“O Canada” – Part 1

This semester, 18 students from the University of Klagenfurt took part in René Schallegger’s seminar “The Founding of Canada: Development from Settlement to Nation.” As part of the seminar, the students went on an exciting two-week excursion to Canada to learn more about the country’s history. During this time, they stayed in three different cities, beginning their journey in Toronto, before journeying on to Ottawa and then finishing their stay in Montreal. In the first of a four-part series, Tamara Urach, a student on the teacher’s programme, shares the group’s experiences, starting in Toronto.

Toronto “Forever Yonge”

Venice, Saturday 25th May, 2:35 pm local time. Twenty students and staff members from the University of Klagenfurt are sitting on an airplane ready to take off on a great adventure – a fortnight in Canada. Some of us have already been there, but most of us haven’t and are extremely excited. It takes us roughly nine hours to arrive at Toronto Airport, where it’s 6 pm local time, and we are ready to continue our adventure the next day after some sleep.

Our five-day program in Toronto mainly takes place before midday, and consists of the Royal Ontario Museum, the Fort York Historical Site, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Black Creek Pioneer Village. Two highlights are the tour at the Fort York Historical Site, where we get an insight into the lives of British and Canadian Soldiers fighting the war of 1812, and the tour at the Black Creek Pioneer Village, where the staff (including real life young Robert Baratheon) show us how newspapers were printed, how lanterns and wool were made and how people lived back then. Although these tours are extremely interesting (apart from the one or other dinosaur that refused to tell us about the history of the first nations), some of us also take the chance to get to know today’s Canada and visit some sights in the afternoon after lunch. Shopping tours at the Eaton Centre, visiting the Niagara Falls, the CN tower, Chinatown, the Distillery District, walking along the shores of Lake Ontario, taking a cruise on this very lake and visiting the Toronto Islands are just a few of the locations some of us decide to visit. Toronto is indeed a great mixture of green parks and big city life, so everyone is able to do whatever is most interesting to them.


Text by Tamara Urach / Photos by Tamara Urach and Natilly Macartney