International airport is a three-hour drive away from Waterton. The best way to get to the park is by car so that you will have the freedom to explore as you wish.
Contributed by Debbie Fettback from WorldAdventurists.com.
Elk Island National Park
Elk Island National Park is located in Alberta and is one of the places in Canada to sight bison. The park is an easy drive away from Edmonton, the capital city of the province, and it takes about 40 minutes to get there.
Elk Island National Park is great for a day trip with family and friends. It is a nice area for a picnic in the summer months. There are many walking and easy hiking trails for visitors to enjoy.
One of the coolest things to do at the Elk Island Island National Park is to admire the bison roaming about freely inside. Known as the bison loop, at this juncture bison walk across a narrow street providing one of the ‘safari-like feels for visitors to witness!
The park is also home to the beautiful Ashtotin Lake, and this is where one can go kayaking or canoeing. In the winters, this lake turns into snowshoeing heaven.
Other than outdoors, Elk Island National Park organizes educational events for kids and young adults. Fall brings in aurora borealis and paints the night in dancing green lights. Yes, this national park is a recognized ‘dark sky preserve’, and in the month of October visitors can enjoy starry nights (and also attend the festival celebrating the same).
In the winter months, remember to wear warm layers, do carry a light cardigan in the fall and spring months. And don’t forget bug spray and mosquito repellent!
Contributed By Mayuri from ToSomePlaceNew
Canada National Parks in Saskatchewan
Grasslands National Park
One of the least known and most underrated national parks in Canada is the incredibly scenic Grasslands National Park in Saskatchewan. Tucked away down at the very bottom of the province next to the American border, Grasslands is divided into two distinct – and quite unique – sections about a 2-hour drive apart.
The West Block is closest to the main Visitor Centre in tiny Val Marie and is one of the best places in the world to see wild bison, not to mention a long list of other animals.
Hawks and eagles frequent the area, there are huge prairie dog towns and even a surprising variety of snakes (yes, including rattlesnakes, so watch your step). There are some excellent hiking trails and a number of top viewpoints where you can enjoy the open expanse of prairie scenery.
If you have the time (and desire) to spend a night in the truly wild prairies, a backcountry trek to Otter Basin is highly recommended.
While the East Block is much less visited, it offers even more dramatic scenery and wild Badland terrain. The steep coulees, fascinating hoodoos and wind-blown fields combine for some of the most memorable views east of the Rockies (especially at sunset).
Plus, they can be enjoyed up close and personal on one of the many great hiking trails – the Valley of 1000 Devils route is particularly exceptional – or, if you are looking to save your energy, at one of the many scenic stops while driving along the Badlands Parkway.
There are good campgrounds in both the West and East Blocks, each with potable water and picnic areas but no showers. The basic RV/tent sites don’t provide any shade but they do have electrical hookups and fantastic views. And if you’re looking for a bit more comfort, check out the fun oTentik cabin/tent hybrids.
From Dean and Laynni at Routinely Nomadic
Canada National Parks in Manitoba
Wapusk National Park
Wapusk National Park can be found in the far north of Manitoba. It covers 11,475 km² and can be found close to the town of Churchill.
Wapusk National Park is home to a variety of unique natural features including glacial lakes and large eskers that can also be found in other regions across Canada’s Arctic coastlines. The park itself consists mostly of flat tundra with small woodlands and can be accessed by car.
Wapusk National Park is an area of vital importance for the preservation of polar bears and other arctic animals, so visitors can expect to see some unique creatures in their natural habitat! With its fresh air and spectacular views, Wapusk National Park has a lot more to offer than just wildlife viewing opportunities
The Wapusk National Park is home to a large population of polar bears which comes here each winter for its annual hibernation period – an event that scientists can only observe. Wapusk National Park can be visited throughout the year, but winter is definitely one of its best seasons – when people can enjoy amazing activities like dog sledding and snowmobiling.
Wapusk National Park offers a variety of exciting opportunities for both wildlife watching and outdoor adventures!
The best things to do in Wapusk National Park:
- View the magnificent polar bears
- Take a helicopter tour for an experience of a lifetime
Canada National Parks in Ontario
Point Pelee National Park
Point Pelee is a national park in southern Ontario, located a 4-hour drive from Toronto, or 1 hour from Windsor. Point Pelee is unique because this Canadian National Park is actually a peninsula, surrounded by the waters of Lake Erie.
The peninsula stretches out into a long, sharp point. When visiting the park, you can hike out to the point. When you reach that spot, you’re officially standing at the most southern point in mainland Canada.
Before Europeans discovered Point Pelee, it was home to First Nations. The park is located on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee and Miami peoples.
Indigenous history in the park goes back as early as 600 CE when First Nations had summertime settlements around the park’s marshlands. It wasn’t until 1918 that Point Pelee became an official national park in Canada.
Point Pelee National Park is a great spot for swimming, hiking, kayaking, cycling, bird watching and stargazing. Because there are so many activities to choose from, the park is a great choice for families. In the summer, you can spend sunny afternoons relaxing on one of Point Pelee’s 20 kilometres of sandy beaches on both the west and east sides of the peninsula.
If you like to stay active, walk one of the park’s 8 self-guided walking trails. The difficulty of the trails range from very easy to moderate, so they are family-friendly. Or, rent a kayak to go paddling through the park’s marshes.
The park is one of North America’s most renowned spots for birdwatching. In the spring and fall, you can watch bird and butterfly migrations, and in the spring the park hosts the annual Festival of Birds. Point Pelee is also a designated Dark Sky Preserve. On specific nights of every month, you can stay late in the park to gaze at the stars. Be sure to check online to find out when the Dark Sky night will be, so you can plan accordingly.
Point Pelee National Park is a unique Canadian National Park that has lots to offer visitors thanks to its interesting history, ecology, and location. It’s one you won’t want to miss!
Contributed by Erin from Pina Travels
Bruce Peninsula National Park
Bruce Peninsula National Park is renowned for its clear blue waters that make its coastline so spectacular. This national park is home to many animal species, such as black bears, barred owls, and the common snapping turtle; hence, it was established as a national park in Canada in 1987 to protect its diverse ecosystems.
The Bruce Peninsula is located almost four hours north of Toronto in Ontario and is best accessed by car. Therefore, I recommend renting a car if you do not have access to one. You can also visit the Bruce Peninsula by bus, although this route was suspended for the 2021 period.
There are many activities available to enjoy at the Bruce Peninsula, such as yurt camping at Cyprus Lake, hiking the Bruce Trail, backcountry camping, stargazing, kayaking and more.
One benefit of visiting Bruce Peninsula National Park is the proximity to Fathom Five National Marine Park. You can access this national park with a glass-bottomed boat trip from Tobermory to Flowerpot Island.
The Grotto is a well-known spot on the rugged coastline where you can see incredible views of the turquoise bay. It is one of the most famous parts of Bruce Peninsula National Park, which means the Grotto can get extremely busy.
Try to visit the Grotto on a weekday, early morning as soon as it opens, or outside the peak summer period. If you decide to camp nearby, you can hike to the Grotto. Otherwise, you need to book a spot well in advance on Parks Canada’s website.
Contributed by Samantha from Continuous Roamer
Thousand Islands National Park
Tiny forested and sparsely inhabited islands. Idyllic views that stretch for miles. A host of activities to keep the whole family engaged. Panoramas that make excellent postcards. This is the Thousand Islands National Park, in a nutshell.
The national park is located in Ontario, east of the Canadian Rockies. The Thousand Islands are made up of about 1,864 individual islands in the St Lawrence River. Of these, 21 make up the national park.
Established in 1904, this national park is the smallest in Canada. That said, it’s a great place to visit for those who want a true Canadian experience and some fun outdoor activities under their belt.
The mainland base area is at Mallorytown Landing. Here you can find a visitor centre, aquariums, a children’s activity area, a picnic spot, a barbecue area, geocaching, scavenger hunts, special displays, and a playground. You can also get your bike out and explore the trails in the area.
If you’re looking for a bit of adventure, you can camp at one of the many sites spread across the islands. Hike through the rich, lush terrain or go island hopping on kayaks or powerboats, discover isolated bays, explore rocky coastal headlands, and catch rare faunal species in their natural habitat.
What makes the Thousand Islands National Park unique is that it works towards promoting recreation while conserving the land and biodiversity of the area.
One travel tip for visiting: While day trips are great, camp overnight in the area in the oTENTiks and experience the Thousand Islands under the night’s blanket. It is an experience you won’t forget.
How to get there: The national park’s main entrance is through the Mallorytown interior, near the Thousand Islands parkway. The parkway runs along the St. Lawrence River, from Gananoque to Butternut Bay, where it merges with the main highway. The islands themselves are only accessible by water.
Contributed by Tanya from My Right Sock.
Rouge National Urban Park
One of Canada’s newest national parks, Rouge National Urban Park is a vast preserve of rare Carolinian forest, farmland, beach, valleys, wetlands and marsh flanking the Rouge River and its tributaries stretching 75 square kilometres in the Greater Toronto Area.
For outdoor adventurers, visiting Rouge Park is one of the top things to do in Toronto as it offers the opportunity to explore a range of ecosystems and landscapes without travelling outside the city or getting stuck in cottage country traffic. It’s actually possible to get there by public transit, by bike or car.
The park’s proximity to Canada’s largest city doesn’t mean it’s packed with people or lacking in biodiversity.
It’s actually home to 2,000 species of plants and animals including over 45 considered at-risk or endangered such as barn swallows, Blanding’s turtle (referred to by First Nations people as the “turtle with the sun under its chin”), bats and snakes.
Looking for things to do with the family? Family-friendly activities in Rouge National Urban Park include hiking one of its many forested trails (ranging in difficulty from easy to moderate), swimming at Rouge Beach on Lake Ontario and fishing for trout and salmon in the Rouge River.
Families with novice anglers will be interested to know you don’t need to buy a fishing license for anyone 17 and under. It’s even possible to borrow basic fishing gear under the TackleShare program.
Another unique characteristic of Rouge National Urban Park is that it also happens to be home to Toronto’s only campground. Open seasonally, Glen Rouge Campground offers space to pitch a tent or park an RV within easy proximity to urban amenities as well as the park’s hiking trails.
Contributed by Michele Peterson of A Taste for Travel
Canada National Parks in Quebec
Parc National du Bic
Parc National du Bic is situated on the southern bank of the St. Lawrence River in Québec. Just 15 kilometres (9 miles) southwest of Rimouski. The park has the most amazing sunset, which ranks among the world’s most beautiful ones. The atmosphere is like nowhere else, which is why this park is so unique.
Unique because this park is explorable in one day, even for families. Smell the sea and feel the wind coming from the St. Lawrence River. This can all be done among the capes, islands, mountains, bays and coves of the park.
In the park 25 kilometres (16 miles) of hiking trails are available. Hiking isn’t the only way to explore the park. There are also 15 kilometres (9 miles) of biking trails available. The perfect way to explore this coastal park, bike from cove to cove. Bikes are available for rent at the park.
Spot the animals present at the park with the family, such as chipmunks, grey seals, white-tailed deer, seals and birds. In wintertime, the park is covered in a layer of snow. Which makes the park perfect for practice snowshoeing, cross-country and backcountry skiing. In summer go geocaching and kayaking. The park has a lot of ways to be active.
The park measures 33km² and was founded on 17 October 1984. The Pic Champlain is the highest point in the surroundings with 346 meters (1135 feet); the area was popular among the early settlers in America. Occupation of the site goes back as far as 9000 years ago.
The national park is 3 hours driving north of Québec City, about 293 kilometres (182 miles). Perfect to include in a Toronto to Halifax road trip.
Contributed by Cosette from KarsTravels
Forillon National Park
Forillon Park is located in the Gaspésie region of the province of Quebec. It’s 770 km from Québec City and 350 km from the New Brunswick border.
Park Forillon is a great place to discover from mid-May to mid-October. In the colder months, Forillon National Park is not officially in operation although visitors are still permitted to access it. Many other trails and infrastructures are not maintained, and the North and South sector roads are closed.
During the warmer months, there are amazing beaches, tons of trails to hike or bike on that go through forests, shorelines, coasts, and more. With waters so clear, it’s the perfect place to snorkel, kayak, canoe, kite surf and even whale watching!
There are also a variety of hiking trails to discover that range from very easy to a bit more challenging. One of the most famous trails is Les Graves, which takes you to Land’s End. It travels along the bay and leads to the end of the road at Cap Gaspé.
A lighthouse sits atop the hill, and a belvedere, further down allows visitors to watch for whales. Make sure to bring binoculars!
Another great trail is La Chute, a moderate trail that winds its way through a mature forest and leads to the foot of a beautiful freshwater fall. There, you will find one of the famous Parks Canada red chairs where you can sit and enjoy nature’s show.
If you’re lucky, you may spot a few animals on the trails too, from porcupines, birds and reptiles. But beware, as black bears are also known to pop up. Make sure to be prepared if they do.
Forillon Park is one of the best National Parks in Canada for camping – there are plenty of campgrounds to choose from. They come equipped with all the Parks Canada amenities – an indoor space, a play park for kids, free showers and so much more!
There’s a ton to do at Park Forillon, so take a few days here to soak it all in. Make sure to book at the opening of the season as spots tend to get taken quite quickly.
Contributed by Carine from We Did It Our Way
Canada National Parks in New Brunswick
Fundy National Park is one of Canada’s most overlooked national parks, probably in part because, like everything in the Maritimes, it feels very isolated from the rest of Canada. Halifax is the only large city nearby and is still a 3.5-hour drive away. Even the much smaller city of Moncton, NB, is still an hour away. Visitors can fly into either one and rent a car.
Fundy also gets overlooked because its big claim to fame is having the highest tides in the world, which is a part of why it was designated a national park in 1948 – but it sounds like something only a nautical enthusiast would enjoy. But those tides result in some striking scenery that’s like nowhere else in Canada.
In the little town of Alma, just outside the park, boats in the harbour bob alongside the pier at high tide. Six hours later, at low tide, these boats sit in the mud several meters below the town’s buildings and piers.
Visitors can truly walk on the bottom of the ocean here, seeing all of the sea creatures that have adapted to live in these ever-changing tidal flats. Even though it’s best experienced outside the boundaries of the park, this is still considered one of the top things to do on a trip to Fundy.
Another draw of Fundy National Park is its trail system, consisting of dozens of kilometres of hiking trails that weave through rugged Acadian forests. If there’s one thing an adventurous family should do while visiting Fundy National Park, it’s camp at Goose River.
Getting there is half the adventure, requiring an 11-kilometre hike through lush coastal forestland from Pointe Wolfe Campground.
Experienced sea kayakers can paddle straight to the campsite instead, cutting the journey down to just over 6 kilometres and providing spectacular views of the rocky cliffs overlooking the Bay of Fundy.
The hike makes up part of the Fundy Footpath, a 41-kilometer trail running southwest to the mouth of the Big Salmon River. It’s a popular trail for multi-day backpacking trips and can be combined with trails inside the park for extended adventures.
Contributed by Ryan from Passions and Places
Canada National Parks in Nova Scotia
Cape Breton Highlands National Park
When it comes to the best national parks to road trip in Canada, it doesn’t get better than Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia. It was established in 1936 for public use and was the first national park designated in Atlantic Canada.
What makes it unique is that the park is part of the Cabot Trail, a 300km long drive that’s continuously named one of the most beautiful in the world. While you can drive it in one day, spend at least three and enjoy all the activities that the park has to offer.
The park is famous for its hiking trails, where you can see a diverse mix of boreal and temperate trees that are not found elsewhere in the country. One of the most popular hikes is the Skyline Trail, where you’ll get stunning panoramic views of the scenic highway that winds through the park.
Cape Breton National Park is also a fantastic place to go whale watching, as every summer you can see large pods of pilot whales, along with seals.
The easiest way to get there is by flying into Halifax and renting a car from there. You can also fly into Sydney, Cape Breton but the flights are more limited. A road trip is the best way to enjoy the park!
Contributed by Lora from Explore with Lora
Canada National Parks in PEI
Prince Edward Island National Park
Prince Edward Island National Park is located on the North Shore of Prince Edward Island, Canada. A National Park Reserve since 1937, it is one of the island’s main tourist attractions. It was created to protect the beaches from erosion and help preserve the spectacular scenery around the beach.
The North Shore in PEI has the most spectacular beaches on Prince Edward Island. The red, rocky cliffs that line the shore contrast with the white sand beaches, which are shaped by the heavy surf that pounds over them. Some of the cliffs are topped with green grasses, others with dark rock.
The National Park runs along almost all of the shoreline The North Shore stretches from the world-famous Cavendish Beach along to Brackley Beach. The beaches are connected by bike trails and roads so you can stop and visit lesser-known beaches along the way.
The main beaches in PEI National Seashore include Cavendish Beach, Brackley Beach, and Stanhope beach. Each of these beaches is equipped with restrooms, lifeguards, wheelchair access, and showers.
Camping facilities are near some of the biggest beaches, including Brackley and Cavendish. Both of these offer fully serviced campsites, as well as unserviced sites for people who would like to set up camp without any facilities. Cycling trails meander through the park along with walking trails that lead down to the water’s edge.
No matter how you plan to enjoy Prince Edward Island make sure to spend a day or two in PEI National Parks.
Contributed by Alicia from Travel With The Crew
Canada National Parks in the Yukon
Kluane National Park Reserve
Kluane National Park can be found in the far southwest of Yukon, Canada. It is one of the largest Canadian national parks and covers an area of 21980 km². This Canadian national park consists mostly of mountain ranges with glaciers and icefields that stretch down into its valleys towards forested plateaus.
Kluane National Park can be described as Canada’s “crown jewel” for its magnificent scenery, unique wildlife and incredible opportunities for outdoor activities including canoeing, kayaking, fishing, hiking and camping.
The Kluane National Park is home to a diverse range of unique wildlife species including moose, grizzlies and over 200 bird species can be found here.
Kluane National park offers visitors many opportunities for outdoor fun. If you are looking for some more strenuous activities, Kluane can also offer many hiking trails – from easy to advance.
Kluane National Park is a vast landscape of natural beauty that can be explored throughout the year by hikers and adventurers alike!
The best things to do in Kluane National Park:
- There are endless hiking trails to explore
- Bask in the midnight sun at Kathleen Lake
- Experience the outdoor life with TENTik
Canada has some of the best National Parks in the world. There are 46 parks across this great country, each one with its own unique features that make it worth visiting.
Some have scenic views of mountains or oceans, others are home to rare species of animals and plants, but all offer peace and tranquillity for those who need a break from their everyday lives.
If you’re looking for your next vacation destination, come visit us here in Canada! We promise that you won’t be disappointed by the many natural wonders that are right outside your door. Want more information on how to plan an unforgettable trip? Look no further than our blog post about The Best National Parks in Canada.
Casandra Karpiak is a travel writer and owner of Savoteur. A Toronto native with Danish roots currently residing in British Columbia, her travel writing has been seen on The Associated Press wire, MSN, FOX, CBS, NBC, Entrepreneur, 24/7 Wall St, Times Daily, and many more. When she’s not traveling, she can be found at hockey arenas all over BC cheering on her two young sons.