CanadaCanada, stretching from the U.S. in the south to the Arctic Circle in the north, is filled with vibrant cities including massive, multicultural Toronto; predominantly French-speaking Montréal and Québec City; Vancouver and Halifax on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts, respectively; and Ottawa, the capital. It’s also crossed by the Rocky Mountains and home to vast swaths of protected wilderness.
Prime minister: Justin Trudeau
Governor-general: David Johnston
Queen: Elizabeth II
Population: 35.16 million (2013) World Bank
Provinces: Ontario, Québec, British Columbia, Alberta, more
IndiaIndia is a vast South Asian country with diverse terrain – from Himalayan peaks to Indian Ocean coastline – and history reaching back 5 millennia. In the north, Mughal Empire landmarks include Delhi’s Red Fort complex, massive Jama Masjid mosque and Agra’s iconic Taj Mahal mausoleum. Pilgrims bathe in the Ganges in Varanasi, and Rishikesh is a yoga center and base for Himalayan trekking.
Capital: New Delhi
Area: 3.288 million km²
Prime minister: Narendra Modi
President: Pranab Mukherjee
Neighboring countries: Pakistan, China, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar (Burma), Bhutan
AmericaThe U.S. is a country of 50 states covering a vast swath of North America, with Alaska in the extreme Northwest and Hawaii extending the nation’s presence into the Pacific Ocean. Major cities include New York, a global finance and culture center, and Washington, DC, the capital, both on the Atlantic Coast; Los Angeles, famed for filmmaking, on the Pacific Coast; and the Midwestern metropolis Chicago.
Capital: Washington, D.C.
Dialing code: +1
ISO code: USA
President: Barack Obama
Population: 318.9 million (2014)
States: California, Hawaii, Florida, Texas, Massachusetts, Alaska, more
AustraliaAustralia is a country, and continent, surrounded by the Indian and Pacific oceans. Its major cities – Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide – are coastal, but its capital, Canberra, is inland and nicknamed the "Bush Capital." The country is known for its Sydney Opera House, Great Barrier Reef, the vast Outback (interior desert wilderness) and unique animal species including kangaroos and duck-billed platypuses.
Dialing code: +61
ISO code: AUS
Area: 7.692 million km²
Population: 23.13 million (2013) World Bank
Currency: Australian dollar