25+ Best places you need to visit in Canada in December
Canada is widely known for its cold climate, especially in the month of December when it is fully covered in snow. With lesser people visiting Canada in December, you get to enjoy all the mesmerizing places in their full authenticity. If you are planning on visiting Canada in December, you need to pack heavy coats, waterproof shoes, ski boots, hats, gloves and not to mention, all the equipment needed for a lot of outdoor activities. Few of the cities and places you can visit while you are in Canada are discussed in detail below.
1. Quebec City
This city of Canada looks something straight out of a fairytale. With its aesthetic buildings, shops, cafes and destinations covered with snow, it looks like a small Christmas village. A little stroll down the shop named Quartier Petit-Champlain can even help you find a suitable souvenir. Quebec City is the capital of Quebec and holds one of the most memorable artifacts and stories of New France. The city is sure to give you some Instagram worthy photos with its scenic beauty and mesmerizing views.
Quebec holds one of the largest winter festivals in the world known as the Quebec City Carnival. It offers numerous fun activities like canoe racing on the frozen St. Lawrence River night parades, giant soccer games, maple syrup, and “beaver tail” tastings, ice sculptures, carriage rides and many more.
The city is also famous for its chic-choc Mountains. You can always build new experiences in these mountains with numerous winter activities including snow hikes and snowboarding. There is also a 4 – star hotel nearby, the Auberge des Chic-Chocs, from where you can stare in awe at the beauty of these mesmerizing mountains.
2. Torres del Paine National Park
It is known for its soaring mountains, bright blue icebergs that shelter rare wildlife such as llama-like guanacos. Hence, if you are someone who enjoys the sterling beauty of Mother Nature or someone who wants to sit in the cool breeze by the beach, Torres del paine is your way to go. With turquoise lakes and scenic beauties, you are sure to find yourself lost in all of it. The temperature is the the chilliest after sunset, if you are planning to visit in December.
Situated at the base of Canadian Rocks at the Southeastern border of Banff National park, Banff too is known for its artistic landscapes and hiking trails. The recreational activities include skiing down Mount Norquay, and hiking to the Hoodoos, the massive, limestone pillars, or biking along Healy Creek.
Banff holds a Winterfest around Lake Louise which reaches its true beauty in the winters. The festival offers recreational winter sports such as skiing, snowboarding, ski races, and concerts.
Vancouver is among Canada’s most ethnically diverse cities. It is a popular filming location, surrounded by mountains, and also has thriving art, theatre and music scenes. Vancouver is known for its beauty and crowds. It is referred to as one of the most beautiful cities to live in. It has the entire city vibe you look for, a perfect escape from the winter mystique. There are numerous shopping malls and restaurants where you can have a good time. There are local seafood stands and outdoor sports you can indulge yourself in with sheer excitement as there is no snow around in the city of Vancouver. You can visit beautiful towns as well, such as Whistler.
Whistler is a town north of Vancouver, British Columbia, that is home to Whistler Blackcomb, one of the largest ski resorts in North America. If you are one to enjoy the winter wonderland in its true essence, Whistler offers you the perfect scenic beauty and activities. Whistler is situated in British Columbia and is referred to as the ski capital of the country. You can visit this Canadian town with your family and enjoy numerous winter oriented activities other than just skiing. You can go ice – skating, snowmobiling, snowshoeing sleigh rides, and ice – fishing. You can get your resort booking at the Four Seasons Resort and Residences Whistler.
Whistler is known mainly for its starring role in the 2010 Winter Olympics. Some of the other sports you can indulge yourself in are ski runs, the bobsled track, and you can also enjoy luge runs, skidooing, a dogsled ride, and a cherry on top, ice climbing. Another thing you should make sure to catch is the World Ski and Snowboard Festival. The festival takes place in April and offers a lot more than just sports. Enigmatic concerts and outdoor scenic beauty add immensely to the wonderful experience.
Grouse Mountain is one of the North Shore Mountains of the Pacific Ranges in the North Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. A visit to Grouse Mountain can help you escape the crowds of the city and let you enjoy the winter wonderland in complete serenity and calmness. The place also has its own lodge for you to spend your stay with your loved ones. You can also catch a quick movie at the Peak Chalet’s Theatre in the Sky.
Ottawa is the capital of Canada, in the east of southern Ontario, near the city of Montréal and the U.S. border. Ottawa is ranked as the topmost and the best place to visit in Canada. It has the largest skating rink in the world for the athletics and is known to be the most enchanting place in Canada. Every year, over one million people gather here during winters and skate away. The rink is situated in front of the Parliament Building and Chateau Laurier hotel. The best part about Ottawa is the affordable hotels and restaurants to relax in after a long day at the skating rink. Furthermore, one of the main things to get yourself to eat is the Ottawa special ‘Beavertail’ which is quite the preference of the former President Obama as well.
Winnipeg is the capital of the Canadian province of Manitoba. It consists of The Forks, which is a historic site at the intersection of the Red and Assiniboine rivers, it has warehouses converted to shops and restaurants, and ample space dedicated to hold festivals. Speaking of skating and skiing, Winnipeg has the largest naturally frozen lake for skiing and snowboarding. However, if you are not into skiing, there is an open-air Scandinavian spa in the forests of Fort Garry known as Thermea, which is only 10 minutes from the city. You can also enjoy a bonfire at FortWhyte Alive or visit the Assiniboine Park Zoo. After a hectic day, you can cool off at Delta Hotels by Marriott Winnipeg. All in all, Winnipeg is a wonderland to explore if you are a fan of the Canadian weather and atmosphere.
Alberta is a province in Western Canada. Its landscape has mountains, prairies, desert badlands and vast coniferous forests. One of the most beautiful peaks in the Canadian Rockies is Mount Edith Cavell. There are numerous cross-country trails you can choose from for a snow hike. You can also choose the level of difficulty you want for your hike, but regardless, you must not miss the viewing of the Angel Glacier. Angel Glacier is situated at the north face of the mountain. The name was given to the glacier because it is shaped very much like an angel with its wings spread.
Edmonton is the capital city of the Canadian province of Alberta. Just when you thought the winter festivities could not get any better, Strathcona Science Park, the Sunridge Ski Area brings you a whole new experience of snow tubing. Located on Edmonton’s eastern edge, Strathcona Science Park is the only snow tubing place you can find in the province. With the rejuvenating hill chutes present in the area, Sunridge Ski opens from December onwards. The place has a dedicated tubing lift that brings you up the hill for another adventure of snow tubing. Sunridge is kept as family-oriented as possible with all the safety precautions and equipment available on rent; from helmets to kneepads, Sunridge has you covered.
Calgary is a cosmopolitan Alberta city with numerous skyscrapers. If you have ever wondered how it would feel like to live in utopia from those Barbie movies, Calgary can help you experience most of it. Exhibiting magical vibes, the city gets covered in snow, giving you the most mystic of experiences. It offers ice fishing and cross-country skiing. If you find yourself in Calgary, make sure to visit the Fish Creek National Park and track. Furthermore, you would obviously need a place to stay, hence, you can reserve a stay at the Hyatt Regency Calgary.
Ontario is a province in east-central Canada that borders the U.S. and the Great Lakes. One of the most exotic views of the frozen falls can be seen in Ontario. While the winter brings in much of its magic with it, the frozen falls are magical in their own way. Apart from all its beauty and glory, Ontario hosts an ice-wine festival. You are sure to enjoy the sweet dessert-style wine in the chilly weather. You can also take a tour of the Capital and go on a hike on the beautiful terrain of the place. Ontario also hosts the Winter Festival of Lights where the entire city is lit up with multi-colored lights. Niagara Falls, covered with the beauty of snow and topped with magical lights, is definitely something worth experiencing on your holiday.
Toronto is the capital of the province of Ontario. It is a major Canadian city along Lake Ontario’s northwestern shore. Toronto will explicitly give you the coldest of temperatures. From long frosty nights to chilly short days, Toronto has everything going on for it. Despite being one of the coldest places to spend your holidays, it offers numerous activities that you can indulge yourself in. There is biking, taking a tour of the trails in the Don Valley, and witnessing the icebreaker installations at the waterfront. It also hosts a winter fest called the Winterlicious and by the name, you can judge its a food fest with one of the most exquisite winter delights. You can book your stay at The Ritz Carlton and have that cherry on top of your entire visit.
Windsor is a city in Ontario. It is definitely a place for the wanderers of nature. Bird-watching is a common fun activity in the area. For those of you wondering how would it be fun in the blistering cold temperature of Canada in December, the winter brings its own mystique to it and it’s something tremendously therapeutic. Certain stargazing programs that run every month are also organized by the Dark Sky Preserve by the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. Winter programs include the popular Owl Prowl and other migrating birds moving towards their destination with just a little drive to the North.
Newfoundland forms the most easterly province of Canada. Norse archaeological site L’Anse aux Meadows is a very famous place in Newfoundland island. Newfoundland is a dream come true for sports fanatics. It offers the best winter sports in the eastern region. The Gros Morne National Park has the large 50km skiing trail and is known to be one of the best park in Canada.
The historic Cape Spear Lighthouse on the easternmost point is known to be the highest point of the continent of North America. This is the point where New Year’s starts first. Sounds like the perfect place to spend the holiday on New Year’s Eve. You can enjoy some extreme windsurfing adventures here apart from the sightings of the impeccable glaciers and other wonders of winters.
16. Halifax, Nova Scotia
Halifax is definitely the place to have that vacation vibe you have been looking for. It is situated in Nova Scotia and offers all the recreational activities one looks for during a vacation. From sleigh riding at Hatfield Farm to tobogganing on the Citadel Hill, Halifax can prove as the jam-packed bucket of fun. It is also known for its treats and delights, especially, the maple syrup. You can enjoy a sweet Maple syrup and take a hike in the woods afterwards. Apart from this, Nova Scotia also offers you mountaineering in Canada. Furthermore, you can reserve your stay at The Prince George Hotel.
Funny as it may seem, Nova Scotia is also the land that surfers seek. The winter surfing proves to be adrenaline like no other.
The place is literally known as the Winter Wonderland. It is definitely the smallest province of Canada. The city, situated in Prince Edward Island is ranked, as one of the best places to visit in Canada in December. You can enjoy tobogganing and snowshoe in Brookvale Winter Activity Park, a fun destination for families. The place offers chilly festivities to indulge yourself in. You can end the day with a warm and cozy dine in and spend the night at the Holman Grand Hotel.
If you are a dreamer, Churchill is the perfect place for you. Its winters are over the top magical with the viewing of the Northern Lights and the Polar Bears. A small town, located on the shores of the Hudson, is all you need to make your fairytale dreams come true. It’s best known for polar bears, and safaris.
19. Plaster Rock
Plaster Rock is a Canadian village in Victoria County, New Brunswick. If you know anything about Canada, it is its cold weather, ice hockey fanatics, and extremely hospitable people. Plaster Rock is the best place to visit in Canada, if you want to observe Canada in its purest form. Plaster Rock town hosts the World Pond Hockey Championship. People from all over Canada, the United States, and Great Britain come and compete in the Ice Hockey Tournament. The place has one of the most beautiful backdrops of the forest covered with snow.
Saskatchewan is a Canadian province that borders the United States to the south. It is covered with grassland, and to its north are coniferous forests, rivers and lakes. Saskatchewan’s Sundogs Sled Excursions offers you a trip to remember. It is open from November until mid-March as long as there is an abundance of snow. The route takes the visitors to Anglin Lake through Canada’s boreal forest by dog sled. Sundog offers you other activities for you to invest your time in including puppy camps, half or full-day excursions, and overnight camping.
21. Prince Edward Island
Prince Edward Island is one of the eastern Canada’s maritime provinces. Just 19km from the town of Charlottetown is Prince Edward Island, a perfect spot to let your inner sportsman out. Prince Edward Island’s Brookvale Winter Activity Park gives you the chance to experience the traditional Canadian winter sports fest. It’s a trip filled with outdoor experiences with multiple sports you can volunteer yourself for including snowboarding, snowshoeing, cross-country and alpine skiing. You can even give biathlon a shot. You can spend a day or half a day with all the sports requirements available on rent at the cheapest rates.
75km from Quebec city is the town of Charlevoix, a place where your dream to enjoy a rich in culture vacation can be fulfilled. Le Massif de Charlevoix is the antique world with a mesmerizing scenery and furniture. Charlevoix is not only extremely beautiful but also offers numerous winter sports including skiing and snowboarding. After a long day, you can enjoy some delicate deliciousness with the traditional cuisines.
Montréal is the largest city in Canada’s Québec province. Montreal hosts one of the largest winter fests of the country. Montréal en Lumière welcomes over 1 million visitors each year. Nuit Blanche, the most popular single-day event in Montréal, showcases numerous musical and cultural shows for its audience. The festival starts from 6 pm and goes on until 6 am where visitors explore a number of sports-oriented shows as well as culinary ones. Montreal is also known for hosting the largest and world-famous jazz and comedy festivals.
Fredericton is the capital of New Brunswick in eastern Canada, on the St. John River. When you are done enjoying the winter wonderlands of the country, you can visit the Beaverbrook Gallery where the visitors are encouraged to actually lay down beneath one of the greatest paintings of history; Salvador Dali’s “Santiago El Grande”. The painting is known to distort and overwhelm the senses. This is definitely a sight to see if you’re visiting Canada in December.
Canmore is a town in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains. Canmore’s Rat’s Nest Caves stay at five degrees Celsius. The caves are known to not deviate from their constant temperature irrespective of the weather outside. You can sign up for a tour of the Canmore Rat’s Nest Caves and acknowledge different cave formations and histories involving pre-historic animals and ancient bones. You can also book a stay at the Canmore Rat’s Nest Inn if you plan to visit Canada in December.
Victoria is the capital city of the Canadian province of British Columbia. It is known for its outdoor activities. A flock of magnificent Bald Eagles fly during the winters and feast on the salmon waste that flows through the Goldstream Provincial Park. In early December to late July, there is a low tide that the Bald Eagles take to their advantage and hunt throughout, and for the spectators, it is the best time to experience the magnificent birds in action. There are also free educational programs, a slide show, or talk at the Nature House and all you need to do is bring a pair of binoculars and book a place at Holiday Inn Express & Suites Victoria in Colwood.
Kelowna is a city in the south of Canada’s British Columbia province. If you are visiting Canada in December, 18 trestle bridges and two tunnels that follow along Myra Canyon should be on top of your priority list. Hand-made in the beginning of the 20th Century, the 18 trestle bridge allows you to bike or hike your way through it, overlooking the city of Kelowna and the Okanagan Lake 3,000 feet below. Located at only a 12km distance from the Myra Canyon, you can steadily make your way through your hike all the while getting mesmerized by the beauty of the city covered with the snow. You can book a stay at Holiday Inn Express & Suites Kelowna – East and plan how you would want the experience.
Iqaluit is the capital city of the Canadian territory of Nunavut. It is on vast Baffin Island in Frobisher Bay. The island is known for its ice-capped mountains and tundra valleys. Iqaluit has one of the clearest skies you would ever witness and with clear skies come the innumerable stars and mesmerizing views of the unknown. One of the wonders of the sky, the aurora borealis, can also be seen in the skies of Iqaluit. Covered with so much snow, it is also one of the coldest places to visit in Canada in December; hence, you might want to get the sturdiest and the warmest clothes you have. In April, the place hosts a Toonik Tyme Festival that celebrates the culture and traditions of Iqaluit. The festival offers you experiences such as igloo building, Skidoo races and traditional Inuit treats.
Saguenay is a city in Québec, Canada. It’s known for Saguenay Fjord, which leads to the St. Lawrence River. If snowy mountains are your thing, Saguenay is the place to be. Massif of the Monts-Valin has about 15 mountain peaks over 800 meters high and covered with snow. Most of these mountains are eroded which gives the place a view like nothing less of a fairytale dream. The views and the intense snow let the hikers and snowboarders give it preference over most places in Canada, especially in December. If you find yourself seeking pleasure in the mountains of Massif, make sure to not miss the Valley of Ghosts.