I'm new to GIS. I need to get the border of Canada as a GeoJSON file.

I googled and landed at this repo https://github.com/johan/world.geo.json which as a representation that would suit my immediate needs, but it really feels like I should be able to go to "The Canadian Department of Interior" or something to get something a little "official".

Is there a canonical resource for this type of thing for Canada?

  • A definitive Canada border would be a huge file, because Canada is very large, very crinkly, and has lots of islands. Could your computer cope? – Spacedman May 10 '18 at 21:44
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    For open data the best place to ask may be the Open Data Stack Exchange. – PolyGeo May 10 '18 at 21:47
  • @Spacedman the one I have is 34M and renders in QGIS 2.8 ok. Trying to edit it, though, goes all "beach ball of death". The one I have is off by like 100 yards along most of the southern border. I'm sure I can eventually edit it, but I am wondering why I have to. There HAS to be some canonical source that I can put through GDAL or something and get a big GeoJSON file that is "correct" enough – Bob Kuhar May 10 '18 at 21:48
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    open.canada.ca/data/en/dataset/… – user2856 May 10 '18 at 22:43
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    The southern border and land mass are fairly well defined in regular sources (Statistics Canada, National Resources Canada) - see Luke and Spacedman links. The northern border is somewhat of a mess. National waters are not well defined at all in most maps (only NRCAN border line shows St-Pierre et Miquelon). – JGH May 11 '18 at 0:52

Maybe "Statistics Canada":


has census boundaries, you'd need to dissolve the internals to get a country outline and it would still be quite a large file.

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    the Provinces/territories dataset would be more suitable – JGH May 11 '18 at 0:41
  • Good news. Bad news. The good news is that Canada does, indeed, make this information available at the location Spacedman calls out. The bad news is this "official" source has the same issue my current GeoJSON has. At some points along its southern border, the official source is, like, 100 yards north of the border as it shows up on the maps. No problem. I learned how to edit with QGIS today. The Canadian border is where I decide it is! Thanks. – Bob Kuhar May 11 '18 at 4:23
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    @BobKuhar sounds like you have an issue with your process rather than the data... – user2856 May 11 '18 at 7:34

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