With the first long weekend of the summer comes the beginning of road trip season. Canadians across the country are gearing up to hit the road with their windows down, playlists blasting and maps at the ready. In case you’re stuck on where to go, here is some adventure inspiration for some of the best Canadian road trips!
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Halifax to the Cabot Trail, Cape Breton, N.S.
Driving the trail is a road trip in and of itself. Take your time exploring the curving coastal highway with spectacular views of the surrounding beaches and cliffs.
Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to stop for a hike or swim, to do some fishing, or even ride horses along the sandy beaches. Is a water-y adventure more your speed? Adventure awaits you in the form of kayaking, canoeing, sailing or scuba diving. This trip is all about enjoying that Maritime hospitality that Nova Scotia is known for.
If the word ‘driver’ makes you think of the golf course and not the open road, fear not. There are courses aplenty for your enjoyment.
Travel distance: approx. 430 km, 4 hours and 40 minutes
Charlottetown to Cavendish, P.E.I.
Looking for a day trip rather than a long-haul journey? Why not drive north to Cavendish, known for potatoes and as the home of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s character Anne of Green Gables.
Regardless of whether or not you’re a fan of the book, Green Gables is a great spot for an immersive experience of the area that inspired the books. There are several museums dedicated to the author and the beloved character she created. Visitors can also enjoy hiking through the Haunted Woods and Balsam Hollow trails.
If you would prefer to skip the fiction, take the family to the local family fun park or petting farm. It’s obvious that there is no shortage of fun in this popular township!
Travel distance: approx. 37 km, 40 minutes
Vancouver to Tofino, B.C.
Whether you live in Vancouver or are just visiting, this is a scenic trip that will surely never get old. The Pacific Coast Highway’s winding drive showcases majestic views of the surrounding nature. Coastlines and temperate rainforests are home to a large variety of Canada’s wildlife. If you’re lucky you might just spot some of the forest’s inhabitants!
Tofino is known as the surf capital of Canada, which is great for avid surfers and beginners alike.If you’re new to the sport, stop at one of the many surf schools for a quick lesson and you’ll be carving it up, hangin’ 10 in no time!
Once you’ve had your fill of the surf and sand head into town to enjoy some of the local cuisine and microbreweries. Make sure to give yourself some time to go whale-watching, fishing, or hiking.
Travel distance: approx. 280 km, 5 hours and 20 minutes
Calgary to Banff, AB
Travel through the prairies and the monumental Rocky Mountains to Banff, an iconic town nestled in the valley of Canada’s first national park. Not only do you get to experience the beauty of the mountains, but you also get access to the breathtaking vistas, rivers, lakes and lots of lush wildlife.
Lake Louise is a short drive 40-minutes north and is a must-see for its incredible milky jade-coloured glacier water. Make the trip to the lake early in the morning for a sunrise hike on one the dozens of trails, or to canoe across the lake during the warmer months.
End your day in Banff at one of the many delightful and unique restaurants or bars. People come from around the world to tour and work in Banff, so you’re sure to make some interesting friends!
Travel distance: approx. 127 km, 1 hour and 25 minutes
Toronto to Pelee Island, ON
Pelee Island’s claim to fame is that it’s Canada’s southernmost inhabited area, and if you make the trip you’re sure to see why it’s become a popular weekend getaway. It’s no surprise that people escape the hustle and bustle of the city to this idyllic locale.
If you’re a nature buff you’ll feel right at home on this coastline surrounded by wetlands and thick, lush forests. Hike through the Point Pelee National Park and do a little bird watching or in the warmer months, hit the beach! Canoeing is also a popular activity on this Lake Erie island.
If you’re a wine enthusiast make a stop at the Pelee Island Winery for a tasting tour and sample some of their award winning vintages. If retail therapy is what you’re after there is plenty of local, artisanal pieces to make your souvenir.
Travel distance: approx. 380 km, 5 hours and 10 minutes
If you can’t take these trips now, make sure you add them to your bucket list of great Canadian road trips. Hitting the road with friends or family is a great way to bond and learn more about one another. Why not choose one of our suggested routes this weekend and get to bonding? In fact, it’s probably a good idea to bookmark this blog and re-visit it anytime you’re stuck for travel inspiration. Why not make it an annual tradition? We’ve got the next few years covered!