10 Outstanding Outdoor Adventures in Canada


Thank you to USA Today 10best for inviting me to write: “10 of the best places to have an outdoor adventure in Canada. From sports to wildlife, these are experiences of a lifetime”

Go on a new journey and explore 10 great outdoor experiences across Canada. From the west to the east, and everything in between, adventures await. Which will you pick first?

Heli-hiking | Banff, Alta.

Heli-hiking. Banff, Alberta — Photo courtesy of Paddy Pallin, Banff Lake Louise Tourism

Banff National Park takes adventure hiking to a whole new level.  To truly get away from others, adventurous tourists can be whisked away by helicopter to remote areas where they can commune with nature.  Hikers can choose between easy strolls through meadows (great for taking photos), jaunts with a picnic near a waterfall or strenuous hikes along high mountain ridges.

5-day otter kayak tour | Kyuquot, BC.

Track otters on a 5-day kayak tour — Photo courtesy of David Pinel, West Coast Expeditions

Pacific Canada is teeming with wildlife and adventures that everyone can enjoy.  One of the most memorable experiences is to track otters on a 5-day kayak trip in Kyuquot, B.C.  Curious otters can be seen as well as puffins, bald eagles, sea lions, and the lucky kayaker will even get to experience floating alongside killer whales or humpback whales.

Adventures at Glacier National Park | British Columbia

Glacier National Park is one of the few national parks in North America that is equally beautiful to visit year-round.  In the summer, visitors can take tree tours along an open boardwalk, climb mountains and explore one of the last stretches of an old rail bed that was Canada’s first transcontinental train route.

Watching grizzly bears at Great Bear Lodge | British Columbia

Great Bear Lodge — Photo courtesy of Great Bear Nature Tours

It isn’t every day that a hotel invites its guests to view grizzly bears from its self-contained floating lodge. Located on the northwest shore of Vancouver Island, visitors arrive by seaplane and are treated to the rare occasion of viewing grizzlies twice per day.

In addition, guests have the opportunity to enjoy gourmet meals made from the freshest ingredients and accommodation that is second to none.

Multi-day horse pack trips | Big River, Sask.

Prince Albert National Park near Big River, Sask. is home to the Sturgeon River Ranch.  Here, guests can have the unique experience of riding horseback on a 4,500-acre property.  This is the only place in Canada where wild plains bison roam freely, and guests can enjoy multi-day horse pack trips complete with tent camping and campfires or short day trips on the property.

Canoe down the Churchill River | Missinipe, Sask.

La Ronge Provincial Park / Nistowiak Falls / Churchill River Lac — Photo courtesy of Greg Huszar Photography, Tourism Saskatchewan

The name, Saskatchewan, comes from the Cree name for the Saskatchewan River, “Kisiskatchewanisipi” or “swift-flowing river.” Taking a canoe adventure on the Churchill River, along the shores of Otter Lake, is the perfect way to spend a week or more.

The route is about 93 miles (150 kilometers) and can take anywhere from five to eight days.  Look for wildlife on the tours such as bald eagles, pelicans, moose and even the occasional black bear.

Canadian safari at Lazy Bear Lodge | Churchill, Man.

During your Canadian summer safari at Hudson Bay, visitors can view over 60,000 beluga whales as well as polar bears hunting on the remaining winter ice.  On a five-day tour, guests can expect to see not only polar bears and whales, but more than 200 species of birds, arctic hare, arctic fox and so much more.

CN Tower EdgeWalk | Toronto

EdgeWalk — Photo courtesy of CN Tower / Tour CN

Toronto’s most extreme attraction is the CN Tower EdgeWalk.  Here, adventure seekers can walk 116 stories above the ground and enjoy the skyline as well as the best view of Lake Ontario – on a ledge with no handrail.  Guests walk in groups of six and are attached by a harness to an overhead rail to ensure safety.

Multi-day sea kayak adventures | Cape Broyle, N.F.

Stan Cook Sea Kayak Adventures — Photo courtesy of Stan Cook Sea Kayak Adventures

The easternmost part of Canada is where tourists can enjoy a truly magical multi-day sea kayak adventure.  Stan Cook Adventures is a family-run business that welcomes guests to experience day-trip kayaking lasting a few hours, multi-day kayaking that covers a lot of scenery, or the option of half day or full day hiking adventures.

Wildlife and wilderness | Quebec and Labrador

Spotting polar bears — Photo courtesy of Rapid Lake Lodge, Inc.

Rapid Lake Lodge on the Labrador coast is located a peaceful 100 miles from civilization and is the place to go to see polar bears, go fly fishing, or go backcountry hiking and camping.  Patrons can also simply sit back and enjoy their time away from home.  The possibilities are nearly endless here as there are activities for everyone to enjoy.


Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has explored 102 countries on six continents. This University of Pennsylvania graduate sailed across the seas for seven years with Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean, and Renaissance Cruises and spent three years backpacking across Asia. Discover her articles in publications from AARP: The Magazine and AAA Explorer to WIRED and Wharton Magazine, as well as her site WeSaidGoTravel. On her award nominated global podcast, Make Your Own Map, Niver has interviewed Deepak Chopra, Olympic medalists, and numerous bestselling authors, and as a journalist has been invited to both the Oscars and the United Nations. For her print and digital stories as well as her television segments, she has been awarded three Southern California Journalism Awards and two National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards and been a finalist twenty-two times. Named a #3 travel influencer for 2023, Niver talks travel on broadcast television at KTLA TV Los Angeles, her YouTube channel with over 2 million views, and in her memoir, Brave-ish, One Breakup, Six Continents and Feeling Fearless After Fifty.

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