Hiking doesn’t have to mean “roughing it.” While there are plenty of physically demanding hiking trails for outdoor enthusiasts, there are also many moderate trails for those who want to take it easy and maybe enjoy a reward, like a great meal or a relaxing massage, at the end of their walk.
Here are a few trails that can be easily combined with after-hike indulgences.
Hiking and Wine
Look no further than Kelowna for mild weather and delicious wine. Enjoy both on the same trip with easy walking trails in the Bertram Creek Regional Park or moderate to difficult hiking trails on the Mission Creek Greenway, both located near wineries like Cedar Creek, Tantalus and Summerhill.
Hiking and Food
One of the highlights of the Canadian Rockies, Yoho National Park offers many trails of different lengths and levels of difficulty, from the one-hour Wapta Falls trail to the full-day Lake O’Hara trail.
For a leisurely day, walk the short and popular Emerald Lake trail or Hamilton Falls trail, then make it a point to grab lunch or dinner at Truffle Pigs Bistro & Lodge in Field, B.C., where you’ll find premium local ingredients in quality yet casual dishes. The Korean pork belly nachos are a must-try.
Over on the East Coast in Twillingate, off the northeastern shore of Newfoundland, hikers of any level can appreciate the breathtaking views of the shoreline from a number of trails.
For a short, two-hour hike, try the Batrix/Barrick’s Island trail that starts by the fishing wharf and leads to the top of the hill overlooking Notre Dame Bay. Or, walk the Top of Twillingate trail that starts from Gillard’s Cove. Afterward, indulge in some fish and chips or Digby scallops at Georgie’s Restaurant in the Anchor Inn Hotel.
Hiking and Spa
In Little Qualicum Falls Provincial Park near Parksville, there are effortless walking trails along Little Qualicum River between the day-use area and the lower and upper waterfalls.
Another area in Vancouver Island with great hiking is the Englishman River Falls Provincial Park, just north of Nanaimo. The trails (three kilometres in total) guide you along the rivers and take you to the falls.
Relax and soothe those muscles at the Tigh-Na-Mara Grotto Spa after a day of walking. In addition to treatments like facials, massages and body wraps, the spa includes a warm mineral pool that detoxifies, a cool waterfall and a whirlpool.
For those who want a light meal at the end of the day, Tigh-Na-Mara’s Treetop Tapas & Grill offers small plates with local, healthy ingredients.
Blue Mountain is well-known for its skiing in Ontario, but it’s also great for hiking, golfing and ziplining before ski season starts. Up the mountain, this section of the famous Bruce Trail offers an expansive view of the Nottawasaga Bay.
At the end of an active day, enjoy the serenity of the outdoors and take in the views of the Niagara Escarpment at Scandinave Spa. Alternate between hot stations like the Finnish sauna and eucalyptus steam room and cold plunges, then rest in relaxation areas.