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CanadaTravelGuide.info is a free resource for those looking to travel to any part of Canada.  Here, you will find useful information on the places you plan on visiting, including popular attractions, information on climate and geography, history, and even recommendations on accommodations/services at each location.  We welcome you here, hope that you will find this website useful for your planning, and wish you a fabulous time on your travels.  Use the menu above to navigate through the site.

Meet Canada

At over 7,000km wide from east to west and just under 10 million square kilometers in land area, Canada is the second largest country in the world.  Canada is slightly larger than the United States and second only to Russia.

Canada’s name comes from the Native word “Kanata” which means “village”.  When Jaques Cartier landed in North America and came in contact with the Natives in the area, the Natives invited him to their village and Jaques Cartier thought instead that the name of the country was “Kanata”.

Much of Canada’s population of 35 million people reside in the urban areas close to the southern border.  When comparing land mass to population, Canada is sparsely populated compared to the majority of other countries that are many times more densely populated.  As a result, Canada has vast expanses of nearly untouched, pristine, natural landscapes.  It is estimated that the number of lakes in Canada exceeds 31,000 lakes, which is more lakes than the rest of the world’s lakes combined.  Canada’s varied geography and natural beauty is a significant draw that attracts many tourists to Canada every year.  Each year, over 16 million tourists visit Canada, which is an incredible number, considering that the population is only 35 million.

Canada consists of ten provinces and three territories.  Canada’s ten provinces are: British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.  Canada’s three territories are: Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut.  What are the differences between the provinces and territories of Canada?  The main difference is in how they are governed.  Each province has a lieutenant governor that govern the provinces according to the Constitution Act of 1867.  On the other hand, territories are not sovereign, and are governed by commissioners on behalf of the federal government.

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History of Canada

It is believed that Canada was not inhabited by humans until up to 50,000 years ago when lower water levels exposed sections of land, forming the Bering land bridge connecting the northwestern point of Alaska to Siberia.  The land bridge allowed the passage of humans into Canada.  Much of Canada was not explored and inhabited due to the Laurentide ice sheet that covered the majority of Canada’s land.  It wasn’t until roughly 15,000 years ago that the ice sheet dissipated and opened up the rest of Canada to be explored and inhabited.  The many groups of people that inhabited Canada for thousands of years before European explorers arrived around 1500AD are referred to as Aboriginal peoples.

evolution-canadian-provinces-territoriesColonization of Canada by Europeans began around the year 1500.  Most of the settlers and colonizers came from France, Great Britain and Spain.  The next 350 years consisted of land claims and expansions of colonies.  It wasn’t until July 1 of 1867 that the Dominion of Canada officially took place.  On that day, Canada became a self-governing colony of Great Britain.  From then until present day, provinces and territories continued to be formed/adjusted, resulting in the distribution of land we have today.  See the animation to see how the borders and divisions of Canada have changed after Canada was formed.

Culture of Canada

Canada’s cultural roots during the early years of its formation was comprised of a mix of the indigenous peoples and European people groups who were the early settlers in Canada.  Over the past century, Canada’s welcoming immigration policies lead to a consistent flow of immigrants from all nations of the world.  Canada’s society, especially in the larger urban areas, has become very diverse and multicultural.  Canada’s multicultural society has been referred to as a cultural mosaic, with an ideology that believes in the benefits of welcoming all cultures, while still celebrating and preserving individual ethnic backgrounds.  The official national languages of Canada are English and French.  There are more French speakers in the province of Quebec.

Some of the national symbols of Canada include the maple leaf, which is featured on the Canadian flag, as well as the beaver, loon, totem poles and the Inukshuk.

With more lakes than the rest of the world and a weather climate conducive to winter sports, ice hockey is a sport with deep roots in Canada’s history.  Ice hockey is Canada’s official national winter sport and is a popular sport for many Canadians to both spectate and to participate in.  Canada’s official national sport of summer is Lacrosse which is not as popular as ice hockey, but is still watched and played by many Canadians.

To the rest of the word, Canada may be best known for its multiculturalism, strong health care system, pristine natural scenery, clean environment and hosting the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, among many other things.