Show your appreciation for the country by exploring its diverse and breathtaking landscapes. 

Sitting down to eat a breakfast feast of bacon and eggs (with a healthy dose of maple syrup) and spending all day with your friends and family before watching fireworks light up the night sky sounds fun, but we have something better in mind for your Canada Day festivities. Swap your sandals for hiking boots and your relaxing long weekend for an action-packed adventure by embarking on a Canadian trip of a lifetime. From taking in the extraordinary scenery in Newfoundland to wandering through the charming fishing villages of Nova Scotia, there’s simply no better way to celebrate the coming together of this multicultural country.  

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What is the meaning behind Canada Day? 

Canada Day commemorates the passing of the British North America Act (now called the Constitution Act) where the three territories (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Canada province – which is now Ontario and Quebec) consolidated into the single nation of Canada way back in 1867 on the 1st of July. 

Why is Canada Day a day for celebration? 

Canada Day is cause for celebration as it symbolizes the country’s independence and reiterates its unity while giving citizens the chance to show off their Canadian pride. The day is always celebrated on the 1st of July every year but will be observed on the 2nd of July when the 1st falls on a Sunday. 

When did we start celebrating Canada Day? 

Dominion Day (as Canada Day was formerly known) was first held in the year 1879, however, many Canadian people still thought of themselves as British citizens so there were no huge celebrations and festivities that we’re used to seeing today. Acknowledging the day and what it represented started gaining traction in 1917 but it wasn’t until 1967 when patriotism was at an all time high that the occasion really took off. 

What do Canadians typically do on Canada Day? 

How people choose to celebrate Canada Day is entirely up to them, but most people gather together their friends and family for a big cookout or BBQ. Being in the middle of summer, the weather on Canada Day is usually pretty great so it’s not uncommon for Canadians to spend the long weekend down at the beach or at a nearby lake.

There are also several parades that happen across the country, as well as firework displays and music festivals to commemorate the occasion. Most people will also celebrate the day by wearing Canadian flag-themed clothing or accessories or making some of their favourite Canadian foods. 

Things to do on Canada Day

A group of travellers cycling by Athabasca River in Jasper, Canada

Cycle the Canadian Rockies

Prepare to be completely stopped in your tracks on an unforgettable cycling tour of the Canadian Rockies. From the snow-dusted peaks of the mountain ranges in Banff National Park and the turquoise Lake Louise that glitters in the sun to the rich forests full of dense greenery in Jasper National Park and the awe-inspiring Athabasca Glacier, this cycling adventure is what dreams are made of. 

Traveller looking at the stunning sunset at Saltery Bay, Vancouver

Explore the Sunshine Coast

The perfect combination of seaside towns and lush wilderness await you on your epic adventure along British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast. Make the most of the cloudless days by embarking on a journey that’ll take you on several scenic rides across the Strait, along some incredible hikes for views you’re going to want to take photos of, and deliver you straight to the roaring Skookumchuk Tidal Rapids. 

Peggy's Cove Lighthouse at sunset in Nova Scotia

Catch an epic sunset at the lighthouse in Peggy’s Cove

Spend a couple of hours wandering through the picturesque village of Peggy’s Cove and you’ll soon see why it’s one of the most photographed places in all of Canada – it’s that damn beautiful. Looking like it’s straight off a postcard (no exaggeration), this jewel of Nova Scotia is home to colorful fishing boats, creamy seafood chowder, and a famous, red-tipped lighthouse you simply have to watch the sunset from. 

Iceberg floating in Iceberg Alley, Twilingate

Take in a mighty iceberg formation at Twillingate

You may look forward to watching the Canada Day parades every year, but you have to admit, watching an iceberg bob past you in a town nicknamed “The Iceberg Capital of the World” is a unique phenomenon you’re unlikely to ever experience again. Spot the fluffy, white peaks from the top of a cruise ship floating down Iceberg Alley and ponder how you got to be so lucky to live in a country this beautiful. 

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