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Best attractions, ancient cities, ultramodern places and natural sights in Canada

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I am Yura Matskevich, traveled around 74 countries, travel is my passion, on pages I share useful information.

Today we are going to talk about the things that can be done in Canada. The list of the attractions in this country can be really infinite. The country is considered to be the second in the territory, with the bulk of its vast spaces: national parks, lush forests, scenic prairie with hills, the Great Lakes and the hundreds of different-sized reservoirs and Rockies.

In the landscape of Canada you will be able to notice a combination of some amazing primitive naturalness and all the benefits of civilization. In the Northwest Territories, Yukon, Nunavut and other remote regions of the country there are still places where no man has gone before. In the vast national parks intervention in nature is minimal, and in the cities there is everything for a comfortable life.

If you plan to go to Canada, then you should see such beautiful Canadian provinces as Quebec and British Columbia, where there is the influence of the old Europe and its architectural traditions can be noticed. Districts of historic buildings have been preserved in almost perfect condition.

In such large cities as Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver there are a great number of interesting museums, in particular – those which are devoted to researches and modern technology, aviation and space exploration. The art galleries of megacities have great collections of works of art.

Today we are going to have a virtual trip with a lot of interesting things to do in Canada. Let’s start our journey!


Thing to do number 1: Visit Royal Ontario Museum

Royal Ontario MuseumVisiting Royal Museum is a must as it is Canada’s largest museum of culture and natural history, as well as the 5th largest museum in North America. It was founded in 1857 as the Museum of Natural History and Fine Arts, and it became the Royal Ontario Museum in 1912. Until 1968, it was engaged in the management of Toronto University, however, today it is an independent institution which maintains close ties with the university. The museum is situated in the unique building –it seems that the construction is cut and is going to fall down from the sky in the form of a huge crystal made of glass and aluminum. The museum’s collection includes more than 6 million pieces that have been placed in 40 halls. Museum can be proud of its famous collection of:

  1. dinosaurs
  2. collection of art of the Middle East, Africa and East Asia,
  3. objects of art of the European and Canadian history.

Interesting: You can visit The Royal Ontario Museum Libraries and Archives which welcome all tourists. There you can find many interesting facts which can’t be read in the internet.


Thing to do number 2: To visit Shri Swaminarayan Mandir and The Canadian Museum of Indo-Canadian Cultural Heritage

Shri Swaminarayan MandirShri Swaminarayan Mandir and Cultural Indo-Canadian Heritage is the largest Hindu temple in Canada and the second largest Hindu temple outside India after the eponymous church in Atlanta. The temple was built in 2005-2007. Building with the participation of the Indian masters was conducted by the canons of the ancient Indian temple architecture – Shilla Shastra. For the construction of the temple such metals were used:

  1. marble,
  2. limestone,
  3. sandstone
  4. wood.

The temple is crowned with five pointed domes, each of which is decorated with elaborately carved image of plant ornaments, animals and birds figures. The interior of the temple is also decorated with carvings, dedicated to Hindu deities – basically, Shiva and Vishnu.

Interesting: The church is a Museum of Indo-Canadian Cultural Heritage, telling visitors about the contribution of Indo-Canadians in art, architecture, science, politics and the development of spiritual values of the country. Near the church there is also a restaurant in which you can taste fresh cooked vegetarian dishes.


Thing to number 3: To walk in the Wood Buffalo National Park

the Wood Buffalo National ParkWood Buffalo National Park is the protected area of national importance, situated in the territory of the Province of Alberta and the Northwest Territories. The park was founded in 1922, it is Canada’s largest national park and one of the largest parks in the world. You should definitely go for a walk there. The park is spread in the central part of Canada, between lakes Athabasca and Great Slave. Its area is about 44,802 km?. In the park there are:

  1. grassy prairie,
  2. marsh
  3. saline meadow plains.

The reserve is well-known for the fact that its territory is inhabited by the largest in North America a herd of wild American bison. Among the 227 species of birds that nest in the park the following species can be paid attention to:

  1. large rare whooping cranes,
  2. pelicans,
  3. falcons,
  4. bald eagles,
  5. great gray owl and the snowy owl.

The protected fauna is represented by the following types of animals: elk, caribou, reindeer, beavers, muskrats, wolves, black bears, grizzly bears, porcupines, wolverines. The park can be reached from two settlements: Fort Smith (Northwest Territories) and Fort Chipuyan (Alberta). In Fort Smith there is the head office of administration of the National Park Wood Buffalo.

Interesting: In 1983 the park was declared a World Natural Heritage by UNESCO.


Thing to do number 4: to see Peace Tower

Peace TowerPeace Tower is considered to be one of the main attractions of Ottawa, Canada’s symbol. The Peace Tower was designed by John A. Pearson. There are some facts about the Peace Tower that you should be aware of before visiting it:

  1. It is a 55-meter clock tower that is located in the center of the architectural complex of the Canadian Parliament.
  2. The first tower was destroyed by fire in 1916, but soon it was rebuilt again.
  3. The tower is also the memorial in honor of Canadians who participated in the First World War.
  4. The tower has a carillon (bells polyphonic musical instrument) with 53 bells installed on the occasion of the signing of the armistice in 1918 and the First World War.

Interesting: Opening of the Carillon took place in 1927, the 60th anniversary of Confederation. Nowadays instrument plays about 200 days a year, spreading the sound of several blocks around.


Thing to do number 5: To feel closer to nature at Van Dusen Botanical Garden

Van Dusen Botanical GardenVan Dusen Botanical Garden is the botanical garden that was named after a local timber merchant, philanthropist and lover of nature Whitford Julian Van Dusen. The garden was founded in 1972 and opened on the 30th of August in 1975. It covers an area of 22 hectares, where there are 255,000 plants with more than 7,300 species from all over the world. The garden is divided into thematic sections:

  1. Canadian,
  2. pink,
  3. China-Himalayan,
  4. a Mediterranean garden,
  5. a garden of perennials,
  6. garden of rocks,
  7. a garden of thoughts
  8. alley of rhododendrons,
  9. garden of flora of the southern hemisphere.

Interesting: The Botanical Garden is decorated with Native American totems and stone sculptures. In the garden you can wander through the green maze, as well as along the chain of interconnected lakes and ponds.


Thing to do number 6: To go to Toronto Zoo

Toronto ZooToronto Zoo is a popular destination of those who travel with their children. In any case this place is worth visiting as it is one of the most famous zoos in Canada and it is one of the largest zoos in the world having an area of 287 hectares. The zoo has gathered about 5,000 animals of more than 460 species. There are the following six zoogeographic regions in Toronto zoo:

  1. Indo-Malaysia,
  2. Africa,
  3. America,
  4. Australia,
  5. Asia,
  6. Eurasia
  7. Canada.

Interesting: Animals are kept in enclosed spaces (in tropical pavilions) and outdoors in their natural habitat.


Thing to do number 7: To see Capilano Bridge

Capilano BridgeCapilano Bridge is considered to be the famous suspension bridge that is located in the beautiful wooded area on the river of the same name in the vicinity of Vancouver, British Columbia. Its length is 136 meters, it is situated at a height of 70 m.

There are some important events in the life of Capilano Bridge that will be interesting to know if you are going to go sightseeing.

  1. The bridge was built in 1889 by the Scottish engineer George Grant Mackay using cedar planks and hemp ropes.
  2. In 1903 these ropes were replaced the metal cables. The bridge was built to ease the way to a local sawmill loggers.
  3. From 1910 to 1945, the bridge changed masters more than once and in 1956 it was completely rebuilt and became a tourist attraction.
  4. Since 1983 it belongs to the current owner Nancy Stibbartu who created the natural park in the vicinity.

Interesting: There is a popular attraction «Treetops Adventures» that was opened in 2004 which represents a 7 foot bridge suspended between trees on the west side of the gorge.


Thing to do number 8: To visit Castle Laurier

 Castle LaurierCastle Laurier is one of the most notable attractions of Ottawa, rising in the town center, not far from Parliament Hill. The building was built in 1909-1912 in the style of a French castle, designed by architect Bradford Gilbert. The construction site has been provided by the Canadian Prime Minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier, after whom the castle got its name. Throughout its history, the castle was used as a hotel, and today it still functions as a hotel, where a lot of celebrities and famous politicians had stayed for a night. Because of its location, the castle was often the venue of important public events and political meetings, for which it has been you can see a collection of photographic portraits of famous people of the XX century:

  1. Winston Churchill,
  2. Albert Einstein,
  3. Georgia O’Keeffe

Interesting: All of portraits have been made by the famous photographer Yousuf Karsh who was a constant guest of the hotel.


Thing to do number 9: To go to the Bay of Fundy

the Bay of FundyBay of Fundy is a natural sight of Canada. It is located in the north-eastern part of the Gulf of Maine, washing the coast of Canada and the United States of America. The bay is located between Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. The name Bay of Fundy appeared thanks to the Portuguese settlers of the XVI century who called it Rio Fundo or the deep river.

Its measures are the following:

  1. its length is 300 km,
  2. its width is about 90 km
  3. its depth is 214 m.

Bay of Fundy is known for the highest tides in the world, constituting 15.6 -18 m. At high tide the water level in the bay of the average rises to 8 meters every hour.

Interesting: If you have time you should visit the Bay of Fundy twice a day to see two completely different pictures – at high tide and at low tide.


Thing to do number 10: To visit National Gallery of Canada

 National Gallery of CanadaNational Gallery of Canada is the country’s leading art museum that is located in downtown Ottawa. The gallery was founded in 1880 by the fourth Governor-General of Canada John Douglas Sutherland Campbell. Since 1988, the gallery has occupied the present building which is constructed of glass and granite according to the project of an architect of Israel Moshe Safdi. At the entrance there is a huge statue of a spider which is known as “Mom”. The museum can boast with an extensive collection of:

  1. paintings,
  2. drawings,
  3. sculptures
  4. photographs.

The basis of the collection consists of works of such Canadian artists as Tom Thomson, Emily Carr, Alex Colville and participants of the “Group of Seven».There are also works of many well-known European artists (from the early Middle Ages and the Renaissance to Impressionism, Cubism and Surrealism). The museum’s collection includes works of:

  1. Rembrandt,
  2. C?zanne,
  3. Rubens,
  4. El Greco,
  5. Monet,
  6. Degas,
  7. Gauguin.

Interesting: The pride of the gallery is paintings of Barnet Nyuman and Andy Warhol that are really worth seeing.


Thing to do number 11: To go to Macmillan Space Centre

Macmillan Space CentreMacMillan Space Centre is located in Vancouver, at the museum’s building. It is named after the industrialist and philanthropist from British Columbia. The center offers its visitors an extensive, informative and entertaining program. So, with the help of virtual simulators you can:

  1. perform a flight to Mars,
  2. take part in the rescue of the Martian colonies.

All tourists find it interesting to play video games, to attend presentations and exhibitions on the theme of space exploration conducted on the Cosmic Courtyard center. At the center there is a theater «Ground station Canada» with 90 seats, where you can always enjoy colorful performances. On Fridays and Saturdays you can visit the center and to enjoy the laser show. Interesting: From Gordon Sauthema Observatory center which is located in the neighborhood you can have a look at the sky through a telescope produced by “Carl Zeiss”.


Thing to do number 12: To visit Canadian Museum of Nature

Canadian Museum of NatureCanadian Museum of Nature is a big biology and natural history museum, the basis of which was the collection of the Canadian Geological Commission. The museum building was built in the early XX century in the “Scottish baronial” style by the architect David Ewart. Until 1922 the building housed the House of Commons and some government offices. Since 1989, it houses the Museum of Nature. In 1990, the building was awarded the status of National Historic Landmark of Canada. In 2010, the museum building has got a large glass dome. The museum exposition is situated on 4 floors:

  1. the ground floor is devoted to a great collection of minerals (from the Late Cretaceous to Eocene),
  2. the second floor has everything devoted to the water world and mammals
  3. the third floor is dedicated to the mineral collection,
  4. the fourth floor has a gallery of birds.

Interesting: In the basement of the museum there is an “Animalium” – a section which is devoted to insects, arachnids and some amphibians.


Thing to do number 13: To go to Saint Joseph’s Oratory

 Saint Joseph's OratorySaint Joseph’s Oratory is the Catholic basilica which is located on the hill of Mont-Royal in Montreal. There are some facts that you may find interesting to know when you visit it:

  1. Monk Andre Bessette, who is famous for miraculous healings, began construction of the temple in 1904.
  2. As the number of parishioners grew rapidly in 1917, it became necessary to build the new premises of the church, which construction was finally completed in 1967.
  3. The Basilica has a huge dome (97 m), which is the third largest dome in the world (after the cathedrals Basilica of Our Lady of Peace in C?te d’Ivoire, and St. Peter’s in the Vatican).
  4. In 2010, Pope Benedict XVI canonized Andre Bessette and today in the oratorio the relics of the saint have remained.

In addition to the room of oratory that can accommodate more than 2,000 people in the complex of the temple there are two chapels and a small museum of sacred art. In one of the chapels there are stored gifts of parishioners and crutches – as evidence of healing saints.

Interesting: In 2005, Saint Joseph’s Oratory entered the list of national historic sites of Canada.


Thing to do number 14: To visit National Park called “Thousand Islands”

"Thousand Islands"National Park “Thousand Islands” or the Park “Island of St. Lawrence” is a protected area, which is located in the province of Ontario. The park was founded in 1904. The National Park covers an area of 24.4 km?. It is situated on the territory of 21 large islands in the mainstream of the St. Lawrence River, 38 km south-west of Brockville to Kingston, and 153 kilometers from Ottawa. The park borders the US state of New York and, the US National Park “Thousand Islands” which has been founded not so long time ago. This park is a popular tourist destination, here you can choose among many possible sightseeing trips:

  1. one of the islands recreated traditional village settlers of the XIX century
  2. active pastime, for example, boating,etc.

Interesting: It is believed that with the small islands in the park there are 1865 islands. Can you imagine this number?


Thing to do number 15:To attend Quebec City Cathedral

Quebec City CathedralNotre Dame de Quebec and the Blessed Virgin Mary in Quebec is the main Catholic church in Quebec and one of the oldest Catholic churches in Canada. The church was founded in 1647 on the site of a wooden chapel. In 1759, Notre Dame de Quebec has been hit by shelling the British troops, and in 1922 it was ruined with the fire, after which it was rebuilt in 1923. The interior of the cathedral, which is in the neoclassical style, kept many valuable works of art. Among them:

  1. the chair of the bishop which was donated to the church by the French King Louis XIV.
  2. In the crypt of the cathedral the remains of the first bishop of Quebec and the four governors of New France can be found.

Interesting: If you love sports, then you will be happy to discover that here different sporting events are held. There are also their local football and baseball teams.


Thing to do number 16: To see CN Tower

 CN TowerCN Tower is the symbol of Toronto and is the tallest building in the world in 1976-2007. The height of the CN Tower is 553.33 m. Today, the tower is the tallest building in the Western hemisphere, it is twice as high as the Eiffel Tower in Paris and at 13 m above the Russian Ostankino television tower. It was built by April 2, 1975 – Construction of the tower began in 1973 and was completed in a couple of years.

Initially the tower belonged to the Canadian company, Canadian National Railway, which gave it its name. At the request of local residents name was retained even after the purchase of the building by another company – Canada Lands. In 2007, the tower has acquired a special illumination, consisting of 1330 LEDs, glowing in the colors of the Canadian flag. During holidays other colors are also added.
At a height of 380 meters you can see an observation deck with a glass floor, able to withstand loads up to 110 kg per 1 cm?. Visitors to the site are delivered by high-speed elevators, moving at a speed of about 22 km / h. Journey to the height takes 58 seconds. Being in Toronto and not visiting the CN Tower has long been considered to be a bad form, it is logical because the number of tourists climbing the tower every year is about 2 million people.

In good weather from the observation deck you can see the panorama of around 160 km, up to Niagara Falls and Lake Ontario. If you like adrenalin and extreme things to do than this attraction is for you. EdgeWalk is the world’s highest full circle hands-free walk which is offered here. There are some other attractions:

  • Glass Floor
  • SkyPod
  • EdgeWalk
  • High Speed Elevator

Interesting: The Tower is characterized by high levels of security: it can withstand wind speeds up to 400 km / h and earthquakes of magnitude 8 on the Richter scale, and resist more than 70 lightning strikes per year.
Hope that you have enjoyed our virtual trip and choose something interesting for your real journey to Canada!



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I am Yura Matskevich, traveled around 74 countries, travel is my passion, on pages I share useful information.

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