5 Canadian UNESCO World Heritage Sites You Need to Visit
While Canada is filled with natural wonders, it takes an extra gear for a park, mountain or waterway to be named a UNESCO World Heritage Site. FlightHub, an online travel agency, is all about promoting Canada’s natural beauty, and reveals its top five destinations Canadians need to see.
1. Dinosaur Provincial Park
FlightHub’s favourite UNESCO World Heritage Site is hands down Dinosaur Provincial Park. Located southeast of Calgary, this park is world famous for its plentiful prehistoric fossils. From small, primitive lifeforms to massive carnivorous dinosaurs. over 40 new species of dinosaurs have been found in this deathbed of dinosaurs since its establishment in 1955. Dinosaur Provincial Park was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979.
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2. L’Anse aux Meadows
Second on FlightHub’s list is L’Anse aux Meadows. This ancient settlement is located on the Northern tip of Newfoundland and was a game changer in the timeline of European involvement in North America. Dated back to 1000 AD, this Viking settlement has been tied to the failed colony of Vinland, an attempted colonization of North America by Vikings that was only alluded to in ancient Norse texts, but proven by this discovery in 1960. This of course predates the Columbus expeditions by nearly 500 years. L’Anse aux Meadows was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978.
3. Rideau Canal
There may not be a more Canadian vision. Winter in Ottawa on the Canal filled with people skating. The Rideau Canal is more than a skating rink though. Originally built in 1832 as a preventative military transportation route, this construction occurred in response to a perceived military threat from the United States following the War Of 1812. This 202 kilometre canal served as a supply line that reduced dependance on the St Lawrence River, a river that could easily be blockaded by US powers with ease. According to FlightHub the canal is used today largely for pleasure boating and skating following its UNESCO designation in 2007.
4. Joggins Fossil Cliffs
Another Canadian fossil sanctuary, Joggins Fossil Cliffs hold remarkably preserved ancient fossils that predate dinosaurs as we know them. In fact, Joggins most historic find is generally considered the earliest recorded reptile of any kind, called Hylonomus. Discoveries here are documented in one of the most famous books written, On The Origin Of Species by Charles Darwin. This treasure chest of finds was designated by UNESCO in 2008.
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5. Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks
Ask anyone about Canada’s most impressive natural feature and you’ll get one of two answers, Niagara Falls or the Rocky Mountains. Unfortunately, only one of those is a UNESCO destination, and that is the four national parks that occupy the Rocky Mountain range. Consisting of Banff, Jasper, Kootenay, and Yoho National Parks, this region is considered the most beautiful in Canada thanks to its abundance of mountains, rivers, lakes, and forests. This region was designated in 1984 by UNESCO.