Winter in Canada

Lonely Planet Travel Editor Tom Hall is on a mission to discover 52 of the most awe-inspiring places to visit across the world. This week he delights in winter in Canada.

Winter in Canada

There’s snow for up to six months of the year in parts of Canada and it’s often nose-numbingly cold. What finer conditions to get out there on your skis or snowboard and let rip?

All across Canada there is a huge variety of resorts, clustered around big towns and cities and scattered into the remotest, most dramatic scenery the country has to offer. As you might expect, this means Canucks are the among the world’s biggest snow fanatics – and it’s easy for you to join them.

Banff National Park

Banff National Park

Skiing in Vancouver

The most alluring adventure lies way out west. In fact, the extraordinarily located city of Vancouver may offer one of the world’s best settings for ski fans who also appreciate the finer things in life. The city has the good fortune of being a couple of hours away from the behemoth slopes of Whistler-Blackcomb.

The Rockies

Inland, the rightly famous Rockies resorts of Banff, Lake Louise, Marmot and Sunshine offer 2500m slopes and excellent facilities. For the best dry powder in the world, seek out Fernie, Nelson and Rossland in British Columbia. You can board pretty much anywhere you can ski, but check in advance for dedicated facilities.

Alternatives to skiing

If downhilling’s not your thing, Canada is still a winter wonderland. Dog-sledding, tobogganing, Nordic skiing and even snow-shoeing are popular pastimes in a land cloaked in snow for half the year.

Canada is also a good-value alternative to skiing in Europe with no language barrier to worry about. If you don’t mind the long flight you’ll almost certainly get more skiing and more snow for your money.

Planning your trip to Canada

The best place to learn more about the Great White North is Outdoor Adventure Canada. Another good site is Big Lines, and Canada Travel can help with all things related to Canadian Tourism.

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