It’s believed that there are over 2 million lakes in Canada varying in shapes and sizes. An estimate of 31,752 lakes are larger than three square kilometres, while around 561 of these lakes have a surface area larger than 100 square kilometres. In fact, over nine per cent of the country is covered by freshwater. That’s over 890,000 square kilometres! With so many lakes, it’s nearly impossible to decide which lakes are the best. But some of these lakes are much more spectacular than the others. Kayak, canoe, water ski or simply sit and stare whilst contemplating life, the universe and everything, there is no finer place to do whatever you feel like doing than by the side of a lake in Canada. Here is a list of our picks of the 5 best lakes in Canada.
1. SPOTTED LAKE
Location: Northwest of Osoyoos, British Columbia
One of the most beautiful and distinct looking lakes you would ever witness is this polka-dotted body-of-water. It looks so bizarre that you could be forgiven for thinking you were on an alien planet. This water body is famous due to its remarkable transformation during the summer months. The lake becomes spotted with different colours and the waters resemble a polka-dot design. This lake is not only a remarkable physical feature; it is also a very important historical and spiritual site for the locals.
2. MORAINE LAKE
Location: Banff National Park, Alberta
The beauty of Moraine Lake can leave anyone spellbound. The lake has a vivid shade of turquoise that changes in intensity through the summer as the glaciers melt. Nestled in the rugged Valley of the Ten Peaks, Moraine Lake is surrounded by waterfalls, mountains and rock piles, creating a scene so picturesque it almost seems unreal. You can spend hours sitting at the lakeside and absorbing the sights and pure mountain air, or exploring further by canoeing and hiking. It’s an incredibly jaw-dropping place that is sure to leave a lasting impression.
3. LAKE SUPERIOR
Location: Michigan North to Ontario
Lake Superior is not only the largest of the Great Lakes, it is also the largest body of fresh water on Earth. Situated on the northern border of Wisconsin, Lake Superior extends from the upper peninsula of Michigan north to Ontario, Canada, and reaches west to the eastern edge of Minnesota. During most winters, the majority of the lake gets covered in ice; however, it rarely completely freezes.
4. EMERALD LAKE
Location: Yoho National Park, British Columbia
With an unmatched diversity of both activities and landscapes suited to the passionate traveler, Emerald Lake is one of the most admired destinations in BC. The hike around the lake is one of the least strenuous but most rewarding in the park and the surrounding areas. Various geographical features can be viewed from the lake, including the world-famous Burgess Shale fossil beds, the Michael glacier, and an avalanche slope, beautifully carpeted by meadows where the surreal sight of moose grazing is often encountered.
Emerald Lake is an incredible place to see wildlife as well, as animals are drawn to this important water source very frequently.
5. LAKE LOUISE
Famous for its teahouses, grizzly bears and hiking trails, Lake Louise is also renowned for its much-commented-on ‘crowds,’ plus the incongruous lump of towering concrete known as Chateau Lake Louise. The lake overlooks the Rockies’ most spectacular sights, one that has captured the imaginations of mountaineers, artists and visitors for many decades.
Considered by many to be the crown jewel of Banff National Park, Lake Louise is nearly impossible to describe without resorting to clichés. Standing next to this serene, unbelievably turquoise lake, Banff’s wild grandeur feels (and is) tantalizingly close.