Just picture it now, cruising along with the wind in your hair, the tunes pumping, the open highway stretched out in front of you and the Canadian Rockies as your backdrop – life doesn’t get much better. Canada is one of the most spectacular countries in the world and the pinnacle road trip destination. But with so much incredible landscape to explore where do you even start? That’s where we come in my friend. We’ve hand-picked 3 of the best Canadian road trips out there, with beaches, glaciers, mountains and waterfalls for you to take your pick from!
So pack your bags and get ready to hit the road…
1. Beachin’ roadie – Vancouver to Tofino
Day 1: Start in Vancouver, head to Horseshoe Bay, take the ferry to Nanaimo, join onto the Pacific Rim Highway and get ready to wind down those windows… you’ll make your way through mountains, lakes, skim along the coastline and pass through ancient rain forests. Jaw. Dropping. Oh and keep your eyes peeled for grizzlies!
Along the way: Stops you HAVE hit include, Coombs Country Market for local souvenirs and spotting their infamous roof roaming goats and Cathedral Grove to check out 800 year old Douglas fir trees!
Day 2: Before you reach Tofino (Canada’s surfing capital – FYI) you’ll arrive at Ucluelet which also has some seriously big waves and is a heck of a lot cheaper, it’s worth spending a couple of days here. When you finally arrive at Tofino, grab your surf board and head straight for the world-famous Chesterman Beach. But if you’re not up for surfing; go whale watching, hiking, horse-riding, even storm watching (yeah, it’s a thing.)
OR just straight up chill, this roadie is for all you beach bums out there.
2. Go Lakeside – Calgary to Lake Louise & Banff Springs
You need at least 3 days for this lovely scenic roadie. Believe us your eyes are going to hurt by the end of it, the views are just TOO beautiful. No joke.
Day 1: Kick things off in Calgary, forget Toronto, say hello to one of Canada’s more understated cities! Calgary has the youngest population in the country with the average age around 35, so that means loads of awesome bars and a great nightlife. But it’s not all partying, Calgary is about 50 miles east of the Rockies, has wide open spaces and an incredibly laid-back atmosphere (known as ‘Cow Town’. Apparently). Spend the day exploring the city!
Along the way: Head out early morning to Lake Louise one of the most stunning spots in Canada and stop at Columbia Icefield to explore the Athabasca Glacier – a Canadian adventure must do.
Day 2: Once you reach Lake Louise take a stroll around its crystal-clear blue waters. Renowned for its beauty, it’s definitely worth hiring a canoe for a day, gently make your way round the lake and just take it all in. If you want to pick up the pace, hike through Banff National Park surrounding the lake. After all that exertion or relaxation, take a break and have a cuppa at Fairmont Chateau, one of Canada’s grand railway hotels. The views from there are FAB.
Day 3: Is all about pampering yourself, head up to Sulphur Mountain & Banff Springs for a day spent soaking yourself in the hot springs. Pack your swimwear, get the gondola up to the top of the mountain and enjoy all that the springs have to offer. You can even opt for a ghost tour if you fancy it! After all of that relaxation, you must be pretty tired, time to head back to Calgary.
3. The Sea to Sky Highway – British Columbia
You’re about to get sky high. You thought the other two road trips were magnificent, just wait until you hit the Sea to Sky Highway also known as Highway 99. This one could be done in a day – short but sweet!
Day 1: Hit the road from downtown Vancouver in the direction of Whistler, turn onto the open highway, take the roof down (romanticise with me here) and crank the radio up! This drive is said to be one of the most stunning in North America, you’ll be cruising through the Howe Sound, so give yourself time for essential Instagramming pit-stops.
Along the way: There are a few spots that you just CAN’T miss. Make sure you stop for a picnic at Shannon Falls or grab a bite at the Watershed grill where you can sit overlooking the Squamish River. If you fancy stretching your legs after being cooped up in the car, head to Tantalus Range Lookout and take some unbelievable panoramic shots.
There you have it 3 beautiful roadies that will take you into the heart of Canada. Feeling inspired? Check out all things Canadian here.