Things To See And Do In Nova Scotia

There is nothing quite like the breath-taking sites and warm hospitality of the East Coast. Nova Scotia is the perfect getaway for couples, families, and solo travelers alike and has a variety of activities and attractions whether you’re visiting for the cuisine or the outdoors. From delicious food and drink to the beautiful trails and the quaint towns, we’ve rounded up the top 20 things to see and do in Nova Scotia, Canada.

1. The Cabot Trail

The Cabot Trail is 580 kilometers long, so while we’re not suggesting you hike or bike the whole thing (unless you’re into that!), it is quite the experience to see the fall colors, dine in restaurants along the trail, and take in some of the highland culture and music. You can hike portions of the coastal trail on your own if you visit Cape Breton Highland National Park or take a guided hike if you’re inexperienced or want to learn more about the local history. Alternatively, you can drive the entire trail in about 8 hours by car or motorcycle, if you’ve got a bike!

Source: Shutterstock

2. Peggy’s Cove

Peggy’s Cove Coastal Region is way more than the iconic lighthouse, though you don’t want to miss Peggy’s Point lighthouse and surrounding village. Known as nature’s playground, this region is the perfect place for kayaking, hiking, birding, whale watching, golf courses, and pristine beaches. There’s enough to do here to spend two or three days with enough fresh seafood restaurants and cozy cottages and bed and breakfasts to make your time there comfortable. Peggy’s Cove is also a great place to head out on the water for a wildlife tour to see birds, puffins, seals, turtles, and fish, so book a tour while you’re in the area.

Source: Shutterstock

3. Whale Watching

There are many parts of the province that you can head out on a whale watching tour, but regardless of what coastal town you choose to set off from, make sure you take the time to see these great creatures of the sea. It’s a classic East Coast activity to do in the Summer and Fall months (which are the best times for sightings) that may end up being the highlight of your trip! Depending on when you go in the season, you may see Minke, Humpback, Fin, Sei, or North Atlantic Right Whales on your tour.

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4. Wineries, Cideries, and Distilleries

Spend a day visiting some of the wineries, cideries, and distilleries that Nova Scotia has to offer! There are actually more of them than you might think – Nova Scotia has over 18 wineries, 12 distilleries, and 8 cideries to explore and drink at. Tour on your own or with a company that will drive you around. If you’re interested in doing a mix of all three, check out the Nova Scotia Good Cheer Trail to plot your trip around the province and grab your boozy passport!

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5. Halifax Boardwalk

Take a stroll down one of the world’s largest boardwalks! The boardwalk in Halifax is 3 kilometers of shops, restaurants, and gorgeous views. Explore the stores, grab a drink at one of the city’s best restaurants, and enjoy the lazy afternoon at the bustling boardwalk. Taking a harbor tour by boat is another great way to experience the waterfront and learn more about Halifax’s nautical history. Before departing on your trip, be sure to check out the Nova Scotia Tourism website to see what unique events might be taking place while you’re in town.

Source: Shutterstock

6. Tidal Bore Rafting in the Bay of Fundy

The Bay of Fundy has a must-experience outdoor activity called tidal bore rafting. You go out on the bay in a motorized boat with a guide to take on the highest tides in the world – up to 16 meters! All you do is hold on! Different times of day have different intensities, making it a great thing to do regardless of whether you’re timid or a total adrenaline junkie. Tidal bore rafting (followed with some mud sliding!) has been named a Canadian Signature Experience, proving further that it’s not an activity to be missed while in Nova Scotia!

Source: Shutterstock

7. Lunenburg

Lunenburg is a port city and UNESCO World Heritage Site known for its colorful and historic buildings and gorgeous waterfront, as well as the Bluenose II, a replica of the sailing boat that graces the Canadian dime. If you want to see the city from a local’s perspective, consider taking a Lunenburg walking tour where you’ll get to take in the sites and cuisine with a knowledgable 8th generation guide. The town has won several awards including Prettiest Painted Places in Canada and Communities in Bloom, making it a can’t-miss stop on your vacation.

Source: Shutterstock

8. Sea or Lake Kayaking

Nova Scotia, or anywhere by the ocean, is a wonderful place to go kayaking and feel the rush that comes with being on the not-quite-flat water. You don’t need to be an expert as many guide companies are offering a variety of levels of difficulty. Don’t pass up this opportunity to explore the hidden coves, paddle the choppy sea, and perhaps even see some wildlife. If you’re looking for more flatwater to kayak in, check out this full moon experience for an evening paddle paired with local cuisine and music!

Source: Shutterstock

9. Lobster-Related Activities

One of the best parts of the East Coast is all the delicious fresh seafood, including lobster! Make sure you indulge in at least one all you can lobster dining experience at one of the many seafood restaurants. If you’re visiting in February, be sure to take part in the infamous Lobster Crawl for some serious fun all month long! Other fun lobster-related activities include seeing the rare colored lobsters at the Northumberland Fisheries Museum hatchery, take a boat tour with a local lobster fisherman to experience a day in the life, or take a lobster cooking class! There are many fun ways to learn about this aspect of the province.

Source: Shutterstock

10. Take in Live Local Music

From local pubs to street corners to boat tours, live East Coast music is everywhere in Nova Scotia. Before you leave on your trip, search for popular live music venues in the area you’ll be staying in. Then you just need to show up, grab a beer, and listen! East Coast music is some of the most lively, foot-tapping music, so don’t worry about seeing the concert of a bigger named musician! Locals know the best spots and favorite musicians, so don’t be afraid to ask the host at your accommodations for some recommendations in the area.

Source: Shutterstock

11. Burntcoat Head Park

Visit Burntcoat Head Park to see the highest tide in the world (up to 53.6 feet!), walk the ocean floor during low tide, and find small sea creatures in the tiny pools left behind. It’s a beautiful display of nature and a lot of fun for kids and kids at heart! The park also offers guided ocean floor tours on certain days, so check the park’s calendar of events before you head East!

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12. Kejimkujik National Park

Kejimkujik Park is a breathtaking park to camp, hike, bike, paddle, learn about Mi’kmaw culture, view petroglyphs, and to connect with nature. The park is biodiverse, allowing you to explore many different habitats and take in the unpolluted night sky in the Dark Sky Preserve! The park has a variety of accommodations, from backcountry and front-country campsites to yurts and cabins, so there’s somewhere to stay regardless of your comfort level.

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13. Halifax Food Tour

Guided food tours are one of the best (and most delicious!) ways to get an overview of a bigger city and therefore are a great way to start your trip. In Halifax, there are two primary tour companies: Local Tasting Tours and Taste Halifax. Both come highly reviewed, so it’s up to you to decide what type of tour you want. Local Tasting Tours offers a downtown tour, SoMo neighborhood eateries tour, and a night out tour – all done on foot. Taste Halifax offers two food tours and two alcohol tours, all done by vehicle with a guide to drive you around. Regardless of which one you choose, you’ll get to taste the local cuisine (often in places that tourists might not otherwise know about) and get to see the city from a local’s perspective.

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14. Visit Sugar Moon Maple Farm

Sugar Moon is a can’t-miss attraction located on the North Shore of Nova Scotia that is all about maple syrup. It doesn’t matter what season you’re visiting in, there’s tons to do at the farm! The farm offers maple syrup tasting and tours, an all-day maple brunch with maple-themed cocktails and non-alcoholic beverages, monthly fine dining Chef’s Nights, hiking on the property, or the famed Maple Magic Package! It’s a quintessentially Canadian experience that even a home-grown Canadian can’t miss while in Nova Scotia.

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15. Sable Island

A trip to Sable Island isn’t necessarily the most budget-friendly activity to do on your Nova Scotia vacation, but it is well worth the trip if you’ve got the time and extra money. Sable Island is most well-known for the legacy of over 350 shipwrecks that dot the shore and the 400 gorgeous feral horses that roam the island. The 25-mile long island is entirely made of sand and boasts the world’s largest breeding colonies of harbor and grey seals. Sable Island is quite remote and takes planning, registering with Parks Canada, and several days to visit, so it isn’t for the faint of heart. But if you’re into adventure, it’s worth the trip by air or sea.

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16. Joggins Fossil Cliffs

The fossil cliffs are fun for both kids and adults! This world heritage site and natural attraction is a thorough fossil record of the Coal Age, which was 100 million years before dinosaurs roamed the earth! Here you can see some incredible exposed fossils on your own or on a beach tour with a knowledgable guide on easy, medium, or difficult terrain. New fossils are regularly being uncovered and guides are aware of them, making a guided tour a really great option.

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17. Oak Island Money Pit

Oak Island has a long and fun history of treasure hunting! In 1795, a teenager found a large oval-shaped hole in the ground that after many years of many people digging, has become much larger and well known as the Oak Island Money Pit. Though no treasure has actually been found, many other things have including wooden planks, a cavern, a tunnel, and other small things that are just enough to keep the mystery and digging going. You can read up on the full mystery here or just head to the island to learn all about it there!

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18. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

If you enjoy learning about history, the Maritime Museum is a great place to explore on a rainy day. Here you can learn about Nova Scotia’s rich and long relationship with the sea, from World War convoys and the Titanic to the Frankin Exploration to the Halifax Explosion. Like many museums, there are often events going on that may enrich your experience, so check out the events before your trip to see what’s going on! There’s lots to learn about and no better place to “dive in” than this museum.

Source: Shutterstock

19. McNab’s Island

McNab’s Island is only a short boat ride out of the Halifax Harbor and has many historic and natural attractions, including wildlife and over 200 species of birds. The island boasts 18 kilometers of hiking trails and abandoned buildings and ruins to view and explore (though not all are open to the public). You can get to the island for about $20 per person round trip and guided tours are available during the summer months, though you can always explore on your own! It’s a great way to enjoy nature and history not far from the Halifax city center, making it a perfect day trip.

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20. Cape Breton Highlands National Park

Cape Breton is a beautiful park where the mountains and sea meet, making for exciting hiking, camping, and wildlife viewing. The Cabot Trail goes through the park and offers some of the best hiking and glorious views in the province. One of the coolest things about this park is it’s Equipped Campsite partnership with Mountain Equipment Co-op allowing you to affordably rent a campsite already equipped with a tent, dining shelter, sleeping pads, chairs, camp stove, dishes, utensils, cooking gear, wash bins and a lantern. This is a great way to experience the park if you don’t own the gear yourself or you couldn’t bring it along (for example, if you flew to the province).

Source: Shutterstock

8 Historic Canadian Forts That Still Exist Today

Canadian forts offer a glimpse into the past, built over the last two centuries to defend the young country. Nowadays they stand as a testament to the history of Canada and offer visitors a chance to go back in time. Many of these historic forts have been rebuilt time and time again, in order to give visitors access to them. Beautiful views, fun activities and a great lesson in Canadian history await visitors to these eight historic Canadian forts.

8. Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site, Victoria, British Columbia

This coastal artillery fort was built in the 1890’s, intended to defend Victoria and the Esquimalt Naval Base. The site is adjacent to Fisgard Lighthouse, the first lighthouse on the west coast of Canada. Visitors here have the chance to tour secret bunkers, military command posts, and original 19th-century buildings.

Hear personal stories of soldiers and their families, explore the nearby tide pools and bring a picnic and spend the whole day here. Known for its breathtaking views, the fort overlooks the beautiful coastline and out into the mountains. Open every day except Christmas, most visitors choose to visit the fort and the lighthouse in the same visit.

7. The Citadel National Historic Park, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Fort George is the fortified summit of Citadel Hill, first fortified in 1749, the year when Halifax was founded. A series of four different defensive fortifications have occupied the summit of Citadel Hill. While it was never attacked, the Citadel played an important part in the defense of the Halifax Harbor and its Royal Navy Dockyard. The star-shaped structure offers an incredible view of the city and the harbor.

Visitors should plan on taking a guided tour to learn more about the fort’s history from 1749 through WWII. Make sure to visit the Army Museum while you are here to view over 70,000 artifacts chronicling Atlantic Canada’s military history. Visit in July and be a part of the Great Canadian Backyard Campout where you can set up camp inside the walls of the citadel.

6. Fort Chambly National Historic Site, Chambly, Quebec

This imposing stone structure has been guarding part of one of the largest navigable waterways in North America for more than two centuries. It was first constructed in 1711 to defend the colony and three wooden forts preceded the stone fortification. For many years this fort was the main footing of the defensive chain of fortifications along the Richelieu River, which was the easiest route into New France.

The fort was lost to the British in 1760 in The Conquest of New France, captured by American forces in 1775 and finally restored in 1882 by a citizen of Chambly. Today visitors can see a fully reconstructed version of the fort where they can learn more about New France history and culture.

5. Fort St. James National Historic Site, Fort St. James, British Columbia

It was one of the first permanent fur trading posts in the West, built in 1805-1806 and has been rebuilt a total of four times. Visitors here will get a good look at life in 1896 that includes a fur warehouse, storage facility, trade store, and gardens. It displays the largest group of original wooden buildings representing the fur trade in Canada and the story here revolves around the relationships and interactions between the fur traders and Native Peoples of the region.

Its location on Stuart Lake offers fun for outdoor enthusiasts including hiking, sailing, fishing and mountain biking. Special event days happen throughout the year including Salmon Day with its ‘iron chef’ cook-off and Harvest Day.

Via Salmon Trails | Northwest BC Culture

4. Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site, St. Andrews, Manitoba

The original Fort Garry was destroyed in 1826 by a devastating flood, leading the Hudson’s Bay Company to search for a higher ground to build the next fort. Thus Lower Fort Garry was built, 32km north of the original in 1830. What makes this fort so significant is the fact that Treaty 1 was signed here.

Visit here from May to September when costumed interpreters recreate like at Lower Fort Garry in the early 1850’s. Original buildings and walls, hands-on activities and original-to-era furnishings are all a part of the experiment. Around Halloween, candlelight tours are offered through the fort, along with hot chocolate around a campfire.

Via National Post

3. Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada, Amherstburg, Ontario

It was formally known as Fort Amherstburg, built in 1795 by Britain in order to ensure the security of British North America against any potential threat of American Invasion. It here where Sir Isaac Brock and Tecumseh met during the War of 1812 to plan the siege of Detroit. Unfortunately, this border fortification was torn down after the War of 1812. The fort was rebuilt and it’s the second structure that survives today.

Ideally located along the Detroit River, visitors here are privy to some true Canadian flora and fauna including sugar maples, swans, and geese. Throughout the year there are special events such as the haunted fort tours during October and Christmas celebrations that show visitors how soldiers over two hundred years ago celebrated the holiday.

Via Ontario’s Southwest

2. Fortress Louisburg, Louisburg, Nova Scotia

The original settlement was made in 1713 by the French and developed over several decades into a thriving center for fishing and trade. Fortified against the threat of British Invasion during the time of empire building, Louisburg was besieged twice before finally being destroyed in the 1760’s. Luckily for visitors, archeologists have reconstructed the fortress as it was in the 18th century.

Today the site features more than a dozen buildings to explore as well as daily demonstrations recreating life at the fort that includes cooking, dancing, music and military drills. This is more than just a fort to explore, with its three 18th-century restaurants as well as a delicious bakery to explore. One of best things about visiting this fortress is the help you are giving the local economy, which has struggled economically with the decline of the North Atlantic fishery.

1. Old Fort Erie, Niagara Falls, Ontario

It is known as Canada’s bloodiest field of battle, due to more than 3,000 troops who lost their lives during the Siege of Fort Erie from August 3rd to September 21st in 1814. The original fort was built in 1764 and was the first British fort to be constructed as part of a network developed after the Treaty of Paris concluded the Seven Years’ War. The fort was first a supply base for British troops, before the War of 1812, a base for troops during the American Revolution and later an important crossing point for the Underground Railroad.

The annual Siege of Fort Erie takes place on the second week of August each year and is most definitely the favorite time to check out this historical fort. It is then that re-enactors from all over North America descend on the fort to re-create the historic battles, complete with plenty of firepower.

The 8 Best Sledding Hills in North America

Winter is coming and one of the best ways to enjoy the cold snowy weather is to bundle up and go play in it, whatever age you are. Luckily you don’t need any special skills to enjoy the snow, indeed all you need is a sled. Tobogganing, sledding, whatever you want to call it is one of the most popular free winter activities that can put a huge smile on your face, no matter what age you are. Here in North America there are some pretty epic sledding hills that will shoot your down at colorful speeds and leave you breathless. Getting up is the only hard part here. From Ontario to Colorado to Halifax to Ottawa, we have rounded up the best 8 sledding hills in North America.

8. Firecracker Hill – Telluride, Colorado

This ski town is known for it’s awesome powder, incredible resorts and laid back feel but skiing just isn’t the only thing you can do here. The town may not have an official sledding park but one local hill is where to go to get your sled on. On the southern side of Telluride Town Park lies Firecracker Hill, follow the orange cones that the city puts out to mark the walking path to the hill. Don’t worry if you don’t have own your sled, the Telluride Nordic Center will rent you one for just a few bucks a day. You will find a mix of locals and visitors at this hill, riding anything from GT snow racers to saucers to mini snowboards. Obey the signs, recognize this is avalanche country and slide down this awesome hill in the ski town of Telluride.

Photo by: The Denver City Page
Photo by: The Denver City Page

7. St Andrews Heights Toboggan Hill – Calgary, Alberta

This hill is known for it’s massiveness, incredible speed and downhill length. It has been tempting daredevil sledders for years. Located in the St. Andrews neighborhood, to reach this hill park in the Community Hall lot and then make your way to the top. A quick warning, it is a heavy hike to the top and be prepared if you have younger ones to pull them most of the way. To understand how big this hill is let’s use statistics. It has a run of about 150m, a drop of 17m and then a run out of 100m. That is a lot of hill to come down, and a lot to go back up. The end of the run is separated from the road by a fence to keep sliders safe. Expect to see a ton of people using this hill in the winter time, including junior snowboarders who practice here before hitting the big slopes.

Photo by: 102.1 The Edge
Photo by: 102.1 The Edge

6. Grand Mesa Old Powderhorn, Grand Junction, Colorado

It is referred to as “Old Powderhorn” by locals and it part of the old Mesa Creek Ski Area, located about three miles past Powderhorn Ski Resort. The parking area is located on the south side of the road and once you have bundled up and got your sled ready, its time to head up the trail head. There are plenty of trees to avoid coming down and the ride can be described as a wind-burning, adrenaline pumping, heart-stopping kind of ride. Expect the tiniest of snowdrifts to send you airborne and we recommend wearing your thickest snowsuit. Best for older kids and adults as there are plenty of trees that pose a threat of crashing into. Or at least bring a sled that you can steer.

Photo by: The Denver City Page
Photo by: The Denver City Page

5. Harvard’s Arnold Arboretum – Boston, Massachusetts

Head to Boston’s Jamaica Plain neighborhood where Harvard University’s Arnold Arboretum is located, offering 281 acres of exotic trees and flowering shrubs, which in the winter is host to an abundance of awesome sledding hills. Peter’s Hill has to be the favorite here as it offers incredible views from the top and no trees to contend with on the way down, making it safe for all ages. It also boasts the highest and longest slope in the area. The steep Weld Hill is the favorite amongst daredevils as it offers a ride of 350 feet long with parts that are at a 60-degree slope. We suggest hanging onto your hat as you race down these hills.

Photo by: Shutterstock via Boston Magazine
Photo by: Shutterstock via Boston Magazine

4. Mount Royal Park – Montreal, Quebec

This Montreal park is popular all year round but really comes alive in the winter thanks to all the visitors that take part in sledding down the hills, whether on rented tubes or sleds of their own. For decades this has been the place to take part in winter fun and the slope at the corner of Cote-Ste-Catherine and Parc looks tame from afar but in fact offers an incredible speedy and bumpy ride. Families and people of all ages flock to this hill with tubes, crazy carpets and even traditional wooden sleds. Straw barriers keep riders from going into the streets and there are even washrooms and a cafeteria on-site so you can warm those hands and grab a snack.

Photo by: J'aime le mont Royal/Facebook
Photo by: J’aime le mont Royal/Facebook

3. Citadel Hill – Halifax, Nova Scotia

It is undoubtedly the best hill to sled on in the city of Halifax and when the snow flies, people of all ages are flocking here. What makes this hill so popular is the awesome incline, lack of obstacles and location. Head to the south and west faces as they offer the best sledding, especially the slope that leads down to the Garrison Grounds. Grab your GT snow racer, a crazy carpet or even a cafeteria tray and prepare for one adrenaline-rushing ride down the best hill in the city. This hill does get busy with locals and visitors and your biggest obstacle here may just be the other sledders. Luckily this hill has a spacious landing area for sledders, ensuring that everyone stays safe.

Photo by: Destination Halifax
Photo by: Destination Halifax

2. Dutch Henry Tubing Hill, Leadville, Colorado

It calls itself the highest, fastest sledding hill in all of Colorado, and it just happens to be conveniently located one-minute south of downtown. The hill here is open seven days a week and free to all visitors who bring their own sled. Rentals of tubes are available on weekends during the day for a small fee. Big, steep and fast are the only three words that come to mind when you head to this hill and sledders should prepare themselves for a wild ride. Not recommended for younger kids, head to this hill with a group of friends, adults or older kids.

Photo by: Colorado Come To Life
Photo by: Colorado Come To Life Tourism

1. Carlington Park, Ottawa, Ontario

It is known as one of the top sledding destinations in North America, and that should come as no surprise considering its steepness and the wild thrills it offers, essentially this former ski hill offers two hills in one, the highest being the steepest and showcasing a platform before the second hill. Not for the faint of heart, this hill is usually riddled with many jumps carved into the snow and expect to be sharing the hill with amateur snowboarders. Lights make it tempting to slide down this hill at night, for an even more extreme thrill. Parking is provided here at the J. Alph Dulude Arena and just use caution and avoid areas that are fenced off for riders. Enjoy one of the wildest rides in North America at Carlington Park in Ottawa, Ontario.

Sledding

The 12 Best Rooftop Bars and Patios in Canada

Canada…often known as the land of ice and snow actually gets enough warm weather in the summer time across the country to house some pretty epic rooftop patios and bars. While you won’t find very many year round pools, you will find handcrafted cocktails, live music and lively atmospheres. Locals and visitors come together on these patios to drink, dine in style and escape the busy streets below. From Victoria to Toronto to Halifax, here are our top 12 choices for the best rooftop bars and patios across the country.

12. Bovine -Toronto, Ontario

It is Queen West’s most enduring rock bar, a smorgasbord of music, junkyard memorabilia and plenty of tourists but in recent years an incredible addition was added to the roof. Although this rooftop patio took a long time to happen, the result is a hidden tropical oasis complete with a tiki hut serving as a bar, picnic bench seating and a jungle of tropical plants. No need to look any further than here if you are craving tropical drinks as this bar serves us pina coladas, mai tais and hurricanes, along with a rum collection that tops out at 50 different kinds. Expect live music events throughout the summer, drink specials and a whole lot of Hawaiian like fun! If it is rock music you are craving though, you will have to head indoor for that.

Photo by: The Joy Architects
Photo by: The Joy Architects

11. Reflections -Vancouver, British Columbia

This outdoor restaurant and lounge is situated within the inner courtyard of the Rosewood Hotel’s fourth floor. This oasis offers a laid-back vibe featuring infinity water features, a central fire pit, private cabanas, beautiful lanterns and oversize teak seating. Guests here will find specialty cocktails and menu that revolves around shared plates of salads and items from the grill. Local fare is on the menu here and most of the menu focuses on ingredients found nearby, as well as the wine list host an abundance of BC wines. Although it appears to be swanky and snobbish, rest assured that this bar invites people of all walks of life to enjoy. On cold nights they provide warm blankets and heaters to warm guests up.

Photo by: Rosewood Hotel Georgia
Photo by: Rosewood Hotel Georgia

10. “Flight Deck” at The Pilot -Toronto, Ontario

It is a Yorkville rooftop patio at its finest and Flight Deck at The Pilot is one of the most beloved outdoor spots in the city of Toronto. Simple seating that encourages conversations, prompt and attentive service and retractable awnings for any types of weather makes this rooftop patio a winner in our eyes. The entire bar is decked out in stainless steel and metal, including the tables and chairs which make it an unusual atmosphere but combined with the lively groups of people that are found here, makes it work for this cool and hip patio. The menu here is mostly pub fare and includes such favorites as the fish tacos, pilot nachos and handmade burgers. With a huge beer and wine list, it is easy to see why so many people flock here for after work drinks and dinner.

Photo by: The Pilot Toronto
Photo by: The Pilot Toronto

9. Thompson Rooftop Lounge and Pool -Toronto, Ontario

This chic and exclusive rooftop lounge provides breathtaking views of the Toronto Skyline and Lake Ontario. Although you have to be a guest of the hotel or a lounge member to visit here, it is well worth it to experience this swanky rooftop. By day you will find guests swimming in the beautiful infinity pool and relaxing on sun loungers. Comfortable oversize couches, cabanas and a bar provide the perfect atmosphere when the sun goes down. Enjoy hand crafted cocktails, an extensive wine list and small plates to share. If you do plan on coming up here at night make sure you have your smart evening attire on as there is a fairly strict dress code.

Photo by: Thompson Hotels
Photo by: Thompson Hotels

8. Hilton Montreal Bonaventure, Rooftop Garden -Montreal, Quebec

Located 17 stories up this rooftop is loaded with lush gardens, paths and streams loaded with resident goldfish. It also happens to feature an impressive year-round outdoor pool complete with poolside bar during the summer months. The hotel itself is located just a stone’s throw away from major attractions and incredible shopping. The catch here is that rooftop visitors have to be guests of the hotel, a bonus for those who are planning on staying a few nights in the city. Guests up here are treated to lunch, dinner or late night snacks and as many cocktails as they can handle while soaking up the hot sun. With terraces, a pond with resident ducks, friendly service and year round swimming; this rooftop bar is a must visit.

Photo by: Hilton Hotels
Photo by: Hilton Hotels

7. Argyle Bar & Grill -Halifax, Nova Scotia

Head to the East side of Canada to eat and drink with the locals at this spectacular rooftop patio located in the heart of downtown Halifax. Plenty of large trees and flowers create an incredible atmosphere at this large rooftop patio, giving visitors the sense that they have stepped into another world. The biggest days to come out and play here are Thursday and Saturday nights when this heated patio gets packed with both locals and visitors. During the day huge patio umbrellas are opened to beat the heat and a large shaded bar area is provided. One of the best things about this patio has to be the rooftop bathrooms, where you can avoid walking down the stairs after one too many mojitos. This bar and grill also has an awesome sidewalk patio in case the roof becomes too crowded.

Photo by: The Coast
Photo by: The Coast

6. The Drake Hotel Sky Yard -Toronto, Ontario

This rooftop patio can be visited during the summer or winter months, a welcome change to most others in Canada who only offer summertime hours. In the summer expect to enjoy a variety of hand-crafted cocktails that make up the 24-page cocktail menu. More of a snack bar than a restaurant, the food here is incredible and unique with dishes such as lobster nachos and truffle fries. During the winter time the patio is decked out with canvas tents, heat lamps and decorated with vintage skis and toboggans. A fire pit sits in the center with thick logs around it, perfect for sitting on and sipping one of the amazing seasonal cocktails, such as the Brown Butter Maple Old Fashioned. If you prefer sitting inside up here, head on it to “The Tunnel”, a long enclave of couches decked out in blue and orange patterns, with a flat screen showing retro cartoons. One of the coolest and hippest places to be, summer or winter is the Sky Yard at the Drake Hotel.

Photo by: The Edito
Photo by: The Edito

5. Terrasse sur l’Auberge -Montreal, Quebec

If you are looking to dine in style with incredible views of the Old Port and the St. Lawrence River, head no further than this amazing rooftop. As an added bonus the month of July offers guests the chance to see the spectacular fireworks light up the sky during the International Fireworks Competition that takes place every year. Food wise, guests here will be delighted in local cuisine, hand-made dishes and an incredible array of choice. We suggest trying the smoked duck breast salad and Quebec cheese platter. As far as cocktails go, this rooftop bar has an impressive wine list along with an array of spirits and handcrafted drinks. Opening hours tend to be from 2pm-11pm and on Thursday nights a local DJ spins the hottest tracks of the summer. With a variety of seating choices, a hip crowd and unbelievable views of the city, this is one of the hottest rooftop patios in Canada.

Photo by: Terrasse sur l’Auberge
Photo by: Terrasse sur l’Auberge

4. Surf Club, The Strathcona -Victoria, British Columbia

This unique rooftop bar has a laid back Vancouver Island feel to it and features some pretty epic amenities, such as two full sized volleyball courts. The atmosphere is always pumping here with a DJ spinning live beats and a disco ball to match. With a view of the city on all sides, it seems this is one epic place to party. Delicious West Coast fare is served up alongside signature cocktails and local brews. Enjoy food such as fresh local steamed mussels, fish tacos, an array of burgers and more. With weekly specials including oyster bars, $5 off pizzas and more; any day of the week is a good time to visit. Weekly events are held all summer long with club nights and other special entertainment. With impeccable service, awesome views and the right atmosphere, the Surf Club offers one of the best summer vibes.

Photo by: Tripadvisor
Photo by: Tripadvisor

3. Roof Lounge, Park Hyatt -Toronto, Ontario

This legendary roof lounge is located eighteen floors up and although mostly enclosed, it does offer a heated outdoor area. Known for being only the second Toronto bar to receive a cocktail license, the history here goes back a long way, and during the 40’s was a hot hangout for Toronto literati. The most famous thing to sip on up here is one of the famous cocktails such as the Yorkville Squeeze or the Neighborhood Negroni, as well as smoke a Cigar, just like back in the day. The view is beyond comparison and sunset is a popular time to head up here to watch as the sky changes dramatic colors. Whether you come for brunch, a martini or a taste of incredible culinary fusion, chances are you won’t be disappointed.

Photo by: Park Hyatt
Photo by: Park Hyatt

2. Terrasse Nelligan -Montreal, Quebec

If you are looking to hang with the cool crowd on top of a rooftop make sure to head into Old Montreal and visit Terrasse Nelligan, the seasonal groovy rooftop terrace at Hotel Nelligan. Although this posh patio is only open until 11pm, it is well worth a visit to take in the views of the Old City and the St. Lawrence River. You won’t have to worry about the weather up here as retractable awnings allow guests to enjoy whether rain or sun. Thirst-quenching cocktails, a fresh menu and a hip young crowd all contribute to the lively atmosphere found here. Happy Hour is the most popular time of day to visit and make sure to try one (or two) of their delicious freshly made mojitos. Colorful plants, bright umbrellas and comfortable tables and chairs set the stage for the ultimate Montreal rooftop patio experience.

Photo by: Terrasse Nelligan
Photo by: Terrasse Nelligan

1. Harvest Kitchen -Toronto, Ontario

This tree-canopy rooftop patio caters to just about everyone visiting the city and although you may be tempted by the lovely inside décor, make sure to head upstairs as this patio should not be missed. Brunch and dinner are the busiest times here and the electric menu and commitment to ethical sourcing brings both vegetarians and meat lovers to this patio. Make sure to give their wine on tap a try, as it is not only more environmentally friendly but also friendly to your wallet being only 99 cents an ounce. Although this rooftop patio is only open 10am-10pm, it is well worth visiting during those hours. A casual walk in restaurant, guests here can wear anything from formal wear to yoga clothes and it is a welcome change from many of the restaurants in this city. Local beer, local wine, handcrafted cocktails and fresh food make this our favorite rooftop patio across Canada.

Photo by: 30 Day Adventures
Photo by: 30 Day Adventures

The 10 Freshest Farmers Markets in Canada

Summer is officially here and now is the time to take advantage of the wonderful bounty our farmers grow, from coast to coast. Canada is blessed with an abundance of fresh seasonal produce, award-winning local wine and locally raised meats; all available at one of the many farmers markets. From the largest year-round market to the historic market of Halifax, to the market that specializes in potatoes; we have rounded up the 10 freshest farmers markets in Canada. From coast to coast, there is great food to be found at all of these awesome markets.

10. St. Lawrence Market -Toronto, Ontario

Although this market is open almost every day of the week, we highly suggest visiting on a Saturday. Saturdays are when both the North and South Market open to the public, as opposed to every other day when just the South Market is open. The North Market stands in a space that has been used as a marketplace since 1803, making this the second most historic market on the list. Ontario produce, eggs, poultry, honey, olives and fresh baked bread are amongst the favorites here. The market starts early; 5 am on Saturdays and by 9 am is packed full so make sure you come early if you want to avoid the crowds. Expect to find exotic cultural food, peameal bacon sandwiches, homemade pasta noodles, camel meat and everything else in between. Make sure to carve out a few hours to walk around this gigantic market and you will soon understand why it’s hailed as being one of the best in the world.

St. Lawrence Market

9. Charlottetown Farmers’ Market -Charlottetown, P.E.I

It wouldn’t take a genius to figure out that potatoes are the main star of this market, but that’s not all you will find here at this overly friendly farmers market. Fresh produce, organic cheeses, handmade chocolates, fresh coffee and baked goods are just a slice of what you will find here. Besides all these amazing products, what really make this market so special are the people you will meet here. From vendors who give you the perfect advice on how to boil the perfect potato to meeting entire families who take part in the growing and harvesting; it is truly the people who make a difference here. Come hungry to this market as there is no shortage of hot and cold food to buy and enjoy in the seated dining area, where you will enjoy Celtic music and a sense of community that you can only find on the island.

Photo by: Martin Cathrae via Wikimedia Commons
Photo by: Martin Cathrae via Wikimedia Commons

8. Jean-Talon -Montreal, Quebec

The flavors and sites here have been attracting visitors since 1933 and Jean-Talon Market remains one of the favorites across the country. Open all year round, Saturdays are the liveliest and perhaps the best time to visit as this day houses the most vendors. This is also the day where you will find the most fresh, seasonal produce in the province. Summer is the favorite time to visit, with brightly colored produce and terrific wine. Visitors will find gourmet meats, cheese, the famous maple syrup, pastries, spices and so much more. Eating your way through this market is highly recommended, from maple glazed salmon bites to slow braised meat tacos to artisanal ice-cream. Hailed as the largest open air market in North America, don’t be surprised to find yourself standing beside famous Montreal chefs, food bloggers and amateur foodies.

Songquan Deng / Shutterstock.com
Songquan Deng / Shutterstock.com

7. St. Jacobs Farmers’ Market -Waterloo, Ontario

Located just an hour outside of Toronto, visitors here will feel as though they have stepped back in time. The nearby countryside is home to an abundance of Mennonite farmers, many of whom can be seen traveling in their horse and buggy. These farmers are who you will find selling products at Canada’s largest year-round market. A fire nearly destroyed this wonderful market a few years back but the market is back up and running in full swing. Expect to shop both indoors and out when you visit in the warmer months, as over 300 vendors congregate here. Many shoppers come here specifically for the fresh produce and hormone-free meats, although you can find just about anything you have ever wanted. Expect entertainment, music, buskers and more when you take a visit to the St. Jacobs Market in Waterloo.

St. Jacobs Farmers Market, Ontario

6. Crossroads Market -Calgary, Alberta

It is Calgary’s largest year-round market and provides a bustling atmosphere with an abundance of vendors and products. It also happens to be just five minutes from downtown with plenty of ample parking. The marker is only open on the weekends so make sure you plan around visiting then. With over 150 vendors here, it is considered part flea market and part food market. The abundance of fresh local products is what really makes this market a winner. Visit in the summer and fall to experience Alberta’s local produce or head over to the cheese shop where over 300 varieties of cheese are sold. The market is a great place to grab some local meat, fresh squeezed juice and a loaf of freshly baked bread.

Photo by: Crossroads Market
Photo by: Crossroads Market

5. Marche du Vieux-Port -Quebec City, Quebec

This year round market entices visitors with its fresh products, locally sourced items and friendly atmosphere. Arguably the best time to visit here is in the summer when the strawberries are at their finest. Locals and visitors also love this market for the specialties you can’t get anywhere else; such as the ciders, maple syrup, pates and preserves. The cranberry wine also happens to be a huge hit with visitors. The market is located on the waterfront and during the summer there is often live music or other entertainment located just outside the building. Even if you just come for the experience, we promise you won’t be leaving this market empty handed. Insider’s tip: head to the spice store at the very end of the building and get lost for hours discovering the worldly spices that you have never even seen before.

Photo by: Le Marche du Vieux-Port
Photo by: Le Marche du Vieux-Port

4. Evergreen Brickworks Farmers’ Market -Toronto, Ontario

In one of the most picturesque settings in Toronto also lies one of the best farmers markets in the country. What was once a former quarry has been transformed into a park and every Saturday morning from May until November between 65 and 85 vendors show up to sell their products. Expect to see fresh produce, organic baked goods, free-range meats, teas, leather products and everything else in between. Some favorites include fresh-made meals from Canadian chef Doug McNish and the abundance of organic options. We recommend you come hungry to this market as the plethora of breakfast and lunch options is unbelievable. From handmade Belgian waffles to organic French fries, we promise you won’t leave here feeling hungry. Take a stroll through the magnificent park afterwards to work off those waffles.

Photo by: Evergreen
Photo by: Evergreen

3. Marché St. Norbert Farmers’ Market -Winnipeg, Manitoba

From May until November, rain or shine you can find Manitoba’s farmers selling the bounty of their fields to visitors at Manitoba’s largest and best-known market. This market originally started back in 1988 with just eight vendors that gathered on the grass to sell their products and support other local producers. The market has grown enormously since then and features about 150 vendors, intent on keeping its local roots. Visitors here can expect to find an abundance of fresh local produce, freshly baked breads, home-style jams and preserves, freshly cut flowers and more. One of the more interesting things to note about this market is their online presence, which was created to help farmers sell their products over the winter. Customers can go online and order their products directly from the producers, who then prepare the order and meet in a designated spot for delivery. This market is big on sticking with their local roots and this is just one awesome way of keeping everyone connected.

Photo by: St. Norbert Farmers' Market
Photo by: St. Norbert Farmers’ Market

2. Halifax Farmers’ Market -Halifax, Nova Scotia

This market has a long history, dating back to 1750 and in 2010 finally relocated to its current location on the south end of the Halifax Waterfront. The new space provides plenty of room for people and the natural light makes this a gorgeous spot to spend the morning. Unbeatable ocean views coupled with a hip vibrant atmosphere are just the beginning of what makes this market so spectacular. You can make your way here year-round and although the market is now open seven days a week, we highly suggest visiting on a Saturday when all of the vendors are present. Some of the favorites at this market are the artisanal crafts, seasonal produce, local wine and of course the freshest seafood found anywhere in the province. This market also runs a really neat program called Lunch and Learn, which features presentations on sustainability, wellness, food demonstrations and workshops.

Photo by: Halifax Seaport Farmers' Market
Photo by: Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market

1. Trout Lake Farmers’ Market -Vancouver, British Columbia

This market is loved by many and has quite the history to go along with it. The market actually started with 14 farmers who squatted at the Croatian Cultural Centre back in 1995. Today the market has moved to John Hendry Park and is one of the most beloved markets in all of the country. Visitors come from all over the world to pick up the freshest cherries and blueberries, stock up on free-range eggs and organic meats and get the freshest vegetables found anywhere in the city. The market is open on Saturdays from May to October and people are encouraged to use public transit, walk or bike here. Think fresh baked bread, artisan crafts, fresh cut flowers and a community like atmosphere. Make sure you come to this market hungry and grab some lunch from one of the terrific food trucks, the favorite being the crepe stall.

Photo by: Vancouver Farmers Markets
Photo by: Vancouver Farmers Markets

The Best Reasons to Visit Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia. New Scotland. The Maritimes. Atlantic Canada. Sea air and people who truly are the salt of the earth. Home to Alexander Keiths, donairs, deep-fried pickles and deep-fried anything for that matter. The breathtaking Cape Breton National Park. The provincial capital, Halifax, steeped in history and one of the oldest cities in North America. In years past the arrival point for hundreds of thousands of immigrants and also the birthplace of Canada’s hockey-playing, USA-beating, Tim Horton’s-advertising favorite son, Sidney Crosby. Windsor, N.S. – the birthplace of the sport itself! What more could you want from a weekend getaway? Here are 10 must-sees for any visit to the beautiful province. 

1. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Halifax was vital to the British Navy during the War of 1812 with the United States. A multitude of books have been written on the subject but a good place to start for an insight into the importance of Nova Scotia’s naval history is the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, aptly situated on the waterfront of Halifax harbor. Here you will find exhibits on the devastating Halifax explosion of 1917 which decimated a significant part of the harbor and claimed an estimated 2000 lives; the CSS Acadia – the only ship to survive the explosion and both World Wars; a look into piracy, smuggling and why there are 10, 000 or more shipwrecks lying off the coast of Nova Scotia and how they are preserved today. Of particular interest to many will be the Titanic exhibition, which details the role the city played in rescuing, recovering, identifying and burying those who perished in the disaster. Also worth visiting is the Fairview Cemetery, where over 100 victims of the Titanic were laid to rest.

Halifax Harbor

2. Pier 21

Halifax was where many Canadian immigrants took their first steps on what would become their new home soil. Between 1928 and 1971 Pier 21 served as an ocean liner terminal and became known as the ‘Gateway to Canada’, welcoming 1.5 million to the country during that time. On Canada Day (1st July) 1999 it opened as a museum to commemorate the history of the building and those that passed through its doors.  Detailed information and personal testimonials make for an interesting, and very moving, insight into a significant piece of the history of this city.

Pier 21

3. Breweries

When on a strenuous sightseeing tour of a city its important to take the weight off and refresh yourself with a beverage as frequently as possible. Across the road from the museum is the Garrison Brewery – an independent micro-brewery that makes delicious craft beer with all-natural ingredients. Beer the way it should be. Drop in for a pint or a selection of tasters. Alexander Keith’s, perhaps Nova Scotia’s most famous export, is brewed only a short walk away along the waterfront. The Propeller Brewing Company, who are proudly the best-selling microbrewery in Nova Scotia, isn’t too much further so you might as well make an afternoon of it!

Garrison Brewery

4. Citadel Hill and Fort George

Occupying a large green space right in the heart of  the city is Halifax’s Citadel Hill and Fort George – named after King George II of Great Britain. From the waterfront it is quite a hike up to the top of this hill, especially after a few brewery tours, but well worth the effort as the views from the top are quite something. British forces built the fortifications in 1749 to defend the city from French, Acadian and Mi’kmaq aggression and they continue to stand watch over the city and harbour today. The site is now operated by Parks Canada – guards in full uniform and bearskin hats, others in period costume, men in kilts playing bagpipes and guided tours by the knowledgeable staff make this a must for any visit.

Citadel Hill

5. Driving (and Kayaking) the South Shore

There’s a lot more to Nova Scotia than its one (relatively) big city and you’d be missing out if you didn’t get in the car and explore. Views like the one below come thick and fast. Driving the winding coastal road and admiring the beautiful scenery along the way is worth taking your time over. Another option is to take to the water for some sea kayaking. Strenuous, yes, but extremely rewarding. Either way, make sure you have plenty of room on your camera. The flora, fauna and wildlife are abundant.

South Shore NS

6. Peggy’s Cove

Less than an hours drive from Halifax is Peggy’s Cove. Beginning life as a quiet fishing community, it now draws many tourists due to its famous lighthouse. Built in 1915, it is one of 160 historic lighthouses in the province that over hundreds of years have helped protect its rocky, treacherous coastline. Colorful houses perched over the water, fishing vessels and nets, salty sea air and the roar of Atlantic waves crashing against the rocks make this a uniquely East Coast experience.

Peggy's Cove NS

7. Mahone Bay

Continuing south east down the shore you will come to Mahone Bay and then Lunenburg. The former was a center for wooden boat building in years past but is most well known for the three churches that sit on the waterfront, as well as boutique shops and cafés. The image below adorns postcards, paintings and has come to be one of the most iconic images of Nova Scotia.

Mahone Bay NS

8. Lunenburg

Like so much of the province, Lunenburg was the site of tensions between the colonial British forces and the Acadian and native Mi’kmaq people. In 1753 Protestantism was forced upon the indigenous Catholic population, leading to raids and retribution against the foreign invaders which ultimately were futile. The town was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1995 and remains the best example of a British colonial settlement in Canada.

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

9. Ironworks Distillery

Whilst some shipbuilding remains in the town of Lunenburg, and the Bluenose II is moored there, its economy relies primarily on tourism. Were it not for the torrential rain that was pouring down when we arrived, we would have explored the historic streets on foot as many do. Instead, we took shelter at the Ironworks Distillery for a look around, and for a taster or two of course. Vodka made with Annapolis valley apples, a raspberry liqueur and many more will put some fire in your belly if its a damp, rainy day.

Ironworks Distillery NS

10. Cape Breton and the Cabot Trail

Last but certainly not least is Cape Breton and the Cabot Trail. Separated from ‘mainland’ Nova Scotia by the narrow Canso Strait, you must drive over a causeway to gain access to the island. The picture below was taken whilst out hiking on the Cabot Trail – named after John Cabot who reportedly visited the island in 1497. Located in the beautiful Cape Breton National Park at the north of the island, stunning highland coastline, headlands that jut out into the Atlantic, wide plateaus, rich forests and incredible wildlife await you – you may even find yourself face to face with a moose, as this author did. Truly, a once in a lifetime experience. Whoever said you had to go out west to the Rockies for breathtaking scenery? Drive the coastal road, camp, hike – but whatever you do, make sure to take a good camera and your binoculars. This hidden gem at Nova Scotia’s northernmost point has all you need.

Cape Breton NS

 

This article is a guest post by Behind The Seens

9 Lesser-Known Canadian Cities Worth Visiting

The second largest country in the world, Canada is a marvel of outstanding natural beauty and lively, gleaming cosmopolitan cities. The major cities are fantastic tourist destinations, and they are justifiably beloved by visitors. Nevertheless, there are some excellent yet lesser-known Canadian cities that are well worth visiting. Each of them is uniquely rewarding for the visitor and, just as importantly, visitors will avoid the crush of the crowd.

The following little-known cities or towns are must-visits for tourists for want to experience the true essence of Canada:

1. Nelson: British Columbia

Nestled within the Selkirk Mountains, Nelson is beautiful and full of charm. The city boasts unique and historic architecture, and the chic cafes make it perfect for days of leisure. The city is also famous as an artists’ enclave. In the opinion of John Villani, an art critic, there is no better art town in Canada. The Heritage Walking Tour is particularly popular. In addition, the surrounding cities and villages within driving distance of Nelson are worth a road trip. Of particular note is the beautiful village of Salmo, BC (a 50 kilometre drive from Nelson). Salmo plays host to Shambhala, an annual electronic music festival that attracts over 10,000 visitors every summer.
Nelson British Columbia

2. Churchill: Northern Manitoba

Situated along the Hudson Bay, the city of Churchill may be small but it puts on a spectacular natural show for visitors: Between late-November and late-March, tourists can be delighted and amazed by the Northern Lights. Churchill is also an ideal destination for seeing polar bears and whales: Polar bears can be seen throughout the year, and Beluga whales can be seen during the summer months.
Churchill, Manitoba, Canada

3. Kaslo: British Columbia

This friendly town that sits prettily on the lake is wrapped in the embrace of the mountains. Visitors can pay a visit to the SS Moyle. Built in 1867, the boat holds the distinction of being the oldest North American paddle steamer. It is now a museum, but it continues to fascinate. Kaslo is also renowned for the jazz festival that it hosts every summer.
Kaslo British Columbia, Canada

4. Whitehorse: The Yukon

Whitehorse is the capital of The Yukon and it is a bustling and attractive city. There are lovely hotels and pleasant restaurants and cafes in the town, and visitors will be absorbed by the various exhibits in McBride Museum. Whitehorse is an excellent base from which to explore the Klondike and to take trips to Alaska.
Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada

5. Dawson: The Yukon

Dawson City came to prominence during the gold strikes of the late 1800s, and the city now appears as if it is preserved in amber. Much work has been put into its preservation and visitors will feel as if they have been transported back to the American Wild West. The first port of call in Dawson has got to be its excellent Visitor Reception Centre. Tourists will fall under the charm of the heritage buildings.
Dawson City Yukon Canada

6. Fredericton: New Brunswick

The capital of New Brunswick, Fredericton is known for its stately elm trees. The city has an endearing and cozy feel, yet it is home to a number of world-class institutions. There is plenty to keep visitors occupied: The museums, historical sites and riverside trails are well-loved, and the restaurants offer international cuisine. In addition, Fredericton plays host to many world-famous festivals.
Fredericton Museum, New Brunswick, Canada

7. Halifax: Nova Scotia

Halifax is famous for its harbors, which are regarded as some of the finest in the world. Visitors should not miss the Citadel on the town’s hilltop. The four-sided Town Clock has a fascinating history: The father of Britain’s Queen Victoria commissioned the clock to keep sailors and soldiers from being late for their duties.
Clock Tower Halifax Nova Scotia Canada

8. Charlottetown: Prince Edward Island

This town is full of charm. It is elegant, dignified and classy. Charlottetown is home to Province House, which is considered a national shrine because of its historical significance. The Confederation Centre of the Arts is replete with history.
Charlottetown PEI

9. St. John’s: Newfoundland

St. John’s is famous for many reasons: It has a spectacular natural harbor, the cathedrals are impressive, and its Signal Hill Historic Park brings local history alive. Cape Spear Point affords magnificent views of the surrounding areas.
Signal Hill St. Johns Newfoundland Canada

Top 10 Cities to See in Canada

Canada is a beautiful country full of picturesque natural settings from the sea, magnificent mountains, and charming lakes. Along with the loveliness of nature, Canada also boasts many of the world’s most gorgeous cities:

1. Toronto, Ontario

One of the most eclectic cities in all of Canada, Toronto is full of both the bohemian and the trendy. The city has many beautiful valleys full of gardens and parks and a lively waterfront with a view of the many quaint archipelagos dotting the lake. The city also boasts many impressive structures including the Flatiron Building, the Ontario Legislature, as well as the Royal Ontario Museum.

CN Tower Toronto

2. Halifax, Nova Scotia 

Nova Scotia is considered to be one of the most beautiful places in all of Canada. Halifax is not only known for its truly impressive number of bars, pubs, live music venues, and restaurants but also for it perfect gardens and beaches. Along with the natural beauty of Nova Scotia, Halifax also offers numerous attractions including the boutiques of Granville Mall and the military re-enactments at the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site.

Halifax Nova Scotia

3. Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

This beautiful area, full of leafy trees, is located in the gorgeous South Saskatchewan River Valley. Saskatoon is particularly picturesque in the fall when the seasons change and the leaves turn orange. The city is full of parks and gardens, a lovely oasis of trees amid an otherwise treeless prairie landscape.

Saskatoon Saskatchewan

4. Victoria, BC

The retirement capital of Canada, the city lures in retirees for a reason – its beauty. Located near the mountains surrounding the Juan de Fuca Strait, the majesty of its surroundings is wonderfully paired with the mild climate to make the spot a must-see destination for any tourist who enjoys gardens and parks. Famous sites include the Fairmont Empress hotel and the B.C. Legislature.

Victoria, BC

5. Montreal, Quebec

Surrounded by the St. Lawrence River, Montreal offers countless attractions including quaint Old Montreal as well as Mont Royal, the peak for which the city was named. Tourists will be held captive by the glorious vistas of both mountain and beach.

Montreal Quebec

6. Kelowna, BC

For those looking for a Canadian version of California, Kelowna is the the spot. Known for its beaches and its vineyards, the city also has ski slopes not far away. Essentially, everything that one would want to do is within a stone’s throw making it perfect for any tourist.

Kelowna BC

7. Ottawa, Ontario

Certainly the backdrop for some of Canada’s most impressive monuments, Ottawa boasts numerous attractions including the Museum of Civilization, Parliament Hill, the War Museum, and the National Gallery. The famous Byward market is full of clubs and shops and across the river in Gatineau lies Gatineau Park as well as the popular Casino du Lac-Leamy.

Ottawa, Ontario

8. St. John’s, Newfoundland 

Located about as far east in Canada as it is possible to get, St. John’s has a dramatic scenery consisting of several ponds and lakes as well as a breathtaking natural harbor. Perhaps one of the most notable aspects of St. John’s is the number of bars the city boasts. In fact, George Street has the largest concentration of bars per square foot in all of North America. St. John’s is also known for it’s many well known structures including the Battery neighborhood of brightly colored homes, Cabot Tower, as well as Newfoundland Museum, Art Gallery, and Provincial Archives.

St. John's Newfoundland

9. Quebec City, Quebec

Largely a tourist town, Quebec City is a chip off the old French block. Full of European flair, the city is famous for the Fairmont Chateau Frontenac hotel, the Citadelle, and the National Assembly. Founded by Samuel de Champlain in 1608, Quebec City is perfect for any tourist who wants to see a piece of history or perhaps go cycling, attend a rock concert, or simply stroll through the beautiful streets and gardens.

Quebec City, Quebec

10. Vancouver, BC

Vancouver, perhaps one of the most visited cities in all of Canada, is renowned throughout the world as being one of the best cities both to live in as well as visit. The city has both the ocean as well as snow capped peaks making it the perfect destination for anyone who enjoys a day at the slopes as much as a day at the beach.

Vancouver, BC