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Canada Country Guide

Explore Canada in North America

Canada with the capital city Ottawa is located in North America (Northern North America, bordering the North Atlantic Ocean on the east). It covers some 9,984,671 square kilometres (slightly larger than the US) with 33,679,000 citizens.

Interactive map of Canada

The landscape offers mostly plains with mountains in west and lowlands in southeast. The average density of population is approximately 3 per km². The notable climate conditions in Canada can be described as varying from temperate in south to subarctic and arctic in north. Potential threats by nature are continuous permafrost in north being a serious obstacle to development or cyclonic storms form east of the Rocky Mountains, a result of the mixing of air masses from the Arctic, Pacific, and North American interior, and produce most of the country's rain and snow east of the mountains.

To reach someone in Canada dial +1 prior to a number. There are 18,251,000 installed telephones. And there are 23,081,000 registered mobile phones. The cellular networks commonly support frequencies of 850, 1900 Mhz. Websites registered in this country end with the top level domain ".ca". If you want to bring electric equipment on your trip (e.g. laptop power supply), note the local power outlet of 120V - 60Hz.

About the flag and history of Canada

Two vertical bands of red (hoist and fly side, half width) with white square between them; an 11-pointed red maple leaf is centered in the white square; the maple leaf has long been a Canadian symbol; the official colors of Canada are red and white.

A land of vast distances and rich natural resources, Canada became a self-governing dominion in 1867 while retaining ties to the British crown. Economically and technologically, the nation has developed in parallel with the US, its neighbor to the south across the world's longest unfortified border. Canada faces the political challenges of meeting public demands for quality improvements in health care, education, social services, and economic competitiveness, as well as responding to the particular concerns of predominantly francophone Quebec. Canada also aims to develop its diverse energy resources while maintaining its commitment to the environment.

Geography Quick-Facts

Summary Continent: North America
Neighbours: United States
Capital: Ottawa
Size 9,984,670 square kilometers (km² or sqkm) or 3,855,103 square miles (mi² or sqmi)
slightly larger than the US
Population 33,679,000
Currency Name: Dollar, Currency Code: CAD
Country Top Level Domain (cTLD) .ca
Telephone Country Prefix +1
Mobile Phone Connections 23,081,000
Landline Phone Connections 18,251,000

Country Position in World Rankings

Information about single country attributes and how these compare against the rest of the world. The information below is compiled with data from 2013. As such, it may differ a bit to the Information above in the text (which is from 2010).


Value name Value World Rank
Area 9,984,670 (sq km) 2

People and Society

Value name Value World Rank
Population 34,568,211 37
Population growth rate 0.77 (%) 136
Birth rate 10.28 (births/1,000 population) 187
Death rate 8.20 (deaths/1,000 population) 91
Net migration rate 5.65 (migrant(s)/1,000 population) 21
Maternal mortality rate 12.00 (deaths/100,000 live births) 150
Infant mortality rate 4.78 (deaths/1,000 live births) 182
Life expectancy at birth 81.57 (years) 13
Total fertility rate 1.59 (children born/woman) 180
Health expenditures 11.30 (% of GDP) 15
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate 0.30 (%) 88
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS 68,000 49
HIV/AIDS - deaths 1,000 69
Obesity - adult prevalence rate 26.20 (%) 48
Education expenditures 5.00 (% of GDP) 78
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24 14.1 (%) 92


Value name Value World Rank
GDP (purchasing power parity) 1,513,000,000,000 14
GDP - real growth rate 1.80 (%) 142
GDP - per capita (PPP) 43,400 19
Labor force 18,850,000 32
Unemployment rate 7.30 (%) 80
Distribution of family income - Gini index 32 103
Investment (gross fixed) 23.70 (% of GDP) 60
Taxes and other revenues 37.3 (% of GDP) 55
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-) -3.70 (% of GDP) 127
Public debt 84.10 (% of GDP) 22
Inflation rate (consumer prices) 1.80 (%) 28
Central bank discount rate 0.25 (%) 141
Commercial bank prime lending rate 3.00 (%) 177
Stock of narrow money 702,300,000,000 9
Stock of broad money 1,523,000,000,000 13
Stock of domestic credit 3,046,000,000,000 9
Market value of publicly traded shares 2,160,000,000,000 7
Industrial production growth rate 3.70 (%) 77
Current account balance -59,920,000,000 190
Exports 481,700,000,000 11
Imports 480,900,000,000 12
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold 65,820,000,000 31
Debt - external 1,326,000,000,000 15
Stock of direct foreign investment - at home 624,500,000,000 10
Stock of direct foreign investment - abroad 703,000,000,000 11


Value name Value World Rank
Electricity - production 580,600,000,000 (kWh) 8
Electricity - consumption 504,800,000,000 (kWh) 9
Electricity - exports 43,910,000,000 (kWh) 5
Electricity - imports 18,790,000,000 (kWh) 9
Electricity - installed generating capacity 131500000 (kW) 8
Electricity - from fossil fuels 28.8 (% of total installed capacity) 181
Electricity - from nuclear fuels 10.1 (% of total installed capacity) 20
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants 57.0 (% of total installed capacity) 35
Electricity - from other renewable sources 3.9 (% of total installed capacity) 44
Crude oil - production 3,592,000 (bbl/day) 7
Crude oil - exports 1,355,000 (bbl/day) 12
Crude oil - imports 791,100 (bbl/day) 16
Crude oil - proved reserves 173600000000 (bbl) 4
Refined petroleum products - production 1,978,000 (bbl/day) 11
Refined petroleum products - consumption 2,259,000 (bbl/day) 12
Refined petroleum products - exports 437,300 (bbl/day) 19
Refined petroleum products - imports 282,200 (bbl/day) 25
Natural gas - production 160,100,000,000 (cu m) 5
Natural gas - consumption 103,300,000,000 (cu m) 8
Natural gas - exports 92,720,000,000 (cu m) 6
Natural gas - imports 30,490,000,000 (cu m) 15
Natural gas - proved reserves 1,727,000,000,000 (cu m) 22
Carbon dioxide emissions from consumption of energy 548,800,000 (Mt) 10


Value name Value World Rank
Telephones - main lines in use 18,201,000 16
Telephones - mobile cellular 27,387,000 37
Internet hosts 8,743,000 14
Internet users 26,960,000 16


Value name Value World Rank
Airports 1,453 4
Railways 46,552 (km) 5
Roadways 1,042,300 (km) 6
Waterways 636 (km) 78
Merchant marine 181 35


Value name Value World Rank
Military expenditures 1.10 (% of GDP) 119

Data based on CIA facts book 2010 & 2013, wikipedia, national statistical offices and their census releases

List of current world heritage sites

Name Since
Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks
The contiguous national parks of Banff, Jasper, Kootenay and Yoho, as well as the Mount Robson, Mount Assiniboine and Hamber provincial parks, studded with mountain peaks, glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons and limestone caves, form a striking moun ...
Dinosaur Provincial Park
In addition to its particularly beautiful scenery, Dinosaur Provincial Park – located at the heart of the province of Alberta's badlands – contains some of the most important fossil discoveries ever made from the 'Age of Reptiles', in particular ...
Gros Morne National Park
Situated on the west coast of the island of Newfoundland, the park provides a rare example of the process of continental drift, where deep ocean crust and the rocks of the earth's mantle lie exposed. More recent glacial action has resulted in some sp ...
Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump
In south-west Alberta, the remains of marked trails and an aboriginal camp, and a tumulus where vast quantities of buffalo (American Bison) skeletons can still be found, are evidence of a custom practised by aboriginal peoples of the North American p ...
Historic District of Old Québec
Québec was founded by the French explorer Champlain in the early 17th century. It is the only North American city to have preserved its ramparts, together with the numerous bastions, gates and defensive works which still surround Old Québec. The Up ...
Joggins Fossil Cliffs
The Joggins Fossil Cliffs, a 689 ha palaeontological site along the coast of Nova Scotia (eastern Canada), have been described as the “coal age Galápagos” due to their wealth of fossils from the Carboniferous period (354 to 290 million years ago ...
Kluane / Wrangell-St. Elias / Glacier Bay / Tatshenshini-Alsek
These parks comprise an impressive complex of glaciers and high peaks on both sides of the border between Canada (Yukon Territory and British Columbia) and the United States (Alaska). The spectacular natural landscapes are home to many grizzly bears, ...
Landscape of Grand Pré
Situated in the southern Minas Basin of Nova Scotia, the Grand Pré marshland and archaeological sites constitute a cultural landscape bearing testimony to the development of agricultural farmland using dykes and the aboiteau wooden sluice system, st ...
L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site
At the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula of the island of Newfoundland, the remains of an 11th-century Viking settlement are evidence of the first European presence in North America. The excavated remains of wood-framed peat-turf buildings are simi ...
Miguasha National Park
The palaeontological site of Miguasha National Park, in south-eastern Quebec on the southern coast of the Gaspé peninsula, is considered to be the world's most outstanding illustration of the Devonian Period known as the 'Age of Fishes'. Dating from ...
Nahanni National Park
Located along the South Nahanni River, one of the most spectacular wild rivers in North America, this park contains deep canyons and huge waterfalls, as well as a unique limestone cave system. The park is also home to animals of the boreal forest, su ...
Old Town Lunenburg
Lunenburg is the best surviving example of a planned British colonial settlement in North America. Established in 1753, it has retained its original layout and overall appearance, based on a rectangular grid pattern drawn up in the home country. The ...
Red Bay Basque Whaling Station
Red Bay, established by Basque mariners in the 16th century at the north-eastern tip of Canada on the shore of the Strait of Belle Isle is an archaeological site that provides the earliest, most complete and best preserved testimony of the European w ...
Rideau Canal
The Rideau Canal, a monumental early 19th-century construction covering 202 km of the Rideau and Cataraqui rivers from Ottawa south to Kingston Harbour on Lake Ontario, was built primarily for strategic military purposes at a time when Great Britain ...
SGang Gwaay
The village of Ninstints (Nans Dins) is located on a small island off the west coast of the Queen Charlotte Islands (Haida Gwaii). Remains of houses, together with carved mortuary and memorial poles, illustrate the Haida people's art and way of life. ...
Waterton Glacier International Peace Park
In 1932 Waterton Lakes National Park (Alberta, Canada) was combined with the Glacier National Park (Montana, United States) to form the world's first International Peace Park. Situated on the border between the two countries and offering outstanding ...
Wood Buffalo National Park
Situated on the plains in the north-central region of Canada, the park (which covers 44,807 km2) is home to North America's largest population of wild bison. It is also the natural nesting place of the whooping crane. Another of the park's attraction ...