Canadians are known for being polite, loving Tim Hortons, and taking hockey more seriously than anything else. However, Canada is also known as one of the safest countries in the world. In fact, according to the 2018 Global Peace Index, Canada ranks as the sixth-safest country on the planet and consistently finds itself within the top ten. For anyone with a case of wanderlust, that means Canada has the seal of approval for solo travel – an awesome conclusion for a country so vast and with so much to offer.
Regardless of where you visit across Canada, you can rest assured knowing you’re in one of the safest countries in the world. But if you’re planning a trip and need some inspiration, here are some of the most fantastic (and the safest) cities you should consider visiting.
Travel to: Canada
Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver is Canada’s third-largest city and easily one of the most diverse. This is one place you can go whale watching and snowboarding in the same day; something not every city can brag about. Tucked against the west coast between the Pacific Ocean and Rocky Mountains, this seaport city has something for everyone, whether it’s art galleries, hockey games, hiking, or boating.
- Ideal traveller: Vancouver is great for anyone travelling in a large group with multiple personalities and interests to satisfy. Whether it’s hiking, art, food, or nature, Vancouver has something for everyone.
Calgary, known to some as “Cowtown”, is a bustling city in Alberta nestled between the Bow River and the Elbow River. For outdoor-junkies and nature lovers, Calgary is paradise. Fly fishing, hiking, canoeing, skiing, and just about any other outdoor activity can be satisfied here, especially with Banff being just an hour away. Anyone visiting in July should experience the Calgary Stampede, a massive festival and rodeo that’s the ultimate country-Western experience.
- Ideal traveller: Calgary is ideal for anyone looking to get some fresh air and explore the outdoors. From Lake Louise to Peter Lougheed Provincial Park, there are endless places for you to explore and enjoy.
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Yellowknife, Northwest Territories
Yellowknife is the capital city of the Northwest Territories and is easily one of the most unique places to see in Canada. Each month brings something unique, from never-ending daylight in June to the Aurora Borealis in December. Regardless of when you visit, you’ll instantly fall in love with the isolation, strong cultural values, and simplistic beauty. Whether you want to go dog-sledding, ice fishing, or chase the Northern Lights, Yellowknife is one place in Canada that shouldn’t be missed.
- Ideal traveller: Yellowknife is the perfect place for travellers looking to experience something off the beaten path. If you love visiting unique places that few people can say they’ve been to, this is definitely the Canadian city for you.
With a population of less than 1,000 people, Churchill can’t be considered a city. That said, it’s still a must-see destination with tons of things to do, especially for travellers who love getting up close and personal with wildlife. Churchill has become a budding tourist destination thanks to its promise of unique wildlife, from polar bears to beluga whales. Wapusk National Park and the Hudson Bay are two must-visit spots, so pack your parka and camera and get ready to experience nature in its rawest form.
- Ideal traveller: Churchill is very isolated, meaning the ideal traveller for this “city” is someone who isn’t afraid of bracing the elements to achieve their travel goals. This traveller has a deep love of animals and has always wanted to see bears and whales in their natural habitat.
Thunder Bay, Ontario
Thunder Bay is a beautiful city in Northwestern Ontario that offers some of the most epic outdoors adventures in the province. Climb to the top of one of the highest peaks in the province, explore some of Canada’s oldest historic sites, or sail across the world’s largest freshwater lake. Whatever the adventure may be, Thunder Bay is waiting for you to come and explore.
- Ideal traveller: Thunder Bay makes for an awesome family or group summer vacation for travellers who adore the outdoors. From camping to sailing, your days will easily fill up with countless things to do.
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As the largest city in Canada, often confused as the country’s capital, Toronto is filled with towering skyscrapers, charming city parks, and of course, the iconic CN Tower. Enjoy a night at the theatre, a morning at trendy coffee shops, or a day spent exploring the Royal Ontario Museum. From castles to zoos, shopping centres and baseball games, Toronto is a haven for city slickers who love riding the subway to explore each and every destination.
- Ideal traveller: Toronto is the ideal place for travellers who love exploring big cities with tons of things to do. This person isn’t scared of a big itinerary and days packed with countless activities.
Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, is a historic city with some of Canada’s most impressive architecture, art galleries, and charming city streets. If you visit in the winter, the Rideau Canal and Winterlude will instantly capture your heart, while the spring celebrates the beautiful Tulip Festival. For Canadians, Parliament Hill offers a unique perspective into Canada’s history and politics, while the entire downtown core is filled with photogenic cobblestoned streets.
- Ideal traveller: Ottawa is perfect for travellers who appreciate timeless cities with countless monuments, historic buildings, and inviting public events. From art galleries to Irish pubs, Ottawa is inviting from every point of view.
Quebec City, Quebec
As one of the oldest cities in Canada, visiting Quebec City is almost like travelling back in time. This mostly french-speaking city is filled with photogenic streets, beautiful colonial buildings, and one of a kind bistros and cafes that will populate your hipster-inspired Instagram feed. Whether you visit in the summer or winter, every season is beautiful in it’s own way: especially if you’re a sucker for old and charming cities.
- Ideal traveller: Quebec City is bursting with culture and personality, making it a great place to visit for anyone who appreciates cities with character. This hipster haven is a fabulous destination for photographers, art buffs, and foodies alike.
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Halifax, Nova Scotia
Halifax, one of the largest cities in Eastern Canada, is a relaxed, bright, and welcoming city nestled along the Atlantic Ocean. Perfect for summer holidays, Halifax is a big city with a small town feel, welcoming thousands of tourists each year. Popular activities include whale watching, deep-sea fishing, sunset cruises, and walking through the city’s beautiful gardens. The locals are kind, the air is warm, and the views are serene.
- Ideal traveller: Halifax is the perfect place for travellers looking to relax and unwind during the summer holidays. If you love being near the ocean air, eating ice cream on the boardwalk, and sunsets on sailboats, Halifax will become your new favourite city.
St. Johns, Newfoundland
Established in the 1600’s, St. John’s is the oldest and most easterly city in North America. A unique combination of traditional charm and big-city luxury, St John’s is a one-of-a-kind city full of wisdom and charisma, with a colourfully sophisticated edge. Walk through the criss-crossing streets dotted with colourful homes down to the fishing outports, or spend the day looking over the dramatic cliffs. No matter how you spend your time, St. John’s is a lively city that somehow becomes more intoxicating the longer you stay.
- Ideal traveller: St. John’s is ideal for travellers looking for the elusive combination of adventure and relaxation. Enjoy staying in the city and exploring the oldest streets in the New World, or hike through the valleys to the cliffs that greet the Atlantic – here you have endless options.
No matter where you travel solo in Canada, you can almost certainly rest assured that your experience will be safe, exciting, and, above all, fun! Whether you’re looking for polar bears, hiking through the cliffs, or exploring the urban jungle, Canada just might be the perfect place for your next adventure.
Where would you travel to in Canada?