In today’s world, tourists are increasingly more things other than those traditional ‘three S’ in the destinations that they are planning to visit to enjoy their holidays (Dawson, 2010). Nowadays, tourists are more attracted to destinations that have a little historical background or have heritage appeal. This trend is mostly seen in the discerning market and in mature customers. Canada has the privilege to holding 17 sites of world heritage, which also includes the oldest heritage site Nahanni Heritage Park and also includes the newest heritage site Red Bay Basque Whaling Station (Colton, 2005). Out of these 17 heritage sites, there are 9 natural heritage sites, whereas 8 are cultural heritage sites (Colton, 2005).
Canada is a place that is rich in culture as well. It is also getting benefits from the above-mentioned culture. Along with being rich in culture, Canada also has a lot of historical places, which it is marketing over many other forms of travelling experiences.
Canada is considered one of the largest domestic as well as foreign tourism industries. Canada has got unimaginable geographical structure, due to which it has become an important destination for all tourists around the world. Major regions for the tourist attraction in Canada are; Montreal, Vancouver, Toronto, Vancouver Island, Niagara Falls, Okanagan Valley, Canadian Rocks and Ottawa. Most of these regions are rich in culture and are attracting a lot of tourists because of the diversity they have in their cultures. Historical sites and amusement parks are also one of the biggest attractions in these regions.
According to a report, around 12 million tourists arrived in Canada in the year 2012 and giving a boost to the economy with US$17.4 billion. The tourism industry of Canada gives more than 300,000 jobs to the citizens and together, the domestic and international tourism in Canada contributes to the GDP of Canada, which is around 1% of the total GDP.
No matter what the measuring stick is when it comes to tourism, it is always meant as a business in Canada. Not because of the reason that it is playing an important role in the economy of Canada, but it is also contributing to every Canadian territory and every province because of the expansive influence and unique structure of the Canadian tourism industry. The tourism industry of Canada is making marvellous contributions to every sector and overall industry of Canada.
According to a study, in 2015, more than 27 million tourists were attracted to the cultural and historical heritage of Canada. Of which, the majority of the tourists came from America (Dawson, 2017). Here is the statistical representation of the data about the visitors that came to Canada in 2015 (Dawson, 2017).
|Number of People
|Total visitors arriving in Canada
Canada is known as the largest country (by size) in North America and the second largest (by size) in the world. The said country is known in the world for its untouched, vast landscape, multifaceted history and lot of cultures that it has (Murray 2015). Canada is known to be one of the wealthiest countries in the world and a must-go destination for tourists across the world (Murray 2015).
Canada is a land of rich natural beauty and immeasurable distances. Technologically and economically, Canada resembles one of her’s neighbouring countries in the south, the United States. Although there are many differences in the said countries there are also a lot of common things between these two countries. Both the United States and Canada have seen the time of colonialism and have a long history of that. Over the primitive people of both countries, Canadians are perfectly happy about the heritage they are carrying forward of the Britishers and they feel proud of that (Kiráľová, 2015). Much of Canada’s environment that we are seeing today was built back at that time by the immigrants of two European countries i.e., France and Britain.
This thing is very different from the United States, if we visit New Brunswick and Quebec in Canada we will come to know that these are the parts of Canada where people still have the influence of the French immigrants and even in 2018, Canadians in these two regions speak French.
Why has Canada attracted so many tourists?
There are many reasons why Canada has become the leading tourist attraction in the world. While taking a look at the geographical view of Canada, no other country can match those scenes. From mountains to glaciers, forests to secluded lakes, there is no other country in the world that can match Canada. But the attraction for tourists is not just limited to the outdoorsy activities in the mountains, lakes, and forests. Canada has many cosmopolitan cities that are far safe, clean, multicultural and more friendly than many of the major cities of other countries of the world (Lloyd, 2014). Canada has been awarded many times as the country that is clean and the most livable country in the world.
Spectacular urban attractions
Canada has many multicultural and modern cities and due to diversity in the culture, each city has its own personality. Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto are the cities that are best known for their distinct cultures. Yet, there are many others who show different aspects of Canadian life and Canadian cultures such as the mountainous landscape, maritime history and French history in Canada (Lloyd, 2014). In addition, Canadian cities are much smaller as compared to the cities in the USA because which administration of the Canadian cities is much easier than the administration of the metropolitan cities in other countries of the world (Lloyd, 2014). In cities in Canada that are relatively big in size, even in those cities, the natives are very much friendly to strangers, and the crime rate in Canada is very low.
Natural wonders in Canada
A natural wonder in Canada is also one of the major reasons for the attraction of tourists towards the country. Canada has the vastest coastline than any other country in the world. Lakes, mountain ranges, a small amount of deserts, arctic and forests, Canada has been blessed with almost everything and is a country that is full of surprises. The most famous attractions for tourists in Canada are (Smith, 2014):
- Dinosaur Provicial Park
- Nahanni National Park Reserve
- Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks
- Niagara Falls
- Scenic Drives
- Cabot Trail
Compared to the US, Canada is a place that is affordable to everyone. The Canadian dollar is almost worthless if it is compared with the US dollar (Prowse, 2009). Therefore the visitors that come to Canada find the prices reasonable. A worldwide survey that is conducted to find out the cost f living in different cities of different countries around the world with the name mercer Worldwide Cost of Living Survey says that Canadian cities are the most affordable cities in the world. Toronto, being the most expensive city in Canada, is ranked 82 out of 100 among the most expensive cities in the world (Dawson, 2017). Whereas Ottawa is said to be the city that is most affordable across North America.
Canada’s amazing outdoor activities
Another reason that makes Canada a major destination for visitors is its outdoor sports and outdoor activities. Although Canada is considered the second largest country in the world according to its size as compared to the area of the country, its population is very less. Canada has so much land for tourists to roam freely across the country, which makes it a very popular destination for every tourist. The most famous outdoorsy activities in Canada are (Stewart, 2010):
- Skiing/ Snowboarding
A place to visit every season
Many Canadian say that the climate in winter is much warmer, due to which they try to leave the country on vacations. Whereas people from many other areas of the are coming to Canada at that time to enjoy the winter (Stewart, 2007). The country is known for its famous northern climate. Fal, summer and spring appeal differently and have their own charms. As Canada is by area the second largest country in the world, therefore the climate of Canada varies greatly, thus allowing the country different activities around the year.
French heritage in Canada
As there were a lot of immigrants in Canada from Britain and France, therefore French culture is still prominent in some regions of Canada, especially in Quebec and Maritime (Prowse, 2009). Officially, Canada is a country to two languages but it is not necessary for the visitors to speak French.
Diversity in the Canadian culture is also another important factor that makes Canada a place for everyone to go. The landscape, the climate and the culture all these things have so much diversity that makes it much popular among all the travellers of the world. Canada is a country that encourages diversity and has always welcomed immigrants on its soil (Prowse, 2009). This gives Canada a wide range of ethnic shops, restaurants and neighbourhoods.
Issues faced by the Canadian tourism industry
Few people say that the tourism industry is a highly volatile industry. The boom or downfall of the tourism industry is highly dependent on how many facilities the tourist wants. However, the tourism industry not only depends on the facilities that the tourist wants, but it also depends on the different groups of business travellers (Lloyd, 2014). These business professionals are aware of the fact that the tourism industry is too exposed to fluctuations in different political and economic situations. Below are some of the reasons that the tourism industry is currently facing(Lloyd, 2014).
- This industry is facing high taxes. Very few people outside of this industry are aware of the fact that travellers pay too much taxes for their travelling. Like the taxes, they pay on their airline ticket, their hotel, and the taxes when they travel locally.
- The world is becoming a global village. This means that the same products are available throughout the world. Globalization is becoming a major issue for the tourism industry. Travelling provides the opportunity for the traveller to explore new things. Especially if you travel to Canada, you will get the chance to explore new cultures and will also get the by-products that that multicultural environment provides. But due to globalization, you can get all those things anywhere around the world,
- This industry is highly dependent on the prices of fuel. The up and down in the prices of fuel directly affects the costs that the traveller incurs during his travelling. The recent fall in fuel prices greatly affected the industry, and Canada has faced a boom in its tourism industry. Due to this, a lot of tourists have travelled to Canada. But if the prices get high like a few years ago, then this industry faces a serious downfall. Due to this reason, Canada faced a serious downfall back in 2007.
Canada has been blessed with a beautiful geographical structure and has the blessing of four seasons in a year. The said country is considered to be the largest country in North America and the second largest in the world as per the total covered area. The geographical structure and the enrichment of natural and historical sites make Canada a very famous destination for all tourists around the world. Although there are many issues that this industry has faced in the past as well as it is currently facing, it has recovered itself from the loss that it faced at the start of the 21st century and currently, the tourism industry of Canada is continuing around 1% of the total GDP in the Canadian economy.
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