Canada with Kids: Family Destination Guide

Everything you need to know about travelling to Canada with your family

Canada With Kids: Table of Contents

Photo Story: Tofino

 

Overview

Canada with Kids: A Family Road Trip in British Columbia, from Vancouver to Tofino (coming soon!)

 

British Columbia

Canada with Kids: Visiting Tofino on Vancouver Island

Canada with Kids: The Best Family Hotels in British Columbia 

Canada with Kids: 10 Things to do in Tofino, Vancouver Island

Canada with Kids: The Sea to Sky Gondola in Squamish 

Canada with Kids: 10 Things to do in Whistler in the Summer (coming soon!)

Family Hotel Review: The Wickaninnish Inn, Tofino, Vancouver Island

Family Hotel Review: Delta Victoria Ocean Pointe Hotel Resort & Spa, Vancouver Island

Family Hotel Review: Lodging Ovations Evolution, Whistler

Family Hotel Review: L’Hermitage Hotel Vancouver

Family Hotel Review: The Fairmont Hotel, Vancouver

 

Québec

Canada with Kids: Québec, the Most Magical Winter in the World! 

Canada with Kids: 10 Things to do at the Winter Carnival in Québec

Canada with Kids: Staying at Québec’s Ice Hotel with Kids 

Canada with Kids: Your Essential Packing List for Winter in Québec (coming soon!)

Family Hotel Review: The Hilton Québec 

 

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Canada with Kids: A guide to Canada for families

Canada: Why You’ll Love It 

Canada

We’re fast falling in love with Canada and it’s become one of our favourite destinations for a family holiday. So far we’ve ticked British Columbia and Quebec off our lists but there’s still so much we want to see, both in these states and beyond.

It’s hard to describe just how beautiful British Columbia is. This, Canada’s westernmost state, is simply stunning with one of the most awe-inspiring natural landscapes in the world. Majestic mountains, rugged coastlines, ancient forests and crystal clear lakes are seemingly everywhere.

Locals live within arms reach of the spectacular wilderness; even in Vancouver, the state’s biggest city, you can be on the ski slopes within half-an-hour of leaving work. And when you’re not experiencing the great outdoors, there are tempting restaurants, cool boutiques and some incredible coffee shops to enjoy.

The Gulf Islands, each with a distinct personality, are definitely worth a stop along your travels, if only to enjoy hopping on and off the ferries. On Vancouver Island you’ll find Victoria, the state’s capital that is small but vibrant – you can’t help but fall in love with the water taxis that criss-cross the picturesque Inner Harbour. And then there’s Tofino, the increasingly-popular (almost) most westerly point of Canada home to great surfing, dramatic storm-watching, beautiful hotels, a delicious dining scene and some of the most jaw-dropping scenery in the whole of BC.

On the other side of the country is Quebec, home to Quebec City (one of the prettiest cities I have ever been to), Montreal and more. We visited for La Carnaval de Quebec and had a truly wonderful time – we can’t wait to go back!

 

Canada: Why The Kids Will Love It

10 Things to do with Kids at the Winter Carnaval, Quebec

If you’re looking for a destination where kids can unplug and spend all their days outside, then Canada is the place to do it.

Vancouver City has much to offer including famous Stanley Park, a 1,000-acre green oasis, home to walking and biking trails, stunning views and the incredible Vancouver Aquarium. Summer in Whistler is for hiking, cycling and kayaking and taking the Peak 2 Peak Gondola – you may even spot a bear below you! The Family Adventure Zone in Whistler Village will keep kids of all ages happy. And in the winter? Well, then it’s all about the snow.

Kids can learn to surf in Tofino, on Vancouver Island, or spend their days searching for emerald green sea anemones and giant starfish in the rock pools instead. There are walking trails galore and whale- and bear watching tours aplenty. Catch a water taxi in Victoria and visit colourful Fishermen’s Wharf before exploring all things creepy and crawly at the Victoria Bug Zoo.

In Quebec, the winter carnival is the largest winter festival in the world and a fantastic destination for children. Sure, it’s cold but the locals embrace winter in Quebec and once you learn to do the same, you really will have a brilliant time.

 

Canada With Kids: When To Go

10 Things to do with Kids at the Winter Carnaval, Quebec

Vancouver:

The best times to visit Vancouver are from March to May and from September to November when the weather is mild and hotel rooms can be found at bargain rates. Summer is the most popular time thanks to warmer weather; this can be reflected in hotel rates and availability. Winter is also a great time to visit, particularly if you’re looking to hit the ski slopes!

Whistler: 

The best times to visit Whistler are June through September and December through March. The mountains see peak skiing conditions from December to February, and March brings warmer temperatures but still offers good snow. In June and July, Blackcomb Mountain opens for glacier skiing.

During the summer months Whistler acts as a home base for hikers, campers and mountain bikers. April and May enjoy warmer temperatures ranging from the low 40s to the mid-60s. You can ski through the end of April; the mountains still see snow and the days are warmer and sunny. You should be able to get a good hotel deal during this time. The autumn months bring cooler temperatures between the mid-40s and 50s.

Victoria, Vancouver Island: 

Spring (March – May) is a great time to visit Victoria. The days are bright and the cherry blossoms and azaleas are in bloom. The summer months (June – August) is peak tourist season. This time of year is perfect for outdoor activities such as whale watching and bike riding, however hotel prices are also at their peak over this period. A number of festivals occur over the summer months.

Autumn months (September – November) can be chilly and rainfall increases but you’ll get good deals on hotels! Expect a lot of rain (but few crowds) if you visit between the the months of December and February.

Tofino, Vancouver Island:

Tofino is popular year-round. The summer months are when most people come but the winter also sees a good number of visitors arrive to watch the dramatic storms. The Pacific Rim Whale Festival, celebrates grey whales and marine life education and is held annually in March.

Québec

Québec City is best enjoyed from June to September and from December through February. The summer and winter months are when the Québecois come out to play and the city’s calendar is jam-packed with festivals. Yes, the winters are cold but this is a city where the locals embrace winter (and where it’s perfectly normal to wander around town in your ski suit!). Spring and autumn are also beautiful. In fact, at any time of year you’re guaranteed to fall in love with this picture-perfect city.

 

Canada With Kids: FAQ

Photo Story: Sea to Sky Gondola, Squamish, British Columbia, Canada

Capital: The capital of Canada is Ottawa, the capital of British Columbia is Victoria on Vancouver Island. The capital of Québec is Québec City.

Time: Canada uses six time zones; British Columbia is on PST (GMT +8), Québec is on UTC.

Language: English and French are spoken across Canada. In British Columbia, English is the main language in Québec French is most widely spoken.

Voltage: 110 v

Flight time from the UK: 10 hours to Vancouver, almost 7 hours to Québec.

Visas: Many countries, including the USA, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan, do not require a visa to enter Canada for stays up to 180 days. US permanent residents are also exempt. Other nationals, including China and Mexico, must apply for a visitor visa prior to travel. Starting March 15, 2016, visa-exempt foreign nationals who fly to or transit through Canada will need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA). Exceptions include U.S. citizens and foreign nationals with a valid visa. For more information see here.

Health & Vaccinations: No special vaccines are required for travel to Canada, however you should be up to date on routine immunisations. See the NHS’s fitfortravel website for further advice.

Getting There: Airlines Vancouver International Airport is the main airport of British Columbia and the second busiest in Canada. It sits just 13km south of downtown in the city of Richmond. There are two main terminals, International and Domestic. The flight time from the UK is just under 10 hours. In Québec the Jean Lesage International Airport is the main airport.

Money: Canada uses the Canadian dollar as its currency. Credit cards and debit cards are used more frequently than cash.

Safety: Canada tends to be very safe for visitors. One thing to be aware of is Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside area where the homeless congregate, their lives often affected by drugs and mental illness. It is unlikely that anyone will bother you but do we aware, especially at night.

Dress: British Columbians pride themselves on being able to go straight from the mountain or sea out to dinner. In other words, leave your glad rags at home! The Québecois are a little more fashion-forward but during the winter months anything goes – as long as it keeps you warm!

 

Canada With Kids: Our YouTube Playlist

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Windamere Hotel: 27.045835, 88.267819
Oberoi Amarvillas: 27.167907, 78.048912
Raas Haveli: 26.297646, 73.022527
Itmenaan Estate: 29.518200, 79.832897
Hotel Diggi Palace: 26.910280, 75.812508
Mosaics Guesthouse: 26.966788, 75.920459
Udai Bilas Palace: 23.841943, 73.714678
Samode Haveli: 27.000408, 74.992676
Mongolia With Kids: A Guide to Mongolia for Families: 46.862496, 103.846656
Burma: 21.913965, 95.956223
Family Holidays in India: 20.593684, 78.962880
Family Holidays in Vietnam: 14.058324, 108.277199
Family Holidays in Thailand: 15.921715, 100.788574
Family Holidays in Sri Lanka: 7.873054, 80.771797
Family Holidays in Borneo: 1.068237, 114.233536
Family Holidays in Cambodia: 12.565679, 104.990963
Family Holidays in Nepal: 28.394857, 84.124008
Amazing Angkor Wat, Cambodia: 13.423016, 103.936844
A Taste of Tunisia: 33.886917, 9.537499
A Panama Jungle Adventure: 8.674027, -81.298485
Magical Mongolia: 47.920000, 106.920000
The Pushkar Camel Fair: 26.489749, 74.551086
Srinagar to Leh by Jeep: 34.152586, 77.577053
Sri Lanka: 6.053519, 80.220977
Holi Family Holiday: 26.912434, 75.787271
The Mountains of Ifugao, The Philippines: 16.883403, 120.969086
10 Things to do with Kids in Sri Lanka: 6.500000, 80.771797
5 Things to do with Kids Around Manila: 14.599512, 120.984219
10 Things to do with Kids in India: 15.000000, 79.000000
Jaipur with Kids: 26.500000, 75.805954
Jims Jungle Retreat: 29.535701, 78.924974
Traditional Homes Swotha: 27.674428, 85.325779
The Hyatt Regency Kathmandu: 27.722117, 85.356978
Pauline\'s Guesthouse, Nr Kathmandu, Nepal: 27.772882, 85.333351
Illuketia, Nr Galle: 6.035268, 80.266791
The Wallawwa: 7.131947, 79.927913
Apa Villa, Nr Galle: 6.030486, 80.240915
The Bayleaf Hotel, Manila: 14.589969, 120.977878
Haadson Resort: 8.739592, 98.244386
Villa Ban Haad Sai, Koh Samui: 9.571675, 100.063103
JW Marriott, Phuket: 8.166198, 98.294973
Villa Sai Taan, Phuket: 7.994743, 98.300971
Gili Eco Villas: -8.339901, 116.032570
Lombok B&B: -8.504688, 116.054106
Family House Lombok: -8.891092, 116.275837
Club Paradise, Dimakya Island: 12.234233, 120.088892
Fateh Garh, Udaipur: 24.568566, 73.640348
Lebanon: 33.901197, 35.660934
Glenburn: 27.083155, 88.336072
Club Villa: 6.426232, 79.995232
Atali Ganga: 30.068860, 78.457750
Snowboarding in Gulmarg, Kashmir: 34.059486, 74.311523
RIFF: 26.297836, 73.018447
Phuket: 7.981046, 98.363883
Nepal: 28.598709, 83.822390
Kerala: 9.498067, 76.338848
Costa Rica: 9.748917, -83.753428
Sherlock: 11.197936, 76.745682
The Dune: 12.049141, 79.875163
The Beach Hut: 6.005545, 80.256500
Epic American Road trip: 35.216834, -101.814725
Devi Bhawan: 26.238947, 73.024309
Morocco MFA: 31.791702, -7.092620
Whale Watching Panama: 8.665203, -79.208679
Maya Mexico: 20.211419, -87.465350
MFA Tokyo: 35.689487, 139.691706
Jaypee Palace: 27.153876, 78.071165
Anda Lanta: 7.488091, 99.083462
Ratan Vilas: 26.273913, 73.030063
Khem Vilas: 26.064852, 76.438331
Villa Baan Chao Lay: 9.559606, 100.036228
Highlands Park: 34.052833, 74.384700
Khyber: 34.042840, 74.386346
Dar es Salam: 34.113766, 74.836167
Ranjits SVAASA: 31.642821, 74.862291
Yab Yum: 15.646221, 73.717183
Olaulim Backyards: 15.570627, 73.870387
Vivenda dos Palhacos: 15.314925, 73.912164
Sur La Mer: 15.642397, 73.723037
Joets: 15.370926, 73.832758
Grand Hyatt: 15.451140, 73.851595
Amarya Shamiyana: 15.646737, 73.716856
The Farm: 26.873023, 75.613542
Jas Vilas: 26.930462, 75.788064
Royal Heritage Haveli: 26.925231, 75.745491
Indrashan Homestay: 26.270218, 73.030876
Alila Diwa: 15.306901, 73.911334
Kumarakom Lake Resort: 9.612555, 76.431248
Emerald Isle: 9.492137, 76.326071
Marari Beach Resort: 9.595008, 76.301175
Marari Villas: 9.583107, 76.302272
Philipkutty\'s Farm: 9.662806, 76.409535
Casa Susegad: 15.330995, 73.980346
Park Hyatt Goa: 15.327473, 73.897707
Coconut Creek: 15.372996, 73.833220
Fishermans Cove Philippines: 13.503281, 120.944008
Shahar Palace: 26.909963, 75.785703
Costa Pacifica: 15.760657, 121.569018
Hotel Eagles Nest: 32.261658, 76.306800
Patan Mahal: 27.801557, 75.976059
Tea Bungalow: 9.962806, 76.245846
The Secret Garden: 9.931238, 76.267315
Dreamz: 9.967115, 76.242319
Old Harbour Hotel: 9.967199, 76.242447
Raintree Lodge: 9.966505, 76.243054
Brunton Boatyard: 9.968819, 76.245611
Tikli Bottom: 28.331856, 77.008482
Kipling Camp: 22.310358, 80.496547
: 13.706898, 120.875911
Aashyana Lakhanpal: 15.525650, 73.762132
Dwarikas: 27.704885, 85.342298
10 Things to do in Gulmarg: 34.041603, 74.370477
Video: 10 Things to Do in Gulmarg, With Kids: 34.093610, 74.371948
whale watching panama: 8.627420, -79.037667
Jaipur Video: 26.846128, 75.953979
Bohol: 9.849991, 124.143543
Gamboa Rainforest Retreat: 9.121111, -79.692562
Casa Mariposa: 8.603634, -80.128217
Los Quetzales: 8.869582, -82.566899
Yandup: 9.317597, -78.227778
MFA Singapore Swing: 1.352083, 103.819836
MFA Bohol philippines: 9.849991, 124.143543
New Zealand campervan: -43.532054, 172.636225
Video: Campervan Adventure New Zealand: -42.526243, 172.828825
Casa Tota Mexico: 23.450711, -110.222610
El Diablo y La Sandia B&B: 17.062192, -96.719449
Posada Margherita Tulum: 20.226895, -87.433628
Casa Amarilla: 8.643964, -79.707608
JetWing Beach: 7.243444, 79.841595
Namo Buddha Resort: 27.580712, 85.590484
Why House: 6.007137, 80.266471
River House: 6.269323, 80.037350
Villa Las Estrellas: 20.153443, -87.456997
Meson de Leyendas: 19.198173, -100.130026
La Chevrerie Resort & Spa: 13.732900, 120.887474
Atmosphere Resorts & Spa: 9.158530, 123.242483
The Bungalows: 22.883578, -109.918383
St Joseph Resthouse: 17.085148, 120.901012
Oberoi Udaivilas: 24.576800, 73.672155
10 Things Borneo: 1.068237, 114.233536
10 Things to do with kids in Delhi: 28.613939, 77.209021
Shangri-La Oman: 23.551335, 58.659198
Alphabeto: 7.790297, 98.316714
Riverside Inn Boquete: 8.798225, -82.427238
MFA Tulum: 20.211419, -87.465350
MFA Grand Canyon: 36.106965, -112.112997
Shangri-La Boracay: 11.988269, 121.906216
Coqui Coqui: 20.494404, -87.730531
10 Things to do in Boracay: 11.948647, 121.936569
Dubai : 25.204849, 55.270783
Phuket: 7.951933, 98.338088
MFA Crete: 35.240117, 24.809269
Diphlu River Lodge: 26.578553, 93.255047
Amorita Resort: 9.549948, 123.776424
Los Cabos: 23.079870, -109.712404
Granada Nicaragua: 11.933333, -85.950000
Sol y luna: -13.296530, -72.129460
Tierra Viva Machu Picchu: -13.154402, -72.526342
Tierra Viva Saphi: -13.512817, -71.983037
The Garden House: -13.535587, -71.904965
MFA Peru: -13.163141, -72.544963
MFA Hawaii: 19.542915, -155.665857
The oberoi grand, kolkata: 22.561786, 88.351213
MFA Bali Gili: -8.371399, 116.045580
Chincheros: -13.391999, -72.049284
Museo Inkariy: -13.317499, -71.992301
Bounce Below: 53.004581, -3.942279
Moray & Maras: -13.329857, -72.197144
Ollantaytambo: -13.258369, -72.264268
Pisac: -13.424167, -71.857778
MFA Sigiriya: 7.955154, 80.759803
Tomb of Columbus: 37.385748, -5.993751
Boats of Columbus: 37.211454, -6.928175
La rabida Columbus: 37.207646, -6.926167
Machu Picchu with kids: -13.161062, -72.559204
MFA Bangladesh: 21.439464, 92.007732
Crete top 10: 35.277016, 24.348450
MFA San Blas: 9.507126, -78.803740
Bavarian Forest: 49.126635, 13.120151
Flytographer: 48.428421, -123.365644
Tofino: 49.152984, -125.906618
Xochimilco: 19.257231, -99.102966
Fairmont Hotel: 49.283793, -123.120989
L\'Hermitage: 49.280470, -123.116989
Lodging Ovations: 50.095389, -122.989441
Delta Victoria Ocean: 48.426969, -123.375084
The Wickaninnish Inn: 49.123773, -125.899807
Shangri La Makati: 14.553639, 121.024576
Nobu: 14.523867, 120.992770
Discovery Primea: 14.553381, 121.026953
Day of Dead Part 1: 19.432608, -99.133208
Day of Dead Part 2: 19.414792, -99.081573
Tbex Florida: 26.122439, -80.137317
Best hotels Manila: 14.599512, 120.984219
Tofino 10 things: 49.152984, -125.906618
Sacred Valley: -13.303898, -72.111557
Art in Island: 14.622794, 121.058114
Walks El Valle: 8.609784, -80.131693
10 Things El Valle: 8.601983, -80.119987
Sea to Sky Gondola: 49.701634, -123.155812
Casa Guardia: 8.366792, -80.121831
Awesome Hotel: 16.678999, 120.336555
LivItaly Florence: 43.769560, 11.255814
: 12.001300, 120.193760
Peru for Families: -7.972198, -76.113281
Panama for Families: 9.600750, -79.958496
Cuba for families: 22.796439, -80.914307
Mexico For Families: 22.593726, -103.359375
The Philippines for Families: 11.953349, 119.091797
Canada for Families: 54.367759, -114.609375