By Jade Johnston of OurOyster.com
you are under 30 or 35 (depending on what agreement your country has
with Canada), and are from a country which has a working holiday
agreement with Canada, then you can come to the world's second largest
country and do all three thing in this posts title.
If you are not
eligible for a working holiday visa, well you can still come for the
play, and boy, would we love to have you over!
This blog post is
my fifth and final entry into World Nomad's blog your backyard
competition. I have had a great time reflecting on and writing about my
home country, and it has helped get me through some of the home sickness
I have felt over here in New Zealand.
This image is so Canadian it hurts......
So, you need a place to stay?
One of the first things you will need to consider when you begin planning your trip to Canada
is, where to start! Canada is massive - it's the world's second largest
country after all. Most likely, you will be starting in one of the
major cities. Toronto, Montreal, or Vancouver. And for most of you, it
will be Toronto. Toronto, although NOT our capital city, does have our
busiest international airport, and for most travellers, this will be
your port of entry.
Many people will decide to stay in Toronto,
and as Canada's largest city, there is definitely enough there to keep
you busy for your entire trip. But on behalf of all Canadians who are
not Torontonians - we urge you to see more than just the T dot!
matter what your style, you will find somewhere in Canada that will
suit your tastes. From rugged landscape with sparse populations in the
maritime provinces, to urban playgrounds in Ontario, to French chique in
Quebec, to the liberal and hipster paradise of British Columbia.
you decide on where you want to be, you need to find a place to stay.
If you are only passing through, you will find no shortage of hostels
and hotels to cater to your needs. There is also a vibrant couch surfing community in Canada, and if you are open to that style of travel, I definitely recommend it.
you are staying longer term, you will probably want to find an
apartment to rent. Each area of Canada has different resources, but do
check if your region of choice has any craigslist or kijiji listings. And also make sure to check the local newspapers, and their websites for listings.
So, you want to make some money?
was very fortunate to not be hit very badly by the financial crisis of
2008, so it is still relatively straight forward to find a job here.
Every day is like monopoly day with Canadian dollars! Photo by ~Twon~
job I have had in Canada, I have found by aimlessly walking around and
handing my CV to any shop I pass by. And that is definitely a great way
to find work if you are looking for something in retail or hospitality.
But if you are unlike me and actually have a real degree (ie. not an
arts degree :P ), or real job experience, then you are better off to aim
a bit higher. The government of Canada has a great job website
which lists jobs all over the country - and not just government jobs
either. Another avenue you can go through are temp or job agencies.
Although I have never gone through a job agency, I know of several
people who have had great success with them.
Well, now that the boring part is taken care of, it's time to get out there and have some fun!
on where you chose to live, this could mean anything. If you are in an
urban centre, make sure to pick up some of the many varieties of free
entertainment papers out there and check out the listings. Even in
smaller cities, like my hometown of Winnipeg, there are bands playing
and art events happening on most days.
Don't forget to check out
all the different festivals on offer around the country. The great thing
about a country which prides itself on multiculturalism, is that we
have loads of great and colourful festivals to indulge in.
A skier in Whistler - Photo by Tim in Sydney
of course, there is the great Canadian outdoors. If its summer, grab
your bug repellent, and if it's winter grab your toque (its Canadian for
hat), and get out there! You don't have to go far to be away from the
urban crowds in Canada, and make sure to check out the parks Canada website for great information on our national parks.
you are into skiing or snowboarding, then you will have a hard time
dragging yourself away from Banff, Jasper, or Whistler, so make sure you
don't miss out on these great locations.
And last, but not least,
there is my favourite Canadian past time. EATING OUT! Restaurants are
more affordable in Canada than in many other places I have lived, and
yet again, our multicultural ways have blessed us. You can probably find
every type of food from around the world in Canadian cities, and you
would be missing out if you didn't try them all. If you are in my city
of Winnipeg, make sure you go get an avocado bubble tea from Kawaii
Crepe in Osborne village ..... but don't tell me about it.... I might
get homesick again!
The ‘Blog your Backyard’ Project
Share your local expertise and join the Blog your Backyard project! Become an ambassador for your country (home or adopted) by sharing your experiences and tips with other travelers. Submit your entries starting August 8th on WorldNomads.com for a chance to win one of 20 awesome excursions with Urban Adventures. Plus, if you want to share more of your local expertise or get answers to all of your travel questions, download the FREE ‘Ask A Nomad’ iPad app.