Categories > Guides and Tips

The 10 Best Churches in Canada

The 10 Best Churches in Canada

If you’re a fan of towering spires, intricate stonework, and stories that have stood the test of time, then you’ve stumbled upon the perfect read. You see, Canada, with its rich tapestry of cultures and history, is brimming with awe-inspiring churches that are waiting to be explored.

And guess what? We’re not just talking Sunday grandeur here. These churches are architectural masterpieces, historical gems, and sometimes even the heart and soul of a community.

So buckle up and get ready to embark on an armchair pilgrimage through our leaf-swept lanes—we’re exploring the best churches in Canada. Read on!

Notre-Dame Basilica


Address: 110 Notre-Dame St W, Montreal, Quebec 

Contact details: +1 514-842-2925

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 9 AM to 4:30 PM
  • Saturday – 9 AM to 4 PM
  • Sunday – 12:30 PM to 4 PM

Notre-Dame Basilica comes with a standout azure ceiling that’ll make you feel like you’re under a star-filled sky. No joke, it’ll leave you stargazing in broad daylight!

The interior will have you oohing and aahing over its ornate wooden carvings, its awe-inspiring stained glass, and its massive, intricately designed organ. And oh, talking about masterpieces, did we mention it’s home to a sacred artwork too?

One that depicts the history and religious culture of Montreal. The basilica isn’t just an architectural gem—it’s a setting for stories. 

Go for a light show called “And Then There Was Light,” where the Basilica’s details spring into life, narrating an enchanting tale of how Montreal has grown over the years.

Between divine light and sound, you’ve got yourself the ultimate immersive experience!

Local Tip: Avoid the weekend rush hour and aim to visit during the weekday evenings. Fewer crowds and softly fading light add a whole new layer of magic to the place.

Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre


Address: 10018 Ave Royale, Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré, Québec

Contact details: +1 418-827-3781

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 8:30 AM to 7 PM
  • Sunday – 7:30 PM – 7 PM

Located along the St. Lawrence River and about 20 miles from Quebec City, the Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre enjoys a picturesque setting that’s perfect for those Instagram snaps. 

Look around, and you’ll see statues, mosaics, and stained glass windows showcasing an artistic feast. Oh, and while you’re there, note the walls lined with crutches and walking aids. 

It’s believed Sainte-Anne has bestowed healing miracles upon worshippers from all around the world. So, this isn’t just an architectural standout but also an emblem of hope for many. 

No matter what time of year you visit, there’s always a chance to join in—whether it’s the grand Feast of Saint Anne or one of the many heartfelt pilgrimages.

Local Tip: Stick around for Mass for some truly soulful choir performances—even if you don’t understand French, this is an experience that transcends language barriers!

Basilica of Notre Dame du Cap


Address: 626, rue Notre-Dame Est Trois-Rivières, Québec

Contact details: +1 819 374-2441

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Saturday – 9 AM to 8:30 PM
  • Sunday – 8 AM to 8:30 PM

Right from the gorgeous stone façade to the scenic landscapes that surround it, the Basilica of Notre-Dame du Cap is a dream come true for architecture buffs and nature lovers alike. 

As the second-largest Catholic church in Canada, it offers fun and intriguing tidbits for history enthusiasts—even as it humbles you with its aura of tranquillity. The highlight of this basilica is its scintillating glasswork, which is nothing short of a visual symphony.

More than just a sacred space, it’s a museum that offers artistic pleasures at every turn. The well-maintained grounds and Rosary Bridge are no exception, and I promise you’ll be mesmerised by the garden’s array of stunning sculptures dedicated to Maria.

Local Tip: Come during the summer to witness the highly anticipated Festival de l’Assomption, which includes religious processions and cultural activities.

St. Peter’s Cathedral Basilica


Address: 196 Dufferin Ave, London, ON

Contact details: +1 519-432-3475

Operating hours:

  • Tuesday to Friday – 11:30 AM to 1 PM
  • Saturday – 4:30 PM to 6:30 PM
  • Sunday – 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM

Now, St. Peter’s Cathedral Basilica stands tall (literally!) as one of Canada’s finest cathedrals, serving as the centre of the Roman Catholic Diocese of London. With its ornate Gothic Revival style, St. Peter’s is a visual feast from the get-go.

Seriously, the moment you see its striking red-brick exterior with those sun-kissed copper pinnacles, you’ll be itching to see what waits for you inside. The intricately adorned sanctuary, brilliantly illuminated by radiant stained glass windows, will spellbind you.

But the Basilica is so much more than just a haven for art and architecture lovers. The enriching walkthrough promises a story behind every corner, from the origins of St. Peter’s to the history of London’s Catholic community.

Local Tip: Don’t miss the chance to attend the enriching Sunday Mass, known for the parish’s dedicated and melodic choir.

St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica


Address: 65 Bond St, Toronto, ON

Contact details: +1 416-364-0234

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 7 AM to 6:30 PM
  • Saturday – 8 AM to 6:30 PM
  • Sunday – 7:30 AM to 10 PM

St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica stuns visitors with its stellar blend of neo-Gothic architecture and detailed artistry. As soon as you walk in, be prepared for your jaw to drop—because floor-to-ceiling beauty is the order of the day here.

Towering pillars, elaborate stained glass windows, intricate wood carvings, and a hefty dose of charm make this one of Canada’s brightest stars. And once you step foot inside, you’ll almost feel like you’ve left the bustling city and entered a different world altogether.

The journey of its construction is brimming with history—it’s a testament to the resilient spirit of the Irish immigrants who, back in 1848, laid the foundations of the church. 

As you explore this holy place, you’ll find yourself discovering stories in every nook and corner—from the sculpted Stations of the Cross to the magnificent Bishop’s Throne.

Local Tip: If you can, visit during a choir performance or on a weekday to avoid bigger crowds and immerse yourself in the serene ambience.

Basilica of Our Lady Immaculate


Address: 28 Norfolk St, Guelph, ON

Contact details: +1 519-824-3951

Operating hours:

  •  Monday to Sunday – 8 AM to 3 PM

Constructed in 1877, the Basilica of Our Lady Immaculate exudes a perfect mix of regal charm and subtle elegance. 

Inside, splashes of gem-hued light bathe the intricately carved pews and statues, giving the place an ethereal radiance—almost like stepping into a fairy tale.

And let’s not forget the iconic organ with its thundering sound that practically takes you to heaven’s doorstep. A go-to place for locals seeking solace, the Basilica hums with the energy of prayers and candlelight vigils.

No wonder thousands flock to the annual Christmas Eve Midnight Mass—a tradition that has stood the test of time.

Local Tip: After visiting the Basilica, head to the nearby Guelph Farmers’ Market for a delicious local lunch and some uber-fresh goodies.

St. Dunstan’s Basilica


Address: 45 Great George St, Charlottetown, PE

Contact details: +1 902-894-3486

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Sunday – 8 AM to 5 PM

Once you step inside St. Dunstan’s Basilica, you’ll immediately feel the weight of history bearing down upon you. 

Dedicated to the patron saint of learning, it’s no surprise that this architectural masterpiece is steeped in a rich educational legacy dating back to the 19th century.

But St. Dunstan’s is not just another pretty church. It’s a cultural cornerstone that has always been a haven for those in need.

At its core, the basilica is built on a foundation of community, welcoming people from all walks of life. And when you’re standing in its hallowed midst, surrounded by locals, you can truly feel that spirit.

Local Tip: Check out the concerts hosted throughout the summer—they’re a delightful dose of culture and music.

St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church


Address: 1022 Nelson St, Vancouver, BC

Contact details: +1 604-683-4574

Operating hours:

  • Sunday – 10 AM, 4 PM, and 7 PM

St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church’s breath-taking Neo-Gothic architecture speaks volumes and entices you to uncover the stories that lie beneath the carefully crafted masonry. The magnetism of this church, though, isn’t just felt through its design.

If you want to feel the true spirit of St. Andrew’s-Wesley, join its vibrant congregation to experience the many community-linked activities and events, including musical performances, workshops, and more.

It’s no surprise that this church is a cultural melting pot, nurturing a wide array of creative talents—both young and old. And boy, do they know how to make beautiful music!

Just wait until you hear the jaw-dropping sounds of their Aeolian-Skinner organ.

Local Tip: Plan a visit during their Jazz Vespers on Sunday evenings, where you can unwind to the tune of some soulful jazz.

Saint Patrick’s Basilica


Address: 220 Kent St, Ottawa, ON

Contact details:  +1 613-233-1125

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Friday – 6:30 AM to 5:30 PM
  • Saturday – 6:30 AM to 5:45 PM
  • Sunday – 7 AM to 3 PM, 6 PM to 8 PM

Established in 1847, Saint Patrick’s Basilica is chock full of sophisticated elegance without being pretentious. Quite a tall order, if you ask me.

Don’t be fooled by its humble exterior—you’re going to soak in the mesmerising cloak of history, culture, and spiritual devotion. It’s a journey you simply can’t miss. One word of advice for aspiring photographers: keep your camera handy.

Every intricate detail of this basilica screams art, even managing to impress art critics. Be it its barrel-vaulted ceiling or delicately carved wooden pulpit, this treasure trove is bursting with enchanting beauty that’ll leave your mind racing to keep up.

Don’t miss out on the grand Casavant organ, either—I’m telling you, this beauty brings music to life.

Local Tip: Hop in an hour before the evening mass on Sundays, when the soothing melodies from the choir will have your heartstrings playing their own little harmony.

Saint Joseph’s Oratory of Mount Royal


Address: 3800 Queen Mary Rd, Montreal, Quebec 

Contact details: +1 514-733-8211

Operating hours:

  • Monday to Sunday – 6:30 AM to 9 PM

Last but not least, hear me out as we pay a visit to the awe-inspiring Saint Joseph’s Oratory. Perched on Montreal’s Mount Royal, this colossal basilica boasts the highest vantage point in the city.

When you enter, you’ll see how its modern, unique design and simplistic decorations speak volumes about faith.  

This place is a powerful reminder of Brother André Bessette’s humble, unyielding dedication to Saint Joseph and how that legacy has resonated through time.

While the oratory’s beauty is impressive, it’s the underlying history that serves as a reminder of the powers of love, prayer, and devotion. 

Taking a step back from your busy life to revel in the artistry and calming spirit of the oratory is nothing short of enriching for the soul.

Local Tip: Venture to the Mount Royal lookout nearby for a sweeping panoramic view of the beautiful city laid out before you. It’s truly magical at sunset.
Related topics