We take a look at the culture and customs of Canada, to help give you a clearer picture of what you can expect from life in Canada.

Those of you planning a move to Canada are no doubt excited by the prospect of immersing yourself into the Canadian way of life. Although English speaking, there will be plenty of differences to get used to. Here we run through all you need to know about life in Canada.

Canada is incredibly multicultural, and you’ll encounter people of all nationalities and religions living in the country.

Canadian culture

Canada is incredibly multicultural, and you’ll encounter people of all nationalities and religions living in the country. Canadians are known for being accepting, tolerant, and friendly to all. Good news for the shy amongst you – Canadians have a reputation for being very community orientated. The people of Canada do vary depending on where you are – and wherever you move to, it’s important to respect their way of life, and to adapt to it over time. For example, people in Nova Scotia and more remote areas tend to be a little more reserved than those who live in the cities.

In terms of national holidays, many Christian holidays are observed, i.e. Christmas and Good Friday, as are Jewish and Muslim holidays. Canadian’s also observe Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day, Halloween, and St Patrick’s Day is a big favourite, due to the population of Irish descendants. In terms of cultural holidays, from 21st June through to the 1st July, the nation celebrates a series of holidays, including National Aboriginal Day, St Jean Baptiste Day, Canadian Multiculturalism Day, and Canada Day.


Canadians celebrating Canada Day. Caption: Canadians are very patriotic, and enjoy celebrating national holidays.

Food and drink

Canadian food and drink won’t take much getting used to, as it’s pretty similar in nature to food found in the UK or the USA. As the county is such a melting pot of different cultures, you’ll find restaurants serving all kinds of different cuisines, for example, in Quebec you’ll find lots of French food, and Asian restaurants are all over Vancouver. You must try poutine, a national favourite, which is essentially chips with cheese and gravy. Steak is of excellent quality in the Central Plains, and fresh seafood is excellent on the coast. Bear in mind that when dining out, you should usually leave a tip of 15 percent, and tipping your waiter or waitress is expected in bars, restaurants, and nightclubs.

You must try poutine, a national favourite, which is essentially chips with cheese and gravy.


Canada is a nation of sports fans, and the most popular spectator sports are ice hockey and basketball. Due to the countries climate and natural landscape, winter sports are very popular, and the resorts of Whistler and Banff attract skiers and snowboarders from all around the world. At school, football, lacrosse and Canadian football (similar to American football) are the most prolific. It’s good news all round really for people who want to enjoy a healthy lifestyle – Canada has world-class golf courses, excellent hiking opportunities, running trails around most city parks, fantastic gym facilities, water sports – the whole lot.


Sport is a huge part of the Canadian way of life. Which team will you support?

Shopping in Canada

Canada’s cities and towns boast a huge range of shops, selling everything you could possibly desire– and if not, the Internet will provide. Shopping hours will vary depending on which province you are in, and often on Sunday’s shops will open for just a few hours in the afternoon. In general, you’ll find stores stay open later during the week than at weekends, and that 24-hour shops are rare.

Over the years we’ve developed a trusted network of industry experts and in-the-know expats who are on hand to provide invaluable information about the process of moving to Canada. To be put in touch, contact the Resource Team on 020 7898 0549, or download your free copy of the Canada Property Guide.

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The Canada Buying Guide takes you through each stage of the property buying process, with practical recommendations from our experts who have been through the process themselves. The guide will help you to:

  Ask the right questions
  Avoid losing money
  Avoid the legal pitfalls
  Move in successfully

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