Summer Travel Ideas in Canada

Get summer travel ideas for your trip to Canada

Summer travel ideas for Canada are wide-ranging. July and August are high travel season, so expect prices to jump and crowds are common. Nevertheless, Canada is a big place and it's not hard to find some peace and quiet in a remote location. Or, if crowds are your thing, some of the biggest festivals occur in July and August, so parties are equally easy to find.

01 of 08

Pick a Festival, Any Festival

Green and red snakes, Toronto Caribbean Festival (also known as Caribana)
KatieThebeau/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

From the serenity of Shakespeare performed on the beach in Vancouver to the colorful and spicy Caribana parade in downtown Toronto, Canada's summer festivals suit a wide range of tastes and interests.​

Everyone has heard of the Calgary Stampede, but there are plenty other lesser known festivals well worth checking out.

02 of 08

Take a Scenic Train Ride

Train travel in Canada
Rocky Mountaineer / Armstrong Group

Canada train trips offer stunning scenery and are considered more than just transportation from point A to B. Although train travel tends to be more expensive than bus or even air travel, train travel is relaxing and scenic. The romance of the train is alive and well on Canada's major rail systems.

Some Canada train adventures, such as Rocky Mountaineer, only operate in the summer.

03 of 08

Take a Theater Vacation in Southern Ontario

Festival Theatre, Stratford Ontario
Robert Taylor/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Southern Ontario offers at least three high-quality live theatre destinations: Toronto, Stratford and Niagara-on-the-Lake.

Toronto is a top theater (Canadian spelling: "theatre") destination. Canadians and Americans flock to Toronto to take in one of the many Broadway-style musicals, plays or concerts.

Stratford has the Stratford Festival, featuring the best works of theatre in the classical and contemporary repertoire, with special emphasis on the works of William Shakespeare.

Next door to Niagara Falls, the Shaw Festival highlights works by George Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries. The lineup of plays also includes those by forgotten female playwrights and "undiscovered" or otherwise undervalued works.

04 of 08

Watch the Whales

Ruth Hartnup/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

Canada has the most shoreline of any country in the world. It's no surprise then that migrating whales can be observed in many parts of Canada, notably the coasts of British Columbia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec and the Maritime provinces.

Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08

Experience the Mighty Saint Lawrence by Boat

The Magdalen Islands, Quebec, Canada
  Brian Burke/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

This 10-day/9-night itinerary takes you on an exclusive journey along the exquisite coastal regions of Quebec's North Shore and the Atlantic Maritime region, including the Gaspe, the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Magdalen Islands, and Saint Pierre.

06 of 08

Camp in Algonquin, Ontario

Perry Quan/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

Algonquin Park is one of Canada's finest and most famous parks. Located in northern Ontario, Algonquin Park covers 7,725 square kilometers of lakes and forests, bogs and rivers, cliffs and beaches.

Book ahead online to choose from one of hundreds of campsites. Be sure to pay attention to the type of campsite you reserve - some are large and have trees and shrubbery to give you privacy from neighbors. Others are quite public.

07 of 08

Bike the Okanagan Valley

Okanagan Valley wine country views
Leslie Veen/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

Whether on your own or with a tour group, a bike ride through British Columbia's Okanagan Valley is a beautiful journey: lakes, mountains, ancient Douglas Firs.....even wineries.

Though you can cycle most of its trails year round, the region's best weather conditions occur between April and October.

BC Tourism has several easy to moderate trails laid out to follow or sign up for a tour with an established tour operator like Freewheeling Adventures or Monashee Adventure Tours.

08 of 08

Taste Test Your Way through the Eastern Townships

Auberge Knowlton
Trev Page/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

The Eastern Townships is a southeastern Quebec gem that many U.S. travelers have come to appreciate along with weekending Montrealers. The area is particularly popular with foodies: fine local cheeses, oatmeal pancakes, corn chowder, roasted lamb, freshly steamed brown bread, all complemented with local wines, beers or ciders are just some of the delicacies to be discovered.​

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