Canada is a great destination to enjoy a fitness adventure or vacation. From incredible wellness retreats in Vancouver to awesome outdoor thrill-seeking activities in Manitoba, there is bound to be at least a few adventure holidays in Canada that satisfy whatever it is you’re looking for!
So, pick your pleasure. Below you’ll find some of the best places to hike, bike, paddle, and cross-country ski.
Best Places to Hike in Canada
Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland
Considered a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Gros Morne National Park is situated on Newfoundland’s west coast. With breathtaking vistas, expansive mountain ranges, and wooded areas, there’s something for everyone in this jaw-dropping natural wonder. And there’s no better time to experience the coastal pathways and beautiful landscape than during the autumn foliage.
Fundy National Park, New Brunswick
Located on the famed Bay of Fundy near the village of Alma, New Brunswick, Fundy National Park is known for its rugged coastline that expands all the way up to the Canadian Highlands and for having the highest tide in the world. Experienced and novice hikers from around the world can enjoy breathtaking scenery while exploring the lush green landscapes that this picturesque national park has to offer.
The Haliburton Highlands, Ontario
Known for its wide variety of water and land hiking trails, Ontario’s Haliburton Highlands have something fun and exciting for hikers of all skill levels. Choose from a number of different hiking adventures that are available year-round including the Haliburton Highlands Rail Trail, the Dorset Scenic Tower Trail, the Beetle Lake Trail, and so much more!
Mantario Hiking Trail, Manitoba
Mantario Hiking Trail is a meandering 63-kilometre-long path located in Whiteshell Provincial Park, which shares an eastern border with Ontario. Although the trail is available to hikers, backpackers, mountain bikers and other outdoor activity thrill seekers, vehicular access is limited as Mantario Wilderness Zone is classified as protected land.
Best Places to Cycle in Canada
Confederation Trail, Prince Edward Island
Considered one of the best multipurpose trails in the country, Confederation Trail has a vast and unique natural history. It was originally used as a transatlantic railroad system, but was eventually abandoned in 1989 at which point, residents of the area decided to turn it into an expansive outdoor activities reserve. Spanning a whopping 435 km, this massive corridor is the perfect location for long-distance riding and walking in the summer, but it’s also great for snowmobiling enthusiasts in the winter.
Manitoba Cycling Trails
In Manitoba, there are both paved and dirt trails that are perfect for spending a few hours cycling. For a steep ride, try Bald Hill and Packhorse trails in Riding Mountain National Park. In the summertime, The Grand Beach Provincial Park cross-country ski trails (featuring forested hills and sandy soil) are also used by cyclists. Cycling Manitoba features an extensive list of cycling trails for all skill levels throughout the province.
Valley Trail, British Columbia
If you’re looking for exciting wellness activities in or around Vancouver, one of the most popular cycling locations is the Valley Trail in Whistler. It’s worth making the 1.5-hour drive up to Whistler to experience the 30 km paved pedestrian and bicycle path that links parks, beaches, neighbourhoods, and Whistler Village. If you’re looking for a more challenging trail, then be sure to check out the world famous Whistler Mountain Bike Park.
With a network for over 370 km of bike paths and 600 km of urban recreational pathways, the Outaouais region of Quebec is renowned for its available cycling options and activities. According to the city’s tourism web site, “happiness comes on two wheels, with bike paths and routes for all ability levels”. Surrounded by a mix of wildlife and urban dwellings, the nature lover in you will appreciate the stunning views along this massive trail.
Victoria, British Columbia
As an avid and passionate cyclist, you’d be remiss if you didn’t visit Victoria—Canada’s cycling capital—at least once in your life. It’s reported that more people per capita in Victoria commute via bicycle than people in any other Canadian city. Whether you’re commuting to work, running errands, or pedaling on the Lochside Regional trails or Galloping Goose, there’s tons to see and do on your bike in Victoria.
Best Places to Paddle in Canada
The Laurentian Mountains, Quebec
In Quebec, The Laurentians offer about a dozen rivers that are perfect for paddling including those that snake through the stunning Tremblant National Park. Featuring 1,510 km of protected lakes, rivers, and forests, paddling enthusiast can canoe around the Méandres du Diable or observe the natural habitat of loons as they take a two-hour sea-kayak tour.
Seascape Kayak Tours Inc., New Brunswick
Seascape Kayak Tours Inc. takes eager participants on fun and exhilarating fully guided kayaking expeditions. The company prides itself on upholding the utmost safety standards and adhering to environmentally sustainable operational practices while also educating participants about local wildlife. Whether you want to explore the stunning natural wonder that is the Bay of Fundy or take a tour of Newfoundland’s breathtaking coastline, Seascapes has something for everyone.
Best Places to Cross Country Ski & Snowshoe in Canada
Mont Tremblant, Quebec
Considered the top ski resort in eastern North America, Mont Tremblant offers more than just downhill skiing and snowboarding. There’s a lot here for Nordic skiers. A network of 65 km (about 11 miles) of trails stretches around the Mont Tremblant resort and the city of Mont Tremblant. You don’t need to lug your own skis, there are several places to rent what you need.
Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba
In addition to some awesome cycling trails, Riding Mountain National Park also offers some of the best skiing and horseshoeing trails in the winter. There are also wonderful trails in Lake of the Prairies, Brandon Hills, Spruce Woods Provincial Park, Grand Beach Provincial Park, Pinawa Whiteshell Provincial Park, Beaudry Park, and Snow Valley. The Cross-Country Ski Association of Manitoba is a great resource for more information.
Callaghan Country, British Columbia
Located less than 30 minutes northwest of Whistler, Callaghan Country has more than 35 kilometres of snowshoe trails, as well as numerous back-country ski trails to enjoy each winter. Callaghan Country is also the home of the Whistler Nordic Centre where all the Nordic ski events for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games took place.