Cities and National Parks
Canada offers so much to travelers in the way of natural beauty, cosmopolitan cities, and quaint seaside villages. You will find great variation in accommodation type, style and price, depending on the season and location. In larger cities you can expect to pay over $100 for most places but in national parks camping is a wonderful alternative that not only helps you save money, but helps you feel fully immersed in the surrounding landscape. Some of the most striking beauty is during the evenings as the sun sets or late at night when the stars come out. Whatever your travel style, you are bound to find something unique and comfortable in Canada, whether it's a seaside cottage, a four star hotel, or a tent pitched under the stars.
Tricks to Find a Deal
Canada can be quite expensive as a travel destination. If you're headed to popular cities like Montreal, Toronto, or Vancouver you can expect to pay at least $150 for a room. There are more hostels available in cities and they will cost you anywhere from $30-$50 for a dorm bed. You may be able to find something cheaper, but do keep in mind the location. Transportation can be quite expensive and a poor location is very inconvenient.
A much more affordable way to see Canada is to visit the national parks. Throw a tent in the back of your car and you'll have a wonderful experience seeing some of the most stunningly beautiful landscape in the world. There truly is nothing better than sleeping under the stars, and if it saves you some money, then it's all the better.
Camping, Hotels, and More
The accommodation in the cities in Canada is comparable to that found in the United States. The chain hotels are similar and you will find many of the same brand names. A unique way to experience Canada is along the Canadian Railway Hotels, which can be found in most major cities. They were constructed in the 1900s and are an integral part of Canadian history. Today most of these hotels are owned by companies such as Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, and cost anywhere from $150-$400 a night. These Grand Railway Hotels are four star facilities that are quite impressive in their character and design. If you choose not to stay at one of these hotels, poke your head in the lobby for a peak anyway.
Outside of the cities you will find small cottages, campgrounds, cabins, hostels and motels. The price and quality can be variable so read some reviews before booking. For long term stay you can often find apartment rentals or sublets that are affordable and convenient. Renting a house may also be an option in smaller towns or rural areas.
You'll find the majority of the hotels in Toronto in the area that is just outside of the downtown core. There are a wide range of accommodation types available throughout the city and there are a small number of hostels available for those on a budget. Some of the more popular hostels include Global Village Backpackers and HI-Toronto Hostel. Both of these hostels are well located so you can easily access public transportation and explore all that the city has to offer. Bed and Breakfasts are a very popular option in this city. There are several hundred to choose from and they range in style, price and quality. Many are located right in the downtown core so they are a convenient base for exploring the city.
Chain hotels are also common in the city. Some of the options available to you include the Marriott, Holiday Inn, the Sheraton, and Days Inn. These are reliable options that are conveniently located and predictable in quality.
Vancouver is an expensive place to stay in Canada. The majority of the accommodation options are concentrated in the city centre, but you'll also find some good options in the areas just outside of the city centre. There are a small handful of backpacker hostels available that will cost between $20 and $35 for a bed. You'll have to share in a dorm and these fill up quickly so book ahead. In the city centre you'll find that the hotel costs are substantially higher than just outside. If you're looking to save a few bucks find a local boutique style hotel just outside of the downtown. It will still be conveniently close everything but the price will be significantly less. Some prime locations include Kingsway in East Van and Broadway in South Granville. If you don't mind the commute you'll also find some cheaper options in the suburbs. These include North Vancouver, Burnaby and New Westminster, all of which are connected to Vancouver by public transportation.
If you stay in the city centre area you'll find that most of the high end accommodation are located between Georgia and the waterfront area. The most expensive have views overlooking the harbour and the mountains. The more affordable options in the city centre are closer to the edge near False Creek and Yaletown. The hostels are often found near the popular night spots by Granville Street or Gastown. If you choose to stay at a hostel in these areas do make sure it caters specifically to budget backpackers. Some of the budget hotels in the area are prone to prostitution and drug problems.