Welcome to Canada

Explore a nation of provinces

O Canada!

So what is Canada like? Possibly very different to your home country, meaning that it’s a good idea to do some research before you arrive here so that you can be prepared for the climate in the province you’re considering living and working in as a nurse.

These pages will help to introduce you to important features of this country, such as the Canadian climate and location of each province.

Canada is a North American country stretching from the U.S. in the south to the Arctic Circle in the north. It is made up of 10 provinces and 3 territories, and is the second largest country on earth, covering 9.985 million square kilometres (3.85 million square miles). It is a multicultural country with an ethnic and linguistic mix that is unique in the world, made up of a population of around 38 million people.

    • Capital: Ottawa
    • Largest City: Toronto
    • Official Languages: English & French
    • Demonym: Canadian
    • Government: Federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy

Canada may be very different from your home country, which means there is a great deal to learn about and explore before you arrive here.

Canada has one of the most positive immigration policies in the world.  Roughly around 20 per cent of Canadians were born outside of Canada. In Toronto, Canada’s largest city, this number is over 45 per cent. Immigrants are a valued part of what makes up Canada’s multicultural society. Major cities include east coast Toronto, Vancouver to the west, French-speaking Montréal and Québec City, and capital city Ottawa.

Canada is a constitutional monarchy. This means:

  • the Queen or King of Canada is the head of state
  • the Prime Minister is the head of government

The Governor General represents the Queen in Canada. The Sovereign appoints the Governor General on the Prime Minister’s advice. The appointment is usually for five years.

Learn more about Canada’s provinces and territories below:


Alberta is a province in Western Canada and is one of three Canadian provinces and territories to border only a single U.S. state and one of only two landlocked provinces. Calgary is the largest city in Alberta and is around 290 km (180 mi) south of the capital (Edmonton). Alberta is named after Princess Louise Caroline Alberta who was the fourth daughter of Queen Victoria. It is the 4th largest province after Quebec.

    • Capital: Edmonton
    • Largest City: Calgary
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 4.146 million
    • Average Summer Temperature: 25°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -6°C

Links about Alberta

Here are some links to help you discover Alberta further –

British Columbia

British Columbia is the westernmost province in Canada and has the third highest population. While the coast of British Columbia and some valleys in the south-central part of the province have mild weather, the majority of its land mass experiences a cold-winter-temperate climate similar to the rest of Canada. The city of Vancouver has by far the mildest winter climate of the major Canadian cities, with nighttime January temperatures averaging above the freezing point.

    • Capital: Victoria
    • Largest City: Vancouver
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 4 648 055
    • Average Summer Temperature: 23°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: 3°C

Links about British Columbia

Here are some links to help you discover British Columbia further –


Manitoba is one of the Prairie Provinces of Canada, lying midway between the Atlantic and the Pacific oceans. Winnipeg, Manitoba’s largest city, is the capital. Manitoba is Canada’s fifth most populated province with a population of around 1.3 million. By industry, the largest number of Manitobans are employed in healthcare and social assistance, followed by retail trade, manufacturing and educational services.

    • Capital: Winnipeg
    • Largest City: Winnipeg
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 1 343 371
    • Average Summer Temperature: 20°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -16°C

Links about Manitoba

Here are some links to help you discover Manitoba further –

New Brunswick

New Brunswick is Canada’s 8th most populated province, bordered on the north by Quebec, on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, on the south by the Bay of Fundy, and on the west by the US state of Maine. The southeast corner of the province is connected to Nova Scotia at the isthmus of Chignecto. According to the Constitution of Canada New Brunswick is the only bilingual province. About two thirds of the population declare themselves anglophones and a third are francophones. One third of the overall population describe themselves as bilingual.

    • Capital: Fredericton
    • Largest City: Moncton
    • Official Languages: English and French
    • Population: 747 101
    • Average Summer Temperature: 25°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -15°C

Links about New Brunswick

Here are some links to help you discover New Brunswick further –

Newfoundland and Labrador

Newfoundland and Labrador is the most easterly province of Canada. Situated in the country’s Atlantic region, it comprises the island of Newfoundland and mainland Labrador to the northwest. The capital and largest city, St. John’s, is Canada’s 20th largest census metropolitan area, followed by Corner Brook, Grand Falls-Windsor and Bay Roberts. Newfoundland is the youngest of the Canadian provinces, joining Confederation in 1949.

    • Capital: St. John's
    • Largest City: St. John's
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 519 716
    • Average Summer Temperature: 21°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -4°C

Links about Newfoundland and Labrador

Here are some links to help you discover Newfoundland and Labrador further –

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is Canada’s smallest province in area after Prince Edward Island. The province’s mainland is the Nova Scotia peninsula surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, including numerous bays and estuaries. Its capital city is Halifax, and it is Canada’s 2nd most densely populated province. The next most populated cities include Sydney, Truro, New Glasgow and Glace Bay. 81 per cent of the employed population in 2013 worked in the service sector and within this sector, the trades, health care and social assistance, and education were the top employers.

    • Capital: Halifax
    • Largest City: Halifax
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 923 598
    • Average Summer Temperature: 23°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -8°C

Links about Nova Scotia

Here are some links to help you discover Nova Scotia further –


Ontario is in east-central Canada and is the most populous province, accounting for nearly 40 percent of the country’s population, and is the second-largest province in total area. It is home to the nation’s capital city, Ottawa, and the nation’s most populated city, Toronto. Ontario is bordered by the province of Manitoba to the west, Hudson Bay and James Bay to the north, and Quebec to the east and northeast; and to the south by the U.S. states of Minnesota, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York.

    • Capital: Toronto
    • Largest City: Toronto
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 13 448 494
    • Average Summer Temperature: 25°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -2°C

Links about Ontario

Here are some links to help you discover Ontario further –

Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island (P.E.I) is the smallest province of Canada in both land area and in population, consisting of the island of the same name, and several much smaller islands. Prince Edward Island is one of the three Maritime Provinces. PEI is located about 200 kilometres (120 miles) north of Halifax, Nova Scotia and 600 kilometres (370 miles) east of Quebec City. It consists of the main island and 231 minor islands, but the main island is just slightly larger than the US state of Delaware. The capital of Prince Edward Island is Charlottetown.

    • Capital: Charlottetown
    • Largest City: Charlottetown
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 142 907
    • Average Summer Temperature: 23°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -3°C

Links about Prince Edward Island

Here are some links to help you discover Prince Edward Island further –


Saskatchewan is a prairie province in western Canada, bordered on the west by Alberta, on the north by the Northwest Territories, on the east by Manitoba, to the northeast by Nunavut, and on the south by the U.S. states of Montana and North Dakota. Out of the total population, around half live in the province’s largest city Saskatoon, or the provincial capital Regina. Other cities to note include Prince Albert, Moose Jaw, Yorkton, Swift Current, North Battleford, Melfort, and the border city Lloydminster. It is a landlocked province and as a result, its climate is extremely continental, meaning severe winters throughout the province with southern areas having very warm or hot summers.

    • Capital: Regina
    • Largest City: Saskatoon
    • Official Languages: English
    • Population: 1 098 352
    • Average Summer Temperature: 26°C
    • Average Winter Temperature: -10°C

Links about Saskatchewan

Here are some links to help you discover Saskatchewan further –