Population in Urban Area, now
- World: 1434th
- North America: 166th
- Canada: 13th
Population in City Area, 2019-09-23
- World: 843rd
- North America: 38th
- Canada: 10th
Halifax Urban Area Population Graph
Halifax Population Review
Halifax, also known as the Halifax Regional Municipality or HRM, is the capital of the province of Nova Scotia in Canada. Located on the eastern coast of Canada, the municipality has a total of 413,500 residents spread across 5,490 square kilometers, with the vast majority of the population centered in the small city area. The municipality is made up of four municipalities that were amalgamated in 1996: Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford and Halifax County.
The city is a major economic center for Atlantic Canada and has a large concentration of post-secondary universities, government services, and private sector companies that employ hundreds of people. Some of the city’s largest employers include the Department of National Defence, Dalhousie University and Saint Mary’s University, the Halifax Shipyard, the Port of Halifax, and multiple levels of government.
A top tourist destination on the rise
In 2018, Halifax was listed by TripAdvisor as one of the top ten tourist destinations “on the rise” in the world. Halifax placed fourth on the list, after Ishigaki in Japan, Kapaa in Hawaii, and Kenya’s capital of Nairobi.
There are over 5.3 million tourists who come for overnight stays to Halifax each year. They spend over $1 billion in the city and represents 54% of all visitations to the province of Nova Scotia. The city is also the location where cruise ships frequently dock. In 2015, the Port of Halifax welcomed 141 cruise ships and over 222,000 passengers.
A fast growing city
Halifax is the fastest growing city in the province. The city grew 2.26% in 2019, which was the fourth fastest growing among all of Canada's other Census Metropolitan Areas. More than half of this influx is due to immigration. Since 1950, the city has tripled in population size, growing from 130,000 residents to its current population of over 400,000.
The city is also getting younger and wealthier, as its economy strengthens and grows. The overall unemployment rate and the unemployment rate for young people have fallen from 6.8 per cent to 5.9 per cent, and from 16.1 per cent to 13.7 per cent, respectively. The province of Nova Scotia has welcomed a record number of new immigrants in recent years, with most of them settling in and around the Halifax region.
A diverse religious community
The city has many landmark religious institutions, including the New Horizons Baptist Church, the Ummah Mosque and Community Centre, the Centre for Islamic Development, the Beth Israel Synagogue, and others.
The majority of the population (71%) identifies as Christian. However, the second largest population is actually those who identify as having no religion, with almost 25%. Following this, Muslims are the next largest religious group.
A major cultural center
The city has a rich nautical and military history, which it has maintained while opening itself up to other multicultural influences. It hosts several festivals and many musical events that attract tens of thousands of visitors a year. Events such as the Halifax Pop Explosion, the Atlantic Film Festival, and the Royal Nova Scotia International Tattoo are all large events hosted in the city. Halifax also has the largest LGBT event in Atlantic Canada.
The Halifax Explosion
The Halifax Explosion was a major disaster that occurred in the city on December 6, 1917. The SS Mont Blanc was a French cargo ship filled with explosives, which collided with the Norwegian SS Imo in the Narrows, a strait that connected upper Halifax Harbour with the Bedford Basin. The ensuing fire ignited the explosives, which caused an explosion so sever that it destroyed all buildings within an 800-metre radius. It snapped trees, bent rails, created a tsunami, and killed 1,782 people and injured over 9,000. It was the largest man-made explosion to ever occur, prior to the Atomic Bomb.