Updated: Jun 18, 2021
Canada offers visitors a number of urban attractions to renowned nature spots. Canada’s vastness and rich cultural history have developed it into a welcoming and diverse country. This guide provides travellers with a few top landmarks they should consider visiting on their next trip to Canada.
Before you make a list of landmarks you must see in Canada, it's a good idea to get familiar with the regulations for entering the country. Much like travelling to other countries, you must have a travel authorization, such as a visa or visa waiver, to enter the country. Canada offers tourists and business travellers two types of travel authorizations. One is an eTA, which stands for Electronic Travel Authorization, and the other is a Canadian visitor visa.
An Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) is for visa-exempt travellers to get into Canada by air only. Visa-exempt travellers do not need an eTA if they are arriving into Canada by sea, rail or car. Only passport holders of approximately 60 countries are eligible to apply for an eTA. Once approved, your eTA is linked to your passport and you will need to present it to the Canadian Border Services Officers when you enter Canada. If your passport expires, then your eTA will also expire and you will need to reapply. Your eTA allows you to visit Canada for up to 6 months. Once in Canada, you won't need your eTA to get around the country. Keep in mind that your eTA does not guarantee entry into Canada.
For travellers that are ineligible for an eTA, a Canadian visa will be required if you're travelling to the country via plane, bus, car, train or cruise ship.
If you are going to Canada to work or study, you will also need an approved eTA or visa. If you have family members in Canada, you may be eligible for a super visa, which allows you to visit for up to 2 years at a time.
It's illegal to try to gain entry into Canada without the proper documentation and getting caught trying to do so can lead to jail time and fines, as well as restrictions on entering Canada at a later date. No matter where you're travelling from, it's best to go through the proper channels to get the required travel authorization, whether it's an eTA or a visa so that you can legally visit Canada. Once you're in the country, you can consider visiting the landmarks below.
No visit to Canada would be complete without a trip to one of the world’s most renowned waterfalls. In addition to the massive falls, there's a nature reserve with hiking trails. You can also take a Maid of the Mist boat ride to get a close look and feel the power of the waterfall. Complete your visit by stopping at one of the nearby casinos or wineries.
Unlike the hustle and bustle of many other Canadian attractions, Prince Edward Island offers the opportunity to experience the scenery of the countryside, including expansive sweeping views of green hills, sandstone cliffs, and the harp seals that call the island their home. And of course, you don't want to miss out on sampling the local seafood, including the namesake Prince Edward Island (PEI) mussels.
Located in Toronto, the CN Tower is an iconic landmark on the city's skyline. It towers 553 metres into the sky and when opened in 1984, it was the tallest tower in the world. At the top, there is an observation point enabling the most magnificent views of Toronto and you might also enjoy a meal in the 360-degree revolving restaurant. The tower is equally magnificent at night when it's lit up in a variety of beautiful colours.
Quebec itself is a glorious city filled with a number of tourist activities. A trip to Old Quebec is something visitors should consider. The area is graced by historic buildings and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Here you can visit the Citadel, Place d'Armes and the Rue de Tresor for local art. You'll be along the St. Lawrence River and can also visit the Fairmont le Chateau Frontenac.
Ottawa doesn't lack in sites to see. Parliament Hill is one particular spot that should be experienced. In addition to seeing and touring the architecturally magnificent parliament buildings, this is also the place to see the Changing of the Guard. You can also get a look at the Peace Tower and the Centennial Flame, which was lit in 1966. There's also a sculpture garden and walking trails along the river.
Churchill, Manitoba is where the annual polar bear migration takes place. Here, polar bears make their way from land onto the ice of Hudson Bay. Each fall, the city throws its doors open to tourists who want to see the bears and they offer buggy rides so you can view the animals in a safe way. The best time to see them is in October and November.
Right on the water, Victoria's Inner Harbor area has been developed to create a beautiful place for walking, watching street performers, eating in local restaurants, or shopping. The Empress Hotel is at the centre of the area. The hotel is a place that has hosted kings and queens going back many generations.
Located between New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, the area features the largest difference between low and high tide anywhere in the world; up to an impressive 19 meters. There are plenty of cliffs and rock formations to view this wonder from and many walking trails.
If snow sports are among your passions, you must visit Whistler, where you can ski, snowboard, or snowshoe on many different trails for all skill levels. You can also enjoy snowmobiling at the resort. Head into the city for museums, culture, and unique dining destinations for Whistlers urban activities.
Located in Newfoundland and Labrador, St. John's is a unique destination. The houses are iconic brightly coloured abodes that have been a source of artist inspiration for generations. Many call this the best city in Canada and it's also the oldest. There are several sites on Water Street, but there's also the Cape Spear Lighthouse and nearby options for experiencing local and historical culture.
Often at near the very top of lists of the World's Best Places to Live, Vancouver is a popular destination on the Canadian West Coast. The city has several urban and seaside attractions. It is also close to areas of natural beauty.
Canada has a beach area known as Tofino. Tofino is on Vancouver Island and features several different beaches, including Long Beach and Chesterman Beach. You can partake in kayaking and swimming here, and there are places to camp as well. It's also a popular destination for experiencing Canadian fish tacos.
Within the Long Range Mountains, Gros Morne National Park is the place to hike and experience nature when you visit Canada. The Tablelands offer visitors several walking trails. Gros Morne National Park also offers cruises on the Western Brook Pond. The park is found between Newfoundland and Labrador and there are other outdoor activities in the surrounding areas.
Travellers can experience the old-style architecture and historical Canadian buildings by visiting Montreal, which showcases Canada’s heavy French influence. In addition to the underground city that is ready for you to explore.
Canada is a welcoming country that offers travellers famous landmarks to see, both old and new. Singles, couples, and families can customise their itinerary to best suit their travel needs and Canada’s appeal to all types of travellers ensures there is little chance for disappointing experiences.
If you hold a passport from a country that is eligible for the Canada eTA such as the UK, Ireland, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, or many other eTA eligible countries, you will need to obtain an approved eTA before your tourism, business or medical visit to Canada. Get started on your application, otherwise, visit the eTA requirements to learn more about the Canada eTA