The Top 10 Canadian National Parks
Here you will find maple syrup, hockey, and stunning natural beauty! One of the most magnificent things about Canada is its incredible national parks here. From rugged coastlines to pristine forests to towering mountains, the great white north is home to an array of stunning landscapes. With millions of people eager to explore the wilderness that Canada has to offer, it's no wonder its beautiful national parks here are so popular.
Canada is home to a plethora of breathtaking national parks that can leave you spoilt for choice. Deciding which ones to visit can be a daunting task. But don't worry, we've got you covered! Our team has done extensive research and put together a comprehensive list of the top 10 Canadian national parks you should explore. So, prepare your hiking gear, brace yourself for a thrilling adventure, and let's delve into the wonderland of Canada's finest national parks!
1. Banff National Park
Hold onto your hiking boots, folks! We're about to embark on a west coast trail adventure, and our first stop is Banff National Park. This place is the ultimate Canadian wilderness icon, and it's guaranteed to blow your mind (in a good way, of course). Think towering mountains, crystal-clear lakes, and lush forests that are so dense, you might just bump into a Sasquatch. Banff is the type of place that makes you wonder if Mother Nature has been hitting the gym lately because everything is just so damn impressive. So, get ready to experience some serious #NatureGoals, and don't forget to bring your camera (and a few extra pairs of underwear, just in case).
One of the most popular attractions in Banff National Park is Lake Louise, a turquoise gem nestled in a valley surrounded by snow-capped mountains. Visitors can hike around the lake, take a canoe out on the water, or simply relax and soak in the view. Some might just jump in the lake and really soak up the experience!
But Banff isn't just about the scenery - there are plenty of activities to keep visitors busy year-round. In the winter, you can hit the slopes at one of the area's ski resorts, while in the summer, you can go hiking, mountain biking, or even try your hand at rock climbing. And of course, no visit to Banff is complete without a soak in the natural hot springs!
2. Jasper National Park
Hey there, adventure seekers! If you're ready to take things to the next level after Banff, then hop in your car and head over to Jasper National Park. This place is the ultimate playground for nature lovers, and it's packed with all sorts of critters, including grizzly bears, wolves, and elk. So, make sure to bring your best "bear spray shuffle" and your loudest animal calls, and get ready to get up close and personal with some of Canada's wildest residents. Who knows, you might even make a new furry friend (or become lunch - just kidding...maybe).
One of the highlights of Jasper is the Columbia Icefield, a massive glacier that straddles the border between Banff and Jasper National Parks in Canada. Visitors can take a guided tour of the glacier, or even strap on some crampons and explore on their own!
But the fun doesn't stop there - Jasper is also home to Maligne Lake, one of the most beautiful spots in the Rockies. Take a boat tour out to Spirit Island, or hike one of the many trails that wind through the surrounding forests. The possibilities are endless when it comes to Jasper National Park!
3. Pacific Rim National Park Reserve
Let's continue our adventure with a trip to Pacific Rim National Park Reserve - this place is an absolute gem of the west coast! If you're a lover of the great outdoors, then you'll feel right at home here. Located on the west coast trail of Vancouver Island, this Canadian national park is a haven for adventure seekers. You can explore the whole national park through hiking, surfing, kayaking, and more - there's no shortage of opportunities to get your heart pumping. So, grab your gear, embrace your inner adventurer, and get ready to experience the natural beauty of Pacific Rim National Park Reserve!
One of the sandy beaches among the highlights of Pacific Rim is Long Beach, a stretch of sand that seems to go on forever. Surfers come from all over the world to catch the waves here, but even if you're not a surfer, the beach is a beautiful place to stroll and take in the ocean air.
But Pacific Rim isn't just about the coast - there are also plenty of hiking trails to explore in the two mountain national park's dense forests. Keep an eye out for wildlife, including black bears and bald eagles! Bald eagles are so cool, man.
4. Gros Morne National Park
Heading east now, we come to Gros Morne National Park in Newfoundland. This park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it's easy to see why - the landscape here is truly unique and unlike anything else you'll find in the entire country of Canada.
One of the highlights of Gros Morne national park is the Tablelands, a stark, otherworldly landscape of red rocks and barren hills. It's hard to believe that you're still in Canada when you're standing here - it feels more like you've been transported to Mars! But don't let the harsh terrain fool you - there's plenty of life to be found here, including rare plants and animals that are adapted to the area's unique conditions.
Who says Gros Morne national park is all about the Tablelands? Sure, those giant rocks are pretty impressive, but have you seen the park's coastal scenery? It's got everything - rugged cliffs, fjords, and more hiking trails than you can shake a stick at. And if you're feeling particularly adventurous, hop on a boat tour and get ready to say hi to the park's marine life - just be sure to bring your sea legs (or some Dramamine).
But hey, we get it - not everyone is cut out for life on the high seas. So, if you prefer to keep your feet on solid ground, grab your hiking boots and hit the trails. Who knows, you might even find a secret cove or two where you can skinny dip in private (or run into a pack of wild moose - either way, it'll be a story to tell).
5. Cape Breton Highlands National Park
Psst, hey you! Yeah, you - looking for some seriously Insta-worthy coastal scenery? Well, Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia has got you covered. With its rugged cliffs and views of the Atlantic Ocean that'll make your heart skip a beat, this place is a natural beauty.
But hold up, the real star of the show is the Cabot Trail. It's like a 300-kilometre hug from Mother Nature herself, taking you through all the iconic national park's most gorgeous spots. You'll be stopping for photos so often, you'll start to wonder if you're on a hiking trail or a photo shoot.
And let's not forget the park's interior, where you can hike through rocky mountains, the forests and over the hills. Just watch out for moose - they're basically the park's unofficial mascots. But hey, even if you don't see any wildlife, you'll still be surrounded by stunning scenery. So go on, channel your inner explorer and get lost (in a good way) in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.
6. Waterton Lakes National Park
Are you ready for some park-hopping fun? Let's explore Waterton Lakes National Park and Riding Mountain National Park, the coolest siblings in the Canadian park family! They may not have the fame of their cousin Banff, but these two parks have a unique charm that's hard to resist.
One of the highlights of Waterton Lakes is the Red Rock Canyon - it's like stepping into a scene from a sci-fi movie with towering red cliffs and rushing waterfalls that'll make you feel like a daredevil! And if you're craving more adventure, there are plenty of outdoor activities to choose from in Waterton Lakes National Park like hiking, biking, and even scuba diving in the park's crystal clear lakes. Just make sure to take a boat tour and check out the stunning shoreline of the park name that's just too pretty to miss!
Riding Mountain National Park is not one to be overlooked either - it's like the little park that could! With its endless forests, rolling hills, and sparkling lakes, it's a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Take a hike and you may just spot a moose or two - they're the real MVPs of the park! And if you're lucky, you might even see a friendly beaver building a dam or a shy deer nibbling on some leaves. Just don't forget to pack some snacks, because these animals know how to work up an appetite!
7. Yoho National Park
Just a short drive from Banff National Park is Yoho National Park, another must-visit destination for nature lovers. This park is home to some of the most stunning scenery in the Canadian Rockies, including towering waterfalls, crystal-clear lakes, and rugged mountain peaks.
One of the highlights of Yoho is Takakkaw Falls, a massive waterfall that drops over 250 meters from a cliff above. Take a hike to the base of the falls and feel the mist on your face - it's an experience you won't soon forget!
But Yoho National Park isn't just about the falls - there are plenty of hiking trails to explore in the park's dense forests, as well as opportunities for rock climbing, skiing, and other outdoor activities.
8. Kluane National Park
Moving north now, we come to Kluane National Park in the Yukon. This remote park is known for its stunning mountain scenery, including Canada's highest peak, Mount Logan.
One of the highlights of Kluane is the Kluane Icefield, a massive glacier that covers over 8,000 square kilometres. Visitors can take a guided tour of the glacier, or even go heli-hiking on the ice!
But Kluane isn't just about the ice - there are also plenty of opportunities for hiking, kayaking, and other outdoor activities in the park's rugged terrain. Keep an eye out for wildlife, including grizzly bears, caribou, and Dall sheep.
9. Fundy National Park
Back on the east coast, we come to Fundy National Park in New Brunswick. This park is known for its wildlife spotting its rugged coastal scenery, including towering cliffs and the highest tides in the world.
One of the highlights of Fundy is the Hopewell Rocks, a series of unique rock formations that have been shaped by the powerful tides of the Bay of Fundy. Visitors can walk on the muddy ocean floor even at low tide and marvel at the towering rocks above.
But Fundy isn't just about the tides - there are also plenty of hiking trails to explore in the park's dense forests, glacial lakes and pristine lakes below, as well as opportunities for kayaking and other outdoor activities. And if you're lucky, you might even spot a moose or black bear!
10. Auyuittuq National Park
Let's wrap up our journey with a trip to Auyuittuq National Park in Nunavut, where you can experience the icy wonderland of Baffin Island. It's so remote that even Santa Claus considers it a bit too chilly for his taste, but that's what makes it so special.
The park's crown jewel is the Akshayuk Pass, a 97-kilometre hiking trail that takes you through some of the most awe-inspiring terrains on the planet. Think of colossal glaciers, towering peaks, and tranquil lakes that'll make you feel like you're in another world.
And if that's not enough to get your adrenaline pumping, Auyuittuq is also a prime spot for wildlife spotting. You might catch a glimpse of arctic foxes, caribou, or even polar bears - just don't forget to bring your camera!
And last but not least, if you're lucky enough to catch a clear night sky, you might even witness the spectacular Northern Lights. So, grab your parka, strap on your hiking boots, and get ready for an adventure you'll never forget!
So there you have it, our list of the top 10 Canadian national parks! Whether you're a nature buff, an adrenaline junkie, or someone who simply loves breathtaking views, these ten national parks in Canada are sure to have something that will pique your interest.
From the untamed coastlines of Newfoundland to the majestic peaks of the Rockies, these national parks offer visitors a chance to experience some of the most awe-inspiring natural wonders on the planet. So throw some essentials in your backpack, lace up your boots, and get ready for a journey that will stay with you forever - Canada's best national parks are calling!
We hope you enjoyed our slightly playful take on the best national parks in Canada. We believe that nature is meant to be enjoyed with a light heart and a spirit of adventure, and we hope that this list will inspire you to venture out and discover all that Canada has to offer.
Of course, this list is not exhaustive, and there are plenty of other beautiful national parks all across Canada that are worth exploring. Whether you're looking to spot wildlife, take on a challenging hike, or simply soak in the beauty of the great outdoors, there's a national park out there for you.
So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to one of Canada's best national parks today, and get ready to make memories that will last a lifetime!
Before you go, we'd like to leave you with a few tips for visiting Canada's national parks
Don't be like me and show up to a remote Canadian national park with nothing but a granola bar and a dream. Do your research and plan ahead for things like where to stay, how to get around, and most importantly, where to find the best poutine.
Canada's national parks might be breathtakingly beautiful, but they're also as rugged as a lumberjack's beard. Make sure you dress appropriately for the weather and activities you'll be doing - no flip-flops on a glacier, please.
Respect the environment
Remember, you're just a guest in nature's house. Be sure to follow the park's guidelines for protecting the environment and leave no trace of your visit. Unless it's a Sasquatch footprint, in which case, snap a photo and let us know!
Be bear aware
It's a fact - many of Canada's national parks are home to bears, some of whom are more cuddly than others. Make sure you know how to stay safe in bear country, and always carry bear spray. But if you do run into a grizzly, just play dead. Kidding, don't do that. Run faster than a moose on a sugar high.
Last but not least, remember to have fun! Canada's national parks are like a giant playground for adults. So go ahead, skip, twirl, and even cartwheel if you're feeling adventurous. Just make sure you don't accidentally roll down a mountain.
We hope you found this guide to the top 10 Canadian national parks helpful, informative, and entertaining. Remember, these are just our picks, and there are plenty of other beautiful national parks here in Canada that are well worth a visit.