Canada is a popular holiday destination, and offers visitors a mix of urban sophistication and outdoor pleasures. Visitors’ facilities are generally excellent. Accommodations and restaurants are of international standard, public transportation is efficient, and tourist information centers are found nearly everywhere.
All visitors to Canada should have a passport valid for longer than the intended period of stay. Travelers from the UK, US, EU, and all British Commonwealth countries do not require a special visa to visit Canada. Tourists are issued with a visitor’s visa on arrival if they satisfy immigration officials that they have a valid return ticket, and that they have sufficient funds for the duration of their stay. Visitors can stay up to six months, but to extend their stay they must apply to Citizenship and Immigration Canada in Ottawa before expiration of their authorized visit. As visa regulations are subject to change, it is wise to check with the nearest Canadian Consulate, Embassy, or High Commission before leaving home or buying tickets.
Anyone under the age of 18 who is traveling unaccompanied by an adult needs a letter of consent from a parent or guardian giving them permission to travel alone.
Canadian tourist offices are famous for the amount and quality of their information, offering everything from local maps to hotel, B-and-B, or campground bookings. Special tours such as wilderness camping, archaeological digs, and wildlife-watching can often be arranged through the tourism service. All the provincial and national parks have visitors’ centers, which generally provide maps detailing hiking trails and canoe routes.
The national Canadian Tourism Commission is the central organization, and each province has its own tourism authority. Most smaller towns also have their own seasonal tourist offices, which offer good free maps and detailed information.
Each of the large cities has a main office as well as extra booths and kiosks open during busy summer months. Accommodations can usually be booked at the booths found in airports and regional offices.