15 Things Most Canadians Don’t Know About Their Own Country

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June 6, 2018 | by: marysullivan
1. Our tallest waterfall isn’t the horseshoe
Niagara Falls may get all the glory (and rightfully so, as it is spectacular and breathtaking) but if you’re into waterfalls for their  height, Niagara leaves something to be desires. The highest waterfall in Canada is in British Columbia’s Strathacona Provincial Park on Vancouver Island. Della Falls stands 440 metres, which is more than eight times the height of the Niagara Falls.

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2. We almost shared currency with Iceland
In the aftermath of the country’s economic collapse, Iceland’s government publicly considered adopting Canada’s currency, prompting speculation that Greenland would also consider taking on the loonie. Obviously, this didn’t end up happening, but it would have been pretty interesting to see Icelandic politicians and statesmen on Canadian currency.

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3. We built the world’s first UFO landing pad

While most people tend to associate UFOs with Roswell, New Mexico, and Area 51, St. Paul, Alberta, is home to the world’s first landing pad for alien life. The raised cement pad was built in 1967 and was officially opened by then Minister of National Defense (and open alien conspiracy theorist) Paul Hellyer.


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4. We eat 55 percent more Kraft Dinner than Americans do

Yes, us northerners really love instant macaroni and cheese. To some, this may not be so surprising considering that KD is a) incredibly tasty and b) incredibly cheap, but still, the way Canadians consume the stuff would suggest there’s something about the university dinner staple that’s knitted into our national character. Maybe that’s why The Barenaked Ladies referenced KD in their hit song, “If I Had a Million Dollars.”


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5. We harvest icebergs in Newfoundland and Labrador for vodka

Have you ever seen Iceberg Vodka at your local liquor store? It’s the only vodka in the world made from icebergs, which are harvested from Iceberg Alley, off Newfoundland’s east coast, then processed in St. John’s. Ontario has a hand in there, too—the alcohol part is triple-distilled from Ontario sweet corn.


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6. We have more doughnut shops per capita than anywhere else in the world

The doughnut is commonly considered an American sweet, but it turns out we eat more of the deep-fried treat than anywhere else on the planet. If you’re surprised, maybe you shouldn’t be. Think of how many Tim Hortons you pass on your daily commute, and, moreover, how Timmy’s is knit into our national culture.


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7. We have the deepest underground physics lab in the world

Super Villains from James Bond movies (and the like) may have underground fortresses, but they have nothing on the SNOLAB. Located two kilometres underneath the city of Sudbury, Ontario, the SNOLAB is the deepest physics lab on earth. Work in the lab includes experiments on dark matter and research on supernovas.

 


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8. We hold an annual bathtub race

Maybe you can take a bath very fast, but is your bathtub itself a speedy vehicle? Why nott find out. Every July, you can watch—or take part in—the World Championship Bathtub Race in Nanaimo, British Columbia. The annual event started in 1967 and is run by a real organization known as the Loyal Nanaimo Bathtub Racing Society.


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9. We made the world’s first $1-million coin

In 2007, for reasons passing understanding, the Royal Canadian Mint issued the world’s first million-dollar coin. As if this wasn’t a big enough accolade, the coin, which weighs 100 kg (220.4 lb), was also named the world’s largest gold coin by Guinness World Records. To date, five of these coins have been bought by investors.

 


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10. We never owned Alaska

The notion that Alaska was once part of Canada makes sense, if all you’re taking into account is geography. After all, Alaska is way up there on the map, right next to the Yukon and just on top of British Columbia. That said, it’s a common misconception that Canada “sold” Alaska to the U.S. Our southern neighbours bought the state from Russia in 1867.

 


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11. We supply a third of the world’s french fries

Thanks to the McCain empire, one-third of the world’s French fry supply comes from the small town of Florenceville-Bristol in New Brunswick. That’s right, New Brunswick—and not Prince Edward Island (sometimes referred to as “Potatoes Everywhere Island”). That said, P.E.I. does produce a heck of a lot of potatoes, and is famous the world over for its spuds.

 


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12. We’re a hotbed for dinosaur research

If you’ve ever heard of an Albertosaurus, it likely will not surprise to learn that one of the world’s richest dinosaur fossil fields on earth is in Alberta’s badlands. Archaeological excavations continue to take place there, even today. The area has been designated as a provincial park (Dinosaur Provincial Park) and an UNESCO World Heritage site.

 


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13. We’re home to the waterfall capital of the world

The region surrounding the steel town of Hamilton, Ontario, has more than 100 waterfalls, and is dubbed both “The City of Waterfalls” and “The Waterfall Capital of the World.” It may be a self-made claim, but it works for publicity: do a Google search for “waterfall capital” and top spots go to the Hammer.


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14. We’re the garter snake capital of the world

If you’re not scared to see tens of thousands of red-garter snakes in a mating frenzy, head to the Narcisse Snake Den in Manitoba. For two periods each year, visitors can see “more snakes at a glance than anywhere else in the world,” according to the Government of Manitoba’s website.


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15. We’re the world’s largest exporter of lentils

If you were pressed to name Canada’s top exports, could you do it? Would you say wheat? Oil? Lumber? Sure, those are some of them, but not the top of the heap. What is? Lentils! Yes, Canada exports more lentils than any other nation, producing 17 percent of the world’s supply and primarily exporting to India and Turkey.

 


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Article credit: www1.cottagelife.com

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