The winter blues have finally broken, spring is in full force, and warm weather is right around the corner. The May 2-4 long weekend (aka the unofficial start of summer) is almost here! What better way to spend it than on the road, visiting the best and most scenic destinations that Canada has to offer? No matter where you are in this vast country, there’s always a gem of great culture, awe-inspiring wildlife, or plain ol’ good times right around the corner.
Travel expert Natalie Preddie breaks down some of her favourite long weekend trips from B.C. to Newfoundland. Gas up your car!
There’s so much to do in this city that gets it’s name from Queen Victoria. You can catch the event that draws over 100,000 people, features marching bands, floats, and performances – the Victoria Day Parade, May 20. If whisky-tasting, athletic games, Celtic bands, and Scottish and Irish dance troops are more your speed, then why not try the Victoria Highland Games? There’s so much to do in this amazing city!
Front Range Mountains (3 Sisters, Castle Mountain), Alberta
Pack a lunch, because these mountains have to be one of the most beautiful picnic spots ever. Biking, hiking; you name it, these mountains are great for it. Oh, and don’t forget your camera – they’ll look great on your Instagram feed, too.
Riding Mountain National Park, Manitoba
This one’s for the nature lovers. A true Canadian wonder, Manitoba’s national park can be summarized in one word – breathtaking. A 3.5 hour drive from Winnipeg, this huge area has over 400 kilometers of hiking trails, multiple lakes for boating or paddling, traditional camping, cottages, and B&B’s. Wanna try something new? Stay in a micrOcube (a small room that has a panoramic window that takes up an entire wall) or an oTENTik (a homey cabin-style lodging that lets you enjoy nature living to the fullest). Oh, and while you’re there, keep your eyes open for some of the park’s gorgeous animals, like bison, moose, and bears.
Blue Mountain Village, Ontario
Blue Mountain Village is fun for the whole family! On May 18-20, catch fireworks, live music, scavenger hunts, guided tours, dancing, arts n’ crafts, and much more. Had enough activities for the day? Swing by Georgian Bay or Scenic Caves for a wonderful dose of nature to get away from real life for a while, and enjoy the weekend to the fullest.
Bay Roberts, Newfoundland
There’s something special just an hour outside of St.John’s, and it’s called Bay Roberts. You won’t believe your eyes when you see the whales out on the water, and get a taste of the life there by watching the fishing. The town will be gearing up for its annual Song, Stages & Seafood Festival (May 22-May 26),and even if you aren’t staying the whole week, you’ll get a taste of what’s to come with delicious seafood dinners, Irish and East Coast music everywhere, culinary workshops at your fingertips, and fishcake championships. This destination truly magical, through and through.