22 Beautiful Canadian Beaches

From coast to coast.

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Canada is known for its many natural wonders, yes—but beaches? Common opinion suggests they’re just not really our “thing”. While it’s true that the water our nation is usually associated with is actually ice, it’s not like Canada’s best shoreline is a Broken Social Scene song. In fact, each province and territory has stunning, often sandy beaches to visit come the Great Thaw (a.k.a “summer”). See them for yourself.

 

Strathcona Provincial Park

 

Daily Edit: Canada's Beautiful Beaches

Courtesy of Boomer Jerritt and Tourism Vancouver Island.

This lake is situated within 250,000 hectares of untamed wilderness in Vancouver Island’s Strathcona Provincial Park; sublime views make it a favourite destination for hikers year-round.

 

Cameron Lake

 

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Courtesy of Landon Sveinson Photography and Tourism Vancouver Island.

Cameron Lake’s temperate water and pretty picnic tables make it a prime locale for swimming and family barbeques on warm summer evenings.

 

Tofino

 

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Courtesy of Boomer Jerritt and Tourism Vancouver Island.

Long Beach, Cox Bay, Chesterman Beach—it’s hard to pick a favourite beach in Tofino, British Columbia. Best to hit all the stops along the Pacific Rim Highway.

 

Daily Edit: Canada's Beautiful Beaches

Courtesy of Boomer Jerritt and Tourism Vancouver Island.

See what we mean? Tofino certainly has its share of great beaches—at Tonquin Beach, you can lounge amid arbutus trees (unique to this area of North America).

 

Maligne Lake

 

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Courtesy of Sean Thonson and Travel Alberta.

Spruce and pine dot the shores of the azure-blue Maligne Lake in Alberta, and while swimming’s not recommended in the glacier-fed lake, fishing, hiking, and wildlife-spotting certainly are.

 

Paignton Beach

 

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Courtesy of Tourism Saskatchewan and Chris Hendrickson Photography.

Paignton Beach is an oasis within Saskatchewan’s Prince Albert Provincial Park. The beach sees locals picnic, swim (the lake is ice-free end of May), and enjoy digging toes into infinite sand.

 

Grand Beach

 

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Courtesy of Travel Manitoba.

Manitoba’s Grand Beach is a sprawl of white sand under a trademark Prairie-blue sky. The sixth largest lake in the country, it’s known as “the great Prairie Sea”.

 

Blue Flag beach

 

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Courtesy of Ontario’s Southwest.

Southwest Ontario’s Canatara Park is a Blue Flag beach—one of only 26 in Canada—a designation that acknowledges strict adherents to water quality and environmental standards.

 

Daily Edit: Canada's Beautiful Beaches

Courtesy of Ontario’s Southwest.

Also a Blue Flag beach in Ontario’s Southwest, Port Stanley offers a gradual, sandy drop off, warm water, and picture-perfect shorelines.

 

Magdalen Islands

 

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Courtesy of André Quenneville.

Quebec’s Magdalen Islands, made up of eight distinct communities, flaunt ragged coastlines akin to Australia’s Twelve Apostles.

 

Hopewell Rocks

 

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Courtesy of Tourism New Brunswick.

New Brunswick’s Hopewell Rocks boasts complex caves and arches that have been carved into the red stone coast over centuries, and can be explored during low tide.

 

Peggy’s Cove

 

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Courtesy of Izzy Dempsey.

Peggy’s Cove in Nova Scotia is idyllic: quintessential coastal homes perch on jagged shores with expansive views of the Atlantic and the pillowed sky above. An aimless wander is a must.

 

Inverness Beach

 

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Courtesy of Scott Munn.

Sandy shores meet the just-under five-kilometre boardwalk at Cape Breton’s Inverness Beach, from which grass-covered rolling hills can be admired under a windy, speckled Maritime sky.

 

Cape John Beach

 

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Courtesy of Ian Murray.

Nova Scotia’s Cape John Beach is a protected three-hectare reserve that juts out from the mainland and overlooks Megs Cove.

 

Basin Head Provincial Park

 

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©Tourism PEI and Paul Baglole.

The Basin Head Provincial Park in Prince Edward Island is favoured among locals; the bleached sand beaches are made up of grains so fine they squeak—or sing—as you walk over them.

 

Western Brook Pond

 

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Courtesy of Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism.

Although there are no designated beaches at the Western Brook Pond in Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland, one might be encouraged to find a quiet, private shore of their own.

 

Wonderstrands

 

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Courtesy of Newfoundland and Labrador Tourism.

Labrador’s Wonderstrands is a lesser-known beach on the mainland. It is secluded, but the effort is worth it—pristine 54-kilometre-long sand beaches await intrepid explorers.

 

Avalon Region

 

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©Barrett & MacKay.

The Maritime colours might shine their brightest in the Avalon Region, in eastern Newfoundland: the rising sun greets brightly-painted sheds, lumbering blue icebergs, and grazing caribou.

 

Naujaat

 

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Courtesy of Michel Thibert and Nunavut Tourism.

Nunavut’s Naujaat is a village at the northwestern limit of Hudson Bay. It resides on the Arctic Circle and from the chilly majestic shores, polar bears, walruses, and whales can be spotted.

 

Great Slave Lake

 

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Courtesy of NWT Tourism and Terry Parker.

Northwest Territories’ Great Slave Lake might be North America’s deepest lake, but eyes during summer months should be looking up: the midnight sun is hauntingly beautiful.

 

Hay River Territorial Park

 

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Courtesy of NWT Tourism and Terry Parker.

Hay River Territorial Park’s beach in the Northwest Territories evokes images of shores farther south—but locals and visitors flock every year to enjoy sun, sand, infinitely-blue views.

 

Kluane Lake

 

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Courtesy Derek Crowe and ©Government of Yukon.

Visitors to Yukon’s Kluane Lake will be charmed by a land of extremes—Canada’s highest peak and largest icefield reside here, and North America’s most diverse grizzly population, too.

 

This article was originally published June 30, 2016.


Post Date:

July 2, 2017