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Geography

 

The Pacific Coast
The Cordillera
The Prairies
The Canadian Shield
The Great Lakes
The Appalachian Region
The Arctic
Geography and identity

 

The Canadian motto is "A mari usque ad mare" (from ocean to ocean) and points at the first and most fundamental notions when dealing with Canada - size.

 

Occupying the northern half of the North American continent, Canada's land mass is 9 093 507 kmē, making it the second-largest country in the world after Russia. From east to west, Canada encompasses six time zones. In addition to its coastlines on the Atlantic and Pacific oceans, Canada has a third sea coast on the Arctic Ocean, giving it the longest coastline of any country. To the south, Canada shares an 8, 891 kilometre boundary with the United States. To the north, the Arctic islands come within 800 kilometres of the North Pole. Canada's neighbour across the Arctic Ocean is Russia.

 

Because of the harsh northern climate, only 12% of the land is suitable for agriculture. Thus, most of the population of 35 million live within a few hundred kilometres of the southern border, where the climate is milder, in a long thin band stretching between the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans.

Population by year, by province and territory: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/tables-tableaux/sum-som/l01/cst01/demo02a-eng.htm

More figures about the Canadian population from Statistics Canada: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/140926/dq140926b-eng.htm

 

If you fly over Manitoba or northern Ontario in summer, you will see more water than land: lakes, big and small, so many that they could not possibly be counted. It has been estimated that Canada has one-seventh of the world's fresh water. In addition to the Great Lakes, which it shares with the United States, Canada has many large rivers and lakes.

 

Canada is often imagined as a northern country, with people going about their business in snowmobiles or dog-sleighs. While it is true that in the extreme north temperatures climb above 0°C for only a few months a year, most Canadians live within 300 kilometres of the country's southern border, where mild springs, warm summers and pleasantly crisp autumns prevail at least seven months of the year.

 

From a geographical point of view, Canada can be divided into seven physiographic regions, each with a very specific landscape and climate:

 

1.The Pacific Coast

2.The Cordillera

3.The Prairies

4.The Canadian Shield

5.The Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Lowlands

6.The Appalachian Region

7.The Arctic