Canada is fortunate enough to be loaded with awesome museums, whether you are interested in learning about the dinosaurs that once ruled the badlands of Alberta or the first people that set foot in British Columbia. Perhaps you are interested in weapons and counterfeit money, or what happened during the Holocaust-don’t fear, Canada has you covered. From coast to coast impressive museums continue to amaze visitors and while some may be suited for adults, there is plenty of fun for the kids too! Check out the 7 coolest museums in Canada, and why you should drop everything and visit them today.
7. Canadian Museum of History (Gatineau, Quebec)
It is Canada’s national museum of human history, and its purpose includes collecting, studying, preserving, and presenting material objects that illuminate the human history of Canada. One of the most impressive parts of the museum is the Grand Hall where a beautiful wall of windows gives way to a picturesque view of the Ottawa River and Parliament Hill. The museum attracts over a million visitors a year to gaze at the collection of huge totem poles, First Nation artifacts, streetscape galleries, and life-size replicas recreations such as an airport lounge circa 1970. In addition, this awesome museum to home to the Canadian Children’s and Postal Museum, along with an IMAX theatre-making this attraction super family-friendly.
6. Canada Science and Technology Museum (Ottawa, Ontario)
It is the largest of its kind and located in the capital city of Canada, Ottawa. This museum displays all sorts of cool exhibits, focusing on the past, present, and future of science and technological developments in Canada. What makes this museum so cool is the fact that much of it is hands-on, climb-on, and walk-through exhibits. Currently, the museum is closed and undergoing a major renovation, expected to open in 2017, and is thought to be bigger and better than ever. Visitors should expect five main galleries including a Children’s Gallery, Artifact Alley, and Crazy Kitchen. From trains, planes, automobiles, rockets, and space travel simulation; this museum will offer a plethora of excitement.
5. Royal Tyrell Museum (Drumheller, Alberta)
This popular Canadian tourist attraction is both a museum and a center of paleontological research. Hosting more than 130,000 fossils, this museum is located in the middle of the Late Cretaceous Horseshoe Canyon Formation. Visitors will love wandering through the ten signature galleries devoted to paleontology that include 40 dinosaur skeletons, including one huge T. Rex. There are plenty of hands-on experiences to be had here including strength tests where you will discover how strong these fascinating creatures really were. Visitors can also watch actual technicians prepare fossils for research and display, fossils that happened to be found right in Alberta. As well, visitors can join the Dinosite program which allows you to search for real fossils, see real dinosaur remains still in the ground, and learn about ancient Alberta during the 90-minute hike through the badlands.
4. ROM — Royal Ontario Museum (Toronto, Ontario)
It is considered by many to be one of the best museums in Canada and also happens to be one of the coolest. Located in Toronto, this museum is dedicated to art, world culture, and natural history and attracts over a million visitors a year. Visitors will want to spend an entire day discovering the 40 odd galleries that feature over 6 million items including a notable collection of dinosaurs, minerals, and meteorites. The CIBC Discovery Gallery is where you can get “hands-on” at the ROM and although geared towards children, adults will also enjoy the interactive activities including digging for dinosaur bones and touching different specimens and artifacts. Expect awesome interesting exhibits that are constantly changing, slumber parties for adults, and plenty of tours and workshops to keep everyone interested.
3. Human Rights Museum (Winnipeg, Manitoba)
This impressive museum is the newest on this list, opening in September of 2014, dedicated to exploring the subject of human rights with a special emphasis on Canada. Offering a journey from darkness to light, visitors start off on the ground level and gradually make their way up to seven floors that reveal more and more daylight. With a total of six levels of exhibits and 11 galleries and one Tower of Hope that offers panoramic views of Winnipeg, expect to spend at least a day here. Galleries include “Examining the Holocaust”, “Rights Today” and “Canadian Journeys”, just to name a few. Interactive presentations, multimedia technology, and world-class design make this an amazing encounter with human rights.
2. Royal British Columbia Museum (Victoria, British Columbia)
It is known as one of the world’s top regional museums, one of Canada’s most visited, and located on the picturesque Inner Harbor in Victoria. Three permanent galleries trace the natural and human history of British Columbia and include life-sized mammoths, live tidal pools, and replica streets, and shops. The First Peoples Gallery is especially impressive with its ceremonial masks, totem poles, and full-sized log house recreation. Visitors here can even watch as native carvers work on new totem poles in a longhouse located just behind the museum. Featuring the largest IMAX in BC, numerous family events throughout the year, interactive exhibits, and more; it’s an easy choice calling this one of the coolest museums in Canada.
1. Biosphere Environment Museum (Montreal, Quebec)
It is the only environment museum in North America and both kids and adults go crazy for this unique attraction that is both indoors and out. These architectural masterpieces and symbols of Expo 67 invite visitors to learn more about meteorology, climate, water, and air quality, and other environmental issues in a fun way. An outdoor Arctic photo exhibit celebrates the region’s biodiversity and beauty while educating visitors on the environmental changes that are happening there. The immersive show “Design the Future” on the other hand invites visitors to reconnect with the natural environment around us to grasp the importance of climate change and how we will adapt to that. An abundance of games, hands-on activities, and galleries await visitors to this unique museum in Montreal.