Weather in Canada
The weather in Canada is very different in different areas of the country - so you may need to pack for several eventualities all on one tour!
Bathed by currents of warm, humid air from the Pacific, the coast of British Columbia has the most moderate climate of any region in Canada. Vancouver and Victoria enjoy pleasant and relatively dry summers and mild, wet winters. Snowfalls are rare in low-altitude regions and when snow falls it generally melts the same day.
The Rockies have a much more severe climate. The mountains bring a much colder, longer and snowier winter. Summer, however, is just as warm as on the coast. However, weather can change at a moment's notice, so be prepared.
In Ontario, the presence of the great lakes has a moderating effect on the climate, which is not as continental as might be expected. You should still expect summers to be hotter than in the UK, with week-long heat waves not uncommon. The autumn is a favourite for many, with its long, mild and sunny days and bracing nights. In the winter, temperatures average –5°C with very variable weather.
Climate in Atlantic Canada (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland & Labrador; collectively also known as the Maritimes) is very variable. There can be heavy snowfalls that melt completely several times per winter. Summers are warm, but not hot, with temperatures around 24°C.
Fog is very common, especially from April to June.
What to pack
You should bring plenty of light, comfortable clothing that can be easily layered, as well as enough warm outdoor clothing. Good rain gear is a wise precaution against inclement weather at any time of year.
A comfortable pair of shoes for walking and sightseeing is essential. Some members recommend smart clothes for dining out, but this is simply a matter of individual preference. Canadians usually have a very relaxed dress code.