With travel plans for many on hold in 2020, we’re starting to look ahead to 2021 – and with more time on our hands than ever before, what better opportunity to start planning your next big luxury trip?
If you’re looking for a destination that’s a little more outside the standard Caribbean island box and are in search of somewhere offering diversity, culture and natural beauty in equal measures, then look no further than Canada.
This North American country might not be the first place that springs to mind when it comes to getting away from it all, but whether you’re an outdoorsy type or a city slicker at heart, this place has got the lot.
Perhaps best known for its expansive natural beauty, Canada is home to a sprawling landscape of breath-taking snow-capped mountains and glaciers and picturesque lakes. Edged with pretty pine forests and playing host to a range of wildlife, nature lovers will adore this glorious haven in the wilderness, with daily hiking, kayaking or even skiing all great way to spend your days.
Its cosmopolitan cities – from Vancouver to Toronto – are clean, safe and friendly, making Canada one of the most liveable countries in the world, so whether you want to spend some time soaking up the culture at the many art galleries and museums, or eating your way around, you’re certain to enjoy it.
But let’s face it, no trip to Canada would be complete without a little luxury – so to help you plan your lavish getaway for 2021, we’ve rounded up some of the top destinations and five-star accommodation choices you won’t want to miss.
Don’t forget to check out your visa requirements before you head off. The eTa Canada for UK visitors is fast and simple to apply for online.
Banff National Park
With its rocky mountain peaks and turquoise glacial lakes, Banff National Park is every nature lover’s dream, and abundant wildlife and scenic drives will delight those looking to get away from the bright lights of the city. Part of the Canadian Rockies – a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it’s also a big tick off the bucket list when it comes to the world’s most historic and iconic sites to see.
Over three million visitors make their way to Banff each year in search of adrenaline-fuelled activities including hiking, river rafting and skiing – but although this is a great place for action lovers, those in search of a relaxing luxurious getaway won’t be disappointed, either.
A stay at the Fairmont Banff Springs, built in 1988, promises lavish amenities and top-level service from start to finish. Styled after a Scottish baronial castle, this National Historic Site offers a one-of-a-kind experience in the heart of the national park, and features a heated outdoor pool, 11 restaurants and 14 shops.
The luxurious Willow Stream Spa, found on-site, offers a variety of relaxing massages and beauty treatments – while activities including horse riding and golfing are available to book at reception.
With various ski locations located just minutes away, the resort also offers ski passes, storage and rental.
Jasper National Park
Another unmissable area of natural beauty, Jasper National Park offers kaleidoscopic panoramas everywhere you look. Located on the eastern edge of Alberta, Jasper is the largest park in the Canadian Rockies, and with over 2.7 million acres of land to explore, wildlife lovers have the chance to spot animals such as caribou and moose during hikes and kayaking trips.
Winter in Jasper allows visitors to enjoy cold-weather activities, such as skiing in the Marmont Basin, or snowshoeing through the back country.
Pine Bungalows offers comfortable accommodation on the banks of the Athabasca River, with on-site barbecue facilities and breath-taking views of the surrounding landscape.
Located in British Columbia and enjoying a moderate climate, Vancouver is one of Canada’s most popular cities amongst tourists, owing largely to its postcard-perfect location on the edge of a mountain range. Packed with ethnic enclaves and boasting a thriving food scene, it’s easy to see why Vancouver has been nicknamed the nation’s cultural quarter.
The five-star Fairmont Pacific Rim features a rooftop pool with fire pits and a hot tub, as well as a full-service spa and a 4,000 square foot gym. Just a five-minute walk from the Canada Place – home to Vancouver’s Convention and Exhibition Centre – and 15 minutes from the bustling Robson Street shopping area, it’s ideally located for exploring the city.
The biggest and liveliest city in Canada, Toronto attracts sports lovers from across the globe every year. Home to the majority of the nation’s leading teams across hockey, basketball and football, it’s a great place to catch a game. But this cosmopolitan city, which is home to nearly 6 million residents, has a whole lot more to offer, too – and is one of the most multicultural destinations in the world.
Shopping enthusiasts visiting the city are in for a treat, with hundreds of big-name stores and designer boutiques lining the main streets and filling the malls. Art lovers, meanwhile, will delight in the wealth of galleries the city has to offer, from the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art, to the smaller galleries lining the streets of Queen West, Ossington and the Distillery District.
Centrally located between Toronto’s financial and entertainment district, the Shangri-La Hotel Toronto is our top pick for accommodation in the city. Close to the Bishop’s Block heritage landmark, it boasts floor to ceiling, panoramic city views and features an indoor pool, hot tub and on-site restaurant serving up mouth-watering international cuisine.
From city to countryside scenery, the reasons to visit Canada in 2021 are many – and those in search of luxury are in for a very pleasant surprise. So, why not get planning for your most memorable overseas trip yet?
Image credit at the very top of the article: Dasya11/Bigstock.com