An Aussie’s ode to Canada: How this country totally won me over

June 13, 2023

As an Aussie who was lucky to grow up in such a beautiful country, I can confidently say that the Land Down Under gained some major competition when I moved to Canada in 2017. Ever since the second that I touched down on Canadian soil in July of that year, I’ve been in complete awe of Canada. This country is jaw-droppingly beautiful and I’ll talk about it for hours to anyone who will listen while constantly showing pictures of this northern land’s beauty. Seriously, I’m in love.

So, what makes this country so darn amazing? If you’re not already familiar with Canada (or if you’re new here), get ready to be wow’d. Here's why (IMO) Canada is such an awesome place to explore and discover. Who knows, you might just fall in love with it and decide to stick around!

1. The seasons are so FUN (Yes, even winter!)

I remember back in 2017 when I told people that I was leaving “sunny” Australia for “freezing” Canada. They were gobsmacked. With their mouths hanging open, they’d ask, “Why?” over and over again. I would simply tell them that my partner and I wanted to experience something different from what we had become used to for the last 25-odd years. Yes, Canada is cold during winter, but in my opinion, that’s what makes it so remarkable. Being able to explore frozen waterfalls and ski all winter long, followed by frolicking on the beach all summer, is what I love about Canada so much.

Each season is so diverse and always jam-packed with weather-appropriate activities. Do you want to go dog sledding, ice fishing and even skating on a frozen lake? Canada is the place for that. What about stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, and cycling? Then come on over to Canada, bestie. There’s so much to do in every season, as long as you’re willing to get out and explore despite the (sometimes harsh) weather conditions.

2. The scenery is next-level AMAZING

Have you ever felt as though you were—quite literally—inside of a postcard? This is the feeling I get whenever I visit any one of Canada’s multiple natural beauties—from the East Coast to the West Coast. And it was that exact feeling I had when I visited the Rocky Mountains for the first time. I remember standing looking out over Moraine Lake, and being in complete awe. It was one of those moments that reminded me why life is so special and that we often forget to actually look around and take it all in.

Although I now live on Canada’s East Coast, I’m most definitely not running short on natural beauties over this side. Take, for instance, Niagara Falls—I've been there so many times that I could practically be a tour guide for it. The sheer beauty of the water rushing over the falls never gets old.

Aside from the famous landmark beauties that tourists flock to each year, there are also many natural gems that only the “locals” like myself know about. For example, little waterfalls in the woods and beautiful spots on top of high mountains where we can watch the sunset after a long day.

Sergey pesterev P0n Wpyphwks unsplash

3. Multiculturalism is celebrated

When I first arrived in Canada, I was in awe at how diverse the country was and how much each culture was celebrated. Walk through any Canadian city, and it’s like taking a trip across the world, with every little neighbourhood and nook as diverse as the next.

Most weekends, my family and I “neighbourhood hop” by starting the day in the Greek area and ending it in Chinatown while briefly popping into the Polish Village. We get a trip around the world, and we don’t even leave the city, which is a win-win. Am I right, or am I right?

4. The people are SUPER friendly

When travelling, I’m usually quite hesitant to accept advice or help from people that I don't know. So when someone offered us help with directions after having just landed in Canada (and being crazy sleep deprived), I immediately assumed it was a tourist scam. To my surprise, this person wanted nothing from us—he was just a helpful man on his way to work who could spot us delirious Aussie tourists a mile away.

This scenario is the norm in Canada. People want to say hello, help you, and have a chat. (I 100% oblige as I could chew anyone's ear off for hours on end if they let me!)

Insider tip: If you're gonna rock Canadian sports team gear, make sure you've got a couple of facts up your sleeve about that team. 'Cause let me tell ya, those friendly Canadians will without a doubt make conversation with you about their beloved sports teams, and it gets real awkward when you've got nothing to say in return. Trust me, I learned that the hard way.

Sorrey

5. The lingo is authentically Canadian

Coming from a fellow English-speaking country, I had no idea there would be so many differences in the slang between Australia and Canada. For starters, wtf is a double-double and who is Timmy?

But after many confused exchanges between myself and my beloved Canadians, I’ve learned a thing or two. Let me break down a few common slang terms:

  • Timmy’s: The gold standard of Canadian coffee. Tim Hortons is on almost every corner, and Canadians love it so very dearly for their daily coffee and Timbit (donut) fix.

  • Double double: A delicious cup of coffee from Timmy’s with double the goodness of both cream and sugar.

  • Two-four: What has 24 cans and good times? A case of beer of course!

  • Washroom: Yes, it sounds like a room you would go to wash, but no, it’s actually the toilet/restroom. As an Australian—weird.

  • Toque: This is what our lovely Canadians call beanies.

  • Loonie and Toonie: I know, I know, they sound like cartoon characters, but these bad boys are actually the Canadian $1 and $2 coins.

Tim Hortons

6. The food is tantalizingly YUM!

When I say the phrase, “World's best dessert,” if the word Beavertail doesn’t immediately come to mind, listen and learn, my friend. A Beavertail is the Canadian dessert equivalent of heaven on Earth. It’s cinnamon-y fried dough that comes covered in your favourite toppings like Nutella, peanut butter, and marshmallows, and it’s almost impossible to stop at only one.

Although I’m predominately a dessert gal, Canada also has some other delicious foods that are unique to this beautiful country such as:

  • Poutine: Fries, cheese and gravy. Need I say more?

  • Maple syrup: Did you even come to Canada if you didn’t try this and also buy 800L to send back to your family and friends?

  • Montreal style bagels: The absolutely perfect form of bready goodness.

  • Montreal smoked meat: Perfect especially when paired with the above.

  • Ketchup chips: Potato chips covered in ketchup flavour… yum!

7. The sports scene is perfect for sports fans.

The Canadian sports scene is the perfect mix of die-hard fans and the fans like myself; who go more for the amazing atmosphere, social scene, and to eat all of the game-day snacks (the peanuts at the baseball are my favourite!).

Canada is part of the North American market for all of the major sports, including baseball, basketball, soccer, and, of course, hockey. So whatever coast you're on in Canada, there are many sports options.

What I love so much about going to any sports game in Canada is that you don’t have to be a die-hard fan. But if you want to become one, you’re 100% guaranteed to bump into a friendly Canadian fan who will happily explain all of the rules and make you a #1 ticket holder in no time.

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That's a wrap! So, now that you know the seven things that I LOVE about Canada, when are you booking your ticket?

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