Visit Canada As a Tourist

Edited by Pia Marie Villamante, Robbi, Eng, Lynn and 10 others

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Visiting other places, especially other countries, can be a wonderful adventure. If you are a tourist, Canada is one of the best places to visit. Geographically located in North America, just above the USA, Canada is the second largest country in the world. It consists of ten provinces and three territories.

Canada extends from the Atlantic (Newfoundland) to the Pacific (British Columbia) and northward to the Arctic Ocean. With Canada's vast land mass, there is a variety of different terrains to explore within the same country. From tall mountain ranges, the flat plains that stretch as far as the eye can see, the Canadian Shield mostly located in the Province of Ontario, to sand dunes on the coast of Prince Edward Island, there is something for to explore for everyone. In terms of landscape, outdoor recreational sports, and leisure you can water ski in the summer, ski down huge slopes in the winter, and rent a houseboat to travel through the Rideau Canal.

The major cities within Canada offer diversity from Ethnic cuisine to festivals celebrating holidays of different countries and religions. Neighborhoods coined after the immigrants that established them offer the unique opportunity of feeling like you are visiting another country within a city of Canada. Tour one of the many museums or walk through the Old Montreal and Quebec City districts offering a European feel. Visit Travel Canada to help plan your visit.

About Canada

The Canadian Shield - Canada

Canada has four distinct seasons. Because it's so large, winter varies. The Yukon, for example, so far north, is brutally cold in the winter. Ontario has weather similar to New York, and British Columbia is much like the state of Washington. Spring is made so much more beautiful because of the winters. Summers can get very hot. Autumn is stunning, with the blaze of beautiful colours as the leaves change. Moose and grizzly bears live in the north, and the wildlife is beautiful. The natural rivers and mountains, forests and streams make Canada one of the most incredible places to visit, and why so many people travel there.

Aside from kindness, you will experience different kinds of things, like their culture, and you can explore the deeper meaning of their origins. Considered a country that celebrates the colourful mosaic of their cultures, there are three groups of peoples who were the traditional inhabitants of this great land. The First Nations, the Métis and the Inuit, these names refer to the three main groups of peoples who are the traditional inhabitants of this land.

Getting to Canada

In many cases, you are going to require some documentation to visit Canada. Among the things that you might need to know to visit Canada are these:


A visa is a document issued by the government allowing the holder to enter (or to make a formal request to enter) or to leave that country. Some countries require a visa, while other countries do not. Make sure you find out about your own country.

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Steps to Visit Canada as a Tourist

  1. 1
    Determine if you are eligible.
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  2. 2
    Apply for a visitor's visa.
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  3. 3
    Check process times.
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  4. 4
    Prepare for your arrival.
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  5. 5
    If you wish to extend your visit, you may also extend your visa.
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Determine if You Are Eligible to Visit Canada

  1. 1
    Requirements for visiting Canada
    1. Must have a valid travel documents, such as a passport.
    2. Must be in good health.
    3. Must convince or satisfy an immigration officer that you will be leaving Canada after your stay. Convince him that you have ties - such as job, family concerns, home and financial assets - that will take you back to your own country.
    4. Have enough money for your stay and visit. The amount of money you need will vary depending on the length of your stay and the things you will be buying.
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  2. 2
    You may also need
    1. Medical examination.
    2. Temporary resident visa, depending on the citizenship.
    3. Letter of invitation from someone who lives in Canada.
    4. Travel documents. Airline companies must have your proper and valid documents before entering Canada. If you do not have the right documents, you may be delayed or unable to board the plane.
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  3. 3
    The following documents cannot be used to enter Canada
    1. Passports issued by Venezuela.
    2. Passports issued by Somalia.
    3. Temporary passports issued by the Republic of South Africa.
    4. Passports issued by Czech Republic.
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  4. 4
    Visas and Exemptions
    You might need a temporary resident visa depending on your citizenship. This includes important matters you need to know before you plan your trip.
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  5. 5
    Bring proper identification
    Carry proper identification with you and any person traveling with you.
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  6. 6
    Unacceptable to Canada
    Some are not allowed to enter Canada.
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The Toronto Skyline highlighting the CN Tower - Toronto, On., Canada

Determine if you are Unacceptable to Enter Canada

Some are not allowed to enter Canada. There are reasons why, such as:

  1. 1
    You gave false information on your application or in an interview.
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  2. 2
    You do not meet the standard requirements and issues in Canada's immigration law.
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  3. 3
    You are a risk in their country.
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  4. 4
    You suffer serious health or mental problems.
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  5. 5
    You have serious financial problems.
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  6. 6
    You have committed a crime.
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  7. 7
    One of your family members is not allowed to enter Canada.
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If you are unacceptable in Canada, you will not be allowed to enter. But if you have a good and valid reason, the government may issue a temporary resident permit. If you have a criminal record. See Tips and Warnings below for more information.

Temporary Resident Permit

If you are not allowed to travel or enter Canada but have a valid reason, you may be issued a temporary resident permit. To be able to qualify for a temporary resident permit, you must pay a required fee which is C$200 and is non-refundable. This is to cover the cost of processing your application. Your need to enter and stay in Canada must overcome the health and safety risks of the Canadian government. This permit could be canceled anytime by an officer and is no longer valid once you leave Canada unless you were given the authority to leave and re-enter.

Apply as Tourist

Before planning to visit Canada, find out first if you need a visa. If you do not need a visitor's visa, there are still things you should accomplish.

  • You can apply for a single-entry visa, multiple-entry visa, parent and grandparent super visa or transit visa.
    • A single-entry visa only allows a person to enter Canada once.
    • A multiple-entry visa allows you to enter Canada multiple times during the validity of the visa.
    • A parent and grandparent super visa allows parents or grandparents of Canadian citizens to remain in Canada for 24 months at a time without the need to renew their status.
    • A transit visa is for those heading through Canada and on to another country. It applies to those travelers whose stopover in Canada lasts less than 48 hours.

Prepare for Arrival

Hope - British Columbia, Canada

When you arrive in Canada, a border services officer will greet you. The officer will ask for your documents, such as your passport. Always remember to hold your important documents and never place them in your luggage to prevent delays. If you don't have a visa, the officer will ask you a few questions to make sure that you meet the conditions and standard rules of Canada. This will take a few minutes. Never give false and/or incomplete information, as you will not be allowed to enter Canada. You must convince the officer that you are eligible to stay and will leave at the exact date. In some cases, other immigration officers might ask you to post a bond in the form of cash deposit. This makes sure that you follow some rules during your stay in Canada. Children under 18 years old must also bring valid identification. The officer will stamp your passport for you to know the period of your stay in Canada. If you do not obey and follow the rules, some officers will ask you to leave the country at once.

Tips, and Warnings

  • If you have charged with a felony, you need a letter from your government.
  • While the USA is very strict about marijuana charges and more lenient regarding Driving Under the Influence charges, Canada is the reverse. The assumption in Canada is someone who smokes pot is just harming themselves, but someone who will drive when they are drunk, are a threat to others, specifically, Canadian citizens.
    • DUI convictions and all variations are grounds for inadmissibility to Canada, as the offense is a hybrid offense under Canadian law. Individuals with a DUI conviction (or DWI, OWI, OMVI, DWAI or any other similar driving offense) will require either a TRP or Criminal Rehabilitation to enter Canada.
  • Do not bring any meat products (cooked or raw), seeds, fresh fruit or vegetables or live plants over the border, and of course, illegal drugs, as you will be fined.

Questions and Answers

Places to go in Canada as a tourist?

Recommendations would depend on what your interests are. If you are interested in city life, I recommend Toronto or Vancouver. For a mix of both city and outdoor recreation, Windsor, Ontario, would be a good choice with a fairly large city in between two Great Lakes and quick access to Detroit, Michigan. Windsor is also well known for their diversity and excellence in cuisine. If you love mountain landscapes, plan a trip from Vancouver to Calgary. You will take the Trans Canada Pacific Highway through Mountain Passes and quaint ski resort villages. Jasper National Park right before you arrive in Calgary offers pristine blue lakes and wildlife. Be prepared to see a few black bear along the road also as well as moose. To plan a trip such as this, you should allocate two weeks so that you do not feel rushed. Jasper National Park takes two days of just seeing the highlights in the park and walking a few trails.

How can I work as a nurse in Canada?

I am licensed in my country of origin, Philippines, and I passed US licensure exam for nurses in Guam. I want to start with Home Care in Canada, how does it work?

You have to submit your application to recruitment companies in the Philippines that have clients in Canada looking for a nurse. This is often the best route to take, as they will be able to guide you accordingly in the process, depending on the specifications of their clients. However, keep in mind that you have to select the right recruitment companies to go to. Do some research before actually working with any one of those companies. There are many illegal recruiters out there and if you are not careful, you may be one of their victims. On the other hand, there are still quite a good number of recruitment companies that are reliable, so just make sure you do your research and work with a good one.

There are also cases where the company in Canada conducts direct recruiting activities in the Philippines. Watch for their advertisements and participate. You would normally find these types of announcements in the classified ads.

How much money do I need to visit Canada for a holiday with 3 children?

I want to visit Canada for a holiday with my children, only for one month

This largely depends on how you plan to travel. Staying at Airbnb rentals is often cheaper with a family. Most of these are apartments or rental homes with a kitchen so you can make several meals instead of eating out for three meals a day. Budget Your Trip's website is excellent for helping you determine a range of cost to prepare for. If you plan on visiting during the year of 2017, all Canadian National Parks are free to access. This can help keep the budget down with activities outdoors. Keep in mind, that Canadians pay more at the pump than in the US when fueling up a rental car. I would estimate if you make a rigid plan for food, entertainment, and lodging the cost of a one month trip for a family of four can be kept within $4,000 CAD for that month. Check out City Pass if you are planning on visiting a major city like Toronto. These passes come at a discount for 5 major family attractions.

Valid reasons to get a Canadian tourist's visa, I am 25 years old?

Hello, I am 25 years old. I've done basic nursing and want to visit Canada as a tourist. My visa has been refused on the base of purpose of visit. Now I want to apply again. Kindly guide me for suitable reasons to get tourist Canada visa. Also, I have sufficient funds to travel from India. I have tried: I have applied for tourist visa with good ties in India, and I am unmarried. I think it was caused by: purpose of visit and inability to prove them that I will come back to home country after visiting Canada

You can reapply at any time for a new tourist visa. If you are intent on visiting Canada, I recommend hiring an Immigration lawyer to look over your application before you send it. Although you have significant ties to return to India, if you have family within Canada, you may want to state that you are visiting them. Immigration officials only spend a small amount of time assessing a TRV so you will want to overwhelm them with proof that you plan on returning to Canada. If there is even the slightest hint that you plan on coming to Canada and then overstaying your visa, the application will be denied. Your other option is to research if your nursing degree can get you a Labor Market Opinion or work visa. You would, however, need to pass an English language skill exam as well as have a degree that is a shortage within in Canada. Most of the visas are given out by provinces with a lower population rate such as Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Visa application for visiting as a tourist was refused.

My application was declined because of travel history, the length of proposed stay in Canada, the purpose of traveling. I have tried: Just got the letter today. I think it was caused by: Nothing

You probably did not show enough proof of return to your home country. If you were unable to show financial means of support this would be another refusal factor. Depending on what your country of origin is, Canada Visa's Forum has a wealth of information about what to do when you experience a TRV. If you do a search on the forum but do not come up with any information then create an account and post. There is a diverse user network on the website and many have been in your situation and overcome it. They often like to help out with advice. If you do post, be as specific as possible so that you can get correct answers.

Purpose of visit for Canada visa?

I am PR here in Canada. My boyfriend applied for a visa in July 2016. He is a citizen of India and working in Maldives. The purpose of the visit he mentioned was visiting me and his work permit was expiring in October 2016. So his application was rejected for these 2 reasons. Officer was not convinced that he would leave Canada because of the purpose of visit and his work permit validity. He booked a return ticket and attached that too. What should he do now? We are going to get married in December 2016. What is the best way to invite him here? Thanks.

Honestly, your best option is to travel to him and get married and then file the necessary immigration papers for Family Sponsorship to Canada. I suggest filing Outland which would mean that he resides in India while you are awaiting sponsorship approval. After you receive the approval, you can then reapply for a tourist visa on the grounds that you wish to be together while he waits out immigration approval. Usually, immigration will grant this if they see that you are doing the necessary steps for him to become legal as your family member in Canada. If you are intent on getting married within Canada, he would really have to prove with employment, living arrangements and return plans to get approval. You should speak with an Immigration Attorney before you put a deposit down on a wedding within Canada. a Letter of Invitation might help him obtain a tourist visa for the wedding.

The question that I have is part of a larger question. We need to know "Why is Canada there?"

My daughter and I are homeschooling. On of her questions is: "Where is Canada and why is it there? What is significant about its location? How is its location related to the location of other people places and environment? We can figure out the rest of this question, but not the "why". I have tried: Google, various websites. Control F (why is Canada located where it is)

After the Revolutionary War in the US, Canada's territory began being more defined with the British Troops resettling north. In the 1600's the French and English were at war with who was going to control the fur trade and establish settlements. In 1759, the British defeated the French in territory wars. The clash over the fur trade defined borders. By 1780, loyal British were moving to Canada to live with sympathizers and keep their previous way of life before the Independence Declaration of America. The War of 1812 further impacted where Canada's borders would form based on treaties to end that war. In 1841, Canada united the French and English territories to form a unified country. The year of 1867 was the official birth of Canada as a self-governing dominion in the British Empire.

I applied for a Canadian tourist visa but I got rejection last time now I again want to apply please help me?

Hello sir, I applied for my Canadian travel visa, but I got a rejection from the embassy. The reason is the purpose of traveling. I am now in Singapore. I came for my advance diploma and I am still doing my on the job training in Singapore but I want to go Canada for one week only. So please help me and tell me what kind of information I can write in my purpose of travel. I want a sample of the purpose of travel. I am on training here in Singapore. I am 19 years old I want to go Canada for 1 week visiting only. I have tried: I want the information about the Canadian travel visa and I need your help. I think it was caused by: Yes I think my purpose of traveling is not so good. Can you please provide me a sample of the purpose of travel?

The issue is that you are still studying and not gainfully employed. This means that you rely on limited funds or your family's support to live in Singapore. If you are visiting family then you should tell Canada that this is the purpose of your visit. It also helps if you can travel with others in a group to prove that you plan on returning. Possibly signing up to travel in a tour group might help if no one you know can go with you to the US. You can reapply as many times as you want although that can become costly. The next time you reapply, you should have completed your studies and be employed with a permanent living arrangement like an apartment to help show ties of returning. It is also quite a journey to make for just one week of travel. Most people from Singapore spend at least two weeks visiting the US/Canada. Your short length of visit probably raised a red flag. For your letter, you will need to prove that you have as many ties and reasons to return as you can possibly come up with.

How to write the purpose of travel when I am visiting as Tourist?

I want to explore Canada, particularly Toronto side, as I am visiting my brother in Michigan

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I got refused for 2 reasons history 2.purpose of the visit?

And my sister she is Canadian and she sent to me an invitation letter, actually I'm thinking to reapply and my sister modified the invitation letter and wrote my travel history I went just to Istanbul and it was for work from my company I'm working with an international NGO

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Facing charges of youth excess breath of alcohol? Conviction of driving under influence of Alcohol?

Will this conviction cause you to be unable to enter Canada? Is there any way to avoid being sent back? Wanting to travel to Canada to visit my partner, as she is living there for the 2 Year working-visa. Will only be visiting for a maximum of 3 weeks stay. I have tried: Went to see a lawyer to see what I could possibly do about getting a discharge of conviction. Researching the web for answers. I think it was caused by: Driving while under the influence of alcohol. Poor decision making

Even if you discharge the conviction, it will still be in the border's system. You will need to apply for a waiver to visit Canada. I suggest contacting a Canadian immigration attorney if you really need to visit Canada. These waivers can take up to 18 months for approval. You could try crossing the border and not disclosing your conviction unless asked but that is extremely risky and could cause more hassles for later crossings even with a waiver. Apply for the waiver and have your partner visit you. If there is an issue with your partner crossing into the US then look at other countries that you both can visit for time together.

If you have problems with any of the steps in this article, please ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


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Categories : Travel & Leisure

Recent edits by: Maria Quinney, Doug Collins, Nuance

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