Must-Haves for a Canadian Road Trip: Read Up

Must-Haves for a Canadian Road Trip: Read Up

Road Trip!

This summer was left largely un-planned because we wanted to be able to jump in the car and go where our hearts desire without worrying about soccer, play dates and summer camp. It also allowed us to unwind and relax and not worry about things we HAD to do instead of focusing on what we wanted to do. Like weekends away that always started with a road trip and ended up at the beach, trailer, or hotel when we were feeling fancy.

Driving anywhere with four kids is a gamble. I mean these guys start asking when we will get there the moment we pull out the drive way but with some quick navigation help (thank you GPS) we can give them a quick estimate or arrival time and switch into “car game” mode. Our favourite (and the one that keeps them occupied longest) is giving them each a car colour and getting them to count all the cars they see of that colour. They cheat like crazy but at least the ride is not full of “are we there yet?” and “I’m bored”.

Road Trips Across Canada

July is the perfect time to take a family road trip – school’s out so the kids are up for an adventure! There are endless possibilities when it comes to the type of road trips you can take from a local destination to one across the country.

Not sure where you want to go? Here are three great adventures to get your mind wandering and maybe inspire your next trip: Quebec City, Haliburton and Tofino. Not sure what each has to offer? Read more below!

  1. Tofino, British Columbia. Looking for something truly picturesque? Head to Canada’s surf capital – Tofino. Get your family on a ferry from Vancouver to Nanaimo and drive along the Pacific Rim Highway for a truly breathtaking view of mountains and lakes, along with rainforest. The area is also known for its trees, which grow in spectacular sizes. Some trees are believed to be 1000 years old.  
  2. Haliburton, Ontario. Truly the quintessential summer escape from the big city, you’ll practically feel the stress lifting as you start driving into cottage country. There are several scenic route options, dotted with great ice cream parlours along the way, which all lead to good times ahead. Whether you stay for the day or rent a cottage, you’ll want to make sure you stop at Webers in Orillia, a Canadian burger landmark since 1963. 
  3. Quebec City, Quebec. Whatever direction you’re coming in from, stop in a few francophone villages on your way into the old city to soak up the culture, food and French! Making your way through the beautiful and lush countryside, you’ll be thrilled to arrive at your final destination: old Quebec City, a city full of history, architecture, cobble stone streets and endless charm.

Before you head out on a great adventure, make sure you’re well prepared, especially when kids are involved – we’re hoping for less “are we there yet?” and more “wow, this is amazing!” You’ll always want to pack things like a GPS system, snacks, sunscreen, and sun protection, first aid supplies and good music!

To get you ready for your family adventure this summer, here are some very practical products to put in your travel toolkit.

  • GRAVOL™ Natural Source™ Ginger Lozenges – curb motion sickness for you and your kids (over the age of six) with these chewable lozenges – convenient, portable and no water required! GRAVOLTM Kids Quick Dissolve Chewables are a great option for your little ones two years and over! (GRAVOLTM Kids Quick Dissolve Chewables are not included in giveaway).
  • OxiClean™ Foam Pretreat – spills and stains are bound to happen on road trips, treat them the day they happen and then throw the item in the wash a few days later when you make it to your destination!
  • ORAJEL™ Anticavity Fluoride Toothpaste 119g, in either Super Mario™ or The Ultimate Spider-ManTM or My Little Pony™ – with road trips come snacks and fast food so ensuring your little ones are brushing is of the utmost importance.
  • Vitafusion™ Women’s and Men’s Complete Multivitamins – are geared towards providing essential nutrients specifically needed by men and women to maintain their health, in a tasty gummy that you can take without water, perfect for on-the-go!
Road Trip with Church & Dwight

Aneta Alaei
Aneta Alaei

Aneta is a Toronto-based mom of four that loves a good meal, great company, and learning something new. In her free time, you can find her trying to keep yet another plant alive.

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  1. joy
    July 18, 2016 / 1:50 pm

    Pack lots of snacks & beverages! Freeze bottles of water/juice boxes to use as freezer packs. For small kids, bring a cookie sheet with magnetic letters, etc for play. For older kids, bring a journal for writing down events, counting games.

  2. Tara Betterley
    July 18, 2016 / 2:01 pm

    We try to have lots to do for the kids. I make sure they have activities – I try to find games for them to do as well (ie. Collect all the license plates – see if you can get all the states or provinces).. I also have snacks and pre-made lunches. It is so much easier to have pre-made lunches so that you can stop and relax and save the costs of the take out. Also, plan your travel wisely. When we are pulling the trailer – we try to limit the amount of travelling per day. Nobody wants to be sore because they pushed to drive for 8 hours – drive up to 4 hours a day and relax..

  3. Glogirl
    July 18, 2016 / 2:19 pm

    My tip for road tripping is to bring snacks with you in reclosable bags, bring reusable water bottles that can be refilled as needed. Also, bring lots of hand sanitizer! It will come in handy.

  4. Anne Taylor
    July 18, 2016 / 2:21 pm

    Take lots of music, food, and drinks. We drove across Canada from Victoria to Niagara Falls with four daughters and I think we sang for like 95% of the time!

  5. ivy pluchinsky
    July 18, 2016 / 2:28 pm

    Road tripping with kids, make sure you take lots of activities for the car, lots of food and drinks, and play some fun car games!

  6. Jonnie
    July 18, 2016 / 2:44 pm

    Snacks are the key to a successful road trip with kids. If you give them enough snacks they are extremely well behaved!

  7. Judy Cowan
    July 18, 2016 / 2:54 pm

    Best tip is to make it fun – pack snacks, go to the dollar store and make up surprise treat bags with items to keep them busy during the drive and have patience!

  8. Tainan Lu
    July 18, 2016 / 3:18 pm

    Prepare lots of snakes and toys.

  9. Joanne Saunders
    July 18, 2016 / 3:19 pm

    I am kid free and would love to drive to Vancouver.

  10. Tainan Lu
    July 18, 2016 / 3:20 pm


  11. kristen visser
    July 18, 2016 / 3:34 pm

    When going on a road trip with your kids, make sure you have liquids, snackies, and a few things to entertain them such as books, little toys or their favorite stuffed animals

  12. Cheryl
    July 18, 2016 / 3:42 pm

    Being from Cape Breton I would have to say it is the Cabot Trail!! The best for young and old 🙂

  13. kathy downey
    July 18, 2016 / 3:54 pm

    I love to takea road trip down the coast of Newfoundland with kids so many place to stop and so much to see in the small ports also i make sure you take lots of activities for the car, lots of food and drinks, and play some fun car games!

    July 18, 2016 / 5:01 pm

    My tip for road tripping is to bring snacks that the kids like and also do some research on where you are going so you can discuss this and make it interesting for them.

  15. Jessica M Walker
    July 18, 2016 / 5:47 pm

    Must have music and snacks

  16. Laurent L
    July 18, 2016 / 6:38 pm

    I like to road trip to the East Coast. Lots to see and do and eat on the way.

  17. Florence C
    July 18, 2016 / 6:51 pm

    I love taking road trip in Alberta with my grandchildren when we visit. We get them to help choose what they like to do.

  18. Christine Holliday
    July 18, 2016 / 6:58 pm

    It’s all about keeping them busy. Singing, playing games, I Spy is still fun…. and learning about things along the way.

  19. Lynda Cook
    July 18, 2016 / 8:43 pm

    With kids make sure to have snacks and water, and if you do not have a dvd player make sure they have travel games and music, plus some small pillows and blankets for nap time, I found having a small bucket for when the time comes and there is no where for them to go potty, it works wonders!!

  20. Jen L
    July 18, 2016 / 8:55 pm

    My tip is to have pre-made, easy to eat snacks for the car. I pack slices of summer sausage, cheese and crackers and we call them ‘stackers’ and everyone loves them!

  21. heather sibley
    July 18, 2016 / 9:12 pm

    Plan and budget your meal and overnight stops in advance to cut down on costs.

  22. Amy C
    July 18, 2016 / 9:15 pm

    Our best road trip was to Calgary. We had lots of fun on our 10 hour road trip.

  23. Nicole Jubleew
    July 18, 2016 / 9:17 pm

    A fun kid friendly road trip is to Niagara Falls.

  24. July 18, 2016 / 10:18 pm

    Don’t forget the chips and the soda!

  25. Yvonne
    July 19, 2016 / 1:06 am

    Drove up to the beach and stayed for a few days

  26. missbobloblaw
    July 19, 2016 / 1:39 am

    Our best road trip was from Edmonton to Toronto with the kids….we had so much fun stopping at all the tourist traps along the way!

  27. Brenda Penton
    July 19, 2016 / 5:13 am

    I haven’t gone road tripping with my kids. If I were to, I’d make sure to take lots of snacks and things to occupy them.

  28. July 19, 2016 / 6:28 am

    We have 4 kids, so we have dvd’s for each of them so they can watch a movie of their choice, lots of hand held games they can play, books, and then we play games like finding certain items or places.

  29. lori b
    July 19, 2016 / 9:50 am

    definately snacks and a pillow 🙂

  30. Janice Wong
    July 19, 2016 / 10:20 am

    I would love to go to the Hamilton waterfalls.

  31. Tamara M
    July 19, 2016 / 12:30 pm

    I set the kids up with travel games and cards to play in the back seat together!

  32. Daniela Plume
    July 20, 2016 / 2:47 am

    my most favourite road trip was just me and the family dog. i left the kids at home with hubby and drove across the US from coast to coast then across Canada on the way back.. I took over 3 weeks stopping whenever I felt like exploring.

  33. Julie
    July 20, 2016 / 7:33 am

    Snacks and activities are very important when road tripping with kids! We also try to stop fairly frequently and try not to go too far of distances with the littles so that means we are road tripping around Ontario, for the most part!

  34. Sandi Tymchuk
    July 20, 2016 / 9:33 am

    I like to road-trip to Jasper.

  35. kim
    July 20, 2016 / 10:28 am

    Make frequent stops, bring lots of snack and games to keep the kids occupied. We also have a DVD player to play movies.

  36. SarahJ
    July 20, 2016 / 12:06 pm

    A road trip through the Alberta Rockies is so beautiful it keeps your attention for both young and old.

  37. Bo Simms
    July 20, 2016 / 12:07 pm

    My best tip for road tripping with kids is to bring books, games, neck pillow, snacks and drinks (in a mini cooler). We also have a tradition to do arts and crafts after about the road trip and the cities and towns we pass and stop in, so it makes them also aware and learn about their surroundings. We do trivia about the towns and do stop to see interesting places en route – it might takes us longer to reach our destination but it also breaks up the road trip.

  38. Anne Derkat
    July 20, 2016 / 1:17 pm

    Lots of snacks and toys and games.

  39. Steph
    July 20, 2016 / 2:45 pm

    A road trip to Ottawa is nice, its enough time in the car but not too long for people to start getting grouchy! Pack a few snacks and some good music and you are on your way!

  40. Jenny
    July 20, 2016 / 2:51 pm

    bring a portable dvd player and snacks!

  41. July 20, 2016 / 3:14 pm

    Aside from making sure you bring sufficient amounts of beverages, snacks and games to pass the time. I would have to say the most important thing would be to plan and not rush. Make sure the vehicle is topped up with fluids, tire pressure checked and that you top up with gas. Also, it is always good to have a map, a couple of flashlights on hand, toilet paper, blankets and pillows. More importantly, have an emergency fund or a relative/friend that can help you out financially if something arises. Even the best and well planned trips can go awry leaving you with an expense that you had not planned on and cannot afford.

  42. Scott MacMillan
    July 20, 2016 / 3:15 pm

    My kids are grown now.The most memorable road road trip was after we had moved when I was a young child and it was our first trip back to visit the Grandparents.I can still remember vividly the sense of excitement and adventure travelling 100 miles,which to my five year old eyes was like crossing the world.

  43. MaryG
    July 20, 2016 / 3:29 pm

    My best tip for road trips is to pack plenty of kid friendly snacks…and have good music too 🙂

  44. July 20, 2016 / 6:14 pm

    Love the east coast, such a laid back fun family road trip with my teenage ( and older) daughter

  45. K Yee
    July 20, 2016 / 6:16 pm

    Kid free. My best/favourite road trip from our many enjoyable ones was to Jasper National Park. Loved the scenery, the wildlife and generally had a fabulous trip.

  46. Barbara Hall
    July 20, 2016 / 6:33 pm

    There are so many great places to go in Canada! Our latest find is Telkwa BC (near Smithers). there is a great museum, a self-guided walking tour, an abandoned town to explore. It’s by a river and near Tyee Lake Provincial Park. And that’s just within 5 kms, lots more further afield.

  47. 409cope
    July 20, 2016 / 7:18 pm

    We used to bring along plenty of travel games and snack for our boys when travelling.

  48. Karry Knisley
    July 20, 2016 / 7:33 pm

    Always pack a lot of snacks and bottled water. Have gravol for ones who may get motion sickness.

  49. Aarone Mawdsley
    July 20, 2016 / 7:46 pm

    have lots of music

  50. Heather Swanson
    July 20, 2016 / 8:15 pm

    Always take a cooler & cold packs

  51. Wendy hutton
    July 20, 2016 / 9:04 pm

    we aways made sure to take lots of snack, drinks and games or toys for the kids to they didn’t get bored

  52. Andrea Lee
    July 21, 2016 / 12:17 am

    My best road trip is from Banff to Jasper! So beautiful

  53. Robyn Bellefleur
    July 21, 2016 / 12:41 am

    I love to take my kids road tripping with me. But make sure you have lots of snacks on hand and are prepared to make lots of stops for the bathroom usage.

  54. Wayne Lecoy
    July 21, 2016 / 3:33 am

    It would be great to win a Church & Dwight Road Trip Essentials Prize Pack.
    In response to your question of
    What is your best trip for road tripping with kids or in general if you are kid-free.?
    I don’t have any children but my best road trip tip is
    make sure you have a map,don’t be afraid to ask for directions,
    bring along your favourite music and don’t drive if you feel tired.
    Thank you for having this giveaway.

  55. Victoria Ess
    July 21, 2016 / 11:14 am

    We’ve taken many road trips to the US, including to Chicago and New York, and will be going to various cities in Michigan this year.

  56. SweetPanda
    July 21, 2016 / 11:46 am

    I have a dual monitor DVD player in our car and before the trip, I will borrow some DVDs from the library to keep my kids entertain in the car. We also try to stop every 2 to 3 hours, so our kids won’t feel like they are in car forever

  57. Gillian Morgan
    July 21, 2016 / 5:16 pm

    Pack lots of snacks and drinks.

  58. Ian S
    July 22, 2016 / 12:37 pm

    DVD movies w/headphones and car chargers for their smart phones = peace and quiet

  59. nicolthepickle (Nicole Graham)
    July 22, 2016 / 1:40 pm

    Take it slow. IF they’re tired let them nap.

  60. Joni W
    July 22, 2016 / 5:33 pm

    I love going on a road trip. What a gorgeous country. I’ve been to the west coast and the American east. Now I want to see the Canadian east. It’s so pretty on pictures.

  61. Julie bolduc
    July 22, 2016 / 9:31 pm

    My tip is to pack alot of trivia or games to keep the kids busy

  62. Dave
    July 22, 2016 / 9:50 pm

    Music, must have music

  63. Belinda McNabb
    July 23, 2016 / 9:02 am

    for us it is going on a road trip to montreal. I always make sure to have plenty of comics, magazines and books on hand since my son loves to read

  64. Tabby72
    July 23, 2016 / 5:51 pm

    I love to go from Vancouver to Portland, Oregon for a great, short road trip!

  65. Karla Sceviour
    July 23, 2016 / 9:41 pm

    Make sure you pack plenty of snacks,and stop for breaks,get out and stretch,,take in all the scenery 🙂

  66. Brenda Witherspoon-Bedard
    July 23, 2016 / 11:21 pm

    pack lots of snacks and drinks

  67. Maritess
    July 24, 2016 / 3:10 am

    The best road trip we took with the kids was from Calgary to Vancouver through the Rockies.

  68. Wanda Bergman
    July 24, 2016 / 2:52 pm

    Have plenty of snacks along with you. They love that!

  69. janine a
    July 24, 2016 / 4:44 pm

    bring lots of snack and activities 🙂

  70. Josh S
    July 24, 2016 / 10:40 pm

    Always load up on snacks before a road trip.

  71. July 24, 2016 / 11:08 pm

    I want to go to the East Coast and drive the Cabot Trail
    with my little family!!I think it’s always great to have lots
    of snacks and cold drinks,baby wipes and some books and
    games to keep the kids entertained.

  72. Nicole B
    July 25, 2016 / 8:26 am

    We hit up the dollar store and I pull out new things every once in a while plus we make frequent stops for them to run around

  73. Sunshine G
    July 25, 2016 / 1:37 pm

    Pack snacks. Many, many snacks – and it helps if they dont’ usually get to eat in the car!

  74. Marlene Vazquez
    July 25, 2016 / 1:47 pm

    A new game, movie or books to take along always makes the drive shorter for parents and kids!

  75. Joanne Frank
    July 26, 2016 / 7:13 am

    so much fun roadtrippin with the kids .. Things to keep them busy are books, games, colouring, and music kids love music. pillow and blanket ..cheers !

  76. Karine
    July 27, 2016 / 10:27 am

    Making sure to have plenty of snacks and things to drink and to bring a variety of stuff

  77. Maria
    July 28, 2016 / 8:39 pm

    Snacks, colouring books, movies and small toys

  78. M
    July 28, 2016 / 10:58 pm

    Bring snacks

  79. Mel
    July 29, 2016 / 11:49 am

    My best road trips with kids is when we travelled to Saskatchewan to camp. They were excited to see their cousins and were happy most of the way to our destination!

  80. Monique L.S.
    July 29, 2016 / 10:17 pm

    Bring various activities for the kids to do throughout the trip. Stop and take little breaks – good to stretch the legs and get a change of scenery to help finish the trip.

  81. Elaine G
    July 30, 2016 / 6:17 pm

    My tip is to pack lots of snacks so you don’t have to stop that often. And lots of napkins 🙂

  82. KellyPC
    August 1, 2016 / 3:38 am

    I don’t travel without earplugs, a good book (or 3), my mp3 player, headphones, ipad & advil!

  83. August 1, 2016 / 10:07 am

    You need the kid treasure chests. A box with some treats, snacks, some dollar store toys and a portable dvd if you have one. Keeps them happy and entertained. Section of the treasure with times and stops for extra adventure on the road trip

  84. August 1, 2016 / 8:13 pm

    snacks and activities to keep them busy

  85. maria
    August 1, 2016 / 9:07 pm

    Best tip is to be organized and bring things to keep the kids occupied, books.

  86. Tina L.
    August 2, 2016 / 12:44 am

    Bring a lot of drinks and snacks

  87. Caryn Coates
    August 2, 2016 / 1:09 pm

    Lots of snacks, toys and activities to keep them busy.

  88. Cheryl
    August 2, 2016 / 3:10 pm

    We bring lots of distractions for the kids, DS, books, snacks, portable did

  89. Wendy Jensen
    August 3, 2016 / 12:31 pm

    My best road trip with the kids was to make sure we made lots of stops so they wouldn’t get bored or tired riding for long times in the vehicle.. It kept them in good humor.

  90. Tammy Dalley
    August 3, 2016 / 4:37 pm

    lots of snacks and games

  91. August 4, 2016 / 11:21 am

    We roadtrip to Niagara Falls and always pack goldfish crackers.

  92. Jody D
    August 4, 2016 / 12:29 pm

    Racing from Calgary to Vancouver overnight to catch a flight with my daughters and save the extra flight cost was quite the adventure!

  93. Stephanie
    August 4, 2016 / 7:42 pm

    Bring activities so the kids won’t be bored. Don’t forget the snacks & drinks too!

  94. Kelley Moore
    August 4, 2016 / 8:55 pm

    When we travel with the kids we pack lots of what they like so much cheaper than dropping into a store

  95. Kimberley Hamilton
    August 4, 2016 / 9:12 pm

    1. if you think you may need it, bring it! better to be safe than sorry
    2. bring entertainment (magazines, toys for the kids, etc.) just in case of a rainy day on your trip
    3. the more snacks, the happier all the little campers will be.

  96. Betty S
    August 6, 2016 / 9:29 am

    we had a great road trip Ontario to Nova Scotia, for a family reunion. took time to visit PEI and enjoyed the drive together

  97. August 7, 2016 / 12:46 am

    When moving to Vancouver from Halifax, we traveled by car. We had to pass almost every province from the East to the West. End of July is the amazing time for traveling, especially in Canada. That was the trip for life time !

  98. Sandra S
    August 7, 2016 / 10:39 pm

    Bring lots of snacks and beverages

  99. Kevin L
    August 7, 2016 / 11:48 pm

    Hmm, well, we had a recent road trip to Lake Louise in Alberta awhile back that was a lot of fun.

  100. Maureen Carroll
    August 7, 2016 / 11:59 pm

    Tip: Be flexible about when you want to arrive at your destination so you can enjoy the journey, stopping off to check out sites, and detours along the way.

  101. Elaine Laforge
    August 8, 2016 / 9:58 am

    Pack lots of snacks and fun activities to do along the way. Our last trip we cut up and an entire watermelon and had it in individual baggies. I was surprised and how well it worked, no messes and reduced the amount of bathroom stops since it quenched their thirst as well.

  102. Linda Svarovsky
    August 8, 2016 / 12:52 pm

    Kid free and niagara on the lake

  103. Ariel Chiu
    August 8, 2016 / 1:02 pm

    Pack snacks for them

  104. Laurie W.
    August 8, 2016 / 7:24 pm

    Pack lots of activities and snacks so they don’t get bored and hungry.

  105. DS
    June 11, 2017 / 5:29 am

    If I wasn’t handicapped I would love to drive all over Canada and explore every bit of this beautiful country

  106. Debbie White Beattie
    September 10, 2017 / 2:16 am

    I would love to travel here and all around the world but travel is really difficult for me because I’m handicapped, so finding accommodations, equipment and everything else is really hard, so I see the world through pictures and videos on TV and the internet.

  107. cathydryade
    January 11, 2019 / 8:28 pm

    To have the best roadtrip, always be prepare: maps, food, drinks, water, and awesome music!!

  108. Angela Duku
    October 23, 2019 / 11:42 am

    I love going on a road trip

  109. Heather Swanson
    November 26, 2021 / 6:19 am

    Great advice for everyone