Moving to Canada – About the country
Canada is the second-largest country in the world and is packed with so much natural and cultural diversity you’d need a lifetime – and then some – to see and do everything it has to offer. Canada is one of the crown jewels of the Americas.
The Canadian Rockies provide the backdrop for world-class skiing and hiking, while the vast prairies of Alberta and Saskatchewan make for unforgettable road trips. Head to Niagara Falls in Ontario to see the brute force of nature and visit Pacific Rim National Park to experience the rugged beauty of British Columbia’s coastline. The Bay of Fundy, on the Atlantic side, is great for whale-watching, while on Vancouver Island you can spot wild bears.
Among the vast wilderness are the many vibrant cities which are beacons for a completely different experience. Toronto is one of the festival capitals of the world, Vancouver is a mecca for art buffs and the parks of Montreal make the city worth visiting in their own right. From Banff to Baffin Island, from Tofino to Toronto, Canada is a remarkable country. Whether you’re a hard-core adrenaline junkie looking for a backcountry adventure, an explorer heading out on a big road trip, a city-lover hunting for cutting-edge culture and fine cuisine or a combination of all the above, Canada ticks all the boxes.
Stretching 5,500km (3,400 miles) from the Atlantic to the Yukon-Alaska border, the world’s second largest country boasts an astonishing diversity of landscapes: rugged, unspoilt coastline abuts immense forests and emerald lakes containing a startling array of wildlife; vast, seemingly endless prairies become jaw-droppingly beautiful mountain ranges; laid-back, cosmopolitan cities are complemented by remote, quirky outposts.
Canada’s people too are enormously varied, from the indigenous Inuit in the Arctic to First Nations communities, 1960s and 70s British expats, fiercely proud Francophone peoples and a burgeoning Asian population. Their genuine friendliness and warmth is immediately apparent to visitors.
Canadian cities are progressive, vibrant and regularly feature on ‘best places to live’ lists – Vancouver, Ottawa and Montreal have all at some point featured on Mercer’s Quality of Life Survey, usually scoring in the top 30. Toronto, a veritable patchwork of diverse neighbourhoods, sits in an enviable location on the shore of Lake Ontario whilst Canada’s capital city, Ottawa, contains a clutch of great museums and the pretty Rideau Canal for ice skating in winter.
Montreal’s skyscrapers belie its French heritage, but look closer and you’ll stumble upon historic, cobbled streets and centuries-old customs. A stone’s throw from the Canadian Rockies, booming Calgary oozes oil wealth and flaunts its cowboy traditions; chilled-out Vancouver, meanwhile, seems to have it all: mountains, beaches, an incredible downtown park and terrific food.