Canada is the world’s second largest country by land area, stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean. While anticipating the fall foliage timing in a country the size of Canada is difficult, you may get a head start on your autumn holiday in 2022 by visiting one of the best viewing areas. While the western provinces of British Columbia and Alberta have some spectacular trees, the intensity and pervasiveness of autumn color is better in the east. If you’re only going to see the fall leaves, Ontario, Quebec, or the Maritime provinces are probably your best bet.
The Rocky Mountains: Alberta – Best Places to see autumn in Canada 2022
The days in Alberta’s Rocky Mountains are warmish and dry in September and October. The summer throngs have dispersed, leaving you to enjoy the reds and yellows of the subalpine larch and aspen trees in isolation. Try accessible areas around Banff National Park, which is surrounded by mountains. With its waterfalls, creek, and limestone cliffs, Johnston Canyon is one possibility. Tunnel Mountain provides breathtaking views of Banff and the Bow River. Hike up the mountain from Lake Louise to Lake Agnes and warm up with a cup of tea at the historic 1905 Lake Agnus Tea House.
Algonquin Park: Ontario
Algonquin Park is one of Ontario’s most popular parks because of its size, beauty, and proximity to Toronto. It is Canada’s oldest provincial park, with deep forests and thousands of lakes and rivers that can only be explored on foot or by canoe.
Maple trees are at their peak in late September or early October, whereas aspens, tamaracks, and red oaks peak in the middle or late October. For information on fall color activity and specific viewing areas, consult the Algonquin Fall Color Report.
Via Rail: Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia – Best Places to see autumn in Canada 2022
Nothing is more magnificent or romantic than the dramatic changes that fall brings to the forests of Eastern Canada, and there’s something even more romantic about seeing the colors by train. VIA Rail, Canada’s official train service, offers a fall foliage vacation through famous destinations such as Toronto, Montreal, Québec City, and Halifax that includes some of the country’s most dramatic viewing places.
The train offers a variety of scenic routes throughout the year for your family’s enjoyment, including those targeted toward fall foliage. The Windsor-Québec Corridor, which travels through major cities such as Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and Québec City, is the most popular train route in eastern Canada. While this one is convenient for getting around and does provide some seasonal views, the backdrop is primarily urban. Try the road from Montreal up north to Jonquière or Senneterre for a particularly stunning ride.
Niagara Parkway: Ontario
The historic Niagara River Parkway, also known as the “River Road,” was described by former British Prime Minister Sir Winston Churchill as “the prettiest Sunday afternoon drive in the world.” This parkway follows the Niagara River’s sweeping curves, which separates Canada and the United States, all the way to the eponymous cascade.
The most beautiful autumn stretch, between the little village of Queenston and the historic town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, usually reaches its peak of color in early October. Of course, while you’re in the vicinity, you’ll want to see the world-famous Niagara Falls. Finish your day with a glass of wine from one of the area’s many wineries.
Agawa Canyon: Ontario – Best Places to see autumn in Canada 2022
The Agawa Canyon Tour Train, which goes north from Sault Ste. Marie in northern Ontario, is a great way to see the colors in late September and early October. There is just one train each day that travels 228 miles round trip through beautiful rivers, lakes, forests, and granite rocks. In the fall, there is normally a one-and-a-half-hour stop at Agawa Canyon Wilderness Park, which offers a variety of trails leading to four waterfalls and other scenic sites.
Bruce Peninsula: Ontario
The Bruce Peninsula, located between Georgian Bay and Lake Huron, is rich in indigenous heritage and boasts one of the best sections of the Bruce Track, a nearly 500-mile hiking trail filled with spectacular Ontario flora, fauna, and water panoramas. Some of the trees are over 1,000 years old, however they are coniferous trees that do not change color. But the route has plenty of deciduous trees, and the colors in the autumn, especially from the end of September to the beginning of October, are spectacular. For seasonal activity, wonderful viewing spots, and park information, visit the Ontario Parks Fall Color Report.
Laurentian Mountains: Québec – Best Places to see autumn in Canada 2022
Because of the sugar maple trees, Québec is recognized for its autumn colors. The provincial yellow birch and the American beech are also common. Try the Laurentian Mountains in southern Quebec, north of the St. Lawrence and Ottawa rivers, for one of North America’s most spectacular fall color displays. Colors peak around the end of September and last until mid- to late-October in lower elevations and southern areas.
Because it is only 80 miles from Montreal, the ski resort of Mont Tremblant is one among the most popular spots in the area for leaf-peeping. However, it is also popular with locals on weekends, and the twisty mountain routes can rapidly become a traffic nightmare.
Cabot Trail, Cape Breton Island: Nova Scotia
The Cabot Trail, hailed as one of the world’s most magnificent roads, travels around the northern side of Cape Breton Island and rewards fall color enthusiasts in spectacular fashion. The highlands are blanketed in fiery reds, oranges, crimsons, and golds, which peak in the first or second week of October. The route also immediately passes through the spectacular vistas of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, which are especially lovely at this time of year.
Enjoy Cape Breton’s Celtic legacy through the locals, food, and music, and the seasonal Celtic Colours International Festival, held in mid-October each year, is the ideal opportunity to do so.
Fundy Coastal Drive: New Brunswick
The Bay of Fundy extends from Maine’s northern shore into Canada, between the provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The Fundy Coastal Drive, like the Cabot Trail, is an exceptional marine adventure. See some of the world’s highest tides and revel in the vibrant reds and rich pumpkin oranges. The colors are at their optimum during the first two weeks of October, during Canada’s Thanksgiving weekend, which is a lesser holiday than the one celebrated in the United States. The tree variety and hues are similar to those found in New England, but with a fraction of the crowds.
Prince Edward Island – Best Places to see autumn in Canada 2022
In fall, the woodlands of Prince Edward Island (PEI) display a spectacular array of colors. The warm waters of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and the Northumberland Strait assist in generating one of the longest fall foliage seasons in northeastern North America. Furthermore, the forests of PEI are devoid of bears, deer, and moose, maintaining a safe, hunter-free environment.
Confederation Bridge, Canada’s longest bridge and the world’s longest bridge that traverses ice-covered sea, connects the island to New Brunswick.