Canada Road Trip | Suggested Itinerary

Canada is an excellent spot for a road vacation because it boasts 900,000 km of driving routes, which is enough to round the globe 22 times. However, despite the great distances, organising a driving vacation in one of the biggest nations in the world couldn't be simpler. In Canada, you'll find cheap vehicle rental, wide, well-paved roads, and welcoming rest stops, all of which make travelling simple.

We've compiled some of our favourite road trip itineraries in this guide, along with our best advice for organising a road trip vacation in Canada. Explore our interactive maps to get a glimpse of the breathtaking sights that are in store for you.

In Canada, the best road trips |16 days of unlimited adventures

The Rocky Mountains are one of Canada's top tourist destinations thanks to their towering snow-capped peaks, breathtaking mountain routes, and an abundance of wildlife. This itinerary includes three of the top national parks in Western Canada and is ideal for open-jaw flights into Calgary and out of Vancouver.

First day: Calgary

After your arrival to Calgary, you can pick up your personalised route book and spend your first day here exploring Stampede City.

Banff, Day 2 and 3

(1 drive of 25 minutes)

Spend the day outdoors hiking, biking, riding horses, or simply unwinding in the hot springs. Visit Sulphur Mountain's summit via gondola for breathtaking views of Bow Valley.

Fourth day: Lake Louise

(Drive of 40 minutes)

With the imposing Victoria Glacier serving as its imposing background, the glittering, blue lake is breathtaking. The peak of Whitethorn Mountain can be reached by chairlift or by strolling along the water's edge.

5th day: Jasper

One of the longest drives in Canada is 7 hours and 20 minutes, but it is along the Icefields Parkway, possibly the most picturesque road in the country.

Walk on the Athabasca Glacier and cross the glass-bottomed Glacier Skywalk as you take in the countless beauties along the Icefields Parkway. Before entering the charming town of Jasper, you may also see Bow Lake and Peyto Lake.

Sixth day: Clearwater

(3 hours, 20 minutes)

North of Kamloops, in a stunning, untouched region called Clearwater, the Yellowhead Highway leads you through the Thompson Valley. You'll pass beautiful Mount Robson, the Rockies' tallest peak, as you go.

Gold Bridge on Days 7 and 8

(6 hours and 15 minutes)

This charming location is ideal for learning about the Gold Rush era in British Columbia. Explore the abandoned mines and communities that the first prospectors left behind.

9th day: Whistler

(2 hours, 20 minutes)

The options are endless in this bustling mountain community. You can remain active mountain biking and hiking in addition to enjoying some wonderful outdoor meals. The Peak-2-Peak Gondola, where you'll enjoy stunning views, is a must-do.

11th day: Tofino

(6 hours 35 minutes, two hours on the ferry included)

The Pacific Rim National Park is a narrow stretch of gorgeous islands, beaches, and breathtaking seascapes that is located along the south-western coast of Vancouver Island. The boat ride to Vancouver Island across the Strait of Georgia is gorgeous in and of itself.

13th day - Victoria

(4 hours, 20 minutes)

British Columbia's capital is Victoria, a lovely historic city. Enjoy Victoria's vibrant downtown with all of its boutiques, restaurants, and shopping, or take some time to relax by the lovely Inner Harbour.

15th and 16th day: Vancouver

(3 hours 15 minutes, two hours on the boat to Vancouver Island included)

Even if you have separate plans to visit Vancouver, you shouldn't skip this vibrant city on your road trip because it's great for sightseeing, dining, and shopping. Go to the beach, Stanley Park, or one of the city's museums.

Journeys by car in Alberta | 9 days of whales, bears, and Vancouver Island

This brief but sweet route demonstrates that you don't need two weeks or hundreds of miles to see the best parts of Canada. It is one of our shortest road trips. It's the greatest way to fit city and nature into one vacation on a time crunch with return flights to Vancouver.

Day 1: Victoria to Vancouver

(3 hours 15 minutes, two hours on the boat to Vancouver Island included)

Start your vacation by picking up your rental car! Join the ferry that travels over the breathtaking Strait of Georgia from Vancouver to Vancouver Island.

Victoria on Day 2

Embark on a Zodiac boat excursion to observe whales. Keep an eye out for ocean giants and other marine creatures while learning about the environments and behaviours of killer whales, minke whales, and grey whales.

Day 3 and Day 4: Tofino

(4 hours, 20 minutes)

As you travel along this beautiful road on Vancouver Island, you will see magnificent old-growth temperate rainforests on your way to Tofino and the Pacific Rim National Park. You'll have an unforgettable boat ride to observe the coastal black bears foraging on the coasts of the area on your second day in Tofino.

What music would you choose to drive to while on a road trip in Canada?

5th and 6th days: Sonora Resort

3 hours 20 minutes of driving followed by a quick water taxi

You won't have ever encountered anything like this luxurious nature resort. There are countless possibilities to see wildlife, and the area's stunning natural splendour will astound you.

Vancouver on Days 7, 8, and 9

(Four hours, ten minutes, plus a two-hour ferry)

Visit Vancouver at the end of your journey for shopping, dining, and sightseeing. Get a new perspective of the city from the water by taking a floatplane or boat ride, or go to the North Shore for other outdoor activities.

Vancouver Island while driving |15 days of the East's Great Parks

Before seeing the most exciting cities on the east coast, this two-week vacation begins in the cosmopolitan powerhouse of Toronto. On this varied trail that connects Ottawa, the national capital of Canada, to its stunning provincial parks, culture and environment clash.

First day: Toronto

Pick up your rental car and get set for an adventure! Spend the day discovering Toronto, with stops at the CN Tower and some of its hippest neighbourhoods for dining and shopping among the highlights.

Tuesday - Midland

(1 drive of 50 minutes)

Via the historic native village of Penetanguishene, travel through the picturesque Huron Country.

Huntsville, Day 3 and Day 4

(Drive time: 1 hour 35 minutes)

Huntsville's serene environment, which is surrounded by lakes and forests and is ideal for horseback riding and boating, is among the best there is.

5th day: Ottawa

a four-hour drive

Drive through Gatineau Park, which has miles of bicycle trails, to reach the capital of Canada. Explore the historic Parliament buildings in the city or take a stroll along the beautiful Rideau Canal.

Tremblant on Days 6 and 7

(1 drive of 50 minutes)

Enjoy unwinding in the serene Laurentian Mountain surroundings.

Québec City, Day 8 and 9

(3 hours, 45 minutes)

Enjoy this Francophone city's rich history, from Place Royal to Montmorency Falls.

Day 10 and 11 - Saint Michel

(3 hours, 20 minutes)

Rich plains, undulating hills, and a lovely lake. Kayaking, mountain biking, and hiking are all excellent activities in this setting.

12th day - Montréal

(2 hours and 15 minutes)

Montréal is a thriving, international city known for its arts community.

13th day - Kingston

three-hour drive

Without taking a sail across the 1000 Islands canal, a trip to Kingston wouldn't be complete.

14th day: Niagara Falls

(3 hours, 45 minutes)

When you see these thunderous falls for yourself, you'll have seen one of the most famous views in the entire world.

15th day - Toronto

(1 drive of 25 minutes)

The ideal approach to wrap out your tour. You can spend a little longer in the city before taking a flight home thanks to the short driving distance.

Ontario road excursions | 18 days of beaches, islands, lobster, moose, and more

As it meanders across Canada's Maritime Provinces, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island, this road trip takes in the best of the east. Lighthouses, whales, sand beaches, and rocky hills fight for your attention with charming communities. This part of Canada is an unspoiled jewel, with some of the most beautiful coastlines and mouthwatering seafood along the way.

Arrival at Halifax Airport on Day 1

Upon arrival, pick up your car and go to your hotel to settle in and rest. You have the entire day to visit Halifax, which dates back almost 270 years. Visit the picturesque and bustling harbour, the Old Town Clock, the Public Gardens, and the famed Citadel.

Drive along the Eastern Shore on Day 2 (275 km)

Your long road trip starts today. Drive down the Eastern Shore of Nova Scotia's Marine Drive in the direction of the north. Visit Sherbrooke Village, where animators in period attire will transport you to the illustrious 19th century.

On Day 3, travel to Baddeck (280 km)

On the third day of your journey, you have the ability to travel to the wildest and remotest areas of Nova Scotia's northeast coast. You can also choose to stop at the sleepy fishing community of Canso before continuing on to Cape Breton Island. Spend the night in Baddeck, which is near Bras D'Or Lake.

Explore Cape Breton Island on day four.

One of the most famous and picturesque roads in all of Canada is found on Cape Breton Island. The 298-kilometer Cabot Trail winds through lush green forests, valleys, and waterfalls as it ascends from sea level to 500 metres above the water, rewarding travellers with stunning ocean views. It is essential to visit the Fortress of Louisbourg.

Day 5: Charlottetown (Prince Edward Island) to Baddeck (250 km)

You'll return to the mainland of Nova Scotia today to board a ferry that will transport you for 75 minutes to Prince Edward Island, Canada's smallest province. Visit Pictou first, the city known as the "Birthplace of New Scotland," before continuing (Nova Scotia).

Day 6: Before continuing north to O'Leary/Alberton, explore Charlottetown (175 km)

Charlottetown, a small yet lovely, hospitable, and historically significant city, will surprise you with all it has to offer. Visit the Province House National Historic Site, considered to be the "Birthplace of Canada," or go to the Confederation Centre of Arts to take in the greatest examples of Victorian architecture.

Day 7: Discover more about Prince Edward Island.

Drive to Prince Edward Island's less visited Western region to see red sand beaches and mouthwatering seafood.

Drive to Richibucto (New Brunswick) on day eight (260 km)

Today, savour the allure and beauty of the Acadian Coast of New Brunswick. The Bouctouche and Kouchibouguac National Parks as well as the "Pays de la Sagouine" theatrical village among the day's highlights.

Day 9: Carry on with the Caraquet (175 km)

Acadians who speak French are said to have an unofficial capital in Caraquet. Sand beaches and a wide variety of birds may be found on the nearby islands of Lamèque and Miscou, which are ideal for nature enthusiasts.

Day 10 and Day 11: Travel to Fredericton and spend a day sightseeing there (300 km)

You can reach Fredericton in the very centre of New Brunswick by taking a beautiful drive along the Miramichi River, which is renowned for having one of the greatest concentrations of Atlantic salmon in Eastern North America. Enjoy the tranquilly, stunning scenery, and historical landmarks of the city by taking a daylong journey across it on foot or a bicycle.

Day 12: Travel to St. Andrews in the south (150 km)

One of the oldest and most endearing cities in Canada's Maritimes is St. Andrews. This seaside resort community draws tourists with its fascinating history and culture, stunning natural surroundings and marine life, friendliness, and wide range of outdoor activities.

Day 13: Explore the Bay of Fundy's undiscovered beauties

The Bay of Fundy is known for having the greatest tides (16 metres), for being the habitat of over 15 different species of whales and dolphins, as well as numerous migratory birds and magnificent dinosaur relics.

St. Andrews to Shediac on Day 14 (370 km)

Your journey to Saint John and its "Reversing Falls" will be spectacular. The Hopewell Rocks and Fundy National Park, which are located further west, are the day's highlights. At low tide, you can stroll along the ocean floor around these magnificent rock formations, sometimes known as the "Flowerpot Rocks."

On day 15, travel to Wolfville (300 km)

Visit the Joggins Fossil Cliffs, a 14.7 km stretch of cliffs displaying the most comprehensive fossil record of 300 million-year-old life in the world. In 2008, the region was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Day 16 - White Point/Liverpool (160 km)

A tour and wine tasting at the Grand Pre-Winery are included in your fly-drive vacation package today before you visit the expansive 381 sq. km. Kejimkujik National Park, which is home to beautiful woods, lakes, and rivers and offers a variety of outdoor activities.

Day 17: Return to Halifax by car (160 km)

Your journey continues down Nova Scotia's stunning south shore, passing famous locations like Chester, the UNESCO World Heritage Site Lunenburg, and the most photographed lighthouse in all of Canada, Peggy's Cove.

Day 18: Flight from Halifax International

the Atlantic Canada highways

As you can see, taking a road trip across Canada is the ultimate adventure. Now that you know about some of the incredible routes that are accessible, read on for some of our best planning advice.

Visas required for a road trip through Canada

For air travel into Canada, you must first apply for an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). You must apply for an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) in order to enter the United States if you want to visit Alaska while travelling there.

Car Rental Procedures in Canada | Driving a car in Canada

In Canada, there are many alternatives for renting a car. You might wish to choose your vehicle based on the likely state of the roads depending on the time of year you're travelling. A robust vehicle, such as an SUV, would be more appropriate if you intend to travel off the beaten path or through the winter. As there are regulations regarding snow tyres and chains, be cautious to confirm that you are permitted to drive your rental car in winter conditions.

Keep travel insurance in mind

It's crucial to make sure you are covered while embarking on a lengthy journey, and travel insurance is typically rather affordable. Make sure you are insured if you intend to undertake rafting, skiing, or any other of the many adventure sports available in Canada.

Even while it's uncomfortable to consider that an illness or catastrophe could ruin your road trip, going through either of these situations without travel insurance would be a nightmare.

A road trip checklist for Canada

For more advice on how to plan your road trip in Canada, have a look at the checklist below for a complete planning schedule.

  • Select a route.
  • To assist you plan, be aware of the length of the routes.
  • Schedule your pit visits for rest stops and photo chances.
  • Determine the ideal season for your journey.
  • Avoid the winter months. May is ideal since there is less traffic and more light.
  • Request visas
  • Reserve flights
  • The best places to fly to are Vancouver, Toronto, Québec, Calgary, and Montréal.
  • Recall to bring travel insurance

As you can see, exploring Canada by car is a fantastic way to experience all of its wonders. The vast highways of Canada offer a variety of views and sounds, making them the ideal choice for an unforgettable journey.

Visit our blog's further articles and guides to Canada for even more ideas.

If reading all of this has you fired up about what's possible, be sure to look at some of our fly-drive vacations to Canada so you can start making plans!

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