Top 10 Reasons to Visit Canada

Rue Saint-Louis in the Upper Town area of historic Old Quebec, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
••• Ken Gillespie / Getty Images
  • 01 of 10

    So Many Reasons to Visit Canada

    Athlete with Canada flag
    ••• Lynn Koenig / Getty Images

    The expanse of Canada's natural beauty, from mountains and glaciers to secluded lakes and forests, is almost unparalleled worldwide. But Canada's allure is not just the great outdoors, Canada has cosmopolitan cities that are clean, safe, friendly and multicultural. In fact, Canada repeatedly is lauded as one of the world's most livable countries. Whether your interests are river rafting or live theatre, Canada won’t disappoint.

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  • 02 of 10

    Spectacular Canadian Cities and Urban Attractions

    Vancouver, Canada
    ••• Vancouver is one of Canada's most beautiful cities and popular with tourists. Tourism Vancouver

    Canada has many modern, multicultural cities, each with its own distinct personality. Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver are possibly the best known, but there are so many others that highlight different aspects of Canada, such as its maritime culture, mountainous landscape, French history, or its indigenous people. Each city is delightful for different reasons.

    In addition, Canadian cities are generally much smaller than the biggest counterparts in the U.S.A., so they are easy to get around. Canadian people - even in big cities, tend to be friendly to strangers and crime is relatively low. 

    Although it’s doubtful you’ll get to all of them in one trip, the following cities are the most popular destinations for visitors to Canada.

    Vancouver, British Columbia, has been a hot spot in Canada for years now as far as the number of people who want to live there goes. No wonder. It is on the water and next to a mountain range making it postcard pretty. In addition, in a country where winter reality...MORE can be harsh, Vancouver has a moderate climate, which includes not much snow and an early spring. Downsides include lots of rain, low housing availability despite high prices.

    Calgary, Alberta, is probably most famous for its Calgary Stampede, an annual rodeo that attracts more than a million people every July. Calgary is a natural gateway to the Rocky Mountains. 

    Niagara Falls, Ontario, is home to the Horseshoe Falls, the most powerful waterfall in North America and possibly the best-known in the world. The city itself is very touristy but there's more charming places nearby. 

    Toronto, Ontario, is the biggest, brashest city in Canada, often mistaken as the national capital. Its 2.7 million residents are a diverse mix of English, Chinese, East Indian, Irish, Scottish, Italian and more. Vibrant and textured, Toronto is one of the most multicultural cities in the world. 

    Ottawa, Ontario, is Canada's capital and home to the country's government. The city has a cultured, yet friendly vibe. 

    Montreal, Quebec, is Canada's second largest city but arguably the cultural capital of the country, with its wide range of festivals and museums. It is European and quite liberal in character. Much of the old part of the city has been preserved and is a highlight when visiting. 

    Quebec City, Quebec, is a stunning city due to its location, architecture and level of historical preservation. French is even more common here than in Montreal though most workers in the tourist trade will speak English too. 

    Halifax, Nova Scotia, represents all that is great about the Maritimes (group of three provinces in Eastern Canada that all border the Atlantic Ocean): Friendly, down-to-earth, fun, affordable and scenic.

    Victoria, British Columbia, has a rich English history dating back to the 1840s when the city was established as a trading port, but a deeper provenance as an aboriginal community.


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  • 03 of 10

    Canada's Natural Wonders

    Woodland mountain caribou, Jasper National Park, Alberta, Canada
    ••• Jasper is in Alberta, Canada, and boasts an array of wildlife and part of the Rocky Mountain range. John E Marriott / Getty Images

    Few countries boast the number and range of natural wonders that Canada does.

    With more coastline than any other country, mountain ranges, lakes, forests, arctic and even a small amount of desert, Canada has a diverse landscape full of surprises.

    The following are some of Canada’s most spectacular and popular natural attractions:

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  • 04 of 10


    Close up of a Canadian Loonie
    ••• Brian Hillier / Getty Images

    Canada is an affordable vacation choice. Historically the Cdn$ is worth less than the US$, thus prices in Canada generally seem reasonable to travelers. The 2005 Mercer Worldwide Cost of Living Survey ranked Canadian cities among the most affordable. Toronto, even as the most expensive Canadian city, sits at number 82 out of the 100 most expensive cities, and Ottawa stands out as the most affordable city in North America.

    Read More: Using Your Debit and Bank Cards in Canada,  Money in Canada


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  • 05 of 10

    Canada's Amazing Array of Outdoor Activities

    Whitewater rafting in Jasper, AB
    ••• Whitewater rafting in Jasper, AB. James Andre

    One of the best reasons to visit Canada is to take advantage of the fabulous outdoors -- and there's a lot of it. Canada is the second largest country in the world but it's population is relatively small. Consider that the U.S.A. has about nine times the number of people that Canada does on a slightly smaller land mass. We have expansive uninhabited land that gives Canadians and visitors room to roam.

    We're happy to share our trails, mountains and lakes with visitors. Some of the most popular outdoor activities in Canada are:


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  • 06 of 10

    Always an Event or Festival

    Luminato Festival
    ••• LiV Warfield at the Luminato Festival Hub. Courtesy of Luminato Festival

    Canadians know how to put on a party. Just check out any one of these popular Canadian events and festivals to find out how hospitable a group we really are:


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  • 07 of 10

    Visit Canada Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall

    Four seasons
    ••• Canada has four seasons though they vary across the country. John Lamb / Getty Images

    Lots of Canadians head for warmer climates in the winter, but while they're leaving the country, skiers and other winter enthusiasts from around the world are pouring in. Canada is a famous "northern" destination, yet it's not all igloos and snowcaps. Spring, summer and fall have their own charms and add to Canada's appeal.

    Of course, because Canada is so large, the climate varies greatly, allowing for a wide range of activities year-round. 

    For example, Western Canada, including Vancouver, has a relatively moderate climate with not much snow and an early spring. Contrast that to Montreal, which has long, cold winters with loads of snowfall. It definitely pays to know about your destination and what to expect weather wise. 

    Read More: How To Dress To Stay Warm,  Average Temperature by Month & City in Canada

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  • 08 of 10

    Canada's French Heritage

    Quebec City
    ••• Rue Saint Louis is one of the main thoroughfares in the historic part of Quebec City. Ken Gillespie / Getty Images

    French culture remains a prominent part of Canada, mostly in Quebec, but also in Ontario and the Maritime provinces. Canada is officially bilingual, although it's certainly not necessary for tourists to speak French.

    Settled by the French in the 1600s, Quebec, is where visitors can visit Montreal and the provincial capital, Quebec City. Quebec remains very European in feel. Its rich history and distinct heritage make it a unique tourist destination.

    Read More: 10 Quebec Foods You Must Try,  Language in Canada

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  • 09 of 10

    Canada: Fun for the Whole Family

    Extended family with dog pause beside mtn lake
    ••• Ascent Xmedia / Getty Images

    Canada's laid-back attitude and huge variety of fun outdoor activities and events make it a fantastic travel destination for families travelling with children. From hiking or skiing / snowboarding to visiting Quebec Winter Carnival or the The Calgary Stampede, a Canadian vacation with kids is good fun for the whole family.

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  • 10 of 10


    ••• Two girls on Rocky Mountain meadow. Credit: Ascent Xmedia / Getty Images

    Diverse cultures, climates and landscape make Canada a destination to suit any interest.

    Canada is a country of immigrants and has a policy of encouraging diversity. Thus, urban hubs feature a range of ethnic neigbourhoods, restaurants, and shops.

    In addition to rich and varied urban centres, Canada’s natural environment is one of the most beautiful in the world. From pristine coastlines to rugged mountains and sparkling lakes, Canada’s geography inspires awe coast to coast.