Best 10 Amazing Hiking Trails In Canada


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I’ve been a hiking enthusiast for many years - honestly, I think this is one of the best activities you can put your time into. Hiking is not only good for your health (just think about the significantly lower risk of a heart disease!) - it is also good for your mind. Observing breathtaking landscapes can be a great motivation to push your body forward.

Canada is a perfect place for that. It is known for its abundant hiking trails that make their way through all sorts of different places with views that can make you forget everything else in the world. So wait no more - take your best hiking boots with you and explore the beauty of this country.

Here are 10 hiking trails of Canada that I find the most fascinating. I hope this outdoor guide will help you choose your destination!


1. The Bruce Trail

, Ontario

Bruce Trail map

890 km of trails

This is one of the most famous trails in Canada, and with a good reason. It follows Niagara Escarpment, so be ready to witness one of the natural treasures of UNESCO. The trail basically stretches from Queenston (where the Niagara falls are located) to Tobermory, Bruce Peninsula. It is estimated that it takes 30 days to complete it if you travel for about 8 hours a day. The terrain can be quite rocky at times, so high-quality hiking shoes are a must. I would recommend this trail for advanced hikers.

Bruce Trail picture

The Bruce Trail is beloved by Canadians and tourists alike because, firstly, it is the longest hiking trail in Canada. Try it if you’re up to the challenge! Also, it is the oldest one of all the trails. The variety of landscape will amaze you - after all, Canada is known for its lush and wild nature. Even though the primary attraction of the Bruce trail is, of course, Niagara Falls, there are tons of things to look forward to.

After you start your journey in the Queenston Heights Park, you are welcomed by the beauty of the park. Actually, the whole trail displays a wide variety of Canadian nature, including lush forests, caves, cliffs, and mountains. Be ready to witness a lot of animals like chipmunks and squirrels.

Be sure to check out the Devil’s Monument (an incredible flowerpot formation), the Purple Walley Access Trail with wonderful views, the Spirit Rock Trail with an extraordinary scenery, Hope Bay Nature Reserve that offers nature exploration, and the Overhanging Point with rocks full of fossils. There are even more fascinating places to see, so simply open the trail map and see for yourself!

Contact

Telephone: 519-596-2233
Toll-free: 1-888-773-8888
Email: bruce-fathomfive@pc.gc.ca

2. The West Coast Trail

, British Columbia

West Coast Trail map

75 km of trails

The West Coast Trail is significantly shorter than the Bruce Trail, but that doesn’t make it any worse. It is considered to be one of the best hiking trails in the world, and it is especially beloved by backpackers. The best season for taking this path is summer. It approximately takes from 5 to 7 days to complete this hike.

You might want to be physically fit in order to take The West Coast Trail - in your way, you will encounter really steep slopes, have to cross rivers, and climb ladders in order to reach your destination.

West Coast Trail picture

You can either choose to start this trail in Bamfield or in Port Renfrew. It is actually easier to begin hiking in the north (Bamfield) because the southern terrain is rougher, offering a bigger challenge. Either way, you should witness the beauty of the Canadian nature at its finest - there are a lot of parts of the trail that go through forests, the beach, and bogs. You also shouldn’t forget various ladders that might be quite mossy, making it difficult to climb.

However, the views are well worth the challenge - you will see the Pacific Ocean and the beauty of the Olympic Peninsula. You might also meet various mountain animals like wolves, bears, cougars, and eagles, or marine animals like sea lions, orcas, or great whales. Just keep in mind that the trail is suitable mainly to quite advanced travellers.

Contact

Telephone: 250-647-5434

3. The Skyline Trail

, Alberta

The Skyline Trail map

26 Km of trails

Going for a hike in the Skyline Trail is something everyone should experience. It is located in Jasper National Park, which is known for its huge size and breathtaking scenery. During the hike, most of the time you will be walking above the treeline. The hike usually takes from two to four days depending on the person’s physical level.

The Skyline Trail photo

More that two thirds of the Skyline Trail contain the view to the mountains. The landscape is a bit different from the majority of the trails in Canada, as there are few trees and the terrain is barren, offering smooth rocky paths to move forward. During the trip, you will see magnificent valleys and lush meadows that will make you want to stay there. Usually, the season here lasts from early July to early September because of the harsh climate. During the hike, you might meet various animals, like marmots, sheep, or caribou. However, you might also encounter grizzly bears, so be careful and always have bear spray with you just in case. Additionally, keep in mind that you can’t take dogs to this hiking trail - they might scare the caribou.

Contact

Telephone: 780-852-6176

4. Crypt Lake Trail

, Alberta

Crypt Lake Trail map

17 Km of trails

If the Skyline Trail can be suitable for beginners in hiking, the Crypt Lake Trail requires a bit more experience. It is considered to be one of the most exciting and thrilling trails in the world, and that says something!

It is located in Waterton Lakes National Park, which is quite a big attraction itself, being a home for tons of different animals like wolverines, goats, eagles, black bears and grizzly bears, moose, etc.

Crypt Lake Trail photo

You will start your hike with a ferry trip - hikers have to get to Crypt Landing, where the journey begins. After that, the hikers are greeted by a forest. However, as the hike progresses, the trees gradually disappear as the slope becomes steeper and steeper. You will be able to witness the Crypt Valley and, of course, the famous Crypt Falls.

The most interesting part of the Crypt Lake Trail is the narrow mountain tunnel where you’ll have to crawl for about 30 metres. It might be really scary, but the results is worth the trouble - once you’re done with the tunnel, you are presented with Crypt Lake. However, don’t forget that this is a mountain trail, and most of the trail map is really up high. You mustn’t be afraid of heights, or else the whole hike will be a total nightmare!

Contact

Telephone: 403-859-5133
Toll-free: 1-888-773-8888
Email: waterton.info@pc.gc.ca

5. La Cloche Silhouette Trail

, Ontario

La Cloche Silhouette Trail map

78 Km of trails

As the name of this trail suggests, its hikers should expect travelling across the La Cloche mountain range, which is one of the oldest in the world. This means that hikers will have the possibility to witness the beauty of ancient landscape. The hike may take up to 10 days, as it is considered to be one of the more physically demanding paths.

There are five parts of the La Cloche Silhouette Trail, each one having its own flair.

Baie Fine - this section is quite relaxing because the trail is surrounded by the forest. You can see a lot of different kinds of Canadian trees like pines and maples. However, at the end it becomes quite steep.

La Cloche Silhouette Trail photo

Threenarrows - here you will the Threenarrows lake, as the trail stretches alongside the shoreline. It is said that there are a lot of animals in this area, so be ready for keeping your eyes wide open for the local Canadian fauna.

Hansen Township - this part is a bit difficult to complete, but it rewards the hiker with beautiful views of mountains and lakes.

Silver Peak - as the name of the section tells us, you will see Silver Peak here, which is the highest mountain peak of the park.

Killarney Ridge - the last section of the hiking trail. Watch out! Here you will encounter “The Crack”, which is a huge chasm at the end of the journey. The terrain here is extremely rocky.

Contact

Toll-free: 1-888-ONT-PARK

6. Canol Heritage Trail

, Yukon

Canol Heritage Trail map

355 Km of trails

If you want a real challenge, this one’s for you. If you would look at the trail maps of Canada, you would see that it is one of the most remote hiking trails in the country. It should be noted that the trail is suitable only for really confident hikers, as its remoteness might make it less convenient than the others.

The landscape of the Carol Heritage Trail really emphasizes the aspect of being far from civilization - in the middle of the meadow, you can see a lonely path stretching beyond the horizon. All the time you are surrounded by distant mountains covered in fog. There is a huge possibility of seeing animals like caribou. When the weather conditions allow it, you can see the northern lights. The montain rocks contain various fossils, left from the times of the continent formation.

Canol Heritage Trail photo

As you can see, Canol Heritage Trail is really special even in the context of all the Canadian trails - it’s really suitable for those who want to escape the civilization and who crave for some time for themselves, away from the troubles of the world. Here you will truly feel like you are one with the nature. However, watch out for bears - there are lots of them in this area.


7. Sunshine Meadows

Alberta

Sunshine Meadows map

18 Km of trails

If you visit Sunshine Meadows in summer, it really lives up to its name. The majority of this hike trail goes across a beautiful meadow, which is full of wildflowers when the season is right. The meadow is surrounded by mountains and the whole scenery is really nothing but eye candy. Choose this trail on a sunny summer day and your crave for lush, rich meadows will be satisfied.

At one point you will reach Quartz Hill, from which you will be able to witness a beautiful landscape from all directions. You will definitely see Howard Douglas Lake, which looks like a blue gem, tightly surrounded by the forest.

Sunshine Meadows photo

The hiking trail is really relaxing, so it is suitable for those who have just started hiking. What is more, you will later reach Rock Isle Lake that is really popular with the tourists - there might be a lot of people fishing or simply enjoying the scenery.

I would recommend bringing your camera with you, as the hike is really relaxing and you will have plenty of time just to enjoy the nature and pay attention to all the little things around you, like flowers or small animals that show up here and there. You might even see a herd of mountain goats!

Contact

Telephone : 403-705-4000

8. Juan de Fuca Marine Trail

British Columbia

Juan de Fuca Marine Trail map

47 Km of trails

Like many of the hiking trails in Canada, Juan de Fuca Marine Trail is located in a park, more precisely, Juan de Fuca Provincial Park. This place is home and sanctuary for many forest animals. It takes four to six days to complete all of the trail, but it can be taken in parts if all you want is a nice walk in the nature.

Juan de Fuca Marine Trail photo

One of the more interesting aspects of the trail is that is is situated on an island that is called Vancouver Island. This means that some of the itinerary will be focused around the coast, where you can spot marine animals.

Contact

Telephone : 250-474-1336

9. Nootka Island Trail

British Columbia

Nootka Island Trail map

40 Km of trails

Nootka Island Trail is one of the calmer and easier routes in Canada. Most of the trail is situated along the coast because it is located on an island called Nootka. This place is special because here you can see the open ocean in all its glory. People often see whales and sea otters here.

While travelling, you may see many caves that you can discover. As the place is one of the more remote ones, you can feel like an adventurer. It is recommended to visit the place in summer, as it get muddy in other times of the year.

Nootka Island Trail photo

Even though you can easily finish the hike in 5 days, you can add a couple more just to make sure that you have seen everything - the place is really worth exploring.

10. Orphan Lake

, Ontario

Orphan Lake map

8 Km of trails

Even though this trail is one of the shortest if you look at the trail map, it is definitely worth a try. Its difficulty is moderate (some say even easy), so you don’t need to be extremely fit to complete it. Basically, it is a one-day adventure.

The Orphan Lake Trail, even being a short one, has a lot to offer in terms of views and landscape. Like most of the trails, it begins in a forest full of maples and birches. It then continues alongside Orphan Lake, which is tightly surrounded by trees. The atmosphere here is very relaxing. You can stop here for a while and just feel the wind coming from the lake.

Orphan Lake photo

During the hike, you will also see Lake Superior and Baldhead Beach, the terrain of which is completely covered in pebbles and various colorful rocks. It really looks interesting! What is more, you can canoe in the lake, camp on the beach, or just simply wander around, absorbing the calming essence of the atmosphere. So, even though the hike is short, you can make yourself comfortable and spend here the whole day or even more.

Contact

Telephone : 705-856-2284


So, here are the 10 hiking trails in Canada that I consider to be among the best ones. However, there are tons more! You can definitely check out even those that are not mentioned in this outdoors guide. Of course, you shouldn’t forget to be careful and plan your trip thoroughly so that it would be safe for you and your friends. Purchase high-quality hiking shoes, warm clothes, and have enough resources.

But most importantly - have your camera with you in order to share the special moments spent surrounded by the incredible nature of Canada.


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