Planning a Canadian holiday this fall? Consider connecting with Canada in a powerful way by making a stop along The Great Trail. Here are four notable possibilities.
Go Big on the Banff Legacy Trail
Known for breathtaking views, and popular among cyclists and hikers alike, the Banff Legacy Trail stretches between the Rocky Mountain towns of Canmore and Banff. Beyond spectacular wilderness vistas including sightings of resident big horned sheep and elk, the Trail also offer ready access to Canmore and Banff’s fine dining, shopping and nightlife attractions. With vistas too grand for words to describe, be sure to pack a camera.
Known as the Gateway to the North, the city of Edmonton offers a rewarding balance of urban culture and picturesque scenery, much of it accessible via The Great Trail route along the Saskatchewan River. Crossing the river six times via pedestrian and traffic bridges The Trail meanders through a variety of the city’s natural and manmade highlights. For a taste of local culture including historical properties, quaint theatres, restaurants, bars and shops, head to Whyte Avenue in Old Strathcona. Also nearby, the newly renovated Art Gallery of Alberta is home to over 6,000 works of art. For more of Alberta’s great outdoors, walk towards the outskirts of the city and revel in bucolic landscapes, aspen parklands and golden wheat fields.
Taste the Good Life on Vancouver Islands’ Cowichan Trail
Victoria, B.C. may be the province’s bustling capital, but just 30 minutes north of the city, the Cowichan Valley’s farms, vineyards, majestic mountains and calming bays form a foodie’s paradise. From cheese-making courses to wine-tasting tours, this stretch of the Trail rewards with sensory delights. Outdoor enthusiasts and train aficionados are encouraged to take the Trail’s 15-km route, which crosses eight restored wooden trestle bridges. Among them, the Kinsol Trestle – recognized among the world’s highest bridges – rewards with spectacular rainforest and river views.
Explore Thunder Bay’s History
Traversing the remote but historically significant city of Thunder Bay, this mostly urban section of The Great Trail is an ideal conduit to many of the city’s most popular cultural attractions. Explore Fort William Historical Park including the world’s largest reconstructed fur-trading post to glimpse into the city’s pioneering days. The century-old Thunder Bay Museum is another must-see stop, presenting 10,000 years of local human history. Following a day of touring on foot, enjoy culinary delights ranging from European delis to gastropubs and market-fresh fine dining.