Believe it or not, Canada is not all snow fields and igloos – the summer heat in the big three cities, Vancouver, Toronto, and Montréal can get downright tropical. Canada is known for its blend of nature and metropolis, and Canadians are experts at summertime activities – mixing outdoors, arts, foods, shopping, and celebrations of every kind. They’ll certainly be busy, so join their adventures in the great north for the best summer of your life.
As Vancouverites emerge from their cozy homes to celebrate the end of the spring rains, they have renewed friendliness and goodwill; they are looking for fun and social bonding like flowers turning towards the sun. The perfect place to get active in the outdoors, Vancouver has beautiful nature in spades and fairly mild summer temperatures. Crowds of yoga-gear-clothed outdoor enthusiasts take up trail running, hiking, kayaking, and biking in the some of the most instagrammable spots on earth. If breathing pure ocean air on a cliff, looking upon stunning mountain ranges isn’t your thing, there are infinite opportunities to join the now extra-cheerful locals at events like Pride. Pride is serious business in Vancouver – equal parts a celebration of human rights and an absurdly fun party, Vancouver Pride events include queer art and film festivals, parades, and nightlife that involves the whole city in a whirl of glitter, feather scarves, and wonderful celebration of the LGBTQA+ community. You will also want to hit up the neighborhood car-free block parties, exotic food booths at sprawling night markets, or the admire the ever-popular fireworks show, Honda Festival of Light, from a romantic spot on the beach.
Montréal is the essence of cool, but the weather is sizzling hot. This vibrant, multicultural city is home to a duality of cultures, and houses more events than you can count. You can try to attend it all, but the buffet of activities is plentiful. Here’s a few of the choices you won’t want to miss: since 1983, A–list comedians have performed at Montréal’s summer Just For Laughs comedy festival. The definitive name in circus art, Cirque de Soleil holds Montréal Cirque Festival every July in the province that birthed it, and with streets transformed by free shows, as well as paid events, the exotic mind-bending acrobatic troupe is one you need to see. Montréal is also a hotspot for super hip art and music festivals like Fringe Performance art, Piknic Electronique and Osheaga, and the huge traveler attraction Montréal Grand Prix.
Outside of the sheer volume of events hosted in the summer, Montréal itself is also home to excellent restaurants, history, culture, and opportunities to be active and explore. A bicyclists paradise, a foodie’s fond dream, come to Montréal for a summer to change your life.
Last cannot be least when it’s the biggest of the bunch. Toronto is BIG, in population and geography both. Diverse people and diverse interests mean there is a lot to do, see, and be in the city. Toronto does fun the way they do everything else – fast paced and with lots of options. Ride a boat through the mists of an actual waterfall at nearby Niagara Falls, search for vintage bohemian treasures at Kensington Market, explore the world class food scene, chill out at the jazz festival or get amped up at the electronic Veld Music festival. See light shows, pizza shows, art shows, beer shows, whatever show you want to be shown you can find it in Toronto.
It’s time to spend an adventure-filled, hot summer experiencing Canada like a Canadian: comfy rainy snowy days indoors are ahead but right now we’re an outdoor people. Learn more about travel, activities, and learning English with ILSC-Vancouver, ILSC-Toronto, and ILSC-Montréal.