Canada - Cultural Destinations

Canada - Cultural Destinations

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Alianait!, a four year old multicultural festival in Iqaluit, promises ten days of art, music, film, storytelling, circus arts, dance and theatre in June. The festivities celebrate the return of summer and, with it, nearly round-the-clock daylight in this arctic location.

While visiting Iqaluit, take a side-trip to the Qaummaarviit Territorial Historic Park. The island was settled by the Thule people some 250 years before Columbus came to America and archaeological discoveries there have been plentiful—more than 3,000 tools and 20,000 bones as well as 11 semi-buried sod houses.

For visitors interested in Ontario's history, the Whetung Ojibwa Centre on the Curve Lake Indian Reserve with its collection of Indian crafts, sculpture, fine art and handiwork, and the Kay-Nah-Chi-Wah-Nung Historical Centre near Stratton, with its ancient burials mounds, are two excellent places to start.

Toronto has a can't-miss set of offerings—the Museum of Inuit Art, Scarborough Historical Museum, Royal Ontario Museum and Canadian Opera Company are just the tip of the cultural iceberg.

Ottawa's National Gallery of Canada, established in 1880, is now the largest visual arts museum in Canada. With extensive collections of Canadian, indigenous, European, American and Asian art, photographs, prints, drawings and contemporary pieces, the National Gallery has something to appeal to every taste.

Prince Edward Island
For many, Price Edward Island will forever be the home of Anne of Green Gables, but Canada's smallest province has much more to offer than one literary leading lady.

Museums such as the Orwell Corner Historic Village and the Green Park Shipbuilding Museum pay homage to PEI's past and the province is a treasure trove for lighthouse lovers. Visitors in PEI during the holidays will enjoy the WinterTide festival, which celebrates the season with a wreath display, performance of Handel's Messiah, and nativity pageant, among other activities.

Of course, curious visitors can also visit Green Gables, which inspired Lucy Maud Montgomery to write the famed novel, as well as Montgomery's home, the Anne of Green Gables Museum, Avonlea village, and even the annual Lucy Maud Montgomery Festival.

With 400 museums, Quebec has quite a bit to offer lovers of history, arts and sciences. From big names like the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, with more than 30,000 pieces, to smaller options such as the Musée du Fjord, focusing on the history of the Saguenay Fjord, Quebec has something for everyone.

Montreal, the second largest French-speaking city in the world, is an appealing amalgamation of a European sensibility, unique use of underground space, extensive park system, modern architecture, and appreciation for the arts. Well over half of Montreal residents speak both French and English, making it easy for visitors from the United States to make their way around the city.

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