A land of vast distances and rich natural resources, Canada occupies roughly two-fifths of the North American continent. Its total area, including the Canadian share of the Great Lakes, is 9,970,610 sq km. Canada became a self-governing dominion in 1867 while retaining ties with British crown. Economically and technologically the nation has developed in parallel with the USA, its neighbour to the south across an unfortified border.
Canada is made up of 10 provinces and 3 territories in the north. The only country Canada's land borders with is the USA to the south (6379km long) and the US state of Alaska to the northwest. Toronto is the largest city and commercial hub whereas Ottawa is the capital of Canada.
Canada is deserved of its reputation for magnificent scenery, cleanliness, plentiful wildlife peace, diversity and vast spaces. Canada has a population of 35 million which are huddled along the southern border leaving the remainder of the country unspoiled and many parts unvisited. Most of the people in Canada are ethnically British or French. The largest urban areas are in Québec and Ontario provinces, or central Canada, where some two-thirds of the population lives.
French and English are the official languages, though English is more widely spoken than French. Canada sees many people immigrating to its land, though this group still remains a minority. The people of Canada are mostly literate and maintain a high standard of living.