Canada occupies the whole of the northern part of North America (except Alaska) and many islands Baffin Island, Newfoundland, Vancouver, Prince Edward Island etc.). Canada is the second largest country in the world – its area is about 10 mil. sq. km. It neighbours with the USA – with Alaska and with the continental states and the Great Lakes Area. This border is the longest undefended border in the world.
The Great Lakes Region is the largest area of fresh water in the world. There are famous Niagara Falls between Lake Erie and Ontario. We can find also other big and beautiful lakes in Canada, e.g. Great Bear Lake, Great Slave Lake, Lake Winnipeg etc.
Canada has large mountain areas – the Rocky Mountains, the Mackenzie Mountains and the Melville Hills. The highest mountain is Mt. Logan in the Alaska Region, the longest river is the Mackenzie, other big rivers are the Yukon, the Fraser, the Columbia and the River St. Lawrence.
The climate varies from Arctic climate in the North to moderate climate in the east and west. The north of the country near the Arctic is a cold tundra with large and beautiful forests to the south. The central plains form the prairie.
Canada have more than 27 mil. people. The density is one of the lowest in the world. 80 per cent Canadians live in large urban centres located within 300 km of the southern border. People are mainly of British and French origin and of continental European origin and the rest is made by Eskimos or Indians (Eskimos are sometimes called the Inuits). Two main languages in Canada are English and French.
The original inhabitants came to Canada some 10 or 25 thousand years ago from Asia. The first Europeans here were the Vikings. During the Age of Discoveries (the 15th and 16th centuries) some navigators (e.g. Jacques Cartier) landed on the Canadian coast. Since the 16th century large territories were occupied by the French but France lost this country in wars with England and Canada became a British dominion.
Canada has mainly coal, metal, oil and gas, machine-building and chemical industries. The main mining province is Alberta. Motorcar industry has its works in Chatham and Oshawa, ship are built on the banks of Great Lakes, in Montreal and Toronto. Hydroelectric industry is highly developed in the provinces of Ontario and Quebec.
Almost half the land area of Canada is covered by forests. Only about 7 per cent of land is suitable for farming (wheat). Other important agriculture items are e.g. livestock production, oats, vegetables, fruits and leather.
Natural resources: gold, uranium, other metal ores, oil and gas. Most people work in services, the rest work in manufacturing, agriculture, finance, fishing etc.
Government type and administration:
It is and independent federal parliamentary system with Queen Elizabeth II as the head of state. She is represented in Canada by the governor-general. The federal parliament consisting of two houses: The House of Commons and The Senate.
Canada is divided into 10 provinces ant 2 territories. The biggest province is Quebec (capital Quebec city). Other provinces are:
- Prince Edward Island
- Nova Scotia
- New Brunswick
- British Columbia
The capital of Canada is Ottawa. The biggest city is Toronto, other Montreal, Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg… Canada is the member of many international organisations such as the UN and NATO. Its flag is red and in the centre there is whit square with a red maple leaf.