Canada Vacation and Travel Informationcourtesy of Travel Canada
The stars shine down through the velvet sky. You take a breath of intoxicatingly pure air. The world is silent except for the rustle of wind through the majestic pines. The only thing that could make a vacation in Western Canada more perfect is sharing it with someone you love.
Native Manitobans enjoy the great outdoors year round, and it's no surprise: with its endless blue skies and more days of sunshine than almost anywhere else in Canada, Manitoba is the perfect place to rediscover your passions.
Camp out in one of Manitoba's many provincial parks and let the natural rhythms of the great outdoors dictate your schedule. Slow down and enjoy each other's company as you wander the sandy shores of Helca Provincial Park, or hike the forests and pastures of Riding Mountain. After a couple of days in this unspoiled wilderness of shining waters and crisp air, you'll probably find that two people can get along just fine with only one sleeping bag. If you prefer to rough it in style, pamper yourself at one of Manitoba's quiet, luxurious resorts, or retreat to a cabin surrounded by massive forests. Get a taste of fresh-from-the-field food and old-fashioned hospitality with a stay at a country farm, or step back in time by attending Pioneer Days at the Mennonite Heritage Village in Steinbach.
Getting lost has never been easier or more attractive than it is in Saskatchewan. More than half the province is covered by the Precambrian Shield, where rocky outcroppings and forests stretch to meet the sky, and glassy rivers and lakes reflect the endless horizon. To the south, vast grasslands stretch as far as the eye can see and then a little bit farther.
A place with the unlikely name of Moose Jaw may not sound like the ideal romantic retreat, but Saskatchewan natives know that a soak in the town's mineral will rewrite your definition of indulgence. Rejuvenating and relaxing, these mineral rich waters bubble from deep beneath the ground, and they're just the thing to wash away the worries of the everyday world. An evening dip under the stars with that special someone will leave you feeling like the only two people on earth.
Get away to a land where modern life can't find you, where you can be alone with the person you love, where the stars shine just for you. Get away to Western Canada.
What's your idea of romance? A secluded landscape where you can be alone with that special someone? An elegant meal for two in luxurious surroundings? Sharing the best of the world of arts and culture with the person you love? No matter what your answer, you'll find an experience to suit your tastes in Ontario.
In Southern Ontario, an obvious destination is Niagara Falls. Countless couples have fallen under the spell of the "honeymoon capital of the world", and the rushing waters of the falls are a definite inducement to passion. The Niagara Peninsula is also home to some of the finest vineyards in Canada, and a weekend spent touring the wineries and sampling their wares is a romantic indulgence that's hard to resist.
Take in one of Shakespeare's romances at The Stratford Festival, and you'll discover a whole new vocabulary of love, a vocabulary you'll have plenty of time to practice when you retire to a quaint bed and breakfast for the evening.
Make a date to take in a Broadway show in Toronto, or get dressed up and mingle with international celebrities at the Toronto International Film Festival, the largest festival of its kind in North America. While you're in Toronto, a visit to Casa Loma, Canada's most famous castle, is sure to awaken feelings of chivalry and courtly love. As you explore the elegant suites, secret passageways and the five-acre garden, you'll find it hard to believe you're still in a bustling 21st century city.
If you find yourself in Ottawa, wander through the quaint Byward Market, where local farmer's produce stalls are mingled with upscale boutiques, chic restaurants and trendy nightclubs. When you've had your fill of shopping, the scenic beauty of the Gatineau hills is just minutes away. You can stroll for hours amid breathtaking fall foliage, and still be back in time for a five-star meal at one of Ottawa's many gourmet restaurants.
So plan a romantic getaway to Ontario. You'll take back a lot of stories to share with friends and family, and more than a few memories that you'll want to keep all your own.
It's hardly surprising that Ontario is a Mecca for canoeists, kayakers and white-water rafters: twenty percent of the world's fresh water flows through thousands of lakes and rivers in the province's six national parks and 260 provincial parks. If you're looking to dip your paddle into waters that run deep with history, culture and unique wilderness experiences, this is the place to do it.
Beginning paddlers can learn to canoe and kayak amongst the placid waters of the 1,000 Islands, just a couple of hours from Toronto. If you can convince the kids to swap the Game Boy for a paddle, the serene lakes of Killarney Provincial Park, lapping against ancient quartz cliffs, might just become the setting for the best family vacation ever. In fact, there's an Ontario waterway experience to suit every taste; more and more tour operators are offering specialty trips for women and those interested in learning about Ontario's First Nations heritage.
More ambitious adventurers may want to try a "fly in, paddle out" package. Fly by bush plane to a remote interior lake and set your own schedule to canoe or kayak back. No one's timing you, so you'll have ample opportunity to enjoy the rugged beauty of the forests and waterfalls of the Canadian Shield and the Great Lakes. Alone in the unspoiled wilderness, you'll understand why this area inspired the work of some of Canada's most famous artists.
For the less contemplative, Ontario's hundreds of kilometers of white water offer thrills, chills and - depending on your skill level - spills aplenty. The untamed waters of the Frontenac and Wabakimi Provincial Parks are no less challenging today than they were for the Voyageurs who traveled these routes hundreds of years ago.
Of course, a water adventure in Ontario doesn't necessarily mean roughing it. You can trade in sleeping bags for luxury rooms as you travel from one lodge to another, enjoying spectacular, pristine scenery during the day and gourmet meals by the warmth of a friendly hearth in the evening.
Whether you enjoy the gentle slap of a calm lake against the hull of your canoe or the white-knuckle thrill of thundering rivers trying to slap you from your raft, a water adventure in Ontario is what you've been looking for. So cast off from shore and let the current take you on the most memorable trip of your life.
Wildlife in Canada's North is so abundant that you'll need your camera more than your binoculars. Step off any beaten path and you may find a wolf pack patrolling its territory, breeding birds hunting to feed their fledglings or a family of beaver hard at work on a dam. And even if you stay on the path, you'll find ample opportunities to watch animals in their natural habitat: many areas of the North feature systems of viewing platforms, photo blinds and interpretive panels linked by trails.
If you're not bashful, visit the Yukon in August and September, when an estimated 60,000 moose go in search of mates. In October, you'll have a chance to witness the mating rituals of elk and follow the migration of caribou to their calving grounds.
If you venture to the Northwest Territories, be sure to visit Wood Buffalo National Park. This natural reserve, which is bigger than the entire country of Switzerland, is home to the largest remaining herd of bison in North America. The thunder of their hooves is an echo of a time before this continent appeared on any map.
Nunavut, Canada's newest territory, is a land that belongs to nature first and man second. Nanuk, the polar bear, shares the ice floes with arctic wolves and grizzlies, and caribou and muskoxen roam the tundra in vast herds. The summer months bring massive flocks of migrating birds, including falcons, hawks, cranes, loons and eagles.
A trip to the flow-edge (where land ice meets open water) is the best way to see some of Nunavut's most famous citizens, the beluga whales, narwhals, walruses and seals. Many communities located near whale habitats offer whale watching trips. Amid shifting fields of icebergs, and floating at the bottom of glacial valleys, you'll have a chance to meet these magnificent creatures on their own terms.
Canada's North is a nature refuge unlike any other, and a vacation to this unspoiled wilderness will do more than give your camera a workout; it will give you a new appreciation of our place in natural order.
The incoming tide punishes the rocky shore while eagles screech through salt spray. Icebergs, towering stories high and weighing tones, role on the brine. And yet every Newfoundlander wears a smile. Stay for a while, soak up the abundant natural wonders, and you will too.
For naturalists, the place to visit in Newfoundland and Labrador is Gros Morne National Park. Named for Gros Morne Mountain, the second highest point in Newfoundland, the geology and scenery of the region are so unusual that the UN designated the area a World Heritage Site. But a chance to glimpse relics of our geological history is by no means the only attraction at Gros Morne. Visit Broom Point, and you'll discover the history of Canada's earliest fishing settlements, recreated and staffed by retired fishermen. Spend some time with these old salts, and you'll also discover why Newfoundlanders are considered to be among the warmest and most welcoming people in the world.
Terra Nova is Canada's easternmost national park, a unique environment where long fingers of the sea flow deep into sheltered boreal forests. Launch yourself on a sea-kayak tour and you'll have to share the water with whales and seals. Stay on shore and it's a safe bet that, if you want to, you'll encounter at least one moose - Newfoundland has the greatest population density of moose in the world.
Icebergs are a common sight in the waters off Newfoundland and Labrador, and the cliffs of Terra Nova National Park offer a particularly good vantage point to see "nature's sea cathedrals". These giant icebergs, most of them thousands of years old, break off of massive glaciers near Greenland and Baffin Island, and the currents carry them to Newfoundland over the course of two or three years.
For the avid birder, Newfoundland offers unparalleled opportunities: no less than forty million seabirds call the province home, including the chubby, colorful puffins of the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve and the seven million storm petrels that have come to call Baccalieu Island home.
Come to Newfoundland and Labrador and discover a land of rugged, intense beauty. A land where man has found his place within nature. A land you won't want to leave.
British Columbia bills itself as "Super, Natural", and a hike along any one of its hundred of kilometers of nature trails will show you why. From smooth, well-traveled day trails to more rigorous treks that seem to take you to another time (or even another planet), a hiking tour of BC is an unforgettable experience.
The Juan de Fuca Marine Trail offers a leisurely and accessible hike for beginners. Its 47 kilometers stretch from China Beach to Botanical Beach, passing through a variety of terrains and wildlife habitats, making it perfect for day hikes. On this or any BC hiking trail, keep your eyes peeled for denizens of the wild such as, grizzlies, wolves, mountain goats, whales and porpoises. Looking a little higher, a hike through the Brackenrale Eagle Reserve puts you in the middle of one of the highest concentrations of bald eagles in the world. There's no overstating the awe inspired by the sight of up to 3,700 eagles on the wing at one time.
You can take a walk in the clouds at Mount Revelstoke, where a rainforest of 1,000-year-old cedars blankets the mountainous terrain. Or, if you're sure-footed, you can roam among the giants that carved Canada's landscape in Glacier National Park, which is home to over 400 glaciers.
Explore the pounding white water of the Fraser River without even getting your socks wet on one of BC's many dike trails. Travel far enough up river, and you'll be able to reward your sore feet with a long, soothing soak at the Harrison Hot Springs.
Cinemaphiles won't want to miss the chance to go spelunking in the old railway tunnels at the Coquihalla Canyon Recreation Area, which served as a setting for the first Rambo movie, First Blood. And if you want to experience that action-hero feeling for yourself, screw up your courage and cross the suspension bridges that span the dizzying Coquihalla Gorge.
Lone Butte, a volcanic plug about 76 meters tall, offers a stunning view, and a reminder of BC's tumultuous geological past. If that's not quite extreme enough for you, visit Nisga'a Memorial Lava Bed Provincial Park, where eruptions in the 1700s have created an alien landscape of smooth black volcanic rock. Many visitors compare the experience to walking on the moon.
So lace up your boots, grab your pack and follow your feet to British Columbia. No matter how fit you are, it's guaranteed to take your breath away.
For more information on British Columbia visit Hello BC.
There's a familiar buzzing in your pocket: your PDA wants your attention again. But this time, it's not a meeting or a stock update. It's something you can actually use: a complete, downloadable guide, with maps, of all the golf courses on Prince Edward Island. This handy innovation from the Prince Edward Island Department of Tourism puts a 21st century spin on a golfing history that dates back to the opening of the Charlottetown Golf Club in 1893.
This sense of history, coupled with a recognition of the pace of modern life, is just one of the reasons that PEI was recently rated by the readers of Score Magazine as "Canada's Best Golf Destination."
Canada's smallest province boasts a surprising 22 golf courses, and, according to Bob Weeks of Score Golf Magazine, "the Island has established itself as one of the premiere golf destinations in Canada and, for that matter, all of North America."
A golfing tour of PEI offers the dedicated duffer a chance to play rounds at courses designed by such world-renowned architects as Tom McBroom and Robbie Robinson. The unique beauty of PEI's landscape provides some of the finest raw materials for sculpting unforgettable courses, and the relaxed island lifestyle means there's always time for one more round.
Highlights of the PEI golfing scene include The Links at Crowbush Cove, designed by Tom McBroom, which features nine water holes and eight holes near the famous red dunes on the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Crowbush was awarded a 5-star rating from Golf Digest and is listed among the "Sweet Sixteen" top courses worldwide. Another popular destination is Mill River, which is continually rated as one of North America's best golf values, and one of the sternest tests of the golfer's skills in Eastern Canada.
Whether it's a corporate event or a personal quest to knock a few points off your score, golfing Prince Edward Island will give you an unrivalled vacation experience - and serious bragging rights at the pro shop.
For more information on golf in Canada visit Canada Golf.
Are you dreaming of downhill skiing on Whistler Mountain already? Perhaps it's more than a dream.
Perhaps it's a premonition of your Whistler winter getaway - skiing or snowboarding over 7000 acres of fresh snow.
One thing is certain - Whistler and Blackcomb Mountains open on November 23 and November 28, 2002.
Make those dreams a reality and book that winter getaway.
Whilst dreaming of winter, remember to squeeze in a little golf before the snow falls - you've still got time!
Whistler has the best golf rates around. Especially considering The Whistler Golf Club, which was designed by Arnold Palmer, freshly renovated in 2000, and has won numerous awards.
After a day (or two or three) of golfing, those aching muscles will beg for some pampered spa treatments. In the last few years Whistler has developed a spa industry into an award winning destination.
Unique treatments like mustard, mineral and oil baths, acupuncture, reflexology, and even some age-defying botox treatments, Whistler has some of the best spa treatments north of Beverly Hills.
Stick around a little longer and join Whistler biggest and most popular festivals - Cornucopia!
Whistler hosts Cornucopia - Whistler's Food and Wine Celebration from November 4-10, 2002. Enjoy hundreds of wine tastings, food tastings, famous guest speakers, learning seminars, parties, and events all devoted to the fine art of food and wine.
A taste bud extravaganza not to be missed!
Ah! A relaxing getaway - golfing, some time spent at the spa, a tummy full of gourmet meals...mind, body, and soul nourished with a little Whistler love.
Take a peak at the amazing mountain vista from your chalet style hotel suite.
Are those the first sprinklings of snow starting to fall? Wax up the board, sharpen the skis, get a new outfit, and extend your vacation.
That winter dream at Whistler has just arrived!
Cruising the coasts of British Columbia, you can hear the whales before you see them. Their haunting songs carry for miles on the open waters. It's a sound like no other, one that will reverberate in your soul long after the last echoes fade.
On a whale-watching cruise of the waters surrounding Vancouver Island, odds are good you'll spot pods of orcas, belugas, narwhals, gray whales and right whales in their natural habitat, and play audience to the antics of the seals and harbor porpoises. In March and April, you can see up to 20,000 Pacific Grey Whales in the midst of their migration from Baja to Alaska.
A cruise through the Inside Passage between Vancouver Island and the mainland will give you sea bird's-eye-view of British Columbia's spectacular coastlines, with their endless blanket of pine, spruce and cedar forests. If you really want to feel the wind in your hair, board a high-speed catamaran ferry for a tour of the majestic San Juan Islands.
On board ship, you'll have a chance to sample the finest foods BC has to offer. British Columbia, naturally enough, specializes in fresh fish and seafood, including the famous oysters of Fanny Bay, accompanied by local produce like mushrooms and cranberries. Don't limit yourself to fruits de mer, though: loosen your belt and sample the local cheeses and succulent lamb. And since you're here to relax, why not discover for yourself why BC wines have become acclaimed worldwide?
From mid-November to mid-April, you'll have a chance to see BC in a whole new light: this is the prime time to witness the singular spectacle of the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights. As you sail north, the polished wood decks and brass fittings come alive under the light of what many have described as an electrically charged rainbow illuminating the night sky.
It's all effortless: see the sights, hear the songs, taste the food, and you'll discover a new tranquility that comes from connecting with the rugged beauty of this vast wilderness.
Canada's railroads were the first institutions to connect the country from coast to coast. And while the great era of rail travel may be long gone, there's still no more relaxing way to experience the culture and attractions of Québec and the Maritime Provinces. The soothing rhythm of the rails will put you in just the right mindset to appreciate the friendly, relaxed lifestyle of Eastern Canada.
VIA Rail "Canadian" line runs through the cities and towns of Québec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, and brings you within easy day-trip distance of Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.
There's no shortage of sights to see. From the world's highest tides at the Bay of Fundy to the huge pierced rock that gives the town of Percé its name, and from the seabird sanctuary of Bonaventure Island to historic ports and harbors that were among North America's first settlements, you're sure to find a whistle stop to interest you. And even if you don't feel like getting disembarking, many trains feature Skyline Dome cars that offer a 360-degree panoramic view of the scenery.
If small town life is a little too laid back for you, why not stop in one of the urban centers? Halifax, the capital of Nova Scotia, is much more than a thriving seaport. It boasts a vibrant music scene, cutting edge contemporary galleries and theatres, and opportunities for trendy shopping and dining. And if you've got some spare change, Halifax's waterfront casino will give it a good home.
If you're looking for a truly metropolitan experience, look no further than Montréal. The world's second-largest French-speaking city (after Paris), Montréal is a city where the past meets the present. In Old Montréal, you'll find buildings dating back to before Canada's confederation, while just blocks away you'll encounter icons of the 20th century like the Olympic Park and the site of the 1967 Montréal Expo. Add to that a host of international festivals in every season, and a stop in Montréal becomes a must on any train schedule.
Imagine waking up to a new view through your bedroom window every morning. Imagine wandering into a new town each day and being greeted by warm, open people who will invite you into their homes and their lives as if you were a neighbor. It's not so far-fetched. Ride the rails of Eastern Canada and you'll see what we mean.