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dbldidit Jul 22nd, 2009 12:14 PM

Crazy Canadian Road Icons
Hi All- I am constantly bewildered by the various road sign icons up here in Canada (a favorite is the different sized bare butts for the Family nudist colony) _ Does the vase over the hand mean a Pottery is near? Is there a website that explains them ? thanks!

Susan33 Jul 22nd, 2009 10:59 PM

This is an interesting question as explanations would be helpful. We just got home from Canada this week and had a few questions about interpreting the signs. We liked the one with a bed over an egg in an egg cup, and we thought it meant Bed and Breakfast. May be some one else knows if a brochure is available.

ShelliDawn Jul 23rd, 2009 10:14 AM

The symbols vary from province to province, but generally, yes the egg/bed is for a bed and breakfast. The hand/vase means that there is some type of handcraft workshop/store. It may or may not be pottery.

Carmanah Jul 23rd, 2009 10:41 AM

I have no idea what these signs are and have never seen them, ever. Where in Canada did you see them?

kodi Jul 23rd, 2009 04:02 PM

If you are talking about the BLUE signs and I'm sure you are, these are not official road signs, but rather signs paid for by the company advertising their tourist attraction/B&B or whatever.
I am not aware that their are any official icons associated with them. I looked at some today on the highway, and mostly saw a golfer, advertising golf courses. ( I didn't see the butt one !!)

I think our green signs are pretty well standard road signs.

ShelliDawn Jul 24th, 2009 08:25 AM

As I said before the symbols on the signs will vary from province to province and perhaps the colours of them also. I am only familiar with Alberta, so if you're somewhere else, this may not apply...

There is a trend before towns nowadays to have names/logos for restaurants, gas stations and hotels, but there are still lots of "generic" symbol signs.

I found this PDF about promoting farmer's markets and on page 301-2 there's a couple of pictures of road signs with some of the symbols.

Most of them should be fairly obvious, but here's what they mean:

Gas pump: gas station
Knife, fork, cup: restaurant
Bed with roof: hotel/motel
Trailer and tent: Campground
Picnic table: picnic site, park
Police shield: police station
Spinning wheel: museum (I believe)
Pumpkin and farmer: farmers' market
Propane tank: propane
Trailer with square underneath: dump station
Question mark: information center
Golfer: golf course
Person reading: library
Tow truck: service station
Cross country skier: cross country ski trails
Swimmwer with roof: indoor pool
Downhill skier: ski hill
Grocery cart: grocery store

This website has a picture of the Saskatchewan farmer's market road sign which is different from Alberta's:

dbldidit Jul 26th, 2009 06:02 AM

Hi Thanks for the info - I thought the building with an M and the Key were museums and or historic sites - I am still not convinced about the spinning wheel :) We saw the butt one one a previous trip in Quebec province.

laverendrye Jul 26th, 2009 07:24 AM

For those who are interested, here is the complete listing of official tourist highway signs for Québec (including the nudist camp sign):

ShelliDawn Jul 27th, 2009 12:04 PM

I sent an inquiry to the Alberta government about the road signs and they sent me a link to a PDF.

It seems that they are transitioning the tourist signs from brown to blue as both appear in the document. The spinning wheel is listed as a museum sign (brown) and there's also a sign with an "M" in a building (blue) that's also listed as a symbol for a museum.

The hand and the pot is listed as "hand crafts".

Feel free to browse the pdf yourself, but, CAUTION!!! The file is 22MB and takes a long time to download.

ShelliDawn Jul 27th, 2009 12:05 PM

Oh, and apparently we don't have nudist colonies in Alberta, or advertise them anyway. No bare butts signs in the document. ;)

dbldidit Jul 29th, 2009 04:13 AM

WOW! Once again the Fodorites come through! You people are the best - I started to look at the Quebec book - the difference between a winery and cottage wne and cottage mead producer! So wacky - without these crib notes - how would any one know! Once again, thanks for the great info :)

BBSussex May 10th, 2014 11:05 AM

Yes the bed and eggcup is a Bed & Breakfast in New Brunswick too!

sludick May 10th, 2014 05:22 PM

Bookmarking this for the next time this comes up. What a hoot. And useful, thanks.

hverity May 20th, 2014 07:35 AM

It took me a few trips before I realized that the sign with pine tree silhouettes was marking an official scenic route in Quebec. I thought it denoted a forest, which seemed pretty self-evident!

NorthwestMale May 20th, 2014 12:28 PM

The <I>flashing green light</i> is another Canadian classic.

And my favorite Canadian road sign was in Quebec, where I once found myself driving along, on my late grandmother's birthday, only to see road signs with <b>my grandma's first name</b> on them in big, prominent letters.

<i>(I hope it didn't mean that I wasn't supposed to stop on the shoulder of the freeway and take a photo with the date imprinted in the lower corner)</i>

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