Canada is one of the most diverse countries on this planet. Because of its massive size and spread, it offers a host of natural wonders and some of the most enchanting cities in the world - there's truly something for everyone and every budget.
Of course, when it comes to affordable Canadian travel destinations, flights to Toronto and Vancouver will push your pocket book to the brink of extinction, but there are still some choice destinations that can be done on the cheap. That said; enjoy this list of Canadian travel ideas and getaways for the frugal traveler.
1. Banff & Jasper National Parks, Alberta
Although they're located about 4 hours from each other, both Banff and Jasper National Parks in Alberta, Canada are some of the country's finest stretches of land and far from expensive destinations. Between the crystal clear lakes (Lake Moraine pictured below), majestic mountain peaks, age-old glaciers and wildlife to spare, it's an outdoor camping adventure that will save you cash and bind you to nature.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.wildlifearchives.com/images/banff-moraine-lake.jpg
IMG SOURCE: http://blog.caravan.com/wp-content/upLoads/2010/03/JasperNationalPark.jpg
2. Churchill, Manitoba
Speaking of connecting with nature, there is a small town in northern Manitoba called Churchill that offers more natural wonder than you could ever imagine. The fact that Churchill is both the Polar Bear and Beluga Whale Capitals of the World is the boring part ? even better, Churchill is one of the greatest places to catch the Northern Lights in all their glory. While there are many cities to chose from, Churchill is a small town that you'll want to visit, for good reason.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.photographyblogger.net/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/093.jpg
3. Niagara Falls, Ontario
Although most of the water from the Niagara Falls empties into the United States, you have to be in Ontario, Canada to have the best vantage point and see the power of the falls first-hand. Tourists from all over Canada and the rest of the world flock to this little tourist town and enjoy the cheap site seeing, Queen Victoria Park, historical sites from the War of 1812 and the best view from Skylon Tower.
IMG SOURCE: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/94/281334421_5739fb6688.jpg
4. Ottawa, Canada
Marking the list as the first major city that caters to cheap travel in Canada is Ottawa ? the ?Capital City.? Full of museums, culture and performing arts, Ottawa consistently ranks as one of most affordable cities in North America for cost of living and passes the saving on down to the tourists. Whether you visit in the summer or the sub-zero Winterlude Festival in February, this sparkling clean city is a dandy of a destination.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.oustravel.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/parliament_ottawa_canada.jpg
5. Lake Louise, Alberta
For those that can't afford a plane ride to a big city, we simply can't say enough about Alberta and it's pristine landscapes that are ideal destinations for the thrifty traveler willing to take a road trip. In addition to Banff and Jasper National Parks, Alberta is also the resting place of Lake Louise. While the picture can do most of the talking, keep in mind that this turquoise lake is nestled in the regal Canadian Rockies and provides both affordable camping opportunities and/or a luxurious Fairmont Hotel.
IMG SOURCE: http://s2.hubimg.com/u/79353_f520.jpg
6. The Calgary Stampede, Calgary
Canada is home to many wonderful affordable festivals year round and one of the biggest is the Calgary Stampede in Calgary. In fact, over one million people visit Calgary every July to revel in the 10-day ?Western? festivities that includes hundreds of exhibits, fireworks, activities and free concerts all for just about $15. Of course, if 10 days is more than you can handle at a rodeo, you'll be happy to know that a free peak at the Canadian Rockies is just an hour drive away!
IMG SOURCE: http://parade.calgarystampede.com/assets/images/StampedeFloat.jpg
7. Dawson City, Yukon
Placed high up in the Yukon territories of Canada, just 150 miles south of the Arctic Circle, there's a quaint little mountain town that was the epicenter of the Klondike Gold Rush in the late 1800s ? and it hasn't changed much since then. Though it's not quite as bustling as it use to be, it's a wonderful place to escape to for cheap, enjoy the natural beauty all around, learn a bit of history, soak up the town's charming character and maybe even catch a dog sled race as the city acts as the halfway mark for the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race every February.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.cbc.ca/sevenwonders/images/pic_wonder_dawson_city_lg.jpg
8. Prince Albert National Park
Nestled in the forested beauty of Saskatchewan, Prince Albert National Park is another must see Canadian landscape that offers a lot eye candy for a little cash. With a peak tourism season of May to September, the lake-riddled park provides an unparalleled outdoor venue for hiking and canoeing but it also offers the year-round small town of Waskesiu with hotels, rental cabins, restaurants, movie theater, camp grounds, beaches, tennis courts, picnic areas, lawn bowling and the ever-important souvenir shops.
IMG SOURCE: http://i.pbase.com/u38/bmcmorrow/upload/25036915.pa4.JPG
9. Montreal, Quebec
Of course, if it's city-life you prefer, Montreal, Quebec is another of Canada's more affordable cities. Considered one of the most European cities in North America and just a six-hour drive from Boston and New York, USA, Montreal is a diverse city with something to offer any individual, family or group. Whether its culture you're seeking in the historically rich Old Montreal, or simply looking to get away, anyone of any budget can stay entertained in this city and it's top museums, shopping, arts and nightspots.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.taketours.com/images/logo/5837.jpg
10. Pacific Rim National Park, BC
While the metropolitan city of Vancouver British Columbia is far from a frugal destination, there is still an option for saving while you're there. A visit to the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve in BC is great way to enjoy close proximity to the city but while soaking up the more affordable bits of its nature, hiking, whale watching, seal and sea lion observing, birding and more. Between the three separate regions of the Pacific Rim (Long Beach, the West Coast Trail and the Broken Group Islands), this is a cheap way to enjoy Vancouver, BC.
IMG SOURCE: http://www.nationalgeographic.com/adventure/images/0606/pacific-rim.jpg
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