1. Canada is the second largest country in the world (after Russia) in terms of land mass.
The total area of Canada is 9.9 million square meters. and applies to the Pacific, Arctic and Atlantic oceans (therefore, its slogan “from sea to sea” is quite logical), which makes it the country with the longest coastline (243,791 km. in length). It consists of 10 provinces and three territories with a capital in Ottawa.
Provinces: Alberta (Capital: Edmonton), British Columbia (Victoria), Manitoba (Winnipeg), New Brunswick (Fredericton), Newfoundland and Labrador (St. Johns), Nova Scotia (Halifax), Ontario (Toronto), Prince Edward Island (Charlottetown), Quebec (Quebec City) and Saskatchewan (Regina). Three territories: Northwest Territories (Yellowknife), Nunavut (Iqaluit) and Yukon (Whitehorse).
2. Land of Lakes
Canada has more lakes than the rest of the world combined. At last count, there may be up to two million, with 563 lakes measuring over 100 square kilometers. The largest in Canada are Lake Huron (Ontario), Lake Great Bear (northwestern territory) and Lake Superior (Ontario). Lake Winnipeg, the fifth and 11th largest in Canada, is located in Manitoba.
3. Multicultural population
Canada is the first country in the world to adopt a multiculturalism policy that embraces diversity and pluralism. Today, more than 35 million people out of Canada’s total population, one fifth are immigrants.
In fact, based on the 2011 National Household Survey (NHS), more than 200 ethnic backgrounds live in Canada. About 4.3 percent of the Canadian population reported that they belong to indigenous peoples, and 19.1 percent belong to a prominent minority.
The largest groups among these visible minorities are South Asians, Chinese and Africans, followed by Filipinos, Latin Americans, Arabs, Southeast Asians, West Asians, Koreans and Japanese. (Learn more about Canadian Multiculturalism here.)
4. Democracy / Monarchy
Canada is a parliamentary democracy led by the prime minister. However, it is also a constitutional monarchy with executive power entrusted to the queen.
This means that the queen is the head of state, and the prime minister is the head of government. Parliamentary democracy consists of three parts: the sovereign (queen), the senate and the House of Commons. Meanwhile, the government has three levels: federal, provincial and municipal.
The federal government is based in Ottawa and is headed by the prime minister. Provincial and territorial governments are headed by prime ministers, and municipal authorities are headed by mayors.
5. Canada means “village”
The name of the country comes from the “rope”, the Huron-Iroquois word meaning village or settlement. Two indigenous young people used this word to describe the settlement of Stadacon (now Quebec) to European explorer Jacques Cartier.
Cartier then used “Canada” to describe a large area outside Stadacona. It soon spread throughout the region, surpassing its former name, New France.
6. Maple Leaf and Other Symbols
Did you know that it took the Canadian Parliament 40 years to finally decide on the Canadian flag? The red-and-white flag with an outstanding maple leaf was officially released on February 15, 1965 (which became February 15 as Canada’s national day) after much debate and careful study.
But have you ever wondered why the maple leaf is so identified with Canada? Well, for many years, even before the arrival of European settlers, indigenous peoples used maple sap as their staple food. Throughout history, the sheet has found its way to Canadian coins, emblems and emblems.
Maple is also very important for Canadians and is the official tree logo. By the way, Canada continues to produce three-quarters of the world maple syrup production.
Meanwhile, the beaver as a national coat of arms dates back to the 1700s, when the lucrative trade in beaver skins (for fur hats) put Canada on the map. The Hudson’s Bay Company honored the animal by putting it on its coat of arms. Another Canadian symbol is the maple leaf tartan, designed by David Weiser, which became the official symbol in 2011.
7. Canada Day
Canada’s Day is marked by the signing of the British Act of North America (today known as the Constitutional Act of 1867), which created Canada. The official holiday is celebrated every July 1 and for some time was called the Day of Dominion.
He celebrates the anniversary of the Confederation of three British colonies in four provinces: the United Province of Canada (Ontario and Quebec), New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. To see how Canada Day is celebrated in different parts of the country, visit its official website.
8. “O Canada”
The national anthem of Canada “About Canada” was written by the famous composer Kalixa Lavalle with texts written by Sir Adolf Basili-Rotier. Several versions of the anthem were made, but the version used today was written by Robert Stanley Weir, a lawyer from Montreal. You can watch a hymn playing with lyrics below (YouTube video from Canada Immigrant):
9. National dish: Putin
The Canadian national dish originated in Quebec in the 1950s. Made from a delicious mix of french fries, cheese curd and gravy, Poutine has been in demand by many people, but its inventor has never been confirmed.
Anyway, the Kanaka (a nickname for Canadians) ate a wonderful dish in different ways than one. Care of traditional Putin? Or maybe Putin with an international bias? How about having dinner with foie gras Putin?
10. Inventions in abundance
What do basketball, a pacemaker, IMAX and Blackberry have in common? Yes, they were all invented by Canadians. Basketball was invented by Dr. James Naismith, a Canadian physical education instructor in Massachusetts, who wanted to create a game that can be played indoors in the winter.
Meanwhile, the first pacemaker was invented by electrical engineer John Hopps, and IMAX (for Image Maximum) was created by Grem Ferguson of Toronto, Roman Croitor, Robert Kerr, and William Shaw.
Finally, the Blackberry mobile phone is a product of Research in Motion (RIM) in Waterloo, Ontario. Want to know more Canadian inventions? Here are 19 things you may not know that were invented in Canada.
11. National Pastime
Ice hockey is Canada’s national winter sport, and lacrosse is the national summer sport. To give you an idea of how Canadians love ice hockey, the Canadian-American men’s gold hockey game at the Vancouver Olympics in 2010 was the most popular television broadcast in Canadian history,
according to NHL.com. Meanwhile, the women’s hockey team also dominated the Olympics, winning gold medals, the most recent of which was at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.