Best summer vacations in Canada for families in 2023

Canada, with its diverse landscapes, rich cultural offerings, and myriad family-friendly activities, is a fantastic destination for a memorable summer vacation. From coast to coast, families can explore stunning national parks, bustling cities, and charming coastal towns, creating unforgettable experiences for all ages. In this article, we’ll highlight the top 10 summer vacation spots in Canada, perfect for families seeking adventure, relaxation, and everything in between.

Best summer vacations in Canada for families

  1. Vancouver, British Columbia

Vancouver is an excellent choice for a family summer vacation, thanks to its stunning natural beauty, mild climate, and a wide array of family-friendly attractions. Kids will love exploring the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park, the Vancouver Aquarium, and the Science World interactive museum. Families can also enjoy outdoor activities like biking around Stanley Park, taking a gondola ride up Grouse Mountain, or relaxing on one of the city’s many beaches.

  1. Banff National Park, Alberta

Banff National Park, located in the heart of the Canadian Rockies, offers families an abundance of outdoor activities and awe-inspiring scenery. Explore picturesque lakes like Lake Louise and Moraine Lake, hike through lush forests and alpine meadows, or take a scenic drive along the Icefields Parkway. For a unique adventure, families can also visit the Columbia Icefield and take a guided tour onto the Athabasca Glacier.

  1. Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island, Canada’s smallest province, is a charming summer destination with its stunning red sand beaches, rolling hills, and a relaxed atmosphere. Families can explore the historic Charlottetown, visit the Anne of Green Gables Heritage Place in Cavendish, or take a scenic drive along the island’s coastline. Outdoor activities like cycling the Confederation Trail, kayaking, and beachcombing are also popular with families visiting the island.

  1. Ottawa, Ontario
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As Canada’s capital city, Ottawa offers families a unique blend of history, culture, and outdoor activities. Visit Parliament Hill and take a guided tour, explore the Canadian Museum of History, or take a scenic cruise along the Rideau Canal. During the summer months, the city hosts various festivals, including Canada Day celebrations and the Canadian Tulip Festival, offering additional entertainment options for families.

  1. Niagara Falls, Ontario

Niagara Falls is a popular family summer destination, thanks to the iconic natural wonder and the surrounding attractions. Take a boat tour with Hornblower Niagara Cruises, walk behind the falls at Journey Behind the Falls, or enjoy the many attractions at Clifton Hill, including arcades, mini-golf, and the Niagara SkyWheel. Families can also visit the nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake, known for its charming streets, historic sites, and delicious ice cream shops.

  1. Tofino, British Columbia

Located on Vancouver Island’s west coast, Tofino is a haven for families seeking a laid-back beach vacation with a touch of adventure. Known for its beautiful sandy beaches and excellent surfing conditions, Tofino offers families the chance to try surfing, beachcombing, or even whale watching. Explore the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, take a guided tour through the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, or simply relax and enjoy the coastal scenery.

  1. Montreal, Quebec

Montreal, with its rich history and vibrant culture, is a fantastic summer vacation spot for families. Explore the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal, visit the Montreal Biodome, or take a ride on La Grande Roue de Montréal, the city’s giant observation wheel. During the summer months, Montreal hosts a variety of family-friendly festivals, including the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal and the Montréal Complètement Cirque circus festival. Kids will also enjoy visiting La Ronde amusement park, featuring over 40 rides and attractions.

  1. Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador
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Gros Morne National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is an ideal summer vacation destination for families who love outdoor adventures and breathtaking landscapes. The park’s unique geological features, including fjords, coastal cliffs, and the Tablelands, offer an array of hiking opportunities and awe-inspiring views. Families can also take a boat tour through the stunning Western Brook Pond, visit the Gros Morne Discovery Centre, or participate in various ranger-led programs and activities.

  1. Whistler, British Columbia

While Whistler is best known as a winter ski resort, it also offers a wide range of summer activities for families. Enjoy mountain biking, hiking, or ziplining through Whistler’s stunning alpine landscape. Visit the Whistler Blackcomb resort for activities like the Whistler Mountain Bike Park, the Peak 2 Peak Gondola, or the Whistler Village for shopping and dining. For a more relaxing experience, families can enjoy the beaches and water activities at Alta Lake and Lost Lake.

  1. The Thousand Islands, Ontario

The Thousand Islands, located along the St. Lawrence River between Ontario and New York State, is a picturesque summer destination perfect for families. Take a scenic cruise through the islands, explore historic sites like Boldt Castle and Singer Castle, or try kayaking, fishing, or boating. Families can also visit the Thousand Islands National Park, where they can hike, picnic, or even spend a night camping on one of the park’s many islands.


Canada offers a wealth of family-friendly summer vacation destinations, catering to diverse interests and preferences. From exploring bustling cities and charming coastal towns to discovering awe-inspiring national parks and enjoying outdoor adventures, there is something for everyone. The top 10 summer vacation spots listed in this article provide a well-rounded selection of the best Canada has to offer, ensuring an unforgettable experience for families looking to create lasting memories together.

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