Family Vacations in Canada: Overview
From Prince Edward Island to Vancouver, Niagara Falls to the Northwest Territories, Canada is bursting at the borders with family-friendly vacation spots. You can experience outdoor activities such as fishing, hiking, and camping, or you can go for a more urban vacation experience in cosmopolitan cities such as Toronto.
Whatever your family vacation dreams, Canada can deliver. We've compiled information about the best family-friendly vacation spots in Canada, including the Hockey Hall of Fame and the Calgary Stampede. Use this information to plan a perfect Canada vacation:
Old Quebec is the only fortified city in North America -- its three-mile wall is a World Heritage Site. The city is divided into Upper Town and Lower Town, which are connected by a tram railway (or funicular). Don't miss the Museum of Civilization, which features exhibits on art, civilization, and society.
Prince Edward Island combines peaceful, scenic countrysides with sandy beaches. This tranquil island was the setting for the Anne of Green Gables novels -- fans of the series won't want to miss the museum dedicated to those books in Avonlea Village.
The most powerful waterfall in the world is a favorite tourist attraction for families. You don't need a barrel to get a good look at the Falls -- board the Maid of the Mists for an up-close and personal view of the rushing waters. Be prepared to get a little wet!
At Toronto's Hockey Hall of Fame, kids can get into the action with interactive hockey exhibits and displays. The museum includes video displays of historic games, collections of famous players' hockey gear, and the original 1893 Stanley Cup trophy.
Every July, the Calgary Stampede comes to town, bringing rodeo champions from around the world. The rodeo holds death-defying competitions such as bull riding, barrel racing, and steer wresting. All of Calgary gets into the spirit with Western-themed decorations, cowboy boots, and ten-gallon hats.
Banff National Park is a perfect spot for year-round outdoor activities. The craggy peaks of the Alberta Rocky Mountains grace this park, giving visitors excellent opportunities to ski, hike, bike, or camp. Visitors can also enjoy the park's vistas via horseback, carriage ride, or gondola.
Lake Louise is one of Canada's most popular vacation spots. Nestled in Banff National Park, Lake Louise is a pristine, emerald lake with calm waters perfect for canoeing. Canada's most famous lake is surrounded by glaciers, waterfalls, and diverse wildlife.
The West Edmonton Mall is more like a theme park than a shopping center, despite its more than 800 shops. The mall houses movie theaters, an ice rink, a lagoon with a sea lion show, and the world's largest indoor amusement park. On a cold winter day, this is a great place for kids to let off some steam.
Victoria, the capital of British Columbia, is best reached by ferry. In this city, you can enjoy the beautiful Inner Harbour, the stately Empress Hotel, and the famous Butchart Gardens' 55 acres of stunning botanical gardens. Consider a bike tour of Victoria to really get a feel for the city.
The city of Vancouver is the urban cornerstone of British Columbia and the nation's gateway to the Pacific. Explore this bustling, alternative metropolitan city.
More than 100 cultures thrive in this international city where shopping, dining, theater, and sites like the CN Tower make for a lively, enjoyable getaway.
The Yukon's rustic remoteness draws visitors who explore the region's pioneer and gold rush history -- as well as pristine wilderness and beauty.
Among the largest French-speaking metropolises in the world, Montreal brings so much of France to its streets. Explore this charming European city by walking it's cobblestone streets, visiting its churches and sampling from its restaurants.
Visitors to Campobello Island can enjoy walks along quiet trails, watch harbor seals bask in the sun, stroll along the beaches, or tour the Roosevelt summer home and four other historic summer cottages.
We start our tour of Canada among the Quebecois. Keep reading to learn about Old Quebec, the only walled city in North America.
To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:
- Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
- Montreal City Guide: Discover Montreal, a city rich with outdoor festivals and activities, dining, architecture, and history.
- Toronto City Guide: Find out why Toronto, home of the CN Tower, is known as Toronto the Good.
- Vancouver City Guide: Learn about Vancouver, a beautiful city nestled between oceans, mountains, and a mighty river.
- Scenic Drives: For those who think getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the United States.