Ontario

Ontario offers a treasure trove of diverse experiences in a four-season playground. Discover vibrant cities and enchanting small towns. Be awed by a natural wonder, Niagara Falls.  Savour local vintages and cuisine.  And answer the call of the wild in a pristine land of forests, lakes and rivers.

Ottawa

A blend of French and English, Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, is spirited, cosmopolitan place that celebrates Canada’s achievements and culture with historical sites, national museums, a non-stop roster of festivals, plus shopping and delightful dining. Its beautiful natural setting supports year round recreation and adventure.

Take in the views of the city from Parliament Hill, the seat of Canada’s government and the setting for national celebrations all year round, including Canada Day on 1 July. The Parliament Buildings are one of the most popular attractions in Ottawa, with hundreds of gargoyles, statues, and reliefs carved into the stonework. In the summer months, make sure you make a morning visit to watch the Changing of the Guard.

Spend a day or two museum-hopping. Do not miss the Canadian Museum of History and the Canadian War Museum – both considered cultural and architectural wonders. There’s also the National Gallery of Canada, Canadian Museum of Nature, Royal Canadian Mint and many others.

The ByWard Market, a thriving produce market and shopping destination during the day, transforms into a trendy restaurant and nightlife hot spot when the sun goes down.

Amid all this history and culture, take time to cruise, stroll or cycle along the Rideau Canal, a spectacular focal point of the city – and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In winter, go skating after it transforms into the largest rink in the world, stretching 7.8 km. And if you want outdoor adventure that cranks up the adrenaline quotient, the Ottawa River is one of the top 5 whitewater rafting rivers in the world –and it’s just 90 minutes away. Family-friendly tours are available.

Guards on Parade near Parliament
© Ottawa Tourism

Toronto

Toronto brims with energy and excitement.  With iconic architecture, fascinating attractions, museums & galleries, enticing restaurants, plus exciting performing arts and nightlife – this city is always on! 

Toronto is the largest city in Canada and is the cultural and economic heartland of the country.  Greater Toronto has a population of over 5.5 million people, making it the fourth-largest urban area in North America! The city sits on the north-western shore of Lake Ontario.

Soar to the top of the CN Tower, Toronto’s most recognizable icon, in 58 seconds flat and feast your eyes on spectacular views.  Don’t miss the Glass Floor!  For the thrill of a lifetime, brave the EdgeWalk.  Toronto’s newest and tallest attraction had adventure lovers taking a walk OUTSIDE – around the circumference of the CN Tower’s roof!  

Explore Canadiana, plus discover world culture and natural history, in the Royal Ontario Museum, one of the largest museums in North America. Peruse Toronto-born architect Frank Gehry’s spectacular redesign of the Art Gallery of Ontario, which houses more than 79,000 artworks, including an incredible collection of Canadian art.  Set your soles down at the Bata Shoe Museum with more than 10,000 items – from Siberian reindeer boots to Elton John’s platform boots.    Families will love the new Ripley’s Aquarium, Toronto Zoo, Ontario Science Centre and Canada’s Wonderland.

Toronto’s neighbourhoods teem with life and vibrancy, from the soaring architectural marvels of the Financial District above ground, to the PATH – Toronto’s underground city, a 27-kilometre subterranean concourse of shops, cafes and restaurants. The entertainment district is home to internationally renowned theatres and galleries.

Shop at Toronto’s chic boutiques, upscale malls and colourful markets.   For a true taste of elegance, don’t look past the ‘Mink Mile’ at Bloor-Yorkville, Toronto’s most exclusive haute couture shopping destination. Kensington Market is a sensory trip around the globe, mixing all of Toronto’s fringe cultures in one place, so it’s the perfect spot to bask in the lively multicultural atmosphere surrounded by artists, poets, dancers and buskers. Tour the historic St Lawrence Market to learn its storied past, meet butchers and cheesemongers or taste the bountiful fare.

When evening falls, revel in a big Broadway-style show or take in experimental or the ‘tried and true’ at scores of smaller theatres. Be moved by an aria or a pas de deux at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts. Later, explore our vibrant club scene. Or if sports are your game, we have professional hockey, baseball, football, basketball and lacrosse teams!

Niagara Falls

Located just 90 minutes from Toronto, the Niagara Region offers a wealth of activities to keep visitors busy! The star of the show, of course, is the roaring Niagara Falls. Thrilling attractions allow you to take in her thundering power by land, water and air. Yet the Falls are just the starting point for visitors, so plan to spend several days in the area. This picturesque region is filled with lush parks and gardens, bountiful orchards and vineyards, and charming towns and villages. Niagara Falls is a great holiday destination for couples and families alike.

Travel right to the edge of the Fall’s crashing waters on a breathtaking boat tour with Hornblower Niagara Cruises. Journey Behind the Falls for a view from the platform at Table Rock, then learn about the formation of the Falls at Niagara’s Fury. Take in the whole sweeping vista from atop the Skylon Tower or aboard a helicopter. Experience the mighty power of the Falls with 12,000 watts of power on a 6-storey screen at the IMAX Theatre.

Drop by Clifton Hill for scores of attractions - Niagara Skywheel, Louis Tussaud's Waxworks, Guinness Records, Nightmares Factory and lots more. Kids of all ages will love the indoor waterparks for wet ‘n wild fun!  Nighttime entertainment abounds too, from casinos to Oh Canada Eh! Dinner Theatre to free fireworks over the Falls.

Just 30 minutes down the scenic Niagara Parkway, you’ll find Niagara-on-the-Lake, a historic town packed with charming shops, galleries and inns. While you’re here, catch a performance at the world-renowned Shaw Festival theatre dedicated to George Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries. Be exhilarated aboard a Whirlpool Jet Boat tour through the whitewaters of Devil’s Hole Rapids – there are wet and dry options!

Follow the wine route signs on a romantic journey to small boutique wineries, exquisite estates and superb restaurants in one of the premiere wine regions of the world, which boasts more than 40 varieties of grapes and more than 90 wineries.  Consider packing a picnic and renting a bicycle for a leisurely day of exploration. 

Niagara Falls can be reached on a day tour from Toronto or you can stay right at the Falls in a range of options. Both the Sheraton on the Falls and the Hilton Niagara Falls Fallsview hotels overlook Niagara Falls.

A View of Niagara Falls
© Destination Canada

Ontario's Outdoors

Ontario is the perfect playground for outdoor enthusiasts, whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation. Witness our magnificent landscapes by water or with your feet firmly on the ground. Observe the diversity of wildlife on expert-led guided tours and cast for more varieties of fish than you ever imagined. Visit countless spectacular parks and golf where the scenery is way above par.  With so many opportunities to tap into your inner explorer, Ontario has just the adventure that you are looking for.

Renowned for natural beauty, sparkling lakes and clean air, the Muskoka Region is Ontario’s playground.    Fondly referred to as “cottage country”, Muskoka is located just two hours north of Toronto – yet it offers an unplugged pace that’s a world away from Canada’s largest city.   Still, its accessibility to Toronto – and Ottawa too - makes it a perfect destination for visitors who wish to combine urban and outdoor experiences into one fantastic holiday.

Muskoka’s resorts and lodges have been hosting international visitors for over 140 years, all of them here to enjoy the region’s abundance of trees, water and wildlife. Today, you can add to that list the area’s fantastic golf, relaxing spas, incredible dining, as well as endless boating, paddling and hiking experiences.   With more than 80 resorts to choose from – including luxurious 5-star hotels, family-run lodges, quaint inns, historic Bed and Breakfasts and rustic cottage resorts – Muskoka has something for everyone.

Top of your “must do list” should be Algonquin Provincial Park, a vast expanse of land stretching 3000 square miles. Algonquin’s dramatic scenery consists of endless stretches of trees, rocky ridges, spruce bogs, and endless lakes and streams.   The best way to experience this rugged beauty is on foot, and 19 clearly marked interpretive trails in Algonquin encourage exploration of the Park’s unique natural environment.  Or dip your paddle into one of Algonquin’s crystal clear lakes.   You might be lucky enough to spot a moose or hear the call of the loon.

Adventure and rejuvenation awaits you just 90 minutes north of Toronto at the beautiful Blue Mountain Resort.  Situated on the Niagara Escarpment, a UNESCO World Biosphere reserve, the resort overlooks the southern shores of Georgian Bay.  Blue Mountain Resort features a variety of accommodation choices, including grand hotels, a boutique hotel and condo style apartments. As well there is the intimate Blue Mountain Village full of boutiques, restaurants and retailer.

Ready to get outside?  At the activity centre, guests can arrange for any kind of adventure imaginable from hiking to hummer tours, ATV rides, tubing, canoeing, kayaking, windsurfing, fishing and rock climbing.   Take an exhilarating ride on the RidgeRunner or challenge yourself on a ropes course.  And don’t miss the eco-adventure at Scenic Cave Nature Adventures – it’s hard to decide which part is the highlight, the 600 metre tree top walk on a network of footbridges 18 metres above the ground or the incredible 1000 metre zip line ride back to the forest floor.   After all this excitement, rejuvenate at Scandinave Blue; pair a relaxing series of hot and cold plunges with a massage for the perfect finish to your day of adventure.

No matter what type of adventure you’re looking for, you will find it in Ontario!

Outdoor Adventures in Ontario
© Canadian Tourism Commission

The Infinity Experience

Get your skates on
During winter, Ottawa has almost 250 neighbourhood outdoor skating rinks.