Moraine Lake, Canada
Moraine Lake, Canada

Moraine Lake

Its waters are the most amazing colour, a vivid shade of turquoise that changes in intensity through the summer as the glaciers melt.
Photo by John Lee

CANADA

North America

Canada Travel Information

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Key facts

Capital:

Ottawa

Location:

Northern North America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean on the east, North Pacific Ocean on the west, and the Arctic Ocean on the north, north of the conterminous US

Currency:

Canadian dollars (CAD)

Area:

9,984,670 sq km

Population:

37,943,231 (July 2021 est.)

Languages:

English (official) 58.7%, French (official) 22%, Punjabi 1.4%, Italian 1.3%, Spanish 1.3%, German 1.3%, Cantonese 1.2%, Tagalog 1.2%, Arabic 1.1%, other 10.5% (2011 est.)

Religion:

Catholic 39% (includes Roman Catholic 38.8%, other Catholic .2%), Protestant 20.3% (includes United Church 6.1%, Anglican 5%, Baptist 1.9%, Lutheran 1.5%, Pentecostal 1.5%, Presbyterian 1.4%, other Protestant 2.9%), Orthodox 1.6%, other Christian 6.3%, Muslim 3.2%, Hindu 1.5%, Sikh 1.4%, Buddhist 1.1%, Jewish 1%, other 0.6%, none 23.9% (2011 est.)

TimeZone:

UTC-5

Tel Code:

+1

Weather

Canada has a diverse climate with different regions having different weather patterns and temperature.

Western Canada

  • Western provinces such as British Columbia, Alberta, and Saskatchewan have a wide range of climates, from coastal temperate rainforest to the semi-arid grasslands of the interior.
  • Summer, which runs from June to August, is the warmest season, with temperatures averaging around 20-25 degrees Celsius (68-77 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day.
  • Winter, which runs from December to February, is the coldest season, with temperatures averaging around -10 to -5 degrees Celsius (14 to 23 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day, with snowfall and cold winds.

Central Canada

  • Central provinces such as Ontario and Quebec have four distinct seasons: spring, summer, fall, and winter.
  • Summer, which runs from June to August, is the warmest season, with temperatures averaging around 20-25 degrees Celsius (68-77 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day.
  • Winter, which runs from December to February, is the coldest season, with temperatures averaging around -10 to -5 degrees Celsius (14 to 23 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day, with snowfall and cold winds.

Eastern Canada

  • Eastern provinces such as Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland and Labrador have a maritime climate, with milder winters and cooler summers.
  • Summer, which runs from June to August, is the warmest season, with temperatures averaging around 15-20 degrees Celsius (59-68 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day.
  • Winter, which runs from December to February, is the coldest season, with temperatures averaging around -10 to -5 degrees Celsius (14 to 23 degrees Fahrenheit) during the day, with snowfall and cold winds.

It's worth noting that the weather in Canada can be unpredictable and can change rapidly, so it's always a good idea to check the forecast and pack appropriate clothing. Additionally, the peak tourism season in Canada varies depending on the location, for example snow activities in Winter and hiking in Summer.

Transportation

There are several transportation options when visiting Canada, including:

Air travel

  • Canada has a well-developed air transportation system, with many major airports located in cities across the country. These airports offer direct flights to and from various international destinations. Additionally, there are several domestic airlines that offer flights between major cities and regional areas within Canada.

Ground transportation

  • Public transportation such as buses, trains, and subways are available in major cities like Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.
  • Rental cars and campervans are popular options for road trips and exploring regional areas.
  • Taxis and ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft are also widely available in most major cities.

Water transportation

  • Ferries are available for travel between islands and along the coast, particularly in areas such as British Columbia and the Maritimes.

Other

  • Bicycles and e-bikes are also available for rent in some cities, such as Toronto and Montreal.
  • Walking and hiking are also popular options for exploring natural areas and national parks.

It's important to note that transportation options and availability may vary depending on the location in Canada. It's a good idea to research and plan transportation in advance, especially if you're planning to visit more remote areas.

Accommodation

There are a variety of accommodation options available for visitors to Canada, including:

Hotels

From luxury resorts to budget-friendly options, there are hotels available in most major cities and tourist destinations.

Guesthouses

These are a more budget-friendly option and can be found in many smaller towns and villages.

Vacation Rentals

Renting a vacation rental such as apartments and houses that can be rented on a short-term basis is a popular option for visitors to Canada, particularly for those traveling with families or groups of friends.

Hostels

Hostels are popular in major cities and tourist destinations, and can be a good budget-friendly option for solo travelers or backpackers.

Campsites

Many national parks and other remote areas in Canada have camping facilities for visitors, which can be a great way to experience the natural beauty of the country.

Resorts and Lodges

Many remote and wilderness areas in Canada offer resorts and lodges that provide comfortable accommodation, as well as access to outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, and skiing.

It's important to note that depending on the location and type of accommodation, prices and availability may vary greatly. It's always a good idea to research and book in advance, especially during peak tourism season.

Money

Money Tips for Travel

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Notify your bank and credit card companies of your travel plans to avoid any potential issues with international transactions.
  • Bring a mix of cash, credit, and debit cards--and possibly a travel money card.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.
  • Make sure to have a backup option for accessing money in case your primary method doesn't work.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • NEVER accept currency conversion at ATMs! Always get your home bank to convert at much better rates.
  • Think about getting a Wise or other travel debit card; these can provide much better rates and some free ATM withdrawals.

ATM and Credit Cards

  • Research the availability of ATMs and credit card acceptance at your destination before you depart.
  • Keep your ATM card in a safe place and be mindful of your surroundings when using it.
  • Try to stick to using ATMs that are affiliated with major banks.
  • Keep your credit card information safe and secure, and be aware of potential scams.
  • Make sure your cards have the necessary security features, such as chip and pin.
  • Be aware of the fees associated with withdrawing money from ATMs and using credit cards abroad.

Exchange Rates

  • Research the currency and exchange rates of your destination before you depart.
  • Consider using a card with no foreign transaction fees.
  • Be aware of the local customs and etiquette when it comes to paying.
  • Keep an eye on the exchange rate throughout your trip and try to make large purchases or withdraw large sums of money when the rate is favorable.
  • Be careful of places that may offer to exchange money at rates that seem too good to be true.

Mobile

When traveling, getting mobile access is very important these days. If you are working remotely, wanting to update social media, or need to access your banks SMS authentication messages having a reliable service is a must. At WhereNext we recommend:

eSIM

Services such as those offered by our partner, Airalo, allow you to easily order and install an eSIM for different countries or regions that you are traveling in.

Dual SIM phone

If you have a phone that supports dual SIM's then you can get a SIM on arrival for each country, this is probably better done at a telco store rather than at the airport.

Extend your home plan

Depending on where you live and your mobile service provider you may be able to extend your plan to cover mobile roaming at reasonable rates.

Keep your primary SIM

With the amount of accounts we all have that require two factor authentication via SMS, keeping a constant number for these accounts is a must.

Community

There are several online communities and platforms that you can use to meet people while traveling, both for making new friends or for networking professionally. Some popular options include:

Facebook groups

There are many Facebook groups dedicated to connecting people while traveling, from expat groups and travel communities to groups specific to certain cities or regions of the country. You can search for groups based on your interests or location and connect with others who share similar interests.

Meetup

Meetup is a platform that allows you to find groups of people that share your interests in your local area. There are Meetup groups all around the world, and they cover a wide range of topics, such as language exchange, sports, and cultural activities.

Internations

Internations is a social network for people who live or work abroad. It has a large community of expats and organizes regular events, activities and gatherings that allow members to connect and socialize.

Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a platform that connects travelers with local hosts, who offer free accommodation and a chance to experience the local culture. It's a great way to meet locals and make friends!

Reddit

Reddit has a large community, and there are several subreddits dedicated to connecting expats and travelers. You can use it to ask questions, get advice, and connect with others who are also living or traveling in the country.

Linkedin

LinkedIn is primarily a professional network, but you can also use it to connect with people who work in the same industry or have similar backgrounds. It can be useful to connect with people before you arrive and establish a few professional contacts to help you get started.

At WhereNext, we use Nomad List as a global community and then research more local ones for our destination. These are just a few examples of online communities you can use to meet people; please suggest any others that you think are appropriate for this destination.

Insurance

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It covers a wide range of needs--even some you might not expect!

Medical Coverage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for medical expenses if you become ill or injured while traveling. This can include coverage for doctor visits, hospital stays, and emergency medical transportation. It's also a good idea to ensure that your travel insurance covers COVID-19 related illness and delays!

Trip Cancellation and Interruption

Travel insurance can provide coverage if you need to cancel or interrupt your trip due to unexpected events such as illness, weather, or travel bans. It can also provide coverage if your trip is delayed or if your travel provider goes out of business.

Lost or Stolen Luggage

Travel insurance can provide coverage for lost or stolen luggage, as well as personal items such as passports and electronic devices.

Emergency Assistance and Evacuation

Many travel insurance plans offer emergency assistance services, such as providing information on local hospitals and doctors, assistance with replacing lost or stolen documents, and help with arranging transportation in the event of an emergency. At WhereNext we have partnered with Global Rescue for evacuation services, which are highly recommended if you are undertaking dangerous activities or are travelling to dangerous parts of the world.

Liability coverage

Travel insurance can also provide liability coverage in case you cause an accident or harm someone while you are traveling.

Travel insurance can provide financial protection and peace of mind for travellers in the event of unexpected situations or emergencies. It can help cover the costs of medical expenses, trip cancellations, lost or stolen luggage, and more. It's always a good idea to review the coverage and compare the different options available before making a decision. At WhereNext we both use and have partnered with Safety Wing for general travel insurance.

Entry Requirements

Here are some general travel tips regarding entry requirements that apply across all countries:

Passport

Make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months from the date of your arrival in the country you are visiting. Some countries will not allow you to enter if your passport is set to expire within a certain period of time.

Visa

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if you need a visa. Some countries require a visa for entry, while others do not. Make sure to apply for a visa well in advance of your trip as the process can take several weeks. Check the latest Visa requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Health Requirements and COVID-19 Rules

Check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are visiting to see if there are any health requirements for entry. Some countries require vaccinations or proof of medical insurance. Check the latest health requirements and if necessary get an online Visa with our partner iVisa.

Travel Insurance

Consider purchasing travel insurance, especially if you are traveling internationally. Travel insurance can cover you in the event of trip cancellation, medical emergencies, and other unexpected events. Our travel insurance partner is SafetyWing. For dangerous activities and/or countries consider a rescue service like those offered by our partner, Global Rescue.

Customs

Be familiar with the customs and laws of the country you are visiting. Some countries have strict laws regarding drug possession, alcohol consumption, and dress codes.

Currency

Check the currency exchange rate and make sure you have enough local currency for your trip. Some countries may not accept credit cards or travelers cheques, so it is always good to have some cash on hand. At WhereNext we recommend use a Wise debit card, which provides low cost currency conversions and ATM withdrawals.

Research the country

Research about the culture, customs and laws of the country you are visiting. It will help you to understand the place more and also prepare you better for the trip.

Contact Information

Make a copy of your passport and keep it in a separate place from your passport. Also, leave a copy of your itinerary and contact information with a friend or family member at home.

COVID Status

I am vaccinated 
Canada Open
Test
Not required
Quarantine
Not required

Check Visa Requirements

      Things to Do

      Canada is a vast and diverse country with a wealth of activities to suit all interests. From the natural beauty of its national parks to the bustling metropolis of Toronto, there is something for everyone. Here are some of the top things to do in Canada:

      1. Explore the Great Outdoors

      Canada is home to some of the most breathtaking natural landscapes in the world, from the rugged Rocky Mountains to the pristine lakes of the Canadian Shield. Hike, bike or camp in one of the country's many national parks, or take a scenic drive along the world-famous Icefields Parkway.

      2. Experience the Culture of Quebec

      Quebec City is the only walled city in North America and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Experience the unique culture and history of Quebec, including its French heritage, by visiting the historic district of Old Quebec, the Notre-Dame de Quebec Basilica-Cathedral and the Musée de la civilisation.

      3. Ski in the Rocky Mountains

      The Rocky Mountains are home to some of the best ski resorts in the world. Ski or snowboard at one of the many resorts in the Canadian Rockies, such as Banff, Lake Louise or Revelstoke.

      4. Visit Niagara Falls

      Niagara Falls is one of the most iconic tourist attractions in Canada and is a must-see for any first-time visitor. Take a boat tour to get up close to the falls or enjoy the view from the observation deck at the Skylon Tower.

      5. Take a Trip to the Canadian Arctic

      The Canadian Arctic is a unique and remote region, home to an array of wildlife, including polar bears, muskoxen and beluga whales. Visit one of the Inuit communities or take a trip to see the Northern Lights.

      6. Explore the Metropolis of Toronto

      Toronto is the largest city in Canada and is a cosmopolitan hub of culture, arts and entertainment. Visit the CN Tower, the Toronto Islands, the Royal Ontario Museum, or take in a show at the Royal Alexandra Theatre.

      7. Discover the Beauty of British Columbia

      British Columbia is a province of spectacular natural beauty, with rugged coastlines, ancient rainforests, and pristine lakes. Take a trip to Tofino for surfing, visit Whistler for skiing or hike in the rugged backcountry of the Rocky Mountains.

      8. Visit the Historic City of Montreal

      Montreal is a city with a rich history and a vibrant cultural scene. Take a stroll down the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal, visit the Notre-Dame Basilica, or check out the contemporary art at the Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal.

      9. Explore the Maritime Provinces

      The Maritimes are a unique region of Canada, with a distinct culture and natural beauty. Take a trip to Cape Breton Island, visit Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia or take a whale-watching tour in the Bay of Fundy.

      10. Take a Road Trip

      Canada is a country of road-trippers, with wide open spaces and beautiful scenery to explore. Take a road trip along the Cabot Trail, the Trans-Canada Highway or the Dempster Highway.

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