10 Reasons to Visit Canada Now

Remember high school? (Sadly, you do.) Remember the cliques? (Sorry to reopen that wound.) Well, if travel destinations attended high school, Paris and London and Rome would be the popular girls. New York, Tokyo and Berlin would be the black-clad bad-boys. Thailand would be the flower child.

And Canada? Dear Canada. She’d be the smart quiet girl who everyone respected but nobody really knew.

But you’ll recall the thing about those smart quiet girls is that given enough time and attention (not to mention decent wine), they could often be persuaded to reveal their secret charms. They definitely had a sexy side; you just needed a little patience to make them come across.

And so it is with Canada.

You’re not going to do her in a day, or even a month. She’ll tempt you with easy pleasures like Rocky Mountain rail tours and romantic calecherides and polar bears and rodeos. And then she’ll ask for a real commitment: a trip north to see the Northern Lights, for example, or a visit to Newfoundland to see the icebergs calve.

Let her lead you down the garden path. She’ll make your toes curl. Because Canada knows:

Bigger Really is Better.

canada bigger

How big is Canada? This big: by area it’s the second largest country in the world, but you could fit the entire population–and then some–into the single state of California. Which means there’s always a parking space in our abundant national parks. And you don’t have to wait eight months for a reservation at a hot new restaurant.

Even our biggest and most cosmopolitan cities, like TorontoMontreal, and Vancouver have plenty of elbow room. Because you shouldn’t have to get sweaty with strangers–unless you want to.

You Want to Get It Up While You Still Can

canada up
Hey, bucket lists are long and life is short. What’s on your wish list? Snorkeling with belugas? Sleeping in a lighthouse? Skiing on Olympic-calibre mountains? Cruising the Inside Passage? Stalking the Spirit Bear? Tying the knot where movie stars say “I do”? Canada can deliver on your biggest travel dreams.

Rainbows Are Romantic

canada diverse

Canada has been welcoming new arrivals ever since the ancient aboriginal communities first greeted European explorers in the 1700s. In fact, we’ve become something of a model for cultural co-existence: the rest of the world is always glancing North of 49 for lessons in tolerance and diversity. (And high moral ground aside: the mix certainly makes for great ethnic food and festivals.)

Canada doesn’t particularly care about the colour of your skin or which way your sexual compass points. Gay, straight, ball cap, burka, brown, white–even Red State: you’re welcome here.

Quebec is Hot

Niagara Falls is for lovesick teenagers. French is the language of love and Quebecla belle province–over on the right of the map just above New York–is Canada’s real Romance Central.

Think of it as a little bit of Europe without the big airfare and attitude. C’est magnifique. (And while French-Canada is a great place to make babies, once they’ve arrived nothing beats Tofino on the wild west coast for a great family vacation.)

Food is an Aphrodisiac

canada food

People who know food know Canada. It’s that diversity thing again: pick a culture, pick a cuisine, pick a winner. You can nosh on Afghan palao one night and Belgian chocolate the next and keep working your way down the geographic alphabet from there.

Seafood? Check. Slow food? Absolutely. Ethnic food of every variety. Vancouver is renowned for it’s wide array of Asian food and is home to the Chinese Restaurant Awards. Don’t leave the country without tasting poutine.

Not to Mention, Booze

canada booze

Would you like wine with that? Our wineries are good and always getting better; some can even give Napa a run for the money.  Of course if you’re more of a cut-to-the-chase sort of romancer, you’ll find what you’re looking for with our superlative Victoria Gin, and Iceberg and Crystal Head vodkas…

Your Heart Should Go Pitter-Pat

canada ice climbing

Just ask the 2010 Olympians: if you’re looking for an adrenaline fix, you’ve come to the right place. River raftingice climbingheli-skiingback-country hiking: you’ll find it all here–and often just a few hours from a city hub.

Winter Just Means More Clothes to Take Off

canada winter romance

Canada has beautiful shoulders. Spring and fall are unquestionably the prettiest (and least pricey) times to see the country. And no one celebrates summer quite like a Canadian (well, ok, maybe the Swedes).

But winter–we own winter. From Quebec’s Carnaval to the Yukon Quest, from Whistler Mountain to the Rideau Canal: we speak snow fluently. And we’d be happy to teach you the language of winter too.

We’re Cheap, But Not Easy

canada cheap
Have you looked at what a Euro buys in Canada these days? Or even the US dollar? Sure it might cost you a little more in airfare to get here, but once you’re on the ground you’ll find your travel budget goes further.

There’s accommodation to suit every taste and budget–hostels, B&Bs and luxury hotels–and dining options than run the gamut from greasy spoon to silver spoon.

You Secretly Want to be Canadian, Eh?

This much-viewed YouTube video pretty much says it all: