this is my canada

I think every Canadian should have a map of Canada in his or her house. It should be displayed in a place where one can sit and contemplate the wonderful vastness of this land. As Canadians we are continuously groping for an identity and a sense of love for our nation. We grapple with the concept, find it somewhat distasteful and leave it for another day. We find American flag waving, hand over heart while belting out Oh, say, can you see... too much and avoid doing the same. We admire their national spirit, but Canadians are, in contrast, understated. To understand the identity that exists in our hearts think of our sweepingly majestic home, its quiet, serene beauty. A beauty recognizable to us all. We are proud of this nation and of who we are. We just don't say it. It's like the map. It just sits there on the wall displaying the lines of our coasts, the bulk of our waterways, and the breadth of our northern territories. Surveying all of this leaves me in awe. It brings a tear to my eye...O Canada...~ Debora O'Neil

I follow a lot of travel blogs. I love them. The idea of travelling the world, and seeing all of Canada, is a dream of mine. Recently Spunkygirl Monologues started a blogger roulette featuring Canada and I was tagged by Breathe Dream Go. The concept is that Canadian bloggers write a post about why they love Canada, and what they think travellers should do when they visit Canada. I decided this is a great opportunity to share with my readers and give back to my favourite country in the entire world.

So why do I love Canada?

I love Canada because there is so much diversity in landscape. I grew up in Nova Scotia filled with rolling hills and ocean views, yet now I live in Manitoba with beautiful flat wheat fields and endless sunsets. I have travelled to every province except British Columbia and Newfoundland & Labrador. There is always a new natural setting to explore in Canada and every province offers its own unique viewpoints and experiences.

I love Canada because the people are some of the warmest and friendliest people in the world, and Canadians are very welcoming of all cultures and backgrounds. As a society Canadians love to share their experiences and are always comfortable offering ideas and tips to travellers. We are proud of our country and want to share it with the world.

I love Canada because there is lots to explore on any budget. Many of the best Canadian experiences are free or nearly free, which means that even if you have a small budget you can still see and do lots of amazing things. There is an abundance of provincial and national parks, quirky roadside attractions, free festivals and celebrations, and delicious little hole-in-the-wall diners and cafes.

I love Canada because it truly has four distinct seasons. One can ski in the winter in Banff, watch thousands of snakes meet up in a large snake pit in spring in Manitoba, frolic on the sandy beaches of Prince Edward Island in the summer, and be blown away from the beauty of the changing leaves on the Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia in the fall. In Canada we experience all four seasons to the fullest!

I love Canada because it is huge! Seriously huge! I travel and explore often and still have not made it to every province. This means you never run out of places to visit. Even if you never leave your own province there are always corners you haven’t been to yet and something new to explore is always waiting for you.

So what do I think travellers should do when they visit Canada? Well I think they should get lost. I think they should pick one or two big ticket traditional Canadian tourist attractions and then set out on a road trip to see it, getting lost along the way. Get off the main highway and take the back roads. They should detour into little communities and parks, discovering beautiful views, friendly people, country cooking, and quirky attractions. Some of my absolute favourite moments in Canada have been simply setting out on a drive just to see what I stumble upon while I'm getting lost. So my advice is get out and enjoy Canada. Explore the large cities and the small rural communities. See the mountains and the valleys and the prairies and get lost along the way. Please come back and share your favourite Canadian discoveries with me. I’m always open to new Canadian ideas and adventures.

TurnipseedTravel - tag you’re it! I can’t wait to see what your Canada looks like! Please follow the hashtag #MyCanada to see all the posts that Canadian bloggers have contributed to this blogger roulette. There are lots of diverse and great ideas to read.

Do you have a favourite place to 'get lost' in Canada? Care to share it with me?