5 cities in Canada to visit that aren’t Toronto, Montreal, or Vancouver

OTTAWA, ONTARIO - JULY 01: General atmosphere during Canada Day celebrations at Parliament Hill on July 01, 2019 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Mark Horton/Getty Images)
OTTAWA, ONTARIO - JULY 01: General atmosphere during Canada Day celebrations at Parliament Hill on July 01, 2019 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Mark Horton/Getty Images) /

Canada is a massive country that offers an incredibly diverse range of experiences. And a significant portion of its population can be found in the areas around major centers like Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. But there’s more to Canada than that.

No one is suggesting that these three cities aren’t amazing. They deserve the international attention that they get and more. But there are other Canadian cities that tourists should also consider traveling to, for a huge variety of reasons.

St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

Established in 1583, St. John’s is about as far east as you can get and still consider yourself as being in Canada. What’s awesome about this part of the country is that it’s a world all on its own. And that definitely comes through in St. John’s.

Signal Hill and Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Sites are both great stops. It’s also a wonderful place to explore nature, from wandering various hiking trails that take you along the coast and the interior as well as puffin and whale watching tours.

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Calgary, Alberta, Canada
CALGARY, AB – JANUARY 18: A general view of the interior of Scotiabank Saddledome prior to an NHL game between the Calgary Flames and the Vancouver Canucks during an NHL game at on January 18, 2021 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /

There are a lot of great cities in the western part of the country to check out but Calgary needs to be at the top of your list. Some people compare it to cities in Texas but it is truly its own thing, with several outstanding spots to check out.

The Calgary Zoo is one of the best in the country, offering an incredible array of exhibits to enjoy. But this is also a food and entertainment town with a lot to offer. Both the Calgary Stampede and Calgary Comics & Entertainment Expo are amazing if you’re so inclined.

Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada

Back out on the east coast is a small province that packs a big punch called Prince Edward Island. Charlottetown is both the capital and the largest city in PEI. It’s also a hell of a place to spend a week or two on vacation.

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It’s not the biggest city in Canada by far, but it has a lot to do. There are several historic locations in and around Charlottetown, as well as more contemporary attractions. Victoria Row is a great place to go shopping, particularly if you’re an Anne of Green Gables fan.

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

Canada, Prince Edward Island
PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND, CANADA – 2004/01/01: Canada, Prince Edward Island National Park, Near Dalvay, Beach. (Photo by Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images) /

This isn’t the first time that Winnipeg has been pointed out as a destination worth checking out. A lot of people overlook this city, thinking it’s in the flyover part of the country. They could not be more wrong as Winnipeg is incredible.

It has a vibrant arts and culture scene as well as a litany of great restaurants and bars. Additionally, this region is at the core of Canadian history, so there is also a lot to explore in that regard. And, of course, the Assiniboine Park Zoo should not be missed.

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

When people plan trips to British Columbia, they usually think about skiing in the mountains or hitting up Vancouver. That’s completely understandable. Just don’t sleep on the magnificent city of Victoria which is located on the southern end of Vancouver Island.

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The Royal BC Museum offers many unique views on the vast history of the province. Shopping and eating in Market Square can kill a day in style. And anyone who travels to Victoria has to stop by the incomparably colorful and stunning Butchart Gardens.