Atlantic Canada


Atlantic Canada, also called the Atlantic provinces, is the region of Eastern Canada comprising the provinces located on the Atlantic coast, excluding Quebec: the three Maritime ProvincesNew Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island – and the easternmost province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The population of the four Atlantic provinces in 2016 was about 2,300,000[1] on half a million km2. The provinces combined had an approximate GDP of $121.888 billion[2] in 2011. The term Atlantic Canada was popularized following the admission of Newfoundland as a Canadian province in 1949.

Atlantic Canada
Provinces de l'Atlantique  (French)
Atlantic Canada (red) within the rest of Canada
Atlantic Canada (red) within the rest of Canada
Largest metroHalifax
 • Total500,531 km2 (193,256 sq mi)
 • Total2,409,874
 • Estimate 
(Q1 2022)
 • Density4.8/km2 (12/sq mi)


French map of New France and Atlantic Canada, published around 1799
Historical map showing parts of the Atlantic Canada

The first premier of Newfoundland, Joey Smallwood, coined the term "Atlantic Canada" when Newfoundland joined Canada in 1949. He believed that it would have been presumptuous for Newfoundland to assume that it could include itself within the existing term "Maritime Provinces," used to describe the cultural similarities shared by New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Nova Scotia. The three Maritime provinces entered Confederation during the 19th century (New Brunswick and Nova Scotia were founding members of the Dominion of Canada in 1867, and Prince Edward Island joined in 1873).


Although Quebec has a physical Atlantic coast on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, it is generally not considered an Atlantic Province, instead being classified as part of Central Canada along with Ontario. Atlantic and Central Canada together are also known as Eastern Canada.

Flag of New Brunswick
Flag of Prince Edward Island
Flag of Nova Scotia
Flag of Newfoundland and Labrador


The following table provides 2021 census figures for "Metropolitan Areas" (built from entire municipalities) and "Population Centres" (limited to actual continuously-built-up areas) in Atlantic Canada. The list includes communities above 15,000, by Metropolitan Area population, or 10,000 by Population Centre population.

Community Province Population of Metro Area (CMA/CA) Population of Urban Area
Halifax Nova Scotia 465,703 348,634
St. John's Newfoundland and Labrador 212,579 185,565
Moncton New Brunswick 157,717 119,785
Saint John New Brunswick 130,613 63,447 – Saint John
24,881 – Quispamsis-Rothesay
Fredericton New Brunswick 108,610 64,614
Cape Breton Nova Scotia 98,318 30,960 – Sydney
16,915 – Glace Bay
12,353 – Sydney Mines
Charlottetown Prince Edward Island 78,858 52,390
Truro Nova Scotia 46,157 23,583
New Glasgow Nova Scotia 34,397 19,316
Bathurst New Brunswick 31,387 15,985
Corner Brook Newfoundland and Labrador 29,762 19,129
Miramichi New Brunswick 27,593 11,594 – Chatham-Douglastown
Kentville Nova Scotia 26,929 14,905
Edmundston New Brunswick 22,144 13,125
Summerside Prince Edward Island 18,157 14,952
Grand Falls-Windsor Newfoundland and Labrador 13,853 11,986

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, 2016 and 2011 censuses – 100% data". Statistics Canada. 2017-02-08. Retrieved 2017-02-08.
  2. ^ "Gross domestic product, expenditure-based, by province and territory". Stats Canada. Nov 9, 2016. Retrieved Feb 7, 2017.

Further readingEdit

  • Hamilton, William Baillie (1996), Place names of Atlantic Canada, University of Toronto Press, ISBN 0-8020-0471-7
  • MacEachern, Alan Andrew (2001), Natural selections: national parks in Atlantic Canada, McGill-Queen's University Press, ISBN 0-7735-2157-7
  • Martinez, Andrew J; Martinez, Candace Storm (2003), Marine Life of the North Atlantic: Canada to New England, Aqua Quest Publications, ISBN 1-881652-32-7
  • Prieur, Benoit (2005), Atlantic Canada, Ulysse Travel Publ, ISBN 2894647239

External linksEdit

  • Atlas of Canada – Atlantic Region
  • Atlantic Canadian cities and Surrounding areas
  • Atlantic Canada Portal/Portail du Canada Atlantique
  • Atlantic Canada a Profitable Place to do Business
  • Historical Coins of Atlantic Canada
  • East Coast Proud

Coordinates: 47°N 62°W / 47°N 62°W / 47; -62