From the CN Towers in Toronto to the top of St. John’s Signal Hill, these Canadian destinations are perfect for first-time travelers!
Traveling makes for a fun and memorable life experience. However, in some cases, traveling is also a skill. That means that for some countries, the best way to appreciate its natural beauty and admire its culture is by having some traveling experience. It may be incredibly difficult for first-time travelers to venture to places like the Tiger's Nest Monastery of Bhutan or Nepal's Mount Everest. However, plenty of places in the world welcome first-time travelers with open arms, especially the beautiful land of Canada! Many cities in the Great White North are tourist-friendly attractions featuring hospitable locals, endless dining and shopping options, and incredible local landscape views. From the skyscrapers of Toronto to the stunning St. John's coastline, these places in Canada are perfect for first-time travelers!
Being Canada's most populous city, Toronto's bustling metropolitan is a great destination for first-time travelers. Located in Ontario, Toronto is a world-class city celebrated for its cultural diversity, evident in its endless array of eateries and shopping options. Moreover, besides the massive CN Tower, Toronto has other amazing attractions, including High Park, Ripley's Aquarium, the Hockey Hall of Fame, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Royal Ontario Museum. Overlooking Lake Ontario, this international city is also close to natural attractions as well, from the high cliffs of Scarborough Bluffs to the rushing waters of Niagara Falls. First-time travelers can easily book day trips from Toronto or explore The Six by foot due to its extensive network of subway lines, buses, and trains coming to and from the city!
Located in Alberta, the city of Edmonton has seen a surge in population in recent years, which has also attracted the attention of prospective tourists, especially first-time travelers. Unsurprisingly, that's because Edmonton has no shortage of activities to enjoy, especially for those that crave constant entertainment. Edmonton has a range of casinos across the city but is also known for the West Edmonton Mall, the largest shopping mall in North America. Tourists can easily book tours to explore these attractions, as well as others like the Art Gallery of Alberta or the St. Joseph's Cathedral Basilica. However, nature-seeking tourists may love visiting Edmonton for another reason: it's approximately three hours away from Jasper National Park, making for an epic drive!
The city of St. John's is an introvert's paradise! Situated in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, St. John's is not as massive as Toronto, but it oozes a charm irresistible to first-time travelers. Visitors may want to book a car, which can easily take them to breathtaking sites along the Atlantic Coast, including Signal Hill, Cape Spear Lighthouse, Bowring Park, and Quidi Vidi Lake. The city is also worth exploring, especially the row of jellybean houses, The Rooms, and the Terry Fox Memorial.
Situated along the St. John River in New Brunswick, Frederiction is regarded as Atlantic Canada's Riverfront Capital. Appealing to history buffs and nature enthusiasts, Fredericton has a little something for everyone, especially first-time travelers. For history buffs and those interested in local culture, there is a range of tourist attractions to explore, from the Historic Garrison District to the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. On the other hand, nature-loving tourists can venture to nearby sites to get their wilderness fix, including Odell Park, Killarney Lake, and the Hyde Park Nature Preserve.
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Sitting on Canada's west coast, Vancouver spoils the first-time traveler with incredible views of mountain ranges, the Pacific Ocean, and a bustling city. Situated in British Columbia, Vancouver is a haven for nature enthusiasts and city dwellers alike. The city is blessed with endless miles (or km) of green spaces, playgrounds, and bike paths. Moreover, traveling foodies may love that Vancouver's unique foodie scene also frequently includes fresh seafood! This west coast city has no shortage of things to do for the first-time traveler, thanks to attractions like Stanley Park, Granville Island, the Vancouver Art Gallery, and the VanDusen Botanical Garden. Plus, it's easy to get attuned to nature when visiting Vancouver, as it sits close to attractions like the Capilano Suspension Bridge, Grouse Mountain, English Bay Beach, and Whistler.
Some may argue that Edmonton is the "better" Albertan city to visit, but people are underestimating Calgary entirely! Known for its oil and gas industry, Calgary is also known for its "cowboy" lifestyle, hence its nickname, "Cowtown." Visit Calgary in July to partake in the cowboy festivities at the Calgary Stampede, home to the world's largest rodeo with parades, live music, and stage shows. Otherwise, first-time travelers will love Calgary for its accessible attractions, including Calgary Zoo, Heritage Park, Prince's Island Park, Peace Bridge, and the Calgary Tower.
Canada's capital city has to be on this list! Located in Ontario, Ottawa is home to the Canadian Government via Parliament Hill, as well as other historic sites central to the country's history. Perfectly accessible by foot, first-time travelers can enjoy a range of activities and attractions in Ottawa, from the parks at Rideau Canal or the vibrant collection of Indigenous art at the National Gallery of Canada. Though Ottawa can get pretty cold in the winter, it's still a magical destination to visit, hosting a bunch of activities like snowshoeing, skiing, and ice skating!
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Not to be confused with St. John's in Newfoundland and Labrador, Saint John overlooks the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick. There is a lot to explore and appreciate in Saint John, as it's Canada's oldest city since May 1785! History can be learned at the Fort Howe National Historic Site, the Carleton Martello Tower National Historic Site, and the Place Fort LaTour. Furthermore, Saint John sits close to peaceful nature retreats like Irving Nature Park, Rockwood Park, and the popular Hopewell Rocks Provincial Parks! Plus, nearby the Saint John River, visitors can witness the natural phenomenon of the Reversing Falls, which are a pretty unique occurrence in nature!
First-time travelers can get a taste of Atlantic Canada when visiting Halifax. Situated in Nova Scotia, this capital city functions as a natural harbor and a bustling hub in Atlantic Canada. When travelers aren't sampling lobster rolls from the Seaport Market, they're lining up to try Canada's famous Cows ice cream! Besides its incredible foodie scene, Nova Scotia has a range of things to see, from the Canadian Museum of Immigration to Point Pleasant Park. Though being recognized as a city, Halifax is not as busy as Vancouver or Toronto, making it a more suitable destination for those seeking a quieter destination. Plus, as it overlooks the Atlantic Ocean, it's easy to appreciate nature when in Halifax, thanks to places like Shubie Park, Long Lake Provincial Park, and much more.
Canada has a ton of beautiful places worth seeing. First-time travelers looking for a gorgeous travel-friendly destination in Canada should set their sights on Victoria, the capital of British Columbia. The photos of Victoria are not an exaggeration; this lovely city is even more beautiful when seen in person! Overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Victoria offers the traveler incredible views of the coast. Enjoy the refreshing sights, sounds, and smells of the ocean by venturing to Victoria's Beacon Hill Park, only a short walk (or bus ride) away from the downtown core. Take a plane to explore this gorgeous city, or take a ferry from Vancouver to visit Victoria for a weekend getaway.
Alex is a Writer who enjoys going on vacation from time to time (though, who doesn’t?). She enjoys learning about new cuisines and food during her travels. She vows to try different foods, from tonkatsu ramen to pav bhaji, when visiting new places. Otherwise, she also likes learning about places through art and archaeology!

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