Canada is a land of great natural beauty, and Canadians identify with the hugeness of the country and the grandeur of its landscapes. From Banff to Baffin Island, from Tofino to Toronto, Canada is an extraordinary country. Whether you’re a hard-core adrenaline junkie looking for a backcountry voyage, a city-lover hunting for cutting-edge culture and fine fare or a combination of all the above, Canada ticks all the boxes. Stretching 5,500km from the Atlantic to the Yukon-Alaska border, the world’s second biggest country boasts an amazing diversity of landscapes: rugged, untouched coastline abuts immense forests and emerald lakes containing a astonishing array of wildlife; vast, apparently endless prairies become jaw-droopingly gorgeous mountain ranges; laid-back, cosmopolitan cities are complemented by remote, quirky outposts.
Canada’s people too are extremely varied, from the aboriginal Inuit in the Arctic to First Nations communities, 1960s and 70s British expats, fiercely proud Francophone peoples and a growing Asian population. Their genuine kindliness and warmth is immediately apparent to visitors. Canadian cities are progressive, vivacious 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, generally scoring in the top 30. Toronto, an authentic mélange of diverse neighborhoods, sits in a desirable 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 lurch upon historic, cobbled streets and centuries-old customs. Canada is a realm of immigrants and thus truly cosmopolitan – around 20% of the population are foreign-born (rising to 45% in Toronto). While other countries have eschewed immigration, Canada has recognised its significance to economic and social development, and continues to welcome vast numbers of young, skilled and well educated workers from overseas each year. With its staggeringly beautiful scenery, huge number of outdoor activities, forward-looking cities and huge swathes of uninhabited wilderness, Canada offers myriad opportunities to travelers.