Proud Canadian and Canadian gems

Happy Birthday Canada

 

Those of you who have read my previous blogs know I have talked about lots of gems. I have also last month commented on the Queen’s Jubilee and the UK.

 

This month I celebrate being a Canadian!Image

Adrian, Jo and Anita it is something else for Smith, Smith and Smith  on July 1 but back to Canada.

 

I am extremely proud to be a Canadian and would like to tell everyone about this great country! No one seems to know a lot about us.  There are lots of thoughts and pre-conceptions about Canada-we are friendly, we are always cold, we live in igloos. These are some of the comments or ideas that I have encountered when travelling.  I don’t have a problem with the idea of Canadians being friendly; too bad we can’t say that about all countries and end all wars.  As far as being cold—I wish- when we are in a hot spell in the summer sweltering in 30-40*C weather, cold would be good. As to the idea of   Igloos I think it would be fascinating to be in one, but I haven’t done that.

 

Canada is a huge diverse country.  When I fly to Scotland it takes 6-61/2 hours from Toronto but when I fly to Vancouver from Toronto it takes me 5-51/2 hours.  This will give you an idea of how big this country is and there are still Quebec and the east coast of Canada   from Toronto when you travelling to the Atlantic Ocean. Canada also stretches to the North pole. Now that you are in awe of how big Canada is what are some of the things you will see?

 

One of the things I love on the east coast is the Island of Cape Breton (closest I can get to the feel of Scotland on this side of the Atlantic). The Cabot trail goes around the island with the water on one side and the cliff on the other-a gorgeous driveImageThe eastern provinces also provide us with Peggy’s cove which has been the subject of many paintings and the unique Magnetic Hill in New Brunswick. The magnetic hill is so cool-drive to the bottom put your car in neutral and the magnetic properties pull you back up.

I can’t tell you much about the rock (Newfoundland) not having been there, but I have relatives who have come from there and always want to go back to visit and retire (or as they call it returning home).

 

My favourite part of Quebec is the part of Quebec city called Old Quebec—have you figured out yet I love history?  The war of 1812 was fought on the Plains of Abraham in Quebec. Of course we have now discovered diamonds in Quebec as well.

 

 Coming further west you will see one of the 7 natural wonders of the world, Niagara Falls.  In June, 2012  Nik Wallenda  strung a wire 3 pennies wide and walked across from the US to Canada making history.

Image I must admit to having been to the falls so often I sometimes take them for granted. But when you think about them and see them they are an amazing sight. I have seen them from the sky in a helicopter with my 3 year old son (at the time) , from the boat that takes you to the base of them, from the walkways that are on the cliffs beside them. I have seen them in the day and in the awe inspiring night with the lights that Canada shines on them, in the summer and in the winter with them half frozen at the base (but never totally froze). Niagara Falls is a must see if you are in Ontario visiting, as seeing it on TV or in pictures  does not do it justice.

Northern Ontario with the rock formations and lots of lakes are always fascinating and so pretty. 

 

Going further west is the province of Manitoba which is the land of lakes leading to the flat prairies.  In the prairies you can see a town in the distance and not realize it is 60 km away. Amazing sight! Diamonds are found in Saskatchewan a prairie province as well.

 If you like mountains the Rockies will be where you want to go, from Whistler for skiing to Banff and Jasper national parks.  The Rockies are on the border of Alberta and BC and I love going to see them. Try climbing the retreating glacier.   We go on to Vancouver and the port of Vancouver and Stanley ParkImageVancouver is an interesting city with always lots to see and do.

 

 Of course being who I am I have to look at Canadian gems briefly—Demantoid garnets in Quebec, amethyst, diamonds in Ontario, Ammolite and  diamonds in the prairies, nephrite jade and opal in BC, diamonds, sapphires and rubies in the North. These are just a few of the gems Canada can claim to have.

 

As a proud and friendly Canadian I invite you to see this country for yourself-it has much to offer! Oh and by the way Happy Canada Day on July 1 and Happy 4th of July to my friends in the USA.

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