10 Best Beaches In Canada For Fun | Ultimate Guide

When you go to the beach in Canada, you can do more than eat ice cream, lie in the sun, and take a refreshing dip in the ocean. If you’re lucky, you might see a bear, walk through windswept driftwood, or throw a snowball instead of a pebble into the water.

Depending on where you are, the coming tide might not destroy your sandcastles. Only six of Canada’s 13 provinces and territories can reach the open ocean without going through the ice. Many of the country’s best beaches are next to large freshwater lakes.

Are you interested in the best beaches in Canada for fun? Keep reading.

What Makes the Best Beaches In Canada Unique and Worth Visiting?

The best beaches in Canada are unique and worth visiting for several reasons, including:

  • Natural beauty: Many of Canada’s best beaches are surrounded by stunning landscapes and breathtaking views, from rugged coastlines to serene lakes and forests.
  • Clean water and sand: Canada is known for its clean and clear waters, making its beaches ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and other water activities.
  • Diverse activities: From kayaking and paddle-boarding to hiking and birdwatching, the best beaches in Canada offer a variety of activities that allow visitors to experience and enjoy the surrounding natural beauty fully.
  • Wildlife: Canada’s beaches are home to an array of wildlife, including seals, whales, and a variety of bird species, making them popular destinations for nature enthusiasts.
  • Unique experiences: Whether a visit to a historic lighthouse or a relaxing soak in a natural hot spring, the best beaches in Canada offer unique and memorable experiences that are hard to find elsewhere.
  • Friendly communities: Many of Canada’s best beaches are located in vibrant coastal towns, offering visitors the chance to experience the warm hospitality of the local communities.

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What Precautions Should Travelers Take When Visiting Canada’s Beaches?

Travelers visiting Canada’s beaches should take the following precautions to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip:

Know the local weather and water conditions.

Be aware of the weather forecast and conditions in the water, and check for any warnings or hazards before entering the water.

Wear appropriate clothing and gear.

Pack swimwear, sunblock, hats, and sunglasses to protect against the sun, and consider wearing water shoes if the beach is rocky or has sharp shells.

Respect wildlife

Canada’s beaches are home to an array of wildlife, so it’s essential to keep a safe distance and not disturb any animals or their habitats.

Be mindful of currents.

Some beaches have strong currents, so it’s essential to know your limits and be mindful of the conditions before swimming.

Follow posted rules and regulations.

Each beach may have specific rules and regulations, such as designated swimming areas, restricted access, and codes for dogs and other pets.

Stay hydrated

Ensure drinking plenty of water, especially in hot weather, to avoid dehydration.

Know the emergency procedures.

Familiarize yourself with the location of first aid stations and emergency exits, and make sure you know what to do in an emergency.

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Are there any Restrictions or Regulations for visitors at the Best Canada Beaches?

Yes. There are restrictions and regulations for visitors to the best beaches in Canada. These may include:

Swimming restrictions

Some beaches may have designated swimming areas and prohibit swimming in certain areas for safety reasons.

Pet regulations

Some beaches may have restrictions on pets, such as leash requirements or designated areas for dogs.

Fire restrictions

Open fires may be prohibited on specific beaches, so check before starting a fire or using a portable grill.

Litter and waste disposal

Visitors must dispose of their litter and waste properly and may face fines for littering or leaving trash on the beach.

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Alcohol and drug restrictions

Some beaches prohibit the consumption of alcohol and drugs. So be sure to check the local regulations before consuming these substances.

Noise restrictions

Some beaches may restrict loud music or other noise, so be mindful of the noise level and respect the peace of other beachgoers.

Parking regulations

There may be restrictions on parking, such as designated areas or time limits, so check the local regulations before parking.

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What Activities and Amenities are available at the Best Beaches in Canada?

The best beaches in Canada offer a variety of activities and amenities, including:

  • Swimming and sunbathing: With clean, clear waters and sandy shores, Canada’s best beaches are perfect for swimming and sunbathing.
  • Water sports: Many of Canada’s best beaches offer opportunities for water sports, such as kayaking, paddle boarding, surfing, and windsurfing.
  • Hiking and outdoor activities: With their scenic surroundings, many of Canada’s best beaches offer excellent opportunities for hiking, cycling, and other outdoor activities.
  • Wildlife watching: With their diverse wildlife, Canada’s best beaches are popular destinations for birdwatching, seal-spotting, and whale-watching.
  • Food and drink: Many of Canada’s best beaches are near restaurants, cafes, and bars, offering visitors various dining options and refreshing drinks.
  • Shopping: Some of Canada’s best beach destinations offer shopping opportunities, including local boutiques, souvenir shops, and markets.
  • Accommodations: From camping grounds and RV parks to luxury hotels and resorts, Canada’s best beaches offer visitors a range of accommodation options.
  • Cultural attractions: Some of Canada’s best beach destinations are located near historic lighthouses, museums, and cultural attractions, providing visitors with a glimpse into the area’s rich cultural heritage.

It’s important to note that the specific activities and amenities available at each beach may vary, so be sure to check the local offerings before planning your trip.

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10 Best Beaches in Canada

#1. San Josef Bay, British Columbia

Northern Vancouver Island in British Columbia is known for beaches that are wild and hard to get to because of the weather and the way to get there.

At the end of a 70-kilometer (43-mile) unpaved logging road from Port Hardy, a 1.6-mile (2.5km) trail leads to San Josef Bay.

When the forest finally opens up, you’ll be in a windswept area with crashing waves, forested sea stacks, and bushes and trees bent by intense Pacific storms.

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#2. Stanhope Beach, on the island of Prince Edward

On the north shore of Prince Edward Island, Stanhope Beach is a vast beach surrounded by dunes. It gets far fewer tourists than nearby Cavendish Beach, which is also huge.

If you keep going west, you’ll see the white clapboard Covehead Harbour Lighthouse, a typical PEI building. If you go east, you’ll end up at Dalvay by the Sea, an excellent hotel built in 1895 in the Queen Anne revival style.

#3. Wasaga Beach, Ontario

Canada may not be as well-known for its beaches as its national parks or cities, but it has the longest freshwater beach in the world. Wasaga Beach is a stretch of soft sand 8.7 miles (14 km) long that hugs the shores of Georgian Bay in Lake Huron.

It is in the town of the same name in Ontario. The beach is in a provincial park with trails and places where you can see owls and woodpeckers.

Since this is the closest full-fledged beach resort to Toronto, thousands of people come here every summer, and the long strip can get loud.

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#4. Chesterman Beach, BC

Tofino, Canada, is known as the surfing capital of Canada. It’s hard to pick a favorite beach there because they’re all so good. Most surveys put Long Beach at the top because it’s long. However, many Tofitians (people who live in the area) think that Chesterman, a hub for surfers, is the complete sand scimitar.

Rock pools, islets, and a narrow sand spit surround it. It looks beautiful when there is mist in the early morning or when the sun sets in a fiery orange wave. Surfing is, of course, excellent.

Unlike Long Beach, Chesterman is close enough to town that you can ride your bike there (with your surfboard on a unique bike rack), and the road is smooth enough to ride on if you want to work out your legs before riding the Pacific waves.

#5. Parlee Beach, New Brunswick

With the warmest sea water in Canada and an International Blue Flag that says it is safe, easy to get to, and good for the environment, Parlee is by far New Brunswick’s best beach. It has a soft, golden strip of sand and shallow, warm water.

During the summer, lifeguards are always on duty, which is a big reason families love this beach. Commercialization is kept to a minimum, and a strip of showers, change rooms, and grassy dunes surround places to eat poutine.

The Beach Boys once put on a show at Parlee, which added to the beach’s rock ‘n’ roll vibe. Locals who know better save their appetites for Shediac, which is close by and known as the “lobster capital of the world.”

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#6. Kitsilano Beach in Vancouver, B.C. Canada

Kitsilano is probably Vancouver’s (and Canada’s) best urban beach. It feels like a freewheeling piece of Southern California was moved 1000 miles north. Kits, as the locals call it, has a sporty, laid-back vibe in the summer, thanks to its excellent cafes and nice park.

Beach volleyball is the most popular game, but there is enough grass to spread out and play football or frisbee. The yellow strip of sand is soft and clean, and you can see Vancouver’s glass skyscrapers and the North Shore mountains on the other side of the water.

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#7. Shallow Bay, Newfoundland, and Labrador

The beach is long, the bay is a bit shallow, and the sunsets are beautiful. This calm stretch of beach in Newfoundland’s Gros Morne National Park feels like it could be in the Caribbean until you put your toes in the 59oF (15oC) Gulf of St. Lawrence water.

People like to go kayaking here. You can start from the beach and paddle through the calm waters of Belldowns Island. This is where arctic terns nest before they start their long journey south. Out at Sea, you can sometimes see whales. When it gets cold, the paths along the beach turn into cross-country skiing trails.

#8. Annette Lake, Alberta

Alberta is a landlocked province, so its lakes are the only places for summer beachgoers to go. Even though the province has a lot of places to go to get away from the sand, few are as perfect as tiny Annette Lake in Jasper National Park, with its forested shoreline, gothic-looking mountains in the background, and refreshingly cold glacial waters.

Annette’s patch of sand is only about as long as a frisbee throw, but this gives it some exciting features. This is one of the few beaches where you should bring bear spray and your blow-up raft because grizzlies could be there. Elk and mule deer are less dangerous to be around.

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#9. Plage de la Grande Échouerie, Québec

The Îles de la Madeleine archipelago is in Québec in terms of government, but it is much closer to the Maritimes in terms of geography. It has an impressive 217 miles (350 km) of beaches next to iron-rich red cliffs.

This 6-mile (10 km) stretch of pale sand on the English-speaking island of Grosse Île is the crown jewel. Grande Échouerie goes northeast from Pointe Old Harry into the wetlands of the 1690-acre (684-hectare) East Point National Wildlife Reserve. It has tufted dunes where horned grebe and piping plover like to hang out.

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#10. Sandbanks Dunes Beach, Ontario.

The Sandbanks Provincial Park, a 2.5-hour drive east of Toronto, sticks out into the eastern end of Lake Ontario, making it the most significant bay-mouth barrier dune formation in the world. This area has three beautiful beaches.

The two most popular, Outlet and Lakeshore, face west onto the main body of Lake Ontario. Dunes Beach is a little bit quieter and a lot more interesting. It is next to West Lake, which has cleaner, calmer water.

Here, massive dunes with trees and bushes all over them rise sharply from the beach. On most beaches, you can relax and take it easy, but at Dunes, you can climb short, steep hills and then fly back into the lake at full speed.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the best beaches in Canada? 

The best beaches in Canada vary based on personal preferences, but some of the most popular and highly rated beaches include Wasaga Beach, Kitsilano Beach, Cavendish Beach, and Ingonish Beach.

What makes Canada’s beaches unique?

Canada’s beaches are known for their stunning natural beauty, clean waters, and diverse wildlife. Some of the unique features of Canada’s beaches include crystal-clear lakes, towering cliffs, and pristine dunes.

What should I pack for a trip to Canada’s beaches? 

When visiting Canada’s beaches, it’s essential to pack swimwear, sunblock, hats, and sunglasses to protect against the sun. Consider also bringing water shoes if the beach is rocky or has sharp shells, as well as a towel and beach bag.

Are there any restrictions for visitors to Canada’s beaches?

Yes, some of Canada’s beaches may have restrictions such as designated swimming areas, pet regulations, and restrictions on alcohol and drug use. It’s essential to check the local rules and regulations before visiting.

What activities and amenities are available at Canada’s beaches?

Canada’s beaches offer a variety of activities and amenities, including swimming and sunbathing, water sports, hiking, and outdoor activities, wildlife watching, food and drink options, shopping, and accommodation options. The specific activities and amenities available at each beach may vary, so check the local offerings before planning your trip.


Canada is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beaches, offering visitors a wide range of activities and amenities. Canada’s beaches offer something for everyone, from the crystal-clear waters of Wasaga Beach to the towering cliffs of Ingonish Beach.

Whether you’re looking to relax in the sun, engage in water sports, or explore the local wildlife, Canada’s best beaches are sure to provide an unforgettable experience. Just be sure to check the local rules and regulations, pack appropriately, and take advantage of all the great activities and amenities these stunning destinations offer.

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