Canada has amazing wildlife and nature. Some of the highlights include the lake-filled Banff National Park in the Rocky Mountains which boasts spectacular hiking trails and crystal clear swimming holes. In Banff National Park, you’ll also find grizzle and black bears as well as cougars, Canadian lynx, wolverines, red foxes, river otters and much more. In winter, there is also great snow conditions for skiing and snowboarding at Lake Louise.
If you’re looking to the cities, Vancouver is the bustling west coast seaport in British Columbia. It’s one of the most ethnically diverse cities. It’s a popular filming location so you’ll see some big name celebrities walking around. It also has a thriving art, theatre and music scene. The Vancouver Art Gallery is known for its collection from regional artists. Vancouver has a huge Asian population and boasts some of the best Chinese food in the world. Visit the city’s Dynasty Seafood and Richmond’s Hoi Tong restaurants for yum cha and seafood.
Another major city to visit is Toronto which is right along Lake Ontario’s northwestern shore. Visit the iconic CN Tower where you can have a meal at the revolving restaurant and take sight of the city below you. For the sports fans, catch a baseball game at the Rogers Centre which is home to the Toronto Blue Jays. If you’re keen for some shopping, the Toronto Eaton Centre has a huge array of shops, clothiers and restaurants in this historic mall with a glass ceiling.
Canada’s eastern provinces of Quebec and New Brunswick are still largely unexplored by Aussie cruisers, so if you are looking for new seas to sail, there are fertile waters around the historic and stately capitals of Montreal and Quebec City via the St Lawrence Seaway. Line such as Holland America and Seabourn will take you right into the heart of Montreal and continue around to Boston via Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Or, if you prefer, explore the scenic countryside all the way to the remote territories by small ship as far as the icy wonderland of Greenland through Baffin Bay.
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Follow the boardwalk along the shoreline full of shops and restaurants from Peake’s Quay to Victoria Park and be sure to sample the seafood, including Malpeque Bay oysters. Fans of Anne of Green Gables will love exploring the setting for the books, including Green Gables House in Cavendish.
This multicultural city has French and British colonial roots. Stroll to museums, such as the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, galleries, shopping precincts (including the “underground city” shopping tunnels), and enjoy quirky dining opportunities, especially nearby the cruise terminal.
Best for: Culture lovers and foodies.
The charming 400-year-old French-flavoured city is exceptionally visitor-friendly, easy to navigate on foot and abundant in culture, art and delightful sidewalk dining options. It has the distinction of being the only walled city in the US and Canada.
Best for: Culture, art and history buffs and Francophiles.
A favourite with Aussie visitors, Vancouver has a busy waterfront, bustling downtown precinct and numerous museums, many catering to kids. Don’t miss Chinatown, Gastown, Granville Island, Stanley Park, Vancouver Museum, H.R. MacMillan Space Centre and the Grouse Mountain Skyride and Wildlife Refuge.
Best for: Families, shoppers and art lovers.