Explore the Provincial Flags of Canada
Learn about each of the provincial flags of Canada and what their designs symbolize.
In 1965, John Robarts — the premier of Ontario at the time — designed this flag. He was critical of the newly recognized Maple Leaf flag and wanted to keep the Union Jack flying in Ontario. The Ontario provincial flag features the Red Ensign that formerly represented Canada with the Ontario coat of arms in the lower right corner.
Quebec was the first province to create a distinctive flag for its region in 1948. This design avoids any direct symbolism but uses a white cross and fleur-de-lis design to reference the medieval banners often seen in royal France.
The Yukon flag was chosen during a province-wide contest. It features a bar of green to represent forests and blue to represent lakes. The territorial coat of arms is at the center with a backdrop of white.
Much like the Yukon flag, this design was also selected during a province-wide design contest. The Saskatchewan flag features a horizontal split of yellow and green to represent the province's prairie landscape. The provincial crest is on the top left, and the provisional flower — the red lily — is on the lower right.
Prince Edward Island Flag
Unlike other provincial flags that feature a smaller provincial crest, this design is a stretched version of the Prince Edward Island coat of arms. A gold lion on a red backdrop and a large tree on a white backdrop represent England. Three smaller trees symbolize the three counties.
Nova Scotia Flag
Nova Scotia's historical connections to Scotland led to a provincial flag inspired by the Scottish Cross of St. Andrew. The flag design features a blue cross on a white background with the provincial coat of arms at the center.
Newfoundland is one of the more recent provinces in Canada, having joined as a territory in 1949. This provincial flag design did not exist until 1980, when a graphic design firm took on the task. The design is a more stylized approach to the Union Jack with symbolic colors to represent different characteristics of the province. The colors are blue for the ocean, white for the northern snow, and red and yellow for pride, forward-thinking and hope.
New Brunswick Flag
Similar to the Prince Edward Island flag, the New Brunswick flag showcases a gold lion on a red background along the top. The bottom half of the flag depicts a ship on the ocean to reference the province's role in maritime shipbuilding and trade.
Manitoba aligns with Ontario in its flag design by retaining the Red Ensign of British rule. As with Ontario, the province personalized its flag with its coat of arms in the bottom right.
British Colombia Flag
Premier W.A.C. Bennett created the B.C. flag design in 1960. This design takes influence from the province's coat of arms, which was designed to depict the phrase, “The sun never sets on the British Empire.” The flag reflects this design with a yellow sun over a wave pattern. The upper half shows the Union Jack with a gold crown.
Northwest Territories Flag
The Northwest Territories flag features a similar design to the Yukon flag. Two blue sections on either side represent the territory's rivers, and the crest sits between them.
The simple design of the Alberta flag highlights the provincial crest on a blue background. Alberta showcases its historical connection to England with the Cross of St. George displayed on the upper half of the crest.
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