21 Most Stunning Canadian Nationwide Parks
Canada is blessed with open areas and there’s nothing higher than hopping in a canoe to discover its freshwater lakes or mountain climbing via the forest in certainly one of our Canadian nationwide parks. From coast to coast to coast and in every single place in between, Canada’s nationwide parks are breathtaking.
Canada has 37 nationwide parks and 10 Nationwide Parks reserves. What are nationwide park reserves you ask? Nicely, they’re handled and managed like a nationwide park however they’ve a number of Indigenous land claims. These nationwide reserves are protected by Parks Canada and we now have had the privilege of exploring lots of our best protected lands. We haven’t seen all of them but, however because the saying goes, “I haven’t been in every single place, nevertheless it’s on my checklist.”
Greatest Nationwide Parks in Canada
One of the best ways to get to the Nationwide Parks in Canada is by automotive. You’ll be able to take a look at automotive rental comparisons at RentalCars.com. Some Canadian nationwide parks can solely be reached by aircraft as lots of Canada’s nationwide parks are in distant areas of the nation. That makes them much more fascinating to see! So, what are we ready for, let’s get exploring.
To encourage you to choose up a nationwide parks go this yr, we wished spherical up our experiences in one of the best Canadian Nationwide Parks that we’ve seen and a pair which can be on our checklist. You’ll be able to decide uo your Canadian Nationwide Parks Go at computer.gc.ca from the Nationwide Park Service. A Discovery Go value $145 per household (as much as 7 individuals) and offers entry to 80 parks for 12 months. Or you should purchase a single go: Adults $72.25 and Seniors $61.75
1. Banff Nationwide Park – Alberta
Banff is Canada’s most well-known Nationwide Park and never solely that it’s the oldest nationwide park within the nation. Banff was designated as a nationwide park in 1885 after the invention of its sizzling springs by workers of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Situated in Alberta simply 1 hour and half-hour from Calgary, Banff nationwide park is nestled within the coronary heart of the Canadian Rockies with turquoise lakes and majestic mountains, it’s no surprise it’s the third oldest nationwide park on this planet.
There’s a purpose everybody flocks to Banff, Alberta. With snowcapped mountains, glacier lakes, and world-class four-season actions, it’s Canada’s outside playground. Banff Nationwide Park is so stunning, that certainly one of its most well-known lakes, Moraine Lake was depicted on Canada’s twenty-dollar invoice.
The one downfall of visiting Banff Nationwide Park is how busy it may well get. Go attempt to go to within the shoulder season and winter in Banff is fantastic as nicely. With snowboarding at Lake Louise, Dogledding, backcountry snowboarding and snowshoeing there’s something for everybody. Plus, the Canadian Rockies are at their most stunning once they have a blanket of snow.
- Location: Banff nationwide park is situated in Alberta within the Rocky Mountains simply 90 minutes from Calgary.
- Dimension: 6641 11,000 sq. kilometres
Plan your journey to Banff Nationwide Park
2. Jasper Nationwide Park
Situated simply up the highway from Banff Nationwide Park is the biggest nationwide park within the Canadian Rockies. Jasper Nationwide Park is dare I say barely much less visited than Banff however it’s simply as spectacular.
Nestled within the Rocky Mountains, Jasper Nationwide Park is teeming with an abundance of wildlife together with, grizzly bears and massive horn sheep. From turquoise lakes to snowcapped peaks, it has every part you would need to see in a nationwide park. Make your method out to probably the most picturesque lakes in Canada, Maligne Lake, hike in Maligne Canyon or see its frozen waterfalls and ice caves within the winter, take a scenic drive, or just chill out within the Miette sizzling Springs.
Jasper city is situated inside Jasper Nationwide Park and makes for a terrific base to take pleasure in its eating places, outlets, and galleries at evening whilst you take a highway journey to see its pure magnificence by day. Jasper is much less crowded than Banff with the identical beautiful panorama crammed with snowcapped peaks, glacier lakes, and four-season outside adventures available.
Plan your journey to Jasper Nationwide Park
3. Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park – Alberta
Situated in Southern Alberta, Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park is commonly left off the Alberta journey checklist, however this distinctive nationwide park shouldn’t be on everybody’s must-visit checklist. Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Web site, an Worldwide Peace Park, and a Biosphere Reserved that shares this honor with neighboring Glacier Nationwide Park in Montana. When you are there, it might be a disgrace to not cross the border to see Glacier Nationwide Park. Try all there’s to do there at 16 of the Greatest Glacier Nationwide Park Hikes
With superior backcountry mountain climbing, the well-known crimson rocks, and the scenic and historic Prince of Wales Resort, Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park has all of it. Plus, you possibly can see a wild herd of bison right here. Waterton Lakes isn’t named after lakes for something, take a ship tour on Waterton Lake, Center Waterton Lake, and Decrease Waterton Lake.
With over 200km of mountain climbing trails, Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park is a hikers paradise. Be certain that to maintain a watch out for wildlife together with bears, elk, moose bighorn sheep and mountain goats. After we had been mountain climbing at Waterton Lakes, there was a cougar on the path which made everybody very excited.
- Location: Alberta – 2 hours and 40 minutes south of Calgary
- Dimension 505 sq. km
- E book an evening to recollect on the Prince of Wales
Plan your journey to Waterton Lakes Nationwide Park
4. Ivvavik Nationwide Park – Yukon Territories
Ivvavik Nationwide Park is as distant because it will get. We flew to Whitehorse Yukon, after which onward via little cities in Northern Canada as we picked individuals up on a small aircraft like a northern bus route earlier than stopping in Inuvvik Northwest Territories for the evening. It was then onward by biplane to camp in the course of Ivavvik Nationwide Park within the far north of the Yukon Territories the place we made a base to seek for grizzly bears.
Parks Canada has a base camp arrange immediately alongside a grizzly bear freeway that you’re smack dab in the course of. Surrounded by the rolling British Mountains, Ivavvik Nationwide Park can also be house to Canada’s oldest river.
- Location: Far Northern Yukon on the Beaufort Sea – Solely method in is by aircraft
- Dimension: 10,168 sq. km
- Plan your journey to Ivvavik Nationwide Park:
5. Kluane Nationwide Park – Yukon Territories
Whereas visiting the Yukon, one other unimaginable Canadian nationwide park will be seen. Situated within the southwest nook of the territory, Kluane Nationwide Park is a delegated UNESCO World Heritage Web site and residential to the biggest non-polar ice discipline on this planet spanning 35,233 sq. km (13,600 sq. miles)
The park’s panorama is dominated by the Saint Elias Mountains, which comprise Canada’s highest peak, Mount Logan, standing at 5,959 meters. Kluane Nationwide Park additionally homes the world-famous Kaskawulsh Glacier, which is the biggest glacier within the park and is thought for its distinctive ice formations and turquoise meltwater streams.
Like so lots of our nationwide parks Kluane Nationwide Park is house to an abundance of wildlife, together with grizzly bears, black bears, moose, caribou, Dall sheep, and mountain goats. The park additionally incorporates a wide range of hen species, together with bald eagles, peregrine falcons, and gyrfalcons.
6. Wooden Buffalo Nationwide Park – Northwest Territories / Alberta
Whereas we’re visiting Canada’s Territories, Wooden Buffalo Nationwide Park is one other certainly one of our stunning and distant nationwide parks in Canada. Sharing a border with Alberta, this nationwide park was established in 1922. It was designed to guard one of many final surviving herds of Bison so you’re secure to imagine that that is the highest draw. Nonetheless, there are many issues to do right here from mountain climbing and paddling to having fun with stargazing and trying to find the Northern lights.
It’s the largest nationwide park in Canada and additionally it is a nationwide historic website.
7. Fundy Nationwide Park- New Brunswick
Residence to the world’s highest tides, Fundy Nationwide Park in New Brunswick is a pure surprise. With greater than 100 km of mountain climbing trails, it’s a place to spend days. Take a drive to the excessive lookouts overlooking sea cliffs that roll alongside the Bay of Fundy, have a picnic on certainly one of its seashores, and make a day journey to the Hopewell Rocks and Cape and Rage to actually see the facility of those excessive tides.
Fundy NP has unbelievable tenting together with yurts for hire via Parks Canada. See extra at: Superb Bay of Fundy Adventures – Methods to Expertise the Highest Tides
- Location: New Brunswick between Saint John and Moncton
- Dimension 207 sq. km
8. Kouchibouguac Nationwide Park – New Brunswick
Not as well-known as its southern nationwide park, Kouchibouguac Nationwide Park is situated on the Acadian Coast. The 239 sq. km nationwide park is legendary for its sand dunes, and marshlands. However additionally it is a premier vacation spot for darkish skies.
That is the place to go swimming on the East Coast, it has the warmest waters within the Maritimes with gentle sands which can be good for wading within the heat waters of the North Umberland Strait. Learn extra: 25 Greatest Issues to do in New Brunswick, Canada
- Location: 1 hour north of Moncton
- Dimension 238 Sq. km
9. Cape Breton Highlands Nationwide Park – Nova Scotia
Residence to one of many best drives on the planet, Cape Breton Highlands Nationwide Park in Nova Scotia is the place the place the mountains meet the ocean. It’s house to Canada’s most stunning sea cliffs. The Cabot Path runs inside the nationwide park, so it’s simple to drive from one spectacular view after one other.
Go whale watching, mountain climbing or tenting in an oTentik. That is actually a spot to take pleasure in east coast hospitality and the fantastic thing about Canada. Learn extra: 22 Unbelievable Stops on the Cabot Path in Nova Scotia
- Location: Cape Breton Island Nova Scotia 5 hours from Halifax
- Dimension: 949 sq. km
10. Pacific Rim Nationwide Park Reserve – British Columbia
Situated on Vancouver Island, Pacific Rim Nationwide Park is the place you’ll hike the well-known West Coast Path. The West Coast Path is a 75 km lengthy trek and takes between 5 to 7 days to hike and is certainly one of Canada’s nice hikes situated alongside the west coast of Vancouver Island. The Pacific Rim Nationwide Park Reserve additionally contains the Lengthy Seashore and the Damaged Group Islands.
With paddling at Damaged Group Islands or browsing at Lengthy Seashore and world-class whale watching, this nationwide park has all of it. Learn extra: Kayaking to the Damaged Group Islands
To be able to hike the West Coast Path, hikers should acquire a allow from Parks Canada and are required to attend an orientation session previous to beginning the path. The variety of hikers allowed on the path is restricted every year with a purpose to shield the delicate ecosystem and make sure the security of hikers.
11. Yoho Nationwide Park – British Columbia
British Columbia is blessed with nationwide parks and wide-open areas and Yoho Nationwide Park is one other stunning place to go to. Situated within the Canadian Rockies, it presents distinctive mountain climbing and biking. The title “Yoho” comes from a Cree phrase that means “awe” or “surprise”, which is a becoming description.
Yoho Nationwide Park creates a Rocky Mountain triangle with Kootenay Nationwide Park to the south and Banff Nationwide Park to the East within the UNESCO World Heritage Web site, the Canadian Rocky Mountains Parks. Learn: The Rocky Mountaineer Expertise – Vancouver to Banff
The highest sights to see listed below are the pure bridge, an emerald lake, Wapta Falls, and Burgess Shale Fossil Web site. As with the entire nationwide parks in Canada, you possibly can go tenting within the backcountry (with a allow). The Burgess Shale, one other UNESCO World Heritage Web site, is situated inside Yoho Nationwide Park. It’s a fossil deposit that incorporates among the oldest and most well-preserved fossils of early animal life on Earth.
12. Kootenay Nationwide Park – BC
One other certainly one of our nationwide parks in Canada is close by Kootenay Nationwide Park. Becoming a member of Yoho Nationwide Park with Banff Nationwide Park this trio makes up the UNESCO-designated Canadian Rockies. Situated within the city of Radium, it’s snuggled alongside the Alberta border.
It’s recognized for its abundance of sizzling springs together with Radium Scorching Springs the place you possibly can benefit from the sizzling swimming pools in luxurious) and abundance of wildlife. A spotlight of Kootenay Nationwide Park is Marble Canyon the place you possibly can hike via the slim gorge.
13. Pukaskwa Nationwide Park – Ontario
Pukaskwa Nationwide Park is situated alongside the north coast of Lake Superior and is within the coronary heart of Ontario’s untamed wilderness. Mountain climbing alongside its coast reminds you of being on the East Coast of Canada because it rolling rocky shoreline climbs excessive above the inland sea of Lake Superior.
There’s backcountry tenting and it homes the most effective hikes in Canada that actually takes you on a wilderness expertise. We got here head to head with a mama moose and her calf that we assume was spooked by a close-by black bear after seeing its recent paw prints within the mud beneath. See our expertise: The Wild Coastal Path of Pukaskwa Nationwide Park
14. Georgian Bay Islands Nationwide Park – Ontario
Staying in Ontario, we make our approach to the world’s largest freshwater archipelago. Situated on Lake Huron, Georgian Bay Islands Nationwide Park is house to 30,000 islands. It might be situated on a big physique of water, however it’s the smallest nationwide park in Canada
Watch the panorama change earlier than your eyes as you head north the place evergreen forests give approach to the rocky Canadian defend. That is the guts of cottage nation so there are actions for the entire household with mountain climbing trails, boat excursions, biking and tenting. Learn extra: Epic Issues to do in Ontario
- Location: Ontario – 2 Hours North of Toronto
- Dimension: 13.5 squ. km
15. Thousand Islands Nationwide Park – Ontario
Situated alongside the St. Lawrence River Thousand Islands Nationwide Park is certainly one of Canada’s smallest nationwide parks with an space of solely 24.4 sq. km and most of that’s water. This can be a good spot to go paddling to discover the islands between Kingston and Brockville. You’ll want to cease in at Mallorytown Touchdown on the 1000 Islands Parkway to get all the data you must discover the primary nationwide park in Japanese Canada. Learn extra: 25 Day Journeys from Toronto to Escape the Metropolis
16. Prince Edward Island Nationwide Park – PEI
Residence to Anne of Inexperienced Gables, Prince Edward Island Nationwide Park homes Inexperienced Gables and the nationwide historic website, Dalvay by the Sea situated at Dalvay Lake. You’ll want to go for a stroll alongside the boardwalk taking you throughout the marshland to the sand dunes.
With different mountain climbing trails, and a really lengthy sandy seaside, that is the right cease on a PEI highway journey. Get extra data: Issues to do in Prince Edward Island (PEI)
- Location: Prince Edward Island (PEI) – half-hour north of Charlottetown.
- Dimension: 27 sq. Km
17. Prince Albert Nationwide Park – Saskatchewan
Okay, that is taking us method again into the vault. Years in the past, I sang in a present in Prince Albert Saskatchewan known as P.A.Boys. It was throughout that point that I had the possibility to discover a little bit of the province within the north. The year-round vacation spot encompasses a boreal forest, grasslands, lakes and rivers. At 3,874 sq. kilometres, it’s an enormous one! Learn extra about Saskatchewan: 15 Greatest Issues to do in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
- Location: Saskachewan – 1 hour north of Prince Alberta
- Dimension: 3874 sq. km
18. Gaspésie Peninsula – Quebec
Visiting the Gaspésie Area of Quebec presents the possibility to go to 4 Nationwide Parks in Canada of assorted landscapes and exeriences. If you wish to see woodland caribou within the wild, Gaspésie Nationwide Park is the place to do it. It was designated to guard the Gaspésie Caribou. Apparently it’s the solely place you possibly can see caribou south of the St. Lawrence (and I imply, actually, simply south of the St. Lawrence).
Situated inland within the Appalachian Mountains, it’s a gorgeous panorama of rolling hills. For the dramatic sea cliff views of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, head to, Forillian and l’Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé. And Miguasha Nationwide Park is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Web site for its 370 million yr outdated fossils. For sure, it is a good spot to spend a summer time trip.
- Location: Quebec – 8 hours North of Quebec Metropolis within the Gaspé Peninsula.
19. Wapusk Nationwide Park – Manitoba
Residence to the Polar Bear Freeway, Wapusk Nationwide Park is situated in a distant area of Manitoba on the Hudson Bay. We stayed on the sting of it when trying to find polar bears with Churchill Wild at each Seal River Heritage Lodge and Nanuk Lodge. They act as bookends to the park!
When flying over this slice of the Arctic we noticed a minimum of a dozen polar bears strolling alongside the coast. You’ll be able to’t go to this park by yourself, however you possibly can ebook polar bear excursions with expert guides in distant lodges to witness the unimaginable wildlife of the north. It’s not simply polar bears that you simply’ll see, we noticed black bears, wolves and arctic fox. So cute! Learn extra: Strolling with Polar Bears
- Location: Manitoba – South of Churchill on the Hudson Bay reached by aircraft.
- Dimension: 11,745 Sq. km
20. Using Mountain Nationwide Park – Manitoba
A extra accessible nationwide park in Manitoba is Using Mountain Nationwide Park. Established in 1929, and it covers an space of over 3,000 sq. kilometers. The park is house to a number of historic websites, together with the Gray Owl Cabin, which was as soon as inhabited by the well-known conservationist Archibald Belaney, often known as Gray Owl.
The nationwide park is 2 hours and 45 minutes from Winnipeg and one of the best ways to get there’s to drive. Should you don’t have a automotive, you possibly can hire one. Autos going into any of Canada’s nationwide parks require a allow. You’ll be able to decide one up from Parks Canada on the gate, or get a nationwide parks go.
21. Gros Morne Nationwide Park – Newfoundland
This can be a Canadian nationwide park that has been on our bucket checklist. Now we have had a few plans to see it, however life bought in the way in which. Hopefully, this yr will lastly be our yr. Gros Morne Nationwide Park Newfoundland and is thought for its excessive fjords and distant panorama.
One of many must-do actions in Gros Morne Nationwide Park is a ship tour of the Western Brook Pond Fjord taking guests on a scenic journey via towering cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and pristine waters.
Gros Morne Nationwide Park can also be house to a singular geological characteristic known as the Tablelands. This is likely one of the greatest locations to hike alongside its flat-topped mountain plateau which rises greater than 700 meters above sea stage. What makes the Tablelands so distinctive is that it’s made up of peridotite, a sort of rock that’s normally discovered deep inside the Earth’s mantle.
And eventually, I do know what you’re considering, why isn’t Torngat Mountains, Nationwide Park? Nicely, it too is in Newfoundland and we now have but to go to so it must wait. However as soon as we do, this area proper right here can be reserved for the Torngat Mountains.
And these are one of the best Canadian nationwide parks that we’ve seen. There are nonetheless a number of extra on our bucket checklist and we are able to’t wait to get exterior and discover extra of fantastic Canada.