Here we are again asking the time old question is the west coast or the east coast best? It's such a hard question to even begin to answer because in Canada both the west coast and the east coast offer so many amazing things!
You have snowy mountain peaks over on the west coast and you have magical oceanside trails on the east coast that offer breathtaking views. But obviously both coasts are super different.
When you're choosing a Canadian vacation you really need to weigh the options and figure out what kind of things you want to get out of your vacation. Do you want fresh seafood or unique dishes for dinner? Do you want to explore historic lighthouses on the ocean or turquoise lakes in national parks?
By looking through this list you can decide which coast might be the best for you to visit on your next vacation!
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Renting an Airbnb in the East Coast is actually pretty affordable even for gorgeous places right on the beach! Prices range from $80-$250.
For hotels you can stay in the stunning Keltic Lodge pictured above on Cape Breton Island for $155 per night or you can stay at a classic Best Western in downtown Halifax for just $106 per night!
There's a ton of super unique Airbnbs in BC you can actually rent for cheap! You can stay in adorable cottages, stunning lofts in downtown Vancouver, and spots with ocean views! Prices range from $30-$225 per night.
Hotel prices in downtown Vancouver are a little bit more expensive than we all hoped. You can't find many for less than $100 unless you really put some time in to look. But if you're willing to spend a little bit more you'll be able to stay in some stunning places!
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We all know that the East Coast is home to some of the best seafood in all of Canada. Being located right on the ocean gives them the advantage of having of super fresh seafood that basically comes straight from the ocean onto your plate.
If you're planning to visit Nova Scotia, check out The Press Gang for raw oysters, The Five Fisherman for allll kinds of seafood, Mckelvie's for lobster!
Since the West Coast is also located along the coast you can find tons of super fresh seafood mostly in the form of ridiculously good sushi! If you love sushi you absolutely need to try Green Leaf Sushi Cafe for sushi rolls, Pokeritto for sushi burritos, and Sushi Nanaimo for crazy topped sushi in Vancouver!
But sushi isn't the only thing that Vancouver does well they have tons of other insane foods Matcha Waffles from Cafe Joie, bacon topped ice cream from JRG Sweet Republic and Sen Pad Thai for authentic Thai food!
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The East Coast is home to some breathtaking views that nowhere else in Canada can beat. The best way to see these views is to spend as much time exploring outdoors as possible.
Visit the infamous Peggy's Cove a historic lighthouse on the coast, relax in the sand at Rainbow Haven or Carter's Beach, visit the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick, Gros Morne National Park in Newfoundland, and bike along the Confederation Trail in PEI!
The West Coast of Canada is known for it's snowy mountains, vast beaches and just an endless amount of nature to explore. British Columbia is home to some amazing sights like Stanley Park in Vancouver, the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Whistler Blackcomb for skiing during the winter!
Alberta steals the show when it comes to national parks though. You can explore the infamous Banff National Park to see the stunning Moraine Lake, Jasper National Park to see the flowing Athabasca Falls and Maligne Canyon!
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Cost Of Transportation 🛩
If you're coming from central Canada the cost of a flight to Halifax will cost around $375 and a Via Rail train will cost around $200. You can also drive which will take around 17 hours to complete.
But if you're coming from the west coast of Canada a flight to Halifax will cost almost $600 and a coast to coast train ride will cost $6,179! So it's probably worth it to book a flight if you want to save some money.
If you're travelling from central Canada to Vancouver a flight will cost about $500 and a Via Rail train will cost around $470. You can also choose to drive which will take about 40 hours.
If you're coming from the East coast though a flight will cost $650 and a coast to coast train will cost $6,300! So overall it seems a bit cheaper to fly from central Canada to the East Coast vs. the West Coast and it's a much shorter drive if you choose to save money that way.
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Night Life 🥂
If you're looking for nightlife on the East Coast your best bet is going to be Halifax. You'll definitely find bars and pubs all over the east coast but Halifax is where all the rowdy clubs are.
You can check out Pacifico Nightclub for sweaty dance parties, Split Crow for super cheap drink deals, Reflections Cabaret for drag shows and cabaret dances, and the Argyle Bar & Grill for up and coming DJs!
The west coast of Canada is home to some crazy nightlife especially in Vancouver and Edmonton. If you're in Vancouver you can find everything from insane nightclubs, chill bars and everything in between.
If you're in Edmonton you should absolutely check out Knoxville's Tavern, The Wine Room or the Beercade. If you're in Vancouver you should check out the Cactus Club Cafe, Juniper for unique drinks and Celebrities Nightclub!
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Outdoor Activities 🌊
There's an endless amount of outdoor adventures to be had on the east coast of Canada. If you're in Nova Scotia take a walk on the coastal boardwalk on the Cabot Trail for stunning ocean views. If you're in New Brunswick hike through Fundy National Park for lush nature and flowing waterfalls.
If you're in PEI bike along the gorgeous 400 km Confederation Trail past rolling fields and tree covered roads. If you're in New Foundland & Labrador you can't miss taking a trip out to Gros Morne National Park for amazing mountain hikes!
With it's towering mountains, bright blue waters and magical hidden waterfalls there's no shortage of amazing outdoor activities to experience on the west coast! If you're in British Colombia you have to visit Tofino for sandy beaches and perfect surfing waves.
If you're in Alberta you can't miss Banff National Park to see the most turquoise water you'll ever lay your eyes on. If you're in Saskatchewan you should see Prince Albert National Park for beautiful nature!
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The weather on the east coast can be pretty unpredictable at times. The summer months are definitely the best time to go because you'll be guaranteed some sunny days. But going in the winter can be very risky.
Although it doesn't get down to frigid temperatures usually around -2 degrees, they can end up with up to 8 feet of snow in a winter!
The west coast is known for it's perpetually rainy weather but that's mostly during the winter months. It doesn't get very cold on the coast, usually the lowest is -2 degrees but they can get up to 100 inches of rain a year.
Expect the weather to be overcast and rainy in the winter but gorgeous, sunny and warm in all the other months!
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Getting Around 🚗🚊
If you're planning on taking a tour of the east coast and going to a few different provinces, the easies thing to do would be to rent a car. There's tons of car rental companies in Halifax that offer really decent prices.
Halifax also has a transit system that offers bus routes through the city as well as ferries.
If you're visiting Vancouver you'll have a pretty reliable metro system to get you around the city in record time. Unfortunately they don't have Uber there so if you want a faster method of transportation you'll have to rely on cabs or the skytrain.
Calgary and Edmonton in Alberta both have transit systems including buses and light rail transit systems. Saskatchewan also has a bus system to help you get around the main cities.