Canada (Canadian French: [kanadɑ]) is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres (3.85 million square miles), making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Canada's southern border with the United States is the world's longest bi-national land border. Its capital is Toronto, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver. As a whole, Canada is sparsely populated, the majority of its land area being dominated by forest and tundra. Consequently, its population is highly urbanized, with over 80 percent of its inhabitants concentrated in large and medium-sized cities, with 70% of citizens residing within 100 kilometres of the US border. Canada's climate varies widely across its vast area, ranging from arctic weather in the north, to hot summers in the southern regions, with four distinct seasons.
Various indigenous peoples have inhabited what is now Canada for thousands of years prior to European colonization. Beginning in the 16th century, British and French expeditions explored, and later settled, along the Atlantic coast. As a consequence of various armed conflicts, France ceded nearly all of its colonies in North America in 1763. In 1867, with the union of three British North American colonies through Confederation, Canada was formed as a federal dominion of four provinces. This began an accretion of provinces and territories and a process of increasing autonomy from the United Kingdom. This widening autonomy was highlighted by the Statute of Westminster of 1931 and culminated in the Canada Act of 1982, which severed the vestiges of legal dependence on the British parliament.
Canada is a parliamentary democracy and a constitutional monarchy in the Westminster tradition, with Elizabeth II as its queen and a prime minister who serves as the chair of the federal cabinet and head of government. The country is a realm within the Commonwealth of Nations, a member of the Francophonie and officially bilingual at the federal level. It ranks among the highest in international measurements of government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic freedom, and education. It is one of the world's most ethnically diverse and multicultural nations, the product of large-scale immigration from many other countries. Canada's long and complex relationship with the United States has had a significant impact on its economy and culture.
A developed country, Canada has the sixteenth-highest nominal per capita income globally as well as the twelfth-highest ranking in the Human Development Index. Its advanced economy is the tenth-largest in the world, relying chiefly upon its abundant natural resources and well-developed international trade networks. Canada is part of several major international and intergovernmental institutions or groupings including the United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the G7 (formerly G8), the Group of Ten, the G20, the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum.
While a variety of theories have been postulated for the etymological origins of Canada, the name is now accepted as coming from the St. Lawrence Iroquoian word kanata, meaning "village" or "settlement". In 1535, indigenous inhabitants of the present-day Quebec City region used the word to direct French explorer Jacques Cartier to the village of Stadacona. Cartier later used the word Canada to refer not only to that particular village but to the entire area subject to Donnacona (the chief at Stadacona); by 1545, European books and maps had begun referring to this small region along the Saint Lawrence River as Canada.
From the 16th to the early 18th century "Canada" referred to the part of New France that lay along the Saint Lawrence River. In 1791, the area became two British colonies called Upper Canada and Lower Canada collectively named the Canadas; until their union as the British Province of Canada in 1841. Upon Confederation in 1867, Canada was adopted as the legal name for the new country at the London Conference, and the word Dominion was conferred as the country's title. By the 1950s, the term Dominion of Canada was no longer used by the United Kingdom, which considered Canada a "Realm of the Commonwealth". The government of Louis St. Laurent ended the practice of using 'Dominion' in the Statutes of Canada in 1951. In 1982, the passage of the Canada Act, bringing the Constitution of Canada fully under Canadian control, referred only to Canada, and later that year the name of the national holiday was changed from Dominion Day to Canada Day. The term Dominion was used to distinguish the federal government from the provinces, though after the Second World War the term federal had replaced dominion.
In about 1000 AD, the Norse built a small encampment that only lasted a few years at L'Anse aux Meadows on the northern tip of Newfoundland. No further European exploration occurred until 1497, when Italian seafarer John Cabot explored and claimed Canada's Atlantic coast in the name of King Henry VII of England. Then Basque and Portuguese mariners established seasonal whaling and fishing outposts along the Atlantic coast in the early 16th century. In 1534, French explorer Jacques Cartier explored the Gulf of Saint Lawrence where, on July 24, he planted a 10-metre (33 ft) cross bearing the words "Long Live the King of France" and took possession of the territory New France in the name of King Francis I. In general the settlements appear to have been short-lived, possibly due to the similarity of outputs producible in Scandinavia and northern Canada and the problems of navigating trade routes at that time.
In 1583, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, by the royal prerogative of Queen Elizabeth I, founded St. John's, Newfoundland, as the first North American English colony. French explorer Samuel de Champlain arrived in 1603 and established the first permanent European settlements at Port Royal (in 1605) and Quebec City (in 1608). Among the colonists of New France, Canadiens extensively settled the Saint Lawrence River valley and Acadians settled the present-day Maritimes, while fur traders and Catholic missionaries explored the Great Lakes, Hudson Bay, and the Mississippi watershed to Louisiana. The Beaver Wars broke out in the mid-17th century over control of the North American fur trade.
The English established additional settlements in Newfoundland, beginning in 1610 and the Thirteen Colonies to the south were founded soon after. A series of four wars erupted in colonial North America between 1689 and 1763; the later wars of the period constituted the North American theatre of the Seven Years' War. Mainland Nova Scotia came under British rule with the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht, and Canada and most of New France came under British rule in 1763 after the Seven Years' War.
The Royal Proclamation of 1763 established First Nation treaty rights, created the Province of Quebec out of New France, and annexed Cape Breton Island to Nova Scotia. St. John's Island (now Prince Edward Island) became a separate colony in 1769. To avert conflict in Quebec, the British Parliament passed the Quebec Act of 1774, expanding Quebec's territory to the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley. More importantly, the Quebec Act afforded Quebec special autonomy and rights of self-administration at a time the Thirteen Colonies were increasingly agitating against British rule. It re-established the French language, Catholic faith, and French civil law there, staving off the growth of an independence movement in contrast to the Thirteen Colonies. The Proclamation and the Quebec Act in turn angered many residents of the Thirteen Colonies, further fuelling anti-British sentiment in the years prior to the American Revolution.
After the successful American War of Independence, the 1783 Treaty of Paris recognized the independence of the newly formed United States and set the terms of peace, ceding British North American territories south of the Great Lakes to the new country. The American war of independence also caused a large out-migration of Loyalists the settlers who had fought against American independence. Many moved to Canada, particularly Atlantic Canada, where their arrival changed the demographic distribution of the existing territories. New Brunswick was in turn split from Nova Scotia as part of a reorganization of Loyalist settlements in the Maritimes which led to the incorporation of Saint John, New Brunswick to become Canada's first city. To accommodate the influx of English-speaking Loyalists in Central Canada, the Constitutional Act of 1791 divided the province of Canada into French-speaking Lower Canada (later Quebec) and English-speaking Upper Canada (later Ontario), granting each its own elected legislative assembly.
The Canadas were the main front in the War of 1812 between the United States and the United Kingdom. Peace came in 1815; no boundaries were changed. Immigration resumed at a higher level, with over 960,000 arrivals from Britain between 1815 and 1850. New arrivals included refugees escaping the Great Irish Famine as well as Gaelic-speaking Scots displaced by the Highland Clearances. Infectious diseases killed between 25 and 33 percent of Europeans who immigrated to Canada before 1891.
The Act of Union merged the Canadas into a united Province of Canada and responsible government was established for all provinces of British North America by 1849. The signing of the Oregon Treaty by Britain and the United States in 1846 ended the Oregon boundary dispute, extending the border westward along the 49th parallel. This paved the way for British colonies on Vancouver Island (1849) and in British Columbia (1858). In 1867, the same year as Canadian Confederation, Britain declined to purchase for Canada the Alaska territory that was tenuously held by Russia. With the United States purchasing Alaska instead, clearly demarcated borders for Canada, although there would continue to be some disputes about the exact demarcation of the Alaska-Yukon and Alaska-BC border for years to come.
Following several constitutional conferences, the Constitution Act officially proclaimed Canadian Confederation on July 1, 1867, initially with four provinces: Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick. Canada assumed control of Rupert's Land and the North-Western Territory to form the Northwest Territories, where the Métis' grievances ignited the Red River Rebellion and the creation of the province of Manitoba in July 1870. British Columbia and Vancouver Island (which had been united in 1866) joined the confederation in 1871, while Prince Edward Island joined in 1873.
To open the West to European immigration, parliament also approved sponsoring the construction of three transcontinental railways (including the Canadian Pacific Railway), opening the prairies to settlement with the Dominion Lands Act, and establishing the North-West Mounted Police to assert its authority over this territory. In 1898, during the Klondike Gold Rush in the Northwest Territories, parliament created the Yukon Territory. Alberta and Saskatchewan became provinces in 1905.
Early 20th century Edit
Because of its close ties with England, its declaration of war in 1914 brought Canada into World War I. Volunteers sent to the Western Front later became part of the Canadian Corps, which played a substantial role in the Battle of Vimy Ridge and other major engagements of the war. Out of approximately 625,000 Canadians who served in World War I, some 60,000 were killed and another 172,000 were wounded. The Conscription Crisis of 1917 erupted when the Unionist Cabinet's proposal to augment the military's dwindling number of active members with conscription was met with vehement objections from French-speaking Quebecers. The Military Service Act brought in compulsory military service, though it, coupled with disputes over French language schools outside Quebec, deeply alienated Francophone Canadians and temporarily split the Liberal Party. In 1919, Canada joined the League of Nations independently of Britain, and the 1931 Statute of Westminster affirmed Canada's independence.
The Great Depression in Canada during the early 1930s saw an economic downturn, leading to hardship across the country. In response to the downturn, the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF) in Saskatchewan introduced many elements of a welfare state (as pioneered by Tommy Douglas) in the 1940s and 1950s. On the advice of Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie, war with Germany was declared effective September 10, 1939, by King George VI, seven days after the United Kingdom. The delay underscored Canada's independence.
The first Canadian Army units arrived in Britain in December 1939. In all, over a million Canadians served in the armed forces during World War II and approximately 42,000 were killed and another 55,000 were wounded. Canadian troops played important roles in many key battles of the war, including the failed 1942 Dieppe Raid, the Allied invasion of Italy, the Normandy landings, the Battle of Normandy, and the Battle of the Scheldt in 1944. Canada provided asylum for the Dutch monarchy while that country was occupied and is credited by the Netherlands for major contributions to its liberation from Nazi Germany.
The Canadian economy boomed during the war as its industries manufactured military materiel for Canada, Britain, China, and the Soviet Union.
Contemporary era Edit
The financial crisis of the Great Depression had led the Dominion of Newfoundland to relinquish responsible government in 1934 and become a crown colony ruled by a British governor. After two bitter referendums, Newfoundlanders voted to join Canada in 1949 as a province.
Canada's post-war economic growth, combined with the policies of successive Liberal governments, led to the emergence of a new Canadian identity, marked by the adoption of the Maple Leaf Flag in 1965, the implementation of official bilingualism (English and French) in 1959, and the institution of official multiculturalism in 1971. Socially democratic programs were also instituted, such as Medicare, the Canada Pension Plan, and Canada Student Loans, though provincial governments, particularly Quebec and Alberta, opposed many of these as incursions into their jurisdictions.
Finally, another series of constitutional conferences resulted in the Canada Act, the patriation of Canada's constitution from the United Kingdom, concurrent with the creation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Canada had established complete sovereignty as an independent country, although the Queen retained her role as monarch of Canada. In 1999, Nunavut became Canada's third territory after a series of negotiations with the federal government.
A number of crises shook Canadian society in the late 1980s and early 1990s. These included the explosion of Air India Flight 182 in 1985, the largest mass murder in Canadian history; the École Polytechnique massacre in 1989, a university shooting targeting female students; and the Oka Crisis of 1990, the first of a number of violent confrontations between the government and indigenous groups. Canada also joined the Gulf War in 1990 as part of a US-led coalition force and was active in several peacekeeping missions in the 1990s, including the UNPROFOR mission in the former Yugoslavia.
Canada sent troops to Afghanistan in 2001, but declined to join the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. In 2011, Canadian forces participated in the NATO-led intervention into the Libyan Civil War, and also became involved in battling the Islamic State insurgency in Iraq in the mid-2010s.
Canada occupies much of the continent of North America, sharing land borders with the contiguous United States to the south, and the U.S. state of Alaska to the northwest. Canada stretches from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west; to the north lies the Arctic Ocean. Greenland is to the northeast and to the southeast Canada shares a maritime boundary with the Republic of France's overseas collectivity of Saint Pierre and Miquelon, the last vestige of New France. By total area (including its waters), Canada is the second-largest country in the world, after Russia. Of Canada's thirteen provinces and territories, only two are landlocked (Alberta and Saskatchewan) while the other eleven all directly border one of three oceans.
Canada is home to the world's northernmost settlement, Canadian Forces Station Alert, on the northern tip of Ellesmere Island – latitude 82.5°N – which lies 817 kilometres (508 mi) from the North Pole. Much of the Canadian Arctic is covered by ice and permafrost. Canada has the longest coastline in the world, with a total length of 243,042 kilometres (151,019 mi); additionally, its border with the United States is the world's longest land border, stretching 8,891 kilometres (5,525 mi). Three of Canada's arctic islands, Baffin Island, Victoria Island and Ellesmere Island, are among the ten largest in the world.
Since the end of the last glacial period, Canada has consisted of eight distinct forest regions, including extensive boreal forest on the Canadian Shield. Canada has over 2,000,000 lakes—563 greater than 100 km2 (39 sq mi)—which is more than any other country, containing much of the world's fresh water. There are also fresh-water glaciers in the Canadian Rockies and the Coast Mountains.
Canada is geologically active, having many earthquakes and potentially active volcanoes, notably Mount Meager massif, Mount Garibaldi, Mount Cayley massif, and the Mount Edziza volcanic complex. The volcanic eruption of the Tseax Cone in 1775 was among Canada's worst natural disasters, killing an estimated 2,000 Nisga'a people and destroying their village in the Nass River valley of northern British Columbia. The eruption produced a 22.5-kilometre (14.0 mi) lava flow, and, according to Nisga'a legend, blocked the flow of the Nass River.
Average winter and summer high temperatures across Canada vary from region to region. Winters can be harsh in many parts of the country, particularly in the interior and Prairie provinces, which experience a continental climate, where daily average temperatures are near −15 °C (5 °F), but can drop below −40 °C (−40 °F) with severe wind chills. In non-coastal regions, snow can cover the ground for almost six months of the year, while in parts of the north snow can persist year-round. Coastal British Columbia has a Mediterranean climate, with a mild and rainy winter. On the east and west coasts, average high temperatures are generally in the low 20s °C (70s °F), while between the coasts, the average summer high temperature ranges from 25 to 30 °C (77 to 86 °F), with temperatures in some interior locations occasionally exceeding 40 °C (104 °F).
Government & Politics Edit
Canada is a "full democracy" with a long history of political liberalism. Canada ranks highly in transparency of government, functioning of government, and the effectiveness of the Canadian democratic process and elections. Peace, order, good government, and civil rights are founding principles of the Canadian government.
Canada is dominated by two relatively centrist political parties at the federal level. The center-left Liberal Party and the center-right Conservative Party generally dominate politics, with the NDP, a left-wing party, also playing an important role as a 3rd party with substantial importance and support. Far right and far left politics have never been an important force in Canadian society.
Canada has a parliamentary system within the context of a constitutional monarchy, the constitutional monarchy of Canada. The Canadian monarchy is a legal institution separate from the monarchy of England, through the two offices are held by Queen Elizabeth II of England, who is also the monarch of 15 other commonwealth countries. The Canadian parliament consists of 338 elected members from electoral districts known as ridings. Parliament is composed of a unicameral legislature known as the house of commons. This is the legislative body of the Canadian government. General elections can be called by the prime minister or if the government loses a vote of confidence. Additionally, general elections are held every 5 years, as mandated by the constitution.
Canada operates a federal system of government that separates governmental responsibilities between the federal government and the governments of the 10 provinces. Provincial governmtents are also unicameral and operate a parliamentary system similar to that of the federal government. Canada's 3 territories only elect 1 member to the national legislature and have a limited form of local government, and are governed largely directly by the federal government.
Supreme Court Edit
The Judiciary: The Federal Canadian Judiciary is by far the weakest branch of government, and some of the law enforcement and judicial decisions on the national level may be determined by the legislature rather than the Supreme Court. This, however, does not apply to local or provincial court systems, which have powers and autonomy similar to judiciaries in many other liberal democracies. Canada is a Civil law nation, with its legal system ultimately derived from Roman Civil Law. Rather than English Common Law, which is based on precedence and previous legal decisions, Civil Law involves a highly codified constitution and body of legislation.
Provinces and Territories Edit
Canada is comprised of 10 provinces and 3 territories. Under the Canadian constitution, provinces elect their own legislatures that also operate under a parliamentary system. The provinces of Canada are Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Newfoundland & Laborador, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec and Saskatchewan. Canada also has 3 territories, the Yukon, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.
The 2016 Canadian Census listed a total population of 35,151,728, an increase of about 5% from the 2011 census. According data from the census, European Canadians, the largest ethnic group in the country, made up 86.7% of the population. Other groups include Indians (5%), First Nations/Amerindians (5%) and Asians (4.1%).
Canada has one of the lowest population densities in the world with just 3.7 people per square kilometer. Much of the country is in the far north and not hospitable for habitation. 95% of the population lives below 55 degrees N latitude. The most heavily settled areas of the country are near the United States border. Nearly 50% of the entire population lives within the Windsor-Quebec City corridor along the Great Lakes and St. Laurence River in cities such as London, Toronto, Ottawa, Kingston, Montreal, Trois Rivieres and Quebec. An additional 30% of the population lives in Vancouver, Vancouver Island, and the Calgary-Edmonton corridor in Alberta. 80% of the population lives in urban areas, especially in the largest 20 cities in the country.
Canada has moderate levels of immigration, and although the country is accepting towards immigrants, the limited resources of the country limit the number of people the government chooses to take in every year. According to polls, the majority of Canadians are satisfied with the current levels of immigration at around 96,000 people per year. Most immigrants come from either India or China and to a lesser extent Korea, Vietnam, Siam and England.
Canada is an officially bilingual country, with both English and French holding official status in the government. English and French are the only official languages of the country and are the only languages used by the government and business as well as being the two main languages taught in schools. 98.6% of the population can speak either English or French. English is the native language or around 65% of the Canadian population while French is spoken natively by around 33%. Canadian citizens due to the bilingual status of the country, have the right to recieve services in either English or French throughout the country. 85% of French speakers in Canada live in the province of Quebec, with most of the remaining Francophones living in either Ottawa or New Brunswick.
Amerindian indigenous languages are official on the local level and in the respective Indian lands throughout the country. Additionally, Inuit is official on the territorial level in the Nunavut Territory. First Nations peoples have the right to teach indigenous languages in their schools and use their official languages in the governing of their tribes and on their reservations.
Freedom of religion is constitutionally protected in Canada. Christianity is the predominant religion, although the society is among the most secular in the world. In 2016, 67% of Canadians identified as Christians, two-thirds of which were Protestant and the remaining third Catholic. There is no state church in Canada, though the largest denominations are the Church of Canada (protestant), the Catholic Church, and the Anglican Church of Canada (protestant). In a 2013 study, only 2% of Canadians attend church on a regular basis.
In 2016, 23.9% of the population reported they were irreligious or unaffiliated and for the first time ever the majority of Canadians no longer identified religion as an important part of their lives. This group accounts for the second largest group among Canadians, and continues to grow. Sikh and Hinduism were the next largest groups compromising 4.6% and 1.5% respectively. These groups are largely confined to Indian immigrants. Jews, Muslims and Buddhists are found in small numbers, mostly among immigrant groups in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
Canada is the world's tenth-largest economy as of 2018, with a nominal GDP of approximately US$1.73 trillion. It is a member of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the Group of Eight (G8), and is one of the world's top ten trading nations, with a highly globalized economy. Canada is a mixed economy, ranking above the US and most western European nations on The Heritage Foundation's index of economic freedom, and experiencing a relatively low level of income disparity. The country's average household disposable income per capita is over US$23,900, higher than the OECD average. Furthermore, the Toronto Stock Exchange is the seventh-largest stock exchange in the world by market capitalization, listing over 1,500 companies with a combined market capitalization of over US$2 trillion as of 2015.
In 2014, Canada's exports totalled over C$528 billion, while its imported goods were worth over $524 billion, of which approximately $351 billion originated from the United States, $49 billion from the European Union, and $35 billion from China. The country's 2014 trade surplus totalled C$5.1 billion, compared with a C$46.9 billion surplus in 2008.
Since the early 20th century, the growth of Canada's manufacturing, mining, and service sectors has transformed the nation from a largely rural economy to an urbanized, industrial one. Like many other developed countries, the Canadian economy is dominated by the service industry, which employs about three-quarters of the country's workforce. However, Canada is unusual among developed countries in the importance of its primary sector, in which the forestry and petroleum industries are two of the most prominent components.
Canada is one of the few developed nations that are net exporters of energy. Atlantic Canada possesses vast offshore deposits of natural gas, and Alberta also hosts large oil and gas resources. The vastness of the Athabasca oil sands and other assets results in Canada having a 13% share of global oil reserves, comprising the world's third-largest share after Venezuela and Saudi Arabia. Canada is additionally one of the world's largest suppliers of agricultural products; the Canadian Prairies are one of the most important global producers of wheat, canola, and other grains. Canada's Ministry of Natural Resources provides statistics regarding its major exports; the country is a leading exporter of zinc, uranium, gold, nickel, aluminum, steel, iron ore, coking coal and lead. Many towns in northern Canada, where agriculture is difficult, are sustainable because of nearby mines or sources of timber. Canada also has a sizeable manufacturing sector centered in southern Ontario and Quebec, with automobiles and aeronautics representing particularly important industries.
Canada's economic integration with the United States has increased significantly since World War II. The Automotive Products Trade Agreement of 1965 opened Canada's borders to trade in the automobile manufacturing industry. In the 1970s, concerns over energy self-sufficiency and foreign ownership in the manufacturing sectors prompted Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau's Liberal government to enact the National Energy Program (NEP) and the Foreign Investment Review Agency (FIRA). In the 1980s, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney's Conservatives abolished the NEP and changed the name of FIRA to Investment Canada, to encourage foreign investment. The Canada – United States Free Trade Agreement (FTA) of 1988 eliminated tariffs between the two countries, while the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) expanded the free-trade zone to include Mexico in 1994.
Canada has a strong cooperative banking sector, with the world's highest per capita membership in credit unions.
Science and technology Edit
In 2015, Canada spent approximately C$31.6 billion on domestic research and development, of which around $7 billion was provided by the federal and provincial governments. As of 2015, the country has produced thirteen Nobel laureates in physics, chemistry, and medicine, and was ranked fourth worldwide for scientific research quality in a major 2012 survey of international scientists. It is furthermore home to the headquarters of a number of global technology firms. Canada has one of the highest levels of Internet access in the world, with over 33 million users, equivalent to around 94 percent of its total 2014 population.
The Canadian Space Agency operates a highly active space program, conducting deep-space, planetary, and aviation research, and developing rockets and satellites. Canada was the third country to design and construct a satellite after the Soviet Union and the United States, with the 1962 Alouette 1 launch. Canada is a participant in the International Space Station (ISS), and is a pioneer in space robotics, having constructed the Canadarm, Canadarm2 and Dextre robotic manipulators for the ISS and NASA's Space Shuttle. Since the 1960s, Canada's aerospace industry has designed and built numerous marques of satellite, including Radarsat-1 and 2, ISIS and MOST. Canada has also produced one of the world's most successful and widely used sounding rockets, the Black Brant; over 1,000 Black Brants have been launched since the rocket's introduction in 1961. In 1984, Marc Garneau became Canada's first male astronaut, followed by Canada's second and first female astronaut Roberta Bondar in 1992. Chris Hadfield became the first Canadian to walk in space.
Canada has an extensive transportation system that many of its people utilize every day. By law, every city with a population of over 50,000 is required to provide a publicly available busing system (with government subsidized help), which can charge for tickets and other services, but not at exorbitant prices. Localities and cities generally oversee city bus operations. ViaRail, the national rail service, operates national passenger rail lines, which crisscross the nation and reach across the entire country. Rail travel is quick, efficient and saves time for passengers from driving. Rail travel is extremely popular in Canada, and many people utilize ViaRail’s transportation systems every day. Many of the largest cities also have above ground rail systems. Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Quebec, London, Victoria, Halifax, Nanaimo, Hamilton, Kingston and Trois Rivieres have above ground light electric streetcar-train rail systems that provide similar services to buses, which they run alongside. Subway systems are also found in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. These subways transport people around the city quickly through efficient underground railway systems. Throughout Canada, Airports both large and small are found in the cities and the countryside. Zealandia has many small, private airfields, which are not allowed to have more than one airstrip. Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa, Quebec and London all have large airports that can take passengers overseas. These and only a few others are the only airports than can handle large, passenger jet traffic.
Canadian culture is a blend of English, French, North American and Indigenous cultures all into one. Canadian culture is similar to the cultures found in the United States, England, Scotland and Ireland and also shares characteristics with Germany and France. Although there is linguistic divide among French and Anglo Canadians, Canadian culture is generally a unifying factor between French and Anglo Canadians and is the source of the united Canadian identity.
General Attitudes & Personal Appearance Edit
Canada is a country that values personal freedom greatly. It is among one of the most socially liberal countries in the world. Canadians do share many similar characteristics, however, that form a united country and identity.
Canada is a clean country. There is a stiff fine for littering, and even petty vandalism can earn you heavy fines or even jail time. Canadians are easygoing about most things in life, and social groups and clubs are popular. Canadians are also comfortable with expressing feelings openly with each other and helping others, friends or otherwise, through their problems. Personal appearance is important in Zealandian society. Western clothing is the norm, and Toronto and Montreal are centers for fashion in the country. Hair styles are similar to those in the west. Women’s hair is generally kept long and worn up or down and men’s hair is kept short, and many have neatly trimmed facial hair like a mustache. Shorts and short sleeves are common in the summer, but they are not welcome in churches. Zealandians are also noted for their use of the “Cowboy hat.”
Canadians generally greet each other with a handshake and a friendly phrase or smalltalk such as "Hello, how are you doing" or "Bonjour, comment allez-vous." Canadian eating styles are similar to those in America or western Europe, with a fork, knife and spoon accompanied with a napkin. Canadian cuisine is very similar to American cuisine, and many American chains are popular in Canada and many Canadian chains serve food similar to that found in the United States.
Sports and recreation. Edit
Hockey is the national sport of Canada and is far and away the most popular sport in the country. Canada has produced many of the best hockey players and professional teams are found at the highest level in Toronto, Montreal, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver. Additionally, lower leagues are present throughout the entire country.
Baseball is the second most popular sport in the country along with basketball in 3rd. Professional team at the highest levels of these sports exist in Canada through the Toronto Blue Jays and the Toronto Raptors of the MLB and NBA. Running, boating, hiking, skiing, camping and outdoor activities are also very popular and thanks to Canada's varied geography and large tracts of undisturbed natural areas make the country a hotspot for outdoors and extreme sports. Canada has hosted the international Olympics Competition 3 times, in Calgary, Montreal and Vancouver respectively. Canada also participates in the commonwealth games, the Pan-Am games as well as the football World Cup.
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