Solo travel can be one of the most rewarding kinds of travel there is. But, it doesn’t come without challenges. Especially as a female traveling alone. However, it’s not near as overwhelming when you choose the right destination and know what to expect.
This list of the best Canadian cities for solo female travelers is exactly what you need if you’re planning a trip solo to Canada and is the next in a series of articles to help equip solo female travelers to navigate the world safely, whether it’s to Europe, South America or Mexico.
Carefully curated by other solo women travelers, this round-up of Canadian cities features places where you’ll feel safe, welcome and comfortable. Each destination has tons of things to do so you’ll always have activities to keep your busy.
Canadian Cities for Solo Female Travelers
Because of it’s welcoming vibe and ease of navigation, Canada is the perfect solution for women looking to travel by themselves. And if you’re new to solo travel, it’s the ideal destination to test the waters.
For United States citizens, it’s not too far from home, it’s easy to get to, English is widely spoken and the currency is pretty straightforward. Most major U.S. airlines fly directly into the larger Canadian cities and there’s good public transportation for getting around.
Bonus points, if you do decide to rent a vehicle, Canada recognizes U.S. driver’s licenses so no need for an international drivers license. To search for the best car rental deals online let Discover Cars do all the work. Which city will you explore first?
For future reference, bookmark this article and add this map to your own Google Maps account by clicking the star at the end of the title. Clicking the icon in the left hand corner provides more info about each individual destination
Kelowna, British Columbia
Kelowna, nestled in the heart of British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, is a hot spot for solo female travelers seeking a blend of adventure and relaxation. The city offers a safe and welcoming atmosphere, making it easy for women to explore on their own. There are so many great things to do in Kelowna.
Start your day with a peaceful paddleboard session on the beautiful Okanagan Lake. Then sip on some local wine at one of the 40 wineries in Kelowna or get social in one of the many downtown microbreweries. For outdoor enthusiasts, you can take in the stunning panoramic city views by hiking at Knox Mountain.
Kelowna has a young vibe with lots of boutique-style shopping, local restaurants, and live music venues around the city. The best time to visit Kelowna is in the summer months between June and September when the city comes alive with tourists and there are lots of events.
Those looking to get social should consider staying at Hotel Zed right in downtown Kelowna for an upbeat vibe and lots of great amenities.
Recommended by Samara from FC World Travels
Victoria, British Columbia
Victoria, British Columbia is one of the best Canadian cities for solo female travelers to visit. Located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, Victoria has some of the warmest weather in all of Canada and is great to explore year-round.
Most of the attractions in Victoria are within easy walking distance of the downtown Inner Harbour area, so you don’t need to take expensive taxis to get around.
Highlights include the Royal British Columbia Museum, the Fairmont Empress Hotel (don’t miss afternoon high tea on their waterfront terrace or inside their gilded dining room), Fisherman’s Wharf, Canada’s oldest Chinatown and a whale-watching excursion to see orcas, humpback whales, sea lions and other wildlife along the beautiful Pacific Coast.
If you’re looking for a more relaxing stay, Victoria has several world-class spas (including a new one that floats on a barge in the harbor!) and a great cocktail scene – be on the lookout for creative drinks made with local craft spirits and locally-grown herbs.
Recommended by Carly from Fearless Female Travels
A fantastic city in Canada for solo female travelers to visit is Markham! Located just north of Toronto, Markham is a great place to visit thanks to its accessible transportation and its wealth of things to do.
Plus, it’s safer than many other big cities like Toronto and offers more affordable accommodations.
Ladies looking to meet people on their travels will love all of the fun and unique events and festivals in Markham! They’re a great place to meet new friends.
Beyond the events, there are so many fun and diverse things to do in Markham for solo ladies! Indulge in caffeine and sweet treats at all the amazing coffee shops and bakeries, many of which are very Instagrammable!
Fans of Gilmore Girls TV show will love spotting filming locations in the charming area of Unionville. Plus, if you’re looking for more cultural attractions, there’s a theatre as well as plenty of museums and art galleries.
Or if you want to check out a unique mall, pop into Pacific Mall. Home to over 400 stores, it’s the largest Asian shopping mall in North America.
A great place to stay in Markham is Hilton Suites Toronto-Markham Conference Centre. It’s close to many of the city’s attractions and boasts a spa, pool, and restaurant.
Recommended by Stephanie from The World As I See It
Niagara Falls, Ontario
Niagara Falls is one of the best Canadian cities for solo female travelers. The city’s beauty, safety, and diverse activities make it a great destination for solo female travelers.
Watching the thundering waters flow over Niagara Falls is a mesmerizing experience and a perfect solo activity. Other great solo things to do in Niagara include hiking through the scenic Niagara Parks, taking in the culture at the museums and local theaters, and participating in adventure activities like ziplining and jet boating.
For accommodation, Niagara Falls offers a range of options, from budget-friendly hotels like the Days Inn to luxurious hotels like the Marriott Fallsview Hotel & Spa. Staying in the vicinity of Clifton Hill ensures easy access to dining, entertainment, and attractions.
When visiting Niagara Falls during winter, you can find less crowds and better deals on hotels. With accessible transportation and a friendly atmosphere, Niagara Falls provides the perfect backdrop for solo adventurers to create unforgettable experiences whether you spend a day or a week.
Recommended by Melissa from My Beautiful Passport
Halifax, Nova Scotia
Halifax is another one of the best Canadian cities for solo female travelers, offering a perfect blend of charm, safety, and genuine hospitality.
The locals provide a warm and welcoming atmosphere, making navigating the city a breeze and giving you that extra peace of mind when exploring on your own.
Go for a stroll along the scenic waterfront boardwalk, hop on a boat tour, enjoy a latte in Halifax Public Gardens, or explore the historic Citadel Hill. When it comes to things to do, Halifax has it all.
As for accommodations, downtown Halifax boasts a range of options to suit any budget. The downtown area is also very safe. So whether you prefer staying at hostels or at something a little more posh, like the Hollis Halifax, you won’t have to worry about being alone.
And you can’t leave Halifax without trying some of the freshest seafood around. Head down to the boardwalk where you will find a wide range of restaurants catering to every pallet.
At night, head to Argyle Street to experience some of Halifax’s nightlife. Pubs and bars line the street, offering live music, al fresco dining, and a chance to mingle with the locals.
Recommended by Marianne from The Journeying Giordano’s
Whitehorse, Yukon Territory
Whitehorse, the capital of Yukon Territory, often referred to as the “backyard of Canada”, calls to solo female travelers in search of outdoor adventure. With its expansive wilderness and small-town charm, Whitehorse is an ideal destination for solo female travelers.
Whitehorse is the perfect place for spectacular hiking opportunities, both within the city limits and in the nearby Kluane National Park and Reserve. While in downtown Whitehorse, take a leisurely stroll along the Millennium Trail before a delicious dinner at Whiskey Jacks Pub & Grill or Klondike Rib & Salmon!
Outside of the city, take in the stunning turquoise waters of Emerald Lake on your way to exploring Carcross Desert; the smallest desert in the world!
Animal enthusiasts will enjoy visiting Sky High Wilderness Ranch for horseback riding by Fish Lake, or the Yukon Wildlife Preserve to get up close with fascinating northern wildlife.
Stay in downtown Whitehorse for easy access to the city’s attractions. The Best Western Gold Rush Inn and Edgewater Hotel offer reasonable prices with free parking, while the Skky Hotel near the airport is perfect for an early morning flight.
Whitehorse has been highly rated by locals and visitors for its safety. However, like any city, it’s advisable to avoid walking alone at night. The primary safety concern here is encounters with bears, so always carry bear spray when hiking and make noise regularly while walking the trails.
With its safety, natural beauty, outdoor adventures, diverse wildlife and small town charm, Whitehorse is a fabulous destination for solo female travelers.
Recommended by Johanna from My Yukon Travel Guide
Often overlooked by its more famous southern sister Calgary, there are many reasons why Edmonton is one of the best Canadian cities for solo female travelers.
Edmonton is indisputably the cultural capital of the West. With a festival almost every weekend, the legendary Winspear Performing Arts Centre hosting events non-stop and more live music venues than you can shake a tambourine at, any solo female traveler is guaranteed a good time (and to make some new friends in the process).
The foodie and restaurant scene in Edmonton is some of the best in Canada. From lively Whyte Ave to the food trucks at the 124 Grand Market, the food in Edmonton is delicious and something to write home about.
And if it’s nature you’re after, Edmonton is also home to Canada’s largest urban park, the beautiful North Saskatchewan River Valley. The area is so vast, and with so many trails, that you’ll forget you’re in the middle of a bustling capital city.
Not to mention that Edmonton is the perfect base to take a weekend trip to Jasper, easily the most underrated destination in the Canadian Rockies.
Recommended by Dotti from Explore Travel Oasis
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Charlottetown, located on Prince Edward Island, is the perfect place for a solo traveler to stop by for a few days. Not only is it quite safe, but there is plenty to keep you busy!
Victoria Row is one of the best places to spend time in the city. This pedestrian-only street is lined with historic buildings housing shops and cute-as-a-button eateries with patios to have a drink or grab a bite. Or just lounge in the shade while live music plays in the background.
Don’t miss Peake’s Wharf. Just a short walk away from Victoria Row, this harbor is brimming with entertainment. Grab a boat tour, indulge in some ice cream at Cows Creamery, and do some people-watching, as this is a popular place for both tourists and locals alike.
Got some extra time on your hands? Wander along the Victoria Park Boardwalk, see St Dunstan’s Basilica, or search for Eckhart (a tiny bronze mouse that can be seen at nine locations on a scavenger hunt).
And if you want to explore outside the city and are an “Anne of Green Gables” fan, the Green Gables Heritage Place is like stepping straight into the book.
When you are ready to lay your head down for the night, Sydney Boutique Inn & Suites is the perfect place to stay. Not only does it have historic charm with original furnishings, but it is close to all the waterfront and downtown attractions.
Recommended by Jenny from Traveling In Focus
Toronto is one of the most diverse cities in the world, and it’s the perfect spot for solo female travelers. With a wide range of attractions and things to do, there’s always something exciting happening in Toronto.
The Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel is an excellent place to stay. It’s located in the downtown core and across the street from the iconic Toronto sign, the Eaton Centre shopping mall, and the trendy Queen West district.
Within easy walking distance of the hotel, visitors can find hundreds of bars and restaurants, attractions such as the Art Gallery of Toronto, and the theater district. For solo visitors, it’s very easy to get single tickets for great shows that some say rival New York City’s Broadway!
For beach lovers, a visit to Woodbine Beach is a must; it’s one of Toronto’s hidden gems, offering beautiful sandy shores, an excellent bike trail, and a picturesque boardwalk for long walks. It’s the perfect spot to relax on the beach, join in a game of beach volleyball, or enjoy a drink on one of the many outdoor patios in the area.
With so many things to do in a safe and welcoming city, it’s easy to see why Toronto is becoming an increasingly popular travel destination for women traveling alone.
Recommended by Julie from Toronto to Anywhere
Nanaimo, British Columbia
Nanaimo is the gateway to British Columbia’s beautiful Vancouver Island and is an excellent destination for adventure seeking solo travelers. There are interesting things to see and do in the city, including museums, art galleries and indulging in fresh seafood.
But the real reason to visit Nanaimo is its proximity to some of Vancouver Island’s most spectacular natural scenery and outdoor activities.
With a range of exciting nature and wildlife tours departing from Nanaimo which are particularly well-suited to solo travelers, including whale-watching, seal-snorkeling and seaplane tours.
And, as the city is located on the Salish Sea, there are pristine beaches, hidden swimming spots and picturesque islands which you can explore by kayak from Nanaimo.
Nanaimo is also surrounded by lush rainforests, nature reserves and mountains. So, if you enjoy hiking then there are plenty of nearby trails to keep you busy. For unobstructed views as far as the eye can see, hike to the top of Mt. Benson.
Or, for a bigger challenge, hike one of Canada’s most iconic multi-day treks – the nearby Juan de Fuca or West Coast Trail. These popular trails are especially great for solo female travelers, as there’s a strong sense of community and comradery on the trail.
So, it’s a safe environment to hike in, with fellow hikers watching out for you, and it’s a great way to make lifelong friends.
Recommended by Chanelle from Chasing Chanelle
Montréal is one of the best Canadian cities for solo female travel. It’s very safe and has an excellent public transportation system. Quebec is French speaking, so you get to experience the old-world charm of Europe when you visit Montreal.
Start off your visit with a food tour in Montréal to savor regional favorites like poutine, Alsatian tarts, and of course a Montreal-style bagel. Montreal’s cuisine scene includes everything from French pastries to Portuguese chicken.
You’ll love visiting historic Vieux Montréal, with the incredible Notre-Dame Basilica. There’s always plenty to do in the Old Port, including taking a ride on Canada’s largest Ferris wheel!
Next, take in the panoramic city views from the viewing terrace on Mont Royal and admire St. Joseph’s Oratory. And don’t miss the gorgeous flowers in the Montreal Botanical Garden!
Stay at Le Square Phillips Hôtel & Suites. This hotel has a great location close to Vieux Montreal and includes full kitchens and an extensive buffet breakfast.
Recommended by Lisa Garrett from Waves and Cobblestones
Banff, Alberta is One of the Best Canadian Cities for Solo Female Travelers
Banff is a picturesque ski town nestled in the Canadian Rockies. You’ll love it here, especially if you’re an outdoorsy type. Get ready for the postcard-perfect sceneries of ice-blue lakes that Canada is so famous for.
Lake Louise is one of the most photographed lakes in the world and a must-visit. After taking in the lake’s beauty and perhaps canoeing on the lake, venture upward along the Lake Agnes Trail to the teahouse.
But Banff isn’t only about hiking. Downtown Banff is full of amazing cafes, cute little shops and restaurants. Moose Hotel and Suites is a charming lodge right in the center, making it a convenient place to stay and explore the area.
End your solo female adventure with a dip in the Banff Upper Hot Springs because you deserve a bit of pampering. Banff is an all-season destination. Summer is perfect for hiking the mountain trails, while winter is the best time to enjoy some of the world’s top skiing.
Christmas time in Banff is especially magical with all that white powdery snow and cozy cabins.
Recommended by Kamila from Kamila Writes
Vancouver, British Columbia
Vancouver is a haven for solo travelers as its downtown core offers a safe environment. Skytrain, Vancouver’s rapid transit, provides reliable and inexpensive transportation, eliminating the need for a rental car.
Staying at the Fairmont Pacific Rim puts you within walking distance of restaurants, shopping, and the beautiful waterfront.
Stanley Park, rated one of the top urban parks worldwide, is a must-visit, and there are several ways to explore. You can walk, cycle, or enjoy a horse-drawn carriage. Nearby, Spokes offers budget-friendly bike rentals, allowing you to circumnavigate the Stanley Park seawall.
If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, you can enjoy some great hiking trails in Vancouver. Grouse Grind tests your skill on a Stairmaster grueling climb, or enjoy less challenging trails in Lynn Canyon.
Stay at the upscale Fairmont Pacific Rim, where you can walk to the Olympic Cauldron, Gastown Steam Clock, and savor aerial views from the Harbour Centre Lookout.
Other can’t-miss attractions include the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Granville Island, an area with great patio restaurants and a fantastic public market.
Recommended by Karen from Forever Karen
Québec City, Québec
Quebec City is one of Canada’s most unique cities, full of fairytale vibes and European charm.
The city has a fascinating history, boasts a renowned Old Town (the entirety of which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site), is incredibly safe, and offers a one-of-a-kind experience of being able to experience a bit of Europe without leaving North America.
Most famous for its Old Town, this part of the city is where you’ll find many of the city’s top attractions. Be sure to wander through the Quartier Petit Champlain, arguably the city’s most beautiful street.
The city is also the only remaining fortified city north of Mexico, and you can see its fortified gates. Also visit the Plains of Abraham and the Citadelle to gain an insight into the city’s unique history.
Quebec City is also home to the Fairmont Chateau Frontenac, one of the most famous hotels in the world. It resembles a real-life castle! For a unforgettable experience, spend a night at the hotel. If your budget doesn’t allow, definitely snap some photos of the exterior and check out the inside.
Recommended by Caroline from Pictures and Word Blog
For any solo female travelers looking for a safe yet lively Canadian city to visit, consider Calgary! This city has an efficient public transportation network but is also very walkable, so you can easily walk to several of the main attractions.
Speaking of attractions, there are plenty of activities to do in Calgary that are suitable for female solo travelers. For example, a fun place to visit is the CORE Shopping Center, which is filled with an array of luxury and boutique stores.
It’s also the place where you’ll find the Devonian Gardens, which are lovely to stroll around or do some remote work at. But, if you’re craving some fresh air, consider walking around Stephen Avenue, the main street that’s often blocked off for pedestrians.
In terms of where to stay, a great place to check out is the Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire. They have all the amenities you need to feel safe and comfortable.
Recommended by Kristin of Global Travel Escapades
How to Visit Canada From the United States
To enter Canada as a United States citizen, you need to provide proof of citizenship and identification. The approved documents include a U.S. passport, a U.S. passport card or a NEXUS card, if you are driving. There’s no visa required as long as you aren’t staying in Canada for more than 180 days.
Tips For Visiting the Best Canadian Cities for Solo Female Travelers
Currency – The currency in Canada is Canadian dollars. Even though the exchange isn’t 1 to 1 currently, (100CDN to 73USD) it’s pretty easy to convert. Having a currency converter app on your phone is very helpful. I like Adiante Ventures currency apps.
Credit Cards – Credit cards are accepted in Canada with the two most common being Visa and Master Card. American Express is somewhat accepted and Discover is the least accepted. Check with credit card company to determine foreign transaction fees.
Tipping – Servers earn more in Canada than in the U.S. but tipping is still very much part of the culture in Canada. Anywhere between 15% to 20% is acceptable, with as much as 25% for excellent service. It’s a good idea to research tipping etiquette in the province where you are traveling.
Language – Canada is a bilingual country with English and French as the two official languages. However, there are approximately more than 60 indigenous languages spoken and you’ll hear over 200 languages from around the world.
Healthcare – Canada has excellent healthcare for its citizens but that doesn’t mean you don’t need travel insurance. Of course, check with your insurance company to see what it covers but the best way to fill in the gaps is with a travel policy. TravelInsurance.com is a good place to start researching what works for your circumstances.
Safety – Canada is a very safe country but when traveling you should always implement these travel safety tips. Especially when traveling alone.
Electricity – like the rest of North America, Canada uses a standard 120 V so there’s no need for an adapter or converter if you are traveling from the U.S.
Best Cities in Canada for Traveling Solo
In conclusion, Canada is as an inviting and accessible destination for solo female travelers. With its friendly and diverse communities, stunning natural areas and a well-developed transportation network, it opens the door to countless adventures and experiences for women traveling alone.
So, pack your bags, embrace the solo journey, and savor the unique experiences that solo travel in Canada has to offer.
See you on the road!
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