When you think of Canada, a few things come to mind; severe wintery weather, bears, mountains, and sports. Sports in Canada consists of a wide variety of games, from ice hockey to bobsleighing. Canada’s crazy climate and geography make it home to some of the world’s most exciting sports. Canada is known for some of the world’s biggest and best sporting events. Here are the top Canadian sporting events that you don’t want to miss when in Canada.

The Stanley Cup

Ice hockey is Canada’s premier sport

The most famous annual sporting event in Canada is none other than the Stanley Cup. The ice hockey championship is run by the country’s major hockey league, the NHL (National Hockey League). The Stanley Cup has been named one of the world’s biggest contests for sports since it was founded back in 1893. The funny thing is, the Stanley Cup, itself, has been lost over the years, from being used as a cereal bowl to being thrown into a swimming pool, and even lost once on a flight from New Jersey to Vancouver. Whether you are a fan of the sport or just hearing of it, ice hockey is a rollercoaster ride, with moments of serious war, wild cards, and so much more.

NBA Playoffs

Even though basketball originated in Canada, most people associate basketball with the United States. However, Canada often excels in this classic sport. The Toronto Raptors are Canada’s pride and joy in the National Basketball Association. Ever since the Vancouver Grizzlies relocated to Memphis back in 2001, the Raptors are the only professional team representing Canada. Canadian basketball games are the perfect balance between spontaneity and competition. The NBA playoffs are the perfect experience for sports lovers in search of some great celebratory entertainment.

Curling

Curling is a true spectator sport, and a very underrated one in fact. The tactical sport of Curling is something like boules on ice, and it’s one that Canada highly excels at. The country won the highest accolade of a gold medal at the Winter Olympics, and have won the most titles in the World Curling Championships. The Tim Hortons Brier is the world’s most famous curling event that draws fans from across the country to watch the best of Canada play for a national championship. However, the Brier is more than just a curling event; it is a huge party! The Brier Patch that is always located near the arena is widely known for its live music and happening atmosphere. If you really want to feel like a Canadian, the Tim Hortons Brier is a must visit!

Velirium

Velirium is the Mountain Bike World Cup and is an adrenalin-filled series of races that includes the Downhill World Cup, the Cross-Country World Cup, and other events such as the Pumptrack Epic. The Mountain Bike World Cup has been running since 1991 and has gained a global following for the athletes’ skilled negotiation of technical passages including tree roots, rocks, banks, jumps, and various other obstacles. This isn’t just regular mountain biking, these races really take skill.

Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Cups

Each year, Canada hosts several bobsleigh and skeleton events on an international scale. Canada is a consistent star contender when it comes to the international bobsleigh and skeleton scene. The country has won four gold medals at the 2014 Winter Olympics for bobsleigh and being third in the Olympic medal tables for skeleton.

Ski Jumping Nordic Combined National Championships

Skiing is a popular Canadian sport

Skiing and Canada go hand and hand, and the many tourists visiting Canada don’t leave without trying out the sport during their stay. If you’ve got your sights set on seeing the experts do their thing in action, Canada is the place to be. The Whistler Sliding Centre offers bobsleigh and skeleton for the public, and at the Olympic park, you can try out base boarding.

Invictus Games

One of the games that Canada holds to high standards is the Invictus Games. These famous games have wounded, ill and injured military veterans compete in interdisciplinary competitions. As the country celebrates its anniversary each year, it will also honor its soldiers and their families through these heartwarming games. The games were founded back in 2014 by Prince Harry. There’s no better way to show your support for the injured military than showing up to these wonderful games.

Final Thoughts

You can thank Canada for birthing basketball, hockey, lacrosse, and bowling. As Canada is a very sports-enthusiastic country, sporting events are held to a high standard. As a canadian, contrary to popular belief, I am not much of a sports fanatic. The closest things to sports that I will partake in is UNO game and Sky blackjack. Since I’m more of a spectator rather than a participant, I do not mind attending sporting events like the ones mentioned above.