Top 6 Road Trips & Getaways for Canadian Thanksgiving

Planning a getaway? Maybe a long road trip? Or do you want to take in a festival for Thanksgiving? Well, try a few of these on for size.

Sea to Sky Highway, British Columbia

It’s only 400 kilometres, but this highway from Vancouver to Pemberton will take you along the coast and through farmlands, mountains, and rainforest. After Vancouver you’ll go through picturesque Squamish, then outdoor sports paradise Whistler, before ending in Pemberton. Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife, on land and in the ocean.

Fogo Island Partridgeberry Festival, Newfoundland

There are harvest festivals, and then there are Newfoundland harvest festivals. You’re already on Fogo Island, one of the most picturesque places in all of Canada. Now add local produce, crafts, harvest competitions, quilting, musical jam sessions, and more, all with a rich background in Newfoundland culture.

The Cowboy Trail, Alberta

Though it technically starts up in Edmonton, the most scenic part of the Cowboy Trail starts around Bragg Creek, an artsy little town west of Calgary. It then passes through or near historic towns like Black Diamond, Turner Valley, Longview, and finally Pitcher Creek. There’s plenty to see and do. Hitch up horses at the historic Bar U Ranch, drink a malt at Marv’s Classic Soda Shop, learn some local history at Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, visit the Big Rock, or hang out with real-life cowboys at Longview Steakhouse or the Black Diamond Hotel. Assuming you don’t want to end your trip in the States, you can always turn west and head towards Frank Slide or into Banff.

Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest, Ontario

Slap on your favourite pair of lederhosen or snazziest dirndl and get ready to drink märzen from tankards the size of your head. Actually, there’s more than beer drinking at Oktoberfest (although that’s a big part). Watch or participate in traditional German dancing, feast on hearty Bavarian fare, and maybe even play a round of Oktoberfest golf. Which is sure to be interesting.

Montreal to the Gaspé Peninsula, Quebec

Maybe you want a big, thousand-kilometre road trip. If so, it’s hard to do better than la Belle Province. This route will take you from Montreal, one of the finest cities for food and culture in Canada, through Quebec City, Canada’s most historic city, and along the northern shore of the St. Lawrence River. Once you get to the Gaspé Peninsula, see if you can spot moose, caribou, whales, and the famous northern gannets.

The Cabot Trail, Nova Scotia

Weaving through the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, the Cabot Trail offers some of the most spectacular views in the country. You could just drive and enjoy the geology and wildlife. But you could also stop for hiking, whale watching, kayaking, skiing, snowmobiling, fishing . . . Really, nearly any outdoor activity you can imagine can be done on the Cabot Trail.