Canada’s Top 5 Staycation Destinations to Visit in 2021

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Canada—the second largest country in the world. If you had to choose one country for a staycation, Canada would be an excellent choice. Why? There are nearly too many reasons to choose from.

First, the mountains are enormous, yet enchanting. Next, the coasts are rugged and charming. Let’s not forget the remote beaches, glaciers, rainforests, and ocean views. Canada is ten provinces, six time zones, and three territories of stunning nature.

But it’s more than natural beauty. Canada is also world-renowned major cities. It’s delicious food and drinks. It’s a melting pot of international cultures, all wrapped in one.

We’ve put together a list of five staycation destinations in Canada.

Explore a little further below.

South Okanagan, BC

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The Okanagan Valley is a sight to behold. It stretches from Osoyoos, a desert-like area near the border of the United States, up to Penticton, much farther north. In between, you’ll find shimmering lakes, rivers, a range of sub climates, and over 70 wineries.

Let’s not forget the hearty and healthy meals in the region’s inns and restaurants either.

The open and mountainous terrain makes it a paradise for outdoorsy types too. There are hiking and cycling opportunities at every turn. And who doesn’t like ecofriendly activities? It’s the perfect blend of nature, adventure, and social fun.

Put simply, South Okanagan is one of the most breathtaking places in Canada.

Banff and Lake Louise, AB

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In a country known for its incredible nature and scenery, Banff National Park and Lake Louise are arguably the most scenic. In fact, Banff is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. During the winter, it’s every skier and snowboarder’s dream. During the spring, summer and fall, the scenic and craggy terrain is ideal for hikers and runners alike.

While there’s no shortage of spectacular views, no trip to Alberta is complete without a visit to Lake Louise, Moraine Lake, the Banff Gondola, and Johnston Canyon. They’re great starting points for wildlife spotting too.

Foodies will have an especially good time in Banff. The town of less than 10 000 people has had a surge of new restaurant openings. It goes without saying, a trip to Banff is worth your while.

Prince Edward County, ON

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If you’re looking for the perfect mix of nature, small town charm, shopping, and cuisine, visit Prince Edward County. It’s one of Ontario’s (and Canada’s) gems. The hundreds of kilometers of sand beaches, conservation areas, wildlife and provincial parks are hard to resist.

Take your pick of farm-to-table restaurant menus too. The county’s eateries showcase dishes made from locally sourced ingredients (read: incredible farmers markets). Your taste buds will thank you.

The region is also becoming well-known for its booming wine culture. Enjoy some of the finest wines the province has to offer at nearly 40 wineries. No matter the season, a trip to Prince Edward County is always delightful experience.

Gaspésie, QC

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Gaspésie is magnetically charming, and its wonderful landscapes are a big part of its appeal. In fact, the Quebec government designated the region a protected area. Take one look at the sprawling Chic-Choc mountain range and seemingly never-ending seaside views, and you’ll understand why.

The beaches may be even more impressive. And the mouthwatering seafood will have you planning your next visit before you head back home. Gaspésie is truly a one-of-a-kind destination—from the seaside drives, to the unique Gaspésian, Quebecois and Acadian history, the geological history, to the people.

Cape Breton Island, NS

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Cape Breton’s natural beauty is second to none. The ocean views, rolling terrain, and expansive provincial as well as national parks are stunning. Go kayaking in Aspy Bay or skiing and bounding down some of Nova Scotia’s highest alpine peaks. Hike your way through the Mabou Highlands or get a bird’s-eye view (quite literally) of the land on awe-inspiring tree walks.

Golf lovers will feel right at home too. Cape Breton is home to some of the world’s most stunning courses. It also boasts a musical history that rivals anywhere else in Canada. Fiddlers in this part of the country are known for producing some of the country’s best traditional folk music.

Last but not least, learn about the province’s indigenous culture at one of five major reserves, or different heritage centers.

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Written by Kyle Bernard

In his free time, Kyle is a photographer, writer and proud plant dad. He’s a lifelong fan of Japanese anime and casual student of the culinary arts. Born in the Caribbean and raised in Canada, he enjoys laidback atmospheres and nature. After graduating from McGill University, he went backpacking for nearly 2 years through the Caribbean, Europe and Asia and has deepened his appreciation for travel and culture.

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