Canada Travel Info
There’s more to Canada than mounties, marshmallows and maple syrup. Epic and expansive, it’s as diverse as it is vast. With skiing, surfing, sailing, hiking and fishing in abundance it’s a Mecca for outdoor enthusiasts. And with its fascinating museums, mammoth mountains, wildlife and sprawling cities there’s lots to occupy the more laid back traveller too. Canada is a country that’s full of contrast.
Star Trek’s Captain Kirk (William Shatner) and Scotty (James Doohan) are both Canadian.
Manitoulin Island in northern Ontario is the largest freshwater island on the planet.
Every year most Canadians eat an average 190 eggs.
At 5,959m, Mount Logan is Canada’s highest mountain – and it’s still growing.
What to see
Ontario’s capital city is a bustling metropolis flanked by soaring skyscrapers including the CN Tower, one of the world’s tallest buildings.
Prince Edward Island
Experience the laid-back attitude of Canada’s smallest province at Prince Edward Island. Located between the Northumberland Strait and the Gulf of St Lawrence, its sandy beaches, rugged cliff faces, glistening waters and vivid red soil make for unforgettable viewing.
This French-speaking city combines European charm with bags urban appeal. Visit the district of Old Montréal in a horse drawn carriage, stroll down the hip streets of The Plateau or enjoy an upmarket dinner at one of the city’s many cool downtown bistros.
With its pristine slopes and traditional Canadian charm, Fernie Alpine Resort boasts an international reputation for world-class skiing.
Top experiences / sites of particular interest
Unleash your inner cowboy with a horseback ride deep into the ranges and valleys of Cypress Hill. You’ll find plenty of organised trips to choose from, with overnight campfire stays available for true pioneers.
Head to the northern capital of Yellowknife for an unforgettable dogsled ride across the glistening snow, perhaps even catching a glimpse of the magical Northern Lights during your trip.
There are over 180 salt and freshwater fish native to Canada, plus some of the planet’s most breathtaking settings to indulge your passion in; fish for halibut in the icy Arctic Ocean, search turquoise lakes for sea bass or catch whitefish beside your very own prairie log cabin.
Captain your canoe or Inuit kayak past icebergs, beneath waterfalls or alongside dolphins and seals with an invigorating waterborne adventure in true Canadian style.
Dawson City in Yukon offers a unique step back in time into Klondike Gold Rush history. Follow the Bonanza trail along the Yukon River and learn to pan for riches, try your hand at the cancan and dine on traditional stampeder’s fare along the way.
When to go
Weather: You can visit Canada at any time of the year and the weather varies vastly depending on which region you choose. Most people plan their trip to coincide with summer, when temperatures are warm enough for outdoor activities without reaching sweltering. Late May to September is the best time to stay in the south. While in the northern territories, summer starts as late as mid June and comes to an abrupt halt with the first snowfalls of September.
Important dates and festivals: Canada stages a huge array of festivals and events throughout the year. Key highlights include the Québec Winter Carnival during January and February, The Calgary Stampede, a ten day outdoor rodeo show held every July, and the Toronto International Film Festival, a glittering star-studded event held each September.
Getting there / around
Flights: There are 500 airports in Canada, including the most popular international gateways of Toronto, Vancouver, Ottowa, Calgary and Winnipeg. Flight times clock in at around eight to ten hours, depending on which region you choose to visit. Smaller domestic airports also offer a wide network of internal flights.
Boat: Thanks to its plethora of lakes and end-to-end oceans, hopping on a boat is an excellent way to navigate Canada. There’s an extensive ferry service operating between the islands and the mainland.
Car: Canada is vast, and one of the best ways to tour this colossus is to hire your own car. Rates will vary depending on the model and pick-up location you choose, with prices ranging from $35 to $70 per day.
Bus: Keep your costs down by taking advantage of Canada’s excellent Greyhound bus service. A single ticket will usually let you transfer between regional operators, and the network stretches across central, western and eastern territories.
Short Trips: A seven-night stay is ample time to embark on a triple-destination tour of the neighbouring regions of Québec, Ontario and Nova Scotia. Explore Québec City, Toronto and Montréal - a boat trip on the Maid of the Mist at Niagara Falls is an absolute must.
City Breaks: Canada boasts a portfolio of cosmopolitan and dynamic destinations for city-breaks. However it’s a long way to travel for just a weekend; it makes sense to extend your visit to at least five days.
Longer Trips: You could hire a car and take four to six weeks to thoroughly explore this epic country. Get closer to nature in the northern Rockies region, stopping off at Alberta, British Columbia, the Canadian Badlands and Kootenay National Park along the way, before heading east to Niagara Falls, Ontario and the raw beauty of the coastal park of Le Bic.
Local DishesCanada benefits from an eclectic range of international influences and this is reflected in its national cuisine. Expect French inspired flavours in Québec, German influences in Ontario, Asian fusion in Vancouver and Eastern European undertones on the Prairies. Carnivores will enjoy the range of lesser-known meats including elk and bison, while fish fans will adore the rich, varied and zingy-fresh choice of seafood.
NightlifeHip nightclubs can be found in all major cities and towns, with most of the action centred around Montréal and Vancouver. If you’re heading off the beaten track nightlife can be a little in short supply, with more rugged bars and cafes offering the opportunity to socialise in authentic Canadian style. Culturally, the cities of Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver and Calgary are hotspots for ballet and classical music, most notably the Sony Centre for Performing Arts and Massey Hall in Toronto.
English and French
Canadian Dollar made up of 100 cent
180-day visa-free stays are available to citizens of most Western European and Commonwealth countries.
No particular vaccinations recommended
Safety, FO travel advice
Useful Telephone Numbers
Canadian country representatives can be found
in the UK atMacdonald House, 1 Grosvenor Square, London, W1K 4AB Tel:- 020 7258 6600
and in the US at501 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW Washington, D.C. 20001. Tel:- 202 682 1740.
For more information visit: http://www.canadainternational.gc.ca or uk.canada.travel .