Canada, often referred to as the Great White North, is a country blessed with an abundance of natural beauty. From rugged mountain ranges to vast forests, pristine lakes to rolling plains, Canada's national parks showcase the country's diverse landscapes and rich biodiversity. In this blog, we'll take you on a journey through some of the major national parks in Canada, each with its unique charm and captivating natural wonders.
Banff National Park, Alberta
So, the first in our list is Banff National Park. Established in 1885, Banff National Park is the most beautiful national park in Canada according to US NEWS. Nestled amid the Canadian Rockies, this place holds the distinction of being the country's first national park and continues to be a world-renowned natural paradise. With its majestic mountain scenery, pristine lakes, and abundant wildlife, Banff National Park offers visitors a taste of unspoiled wilderness and outdoor adventure. Visiting Banff National Park is among the top 10 best things to do in Canada if you are here on vacation.
Majestic mountain scenery, including the iconic Lake Louise.
Opportunities for hiking, wildlife viewing, and winter sports
Soak in the soothing waters of Banff Upper Hot Springs.
Things to do at Banff National Park, Alberta
Visit Lake Louise. Lake Louise is one of the most iconic lakes in the world. It is known for its turquoise water, snow-capped mountains, and Victoria Glacier. You can take a boat tour of the lake, go for a hike, or simply relax on the shore and enjoy the scenery.
Drive the Bow Valley Parkway. The Bow Valley Parkway is a scenic highway that connects Banff to Lake Louise. It is one of the most beautiful drives in Canada, and it offers stunning views of the Canadian Rockies.
Hike to Moraine Lake. Moraine Lake is another stunning lake in Banff National Park. It is known for its vibrant turquoise water and its ten mountain peaks that surround it. You can take a boat tour of the lake, go for a hike, or simply relax on the shore and enjoy the scenery.
Visit the Banff Gondola. The Banff Gondola takes you to the top of Sulphur Mountain, where you can enjoy panoramic views of Banff and the surrounding mountains. There is also a restaurant and gift shop at the top of the mountain.
Jasper National Park, Alberta
Adjacent to Banff, Jasper National Park is no less than a jewel among national parks in Canada. This place offers equally stunning landscapes with a more laid-back vibe.
With awe-inspiring landscapes, including glaciers, crystalline lakes, and rugged mountains, this national park amazes visitors with its beauty. The key to its charm is the title of a Dark Sky Preserve, ideal for stargazing. Here you can hike amid dramatic scenery or get up close to the Athabasca Glacier. Maligne Lake, with its iconic Spirit Island, offers picture-postcard views. Jasper National Park is a testament to Canada's natural splendor, attracting visitors from around the world with its untamed beauty.
Dark Sky Preserve for stargazing.
Athabasca Glacier for a unique ice exploration experience.
Maligne Lake and Spirit Island, postcard-perfect destinations.
Things to do at Jasper National Park, Alberta
Visit Maligne Lake. Maligne Lake is the second largest lake in the Canadian Rockies, and it is known for its crystal-clear water and stunning mountain views. You can take a boat tour of the lake, go for a hike, or simply relax on the shore and enjoy the scenery.
Hike to Spirit Island. Spirit Island is a small island located in Maligne Lake. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Jasper National Park, and it is known for its iconic photo of a tree-covered island surrounded by turquoise water.
Drive the Icefields Parkway. The Icefields Parkway is a scenic highway that connects Jasper National Park to Banff National Park. It is one of the most beautiful drives in Canada, and it offers stunning views of the Canadian Rockies.
Visit the Columbia Icefield. The Columbia Icefield is the largest icefield in the Rocky Mountains. You can take a guided tour of the icefield, go for a walk on the Athabasca Glacier, or take a ride on the Glacier Skywalk.
Go skiing or snowboarding at Marmot Basin. Marmot Basin is a popular ski resort located in Jasper National Park. It offers a variety of terrain for all skill levels, and it is a great place to enjoy the winter scenery.
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Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, Canada
Jasper National Park, Alberta, is a crown jewel among Canada's national parks, nestled in the heart of the Canadian Rockies. Its unspoiled wildness enchants travelers with its jagged mountain peaks, tranquil lakes, and lush forests. As a Dark Sky Preserve, it provides exceptional chances for stargazing. Hikers enjoy the stunning vistas, and the Athabasca Glacier offers a one-of-a-kind glacier experience. Don't miss Maligne Lake, where the majestic splendor of Spirit Island beckons. Jasper National Park is a must-see for nature lovers, presenting the natural treasures that have made Canada's national parks famous around the world.
Long Beach for sandy shores and surfable waves.
The West Coast Trail, a challenging backpacking route.
Whale watching in the pristine waters.
Things to do at Pacific Rim National Park Reserve:
Go for a walk or bike ride on Long Beach. Long Beach is one of the most popular beaches in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, and for good reason. It is a beautiful long sandy beach with stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
Go surfing or swimming at Long Beach. Long Beach is a popular spot for surfing, swimming, and other water activities. There are also several surf schools in the area where you can learn how to surf.
Go birdwatching at Wickaninnish Beach. Wickaninnish Beach is a great place to go birdwatching. There are over 200 species of birds that have been spotted at the beach, including bald eagles, ospreys, and herons.
Go boating or kayaking in the Broken Group Islands. The Broken Group Islands are a group of over 100 islands and islets located in Barkley Sound. The islands are a popular destination for boating, kayaking, and camping. You can rent a kayak or boat from several different operators in Tofino and Ucluelet.
Hike the West Coast Trail. The West Coast Trail is a 75-kilometre (47 mi) long hiking trail that winds its way along the rugged coastline of Vancouver Island. It is considered to be one of the most challenging hiking trails in Canada. The trail is open from May to September, and it is important to book your camping reservations in advance.
Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador
Gros Morne National Park is a Canadian national park and World Heritage Site located on the west coast of Newfoundland. It is known for its dramatic landscapes, including fjords, mountains, and Tablelands, a unique geological area where the Earth's mantle has been exposed. Visitors can embark on boat tours through Western Brook Pond's dramatic fjords, while hiking enthusiasts can explore the park's distinctive rock formations. This pristine wilderness is also a sanctuary for various wildlife, making it a destination for both geology enthusiasts and nature lovers. Gros Morne National Park's striking beauty and geological significance leave an indelible mark on all who visit.
The Tablelands, where Earth's mantle is exposed.
Boat tours in Western Brook Pond's fjords.
Hiking and exploring unique rock formations.
Things to do at Gros Morne National Park:
Hike the Tablelands. The Tablelands are a unique geological area where the Earth's mantle has been exposed. The landscape is barren and rocky, with unusual rock formations and stunning views of the surrounding mountains and coastline.
Take a boat tour of Western Brook Pond. Western Brook Pond is a fjord that is surrounded by towering cliffs and waterfalls. You can take a boat tour of the pond to see the waterfalls up close and to learn about the geology of the area.
Hike the Green Gardens Trail. The Green Gardens Trail is a short but challenging hike that leads to a beautiful alpine meadow filled with wildflowers.
Visit the Broom Point Fishing Premises. The Broom Point Fishing Premises is a historic fishing village that is now a museum. You can learn about the history of the fishing industry in Newfoundland and see the traditional fishing equipment that was used.
Yoho National Park, British Columbia
Yoho National Park is a national park in Canada located in the Rocky Mountains of British Columbia. It is known for its stunning scenery, including turquoise lakes, towering mountains, and glaciers. Yoho is also home to a variety of wildlife, including elk, bears, wolves, and moose. Known for its awe-inspiring natural beauty, it's a must-visit destination in canada for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. The park is home to Takakkaw Falls, one of the country's highest waterfalls, as well as the stunning Emerald Lake, famous for its striking turquoise waters. Hiking the Iceline Trail provides exhilarating panoramic views of glaciers and peaks. Yoho National Park is a serene sanctuary for those seeking the beauty of pristine wilderness, making it a prime example of the captivating landscapes found in Canada's national parks.
Takakkaw Falls, one of Canada's highest waterfalls.
Emerald Lake, known for its stunning turquoise water.
Iceline Trail for a challenging day hike.
Things to do in Yoho National Park:
Visit Emerald Lake. Emerald Lake is one of the most iconic lakes in Yoho National Park. It is known for its turquoise water and its stunning mountain views. You can take a boat tour of the lake, go for a hike, or simply relax on the shore and enjoy the scenery.
Hike to the Burgess Shale. The Burgess Shale is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that is known for its fossils of ancient marine life. You can take a guided hike to the Burgess Shale to learn about the geology of the area and to see the fossils up close.
Visit Takakkaw Falls. Takakkaw Falls is the second tallest waterfall in Canada. It is a beautiful and powerful waterfall that is sure to amaze visitors. You can take a short hike to the base of the waterfall, or you can take a helicopter tour to get a bird's-eye view.
Drive the Kicking Horse Pass. The Kicking Horse Pass is a scenic highway that connects Yoho National Park to Banff National Park. It is one of the most beautiful drives in Canada, and it offers stunning views of the Canadian Rockies.
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Prince Edward Island National Park, Prince Edward Island
Prince Edward Island National Park, located on the picturesque Prince Edward Island in Canada's Maritimes, is a coastal paradise among the nation's national parks. This idyllic park is known for its iconic red sand beaches that stretch along the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Visitors can explore the island's natural beauty while enjoying the serene surroundings. For literary enthusiasts, a visit to the Anne of Green Gables Museum offers insight into the world of L.M. Montgomery's beloved character, Anne Shirley. The park also provides opportunities for biking, water activities, and bird-watching, making it a perfect destination for those seeking relaxation and outdoor adventures. Prince Edward Island National Park invites visitors to discover the coastal charm and maritime heritage of Canada's smallest province.
Red sand beaches along the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
Anne of Green Gables Museum for literary enthusiasts.
Relaxing bike rides and water activities.
Things you can do on your visit to Prince Edward Island National Park:
Visit Cavendish Beach. Cavendish Beach is one of the longest and most popular beaches in the park. It is a great place to swim, sunbathe, and build sandcastles.
Hike the Dunes Trail. The Dunes Trail is a 3.5-kilometer (2.2-mile) loop trail that takes you through the park's sand dunes. The trail offers stunning views of the coastline and the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
Visit the Skmaqn–Port-la-Joye–Fort Amherst National Historic Site. This site commemorates the first permanent European settlement on Prince Edward Island. You can learn about the history of the site and visit the remains of Fort Amherst, a British fort that was built in the 18th century.
Go camping in the park. Prince Edward Island National Park offers a variety of camping options, including campgrounds, backcountry camping, and oTENTiks (a hybrid of a tent and a cabin).
Visit the Green Gables Heritage Place. This site is the inspiration for the novel Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery. You can tour the Green Gables farmhouse and learn about the life of Anne Shirley.
Fundy National Park, New Brunswick
Fundy National Park, located in New Brunswick, Canada, is a natural wonderland renowned for its dramatic tides and lush landscapes. Along the Bay of Fundy, it boasts the highest tides globally, creating a mesmerizing natural spectacle as the water level rises and falls dramatically. Visitors can explore coastal hiking trails that offer scenic viewpoints, witness the tidal bore phenomenon, and engage in camping, kayaking, and bird-watching. With its rich biodiversity and opportunities for outdoor adventures, Fundy National Park is a must-visit for those seeking a unique and immersive natural experience within the captivating beauty of Canada's maritime provinces.
Coastal hiking trails with scenic viewpoints.
Witness the mesmerizing tidal bore.
Camping, kayaking, and bird-watching opportunities.
Things to do in Fundy National Park:
Hike the park's many trails. There are over 35 kilometers of hiking trails in Fundy National Park, ranging from easy to challenging. Some of the most popular trails include the Fundy Trail, which offers stunning views of the Bay of Fundy, and the Falls Brook Trail, which leads to a beautiful waterfall.
Explore the world's highest tides. The tides in Fundy National Park can reach up to 21 meters (69 feet) high. This creates a unique opportunity to explore the ocean floor when the tide is low. You can find a variety of marine life on the ocean floor, including sea stars, crabs, and clams.
Visit the Hopewell Rocks. The Hopewell Rocks are a series of flowerpot-shaped rocks that are located on the coast of Fundy National Park. The rocks are at their most impressive at low tide, when you can walk around them and see them from up close.
Go camping in the park. Fundy National Park offers a variety of camping options, including campgrounds, backcountry camping, and oTENTiks (a hybrid of a tent and a cabin).
Waterton Lakes National Park, Alberta
Waterton Lakes National Park is a Canadian national park located in the southwest corner of Alberta, bordering Montana's Glacier National Park. It is known for its stunning scenery, including towering mountains, turquoise lakes, and glaciers. Waterton is also home to a variety of wildlife, including elk, bears, wolves, and moose. The iconic Prince of Wales Hotel overlooks Upper Waterton Lake, providing a picturesque backdrop for visitors.
The iconic Prince of Wales Hotel overlooking Upper Waterton Lake.
Crypt Lake Trail, a challenging hike with a boat ride and a cave crawl.
Rich wildlife, including bighorn sheep and bears.
Things to do in Waterton Lakes National Park
Visit Upper Waterton Lake. Upper Waterton Lake is the largest lake in the park, and it is known for its turquoise water and its stunning mountain views. You can take a boat tour of the lake, go for a hike, or simply relax on the shore and enjoy the scenery.
Hike to Crypt Lake. Crypt Lake is a turquoise alpine lake that is located in a remote part of the park. It is a popular hiking destination, but the hike is challenging and requires some planning.
Visit the Prince of Wales Hotel. The Prince of Wales Hotel is a historic hotel that is located on the shores of Upper Waterton Lake. It is a popular tourist destination, and it offers stunning views of the lake and the mountains.
Drive the Red Rock Canyon Parkway. The Red Rock Canyon Parkway is a scenic highway that takes you through Red Rock Canyon, a narrow canyon with red sandstone cliffs.
9. Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Island is home to one of Canada's most beautiful national parks: Cape Breton Highlands National Park. The Cabot Trail, which runs through it, is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful drives anywhere, thanks to its panoramic vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The Skyline Trail is one such hiking route that takes you through unspoiled nature with the possibility of seeing whales and eagles along the rocky shoreline. If you're looking for a place to go birdwatching or exploring along the East Coast, look no further than this national park.
The Cabot Trail, one of the world's most scenic drives.
Hiking trails like the Skyline Trail.
Whale-watching and birding on the Atlantic coast.
Things to do in Cape Breton Highlands National Park
Hike the Cabot Trail. The Cabot Trail is a scenic highway that winds its way through the park, offering stunning views of the coastline and mountains. You can also hike from the highway to various trails, such as the Skyline Trail, which takes you to the highest point in the park.
Visit the Ingonish Beaches. The Ingonish Beaches are a series of sandy beaches that are located on the eastern coast of the park. They are a great place to swim, sunbathe, and build sandcastles.
Go whale watching. The waters off the coast of Cape Breton Highlands National Park are home to a variety of whales, including humpback whales, minke whales, and fin whales. You can take a whale watching tour from one of the coastal towns in the area.
Visit the Highland Links Golf Course. The Highland Links Golf Course is a world-renowned golf course that is located in the park. It offers stunning views of the coastline and mountains.
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Kluane National Park and Reserve, situated in Canada's Yukon Territory, is a vast and rugged wilderness that exemplifies the untamed beauty of the North. This remarkable national park encompasses some of the country's highest peaks, including Mount Logan, Canada's tallest mountain. Kluane attracts adventurers and nature enthusiasts with its backcountry hiking opportunities, pristine landscapes, and thrilling river rafting in the Alsek River. The park's remote location and rich biodiversity make it a haven for wildlife, from grizzlies to caribou. For those seeking a true northern wilderness experience, Kluane National Park and Reserve offers unparalleled beauty and adventure.
Canada's highest peak, Mount Logan.
A paradise for backcountry hiking and wilderness adventures.
Rafting and fishing in the Alsek River.
Things to do in Kluane National Park and Reserve
Hike the King's Throne. The King's Throne is a popular hiking trail that offers stunning views of Kathleen Lake and the surrounding mountains.
Visit the Kluane Icefield. You can take a guided tour of the icefield, go for a walk on the Athabasca Glacier, or take a ride on the Glacier Skywalk.
Go wildlife watching. Kluane National Park and Reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, including grizzly bears, mountain goats, Dall sheep, and wolves. You can go on a guided wildlife tour or try your luck finding wildlife on your own.
Visit the Da Kų Cultural Centre. The Da Kų Cultural Centre is a museum that tells the story of the Southern Tutchone people, who have lived in the Kluane region for centuries.
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Canada's national parks are a testament to the country's natural grandeur, offering a wide range of outdoor adventures and opportunities to connect with the wilderness. Whether you're into hiking, wildlife watching, or simply seeking serene beauty, these national parks provide an unforgettable experience in the heart of Canada's spectacular landscapes. Plan your visit to one or more of these stunning national parks in Canada and immerse yourself in the pristine natural wonders that make Canada a paradise for nature lovers.