Canada day vancouver island’s devine distillery restaurant depot online.Devine, the “Willy Wonka of spirits”, named Canada’s Artisanal Distillery of the Year

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Communities Near You. More events Submit your event. All rights reserved. Read new local stories and seasonal recipes every month. We will never share your email address with anyone else.

With its focus on French Canadian culture, the fest shares classic recipes—and pairs them with Port Moody ales and performances from across the country. Back Theatre Dance Comedy. Back Read Culture News Podcasts. By Gail Johnson. Gail Johnson. Related Articles. Blending innovative thinking with time honoured tradition. Farming our property naturally and partnering with local growers to source raw ingredients.

Practising water reuse strategies that allow us to nourish the earth that we steward. Quality sustained through passion and process. One of the few certified craft distilleries in the heart of the Saanich peninsula.

We only use BC grown grains, fruit, and honey. We ferment and distill on-site using traditional methods.

 
 

 

Canada day vancouver island’s devine distillery restaurant depot online

 
The knowledgeable /20460.txt oversee demonstration projects devoted to organic agriculture, wind and solar power, biodiesel production and straw-bale construction.

 
 

Canada day vancouver island’s devine distillery restaurant depot online

 
 

There are guided tours at 10am and 2pm. Exhibits include strange sea creatures and the spiffy Silver Bullet, an early s lobster boat. Camping and food available on site, which is strictly alcohol- and drug-free. Lobster Carnival ; www. Hector Festival ; www. Sites 1 to 22 abut the day-use area and are less private; Sites 78 to 95 are gravel and suited for RVs. The rest are wooded and private.

Hostel Pictou ; www. Willow House Inn ; www. The owners whip up great breakfasts as well as conversation and tips for what to do around town. W H Davies House , ; www. Pictou Lodge , ; www. Beautifully renovated ocean-side log cabins have original stone fireplaces. Motel rooms are also available. Customs House Inn ; www. The chunky antique decor is as sturdy and elegant as the walls and many rooms have waterfront views. Entertainment deCoste Entertainment Centre ; www.

Shopping Water Street Studio ; Water St A cooperative begun more than 20 years ago by local craftswomen, this store sells beautiful clothing, jewelry and gifts. Take a tour of the factory where knives for every use are crafted in no less than 53 steps. For more information Click here. The few major local attractions are in Stellarton, a 5km drive away. It overlooks the river and is situated on the bike path.

Choose from salads, sandwiches, homemade pasta and thin-crust pizza. Open in the morning for coffee and snacks, but not breakfast. Try the Thai grilled salmon or pork tenderloin with black mission-fig butter. Reservations are recommended. Catholic Scots settled and established St Francis Xavier University and today the university still dominates the ambience of the town. Antigonish is known for the Scottish Highland Games held each July since Enter off College St.

In the hall, crests of all the Scottish clans that settled this area are displayed. Those clans gather each July for the Antigonish Highland Games. Evolve www. Locals credit Chef Mark Gabrieau for setting the culinary high-watermark in Antigonish.

Around Antigonish POMQUET About 16km east of Antigonish, this tiny Acadian community is on a stunning beach with 13 dunes that keep growing; waves dump the equivalent of more than truckloads of sand on the beach each year.

Many bird species frequent the salt marshes behind the dunes. From a well-marked picnic area close to Cape George Point Lighthouse, a 1km walk leads to the lighthouse itself. Signs at the picnic area also point to longer hikes through forests and coastal areas, including one 32km loop.

Signs at all the trail junctions indicate how long it will take to follow alternate routes. To walk from the wharf to the lighthouse and back again is a 8km trip. A fish-and-chips van parks nearby. It winds and climbs around and over coastal mountains, with heart-stopping ocean views at every turn, moose on the roads watch out!

Celtic Colours www. This is definitely worth a stop: there are few other centers on Cape Breton Island, especially outside of July and August; the staff is very well informed; and one wall is covered with posters advertising square dances and ceilidhs.

Pick up a copy of the Inverness Oran, an excellent local weekly that lists most events in the northwest area of Cape Breton Island.

Then get on your dancing shoes: this area was settled by Scots with fiddles in hand and is renowned for its ceilidh music performances, square dances and parties. For a great introduction to local culture, visit the Celtic Music Interpretive Centre ; www. Half-hour tours which can be self-guided if you arrive when no guides are available include a fiddle lesson and a dance step or two. Rooms are large and comfortable and this place is only a minute drive from the causeway.

Take any turn off Hwy 19 and see where it takes you. In the Cape Mabou Highlands, an extensive network of hiking trails extends between Mabou and Inverness toward the coast west of Hwy Hikes ranging from 4km to 12km start from three different trailheads.

Maps are also posted at the trailheads. After the tour and a taste of the local beverage, enjoy free ceilidhs and stop for a meal or even for the night. The chalets are a better choice if you want brighter surroundings. Red Shoe Pub ; www. Check the website for performances. Inverness Row upon row of company housing betrays the history of coal mining in Inverness, the first town of any size on the coast.

Its history and people are captured evocatively by writer Alistair MacLeod. Beginning near the fishing harbor there are miles of sandy beach with comfortable water temperatures in late summer. A boardwalk runs 1km along the beach. Inverness County Centre for the Arts ; www. The house is big and modern but the decoration is in keeping with Cape Breton heritage. Windows wrap around the dining area bringing in sea views and light.

The drive is at its best along the northwestern shore and then down to Pleasant Bay. Be sure to take advantage of the many pull-offs for scenic views and otherwise keep your eyes on this very circuitous road.

The Church of St Pierre dominates the town with its silver spire and colorful frescoes but the rest of this seaside town is modern and drab. Check out the rug displays at Les Trois Pignons and take notice of all those co-ops around town: the Credit Union, Co-op grocery store, Co-op Artisanale. Stop here to gawk and snap a few pics of yourself with this quasi-macabre outdoor collection of life-sized, stuffed figures.

Whale Cruises , ; www. Captain Cal is the most experienced and offers three-hour expeditions up to four times daily. It stands out from the other town motels because of its cleanliness and friendliness. Views stretch from the sea to the mountain, wildflowers burst from every corner of the garden and you might even see a passing moose. Very full breakfasts are served in the panoramic dining area by energetic hosts. Four rooms furnished with antiques all have private bathrooms.

It has a fresh, nautical ambience and some creative extras on the menu such as a maple vinaigrette for the salads. Cape Breton Highlands National Park One-third of the Cabot Trail runs through this extensive park of woodland, tundra, bog and startling sea views.

A one-day pass is good until noon the next day. Ask the staff for advice on hiking or camping. Wheelchair-accessible trails are indicated on the free park map available at either entrance. Double the distances if you plan to return the same day. Note that two hikes north of the park opposite and Click here can also be overnight trips. Reviews of trails in and near the park are available at www.

Most other trails are shorter and close to the road, many leading to ridge tops for impressive views of the coast. The best of these is Skyline Trail, a 7km loop that puts you on the edge of a headland cliff right above the water. The trailhead is about 5. Just south of Neils Harbour, on the eastern coast of the park, the Coastal Trail runs 11km round-trip and covers more gentle, lovely coastline. The riding is tough, there are no shoulders in many sections and you must be comfortable sharing the incredible scenery with RVs.

Alternatively you can mountain bike on four inland trails in the park. Only Branch Pond Lookoff Trail offers ocean views. Sea Spray Outdoor Adventures ; www. It also offers help planning trips and leads organized cycling, kayaking and hiking tours. In the smaller campgrounds further from the park entrances, just pick a site and self-register. To camp at any of the three larger ones near the park entrances, register at the closest information center.

Wheelchair-accessible sites are available. When the main campground is full, an overflow area is opened. Corney Brook 20 sites , 10km further north, is a particularly stunning campground high over the ocean. MacIntosh Brook 10 sites is an open field 3km east of Pleasant Bay. It has wheelchair-accessible sites. Big Intervale 10 sites is near a river 11km west of Cape North. Both have wheelchair-accessible sites. These large campgrounds near the beach are popular with local families in midsummer.

In truly inclement weather, tenters can take refuge in cooking shelters with woodstoves. Bring your own food. Pleasant Bay A perfect base for exploring the park, Pleasant Bay is a carved-out bit of civilization hemmed on all sides by wilderness. If you are in the area on Canada Day July 1 , try to be in the stands for the annual monks vs townspeople baseball game. Make a stop at the Whale Interpretive Centre ; www. They leave from the adjacent wharf. Park entrance permits are for sale here, and internet access is available at the C P site downstairs.

Captain Mark promises not only guaranteed whales but also time to see seabirds and seals as well as Gampo Abbey. Tours leave from the wharf next to the Whale Interpretive Center. There are great views along the way and perfect spots to camp when you arrive at the abandoned fishing community.

This is not a Parks Canada trail, so it can be rough underfoot. The office for Cabot Trail Whale Watching is here. The more stylish rooms in the inn are worth the outlay. He does trips at am, pm and pm in July and August. Call for spring and fall schedules. Reservations are accepted for multinight stays and for a beautifully built four-bunk cabin.

There are hot showers, a cooking shelter, frequent whale sightings and the whole place is nearly bug-free. The building was a general store for decades and is still full of strange flotsam and jetsam. Three units have kitchen facilities and there are views of Aspy Bay and mountains.

Kayaks, canoes and bicycles are available free for guests. They frolic here all spring, summer, and into the fall. Carry a compass and refrain from exploring side paths; locals have gotten lost in this area. Old logging saws, antlers, fishnets, bottles and other heritage paraphernalia make the ambience, while thick sliced homemade bread and fresh local homemade ingredients make up wonderful seafood dishes and light lunches.

Be prepared for high winds. Ingonish At the eastern entrance to the national park are Ingonish and Ingonish Beach, small towns lost in the background of motels and cottages. This is a long-standing popular destination, but there are few real attractions other than the Highlands Links golf course , ; www. There are several hiking trails and an information center nearby in the national park Click here.

Ingonish Beach is a long, wide strip of sand tucked in a bay surrounded by green hills. The owner works at the park and is a mine of info about hiking and activities.

Keltic Lodge , ; www. You must have a valid entry permit Click here to the national park, as the lodge, the golf course and the hiking trail are all within park boundaries. These are real gritty, working-people towns and, even though there is some nice architecture and colorful homes, this road feels distinctly off-the-beaten tourist track. The artists are easy to find, just keep an eye out for the signs along the main road.

Make sure you have change for the pay showers. Rainbow paintings grace the walls and Joan cooks up a million dollar breakfast in the morning. Meals breakfast and dinner are served on the screened-in porch. See medical and electrical devices, telegraphs, telephones, kites and seaplanes and then learn about how they all work. The rooms in the inn are full of character, have bay views and are decorated with subtle prints and lots of flair.

Modern self-contained cottages are set in the woods and are great for families. Lynwood Inn ; www. Another refreshing aspect to this place is its chic, modern design. All rooms and suites have private entrance and kitchenette, and fabulous breakfasts are brought to your room or to the sunny patio. Meals come with just about everything and, although not spectacularly prepared, could fuel you for days.

The parish hall is just opposite the VIC right in the middle of town. By appointment, elders will show the use of traditional games and craftspeople can demonstrate beading and basket weaving. Between Wagmatcook and the next town of Whycocomagh is the new, bed Bear by the Lake Hostel ; www. Call in advance to make sure someone will be home when you show up. Arguably the regions best pit stop, the deli serves gourmet sandwiches, soups and salads. Grab a bag lunch or snacks for the road. Most places to stay are along Queen St about 2km west of the ferry terminal.

Rooms have shared bathrooms. Most rooms have private bathrooms. Owners Cyril and Loretta are phenomenally know- ledgeable about their natural surroundings and will proudly teach you about everything from beekeeping to medicinal plants. Open Cafe. For information about the Marine Atlantic ferry ; www. There are several nice places to stay if you want to use this as a base to explore Louisbourg. The more expensive rooms have en suite bathrooms and kitchenette facilities.

Shared bathrooms get awfully busy when this place is full. The rooms are extra comfortable. All of the meat served is oven-roasted, not processed. Entertainment A lot of touring bands make the trek to Sydney. Fiddlers and other traditional musicians from the west coast of the island also perform here or at the Savoy in Glace Bay right. Air Canada Jazz , ; www. Air Saint-Pierre , ; www. The Acadian Lines bus depot is at 99 Terminal Dr. There are also a number of shuttle services to Halifax.

The highlight of this museum is the adventure under the seafloor to visit closed-down mines with a retired miner as a guide. The town itself has plenty of soul, with its working fishing docks, old-timers and a friendly vibe.

Bring your camera to capture the views back toward the fortress at the national historic site. Built to protect French interests in the region, it was also a base for cod fishing and an administrative capital. Louisbourg was worked on continually from to about as saltwater in the mortar led to corrosion. The British took it in a day siege in , exploiting intelligence from British soldiers who had been prisoners in the fortress.

It would change hands twice more. Since its founding in , the Sydney steel mill has produced some , tons of toxic sludge, the by-product of burning dirty coal to produce coke for use in the steel plant.

The hectare coke-oven site is now a field of rubble contaminated to depths of 25m. The immense scale and extreme toxicity of the site have thwarted several clean-up attempts. Once solidified, the area will be covered in plastic, then soil and eventually grass. Workers in period dress take on the lives of typical fort inhabitants. Free guided tours around the site are offered throughout the day.

Travelers with mobility problems can ask for a pass to drive their car up to the site; there are ramps available to access most buildings. Though the scale of the reconstruction is massive, three-quarters of Louisbourg is still in ruins. The 2. Three restaurants serve food typical of the time. Cranberry Cove Inn , ; www. Each room is unique and several have Jacuzzis and fireplaces.

The views over the bay here are lovely and the service charming. Other shellfish platters as well as burgers and chicken are available.

The largest town on the islands, Arichat, is one of the oldest communities in Nova Scotia and was a booming seaport in the s. Le Noir Forge Museum ; Lower St; admission free; 10am-5pm Jun-Sep has blacksmith demonstrations in a restored stone blacksmith shop on the waterfront. The menu features burger platters at lunch and pastas and fresh seafood for dinner.

Running from Cape Canso at the extreme eastern tip of the mainland to the outskirts of Dartmouth, the Eastern Shore has no large towns and the main road is almost as convoluted as the rugged shoreline it follows.

If you want to experience wilderness and are willing to hike or kayak, this is your heaven. From the picnic area on the highway below the campground, a footbridge leads to a small island. Desbarres Manor ; www.

Check the website for schedules. Long dependent on the fishery, Canso has been decimated by outward emigration and unemployment since the northern cod stocks collapsed around The cape surrounding the village has some very off-the-beaten-track opportunities for hiking, kayaking, bird-watching and surfing.

In the British built a small fort to offset the French who had their headquarters in Louisbourg. The outpost was extremely vulnerable to military attacks and was totally destroyed in The boat to Grassy Island departs from the center upon demand, weather permitting. Chapel Gully Trail is a 10km boardwalk and hiking trail along an estuary and out to the coast.

It begins near the lighthouse on the hill behind the hospital at the eastern end of Canso. A large map is posted at the trailhead. Most people come for the Stan Rogers Folk Festival www. Accommodations are pretty much impossible to get unless you reserve a year ahead. Locals set up campsites for the festival; check the website for details and try to get a site away from the festival site if sleep is a priority.

The owners will help you organize your preferred activity. There are 25 buildings to visit in this living museum that effectively helps its visitors step back in time. Rooms in the house are shared while the loft style chalet has its own bathroom. On one side is a long, very fine, sandy beach fronting a protected bay.

Some 17km of hiking trails cut through the spruce and fir forests. The Headland Trail is the longest at 8km round-trip and follows the rugged coastline to scenic views at Taylor Head. The shorter Bob Bluff Trail is a 3km round-trip hike to a bluff with good views. Pack the picnic cooler and plan on spending a full day hiking, lounging and if you can brave the cool water swimming here.

The Acadians had been forced to abandon all their livestock and it appears that Boston merchant ship owner Thomas Hancock helped himself to their horses then put them to pasture on Sable Island to keep it low profile.

The horses that survived became wild. Today the island works as a research center; scientists come every year, mostly to study the birds, seals and horses. Since , natural gas fields run by Exxon have been working only 10km from the island but so far there has been little environmental conflict.

Highly recommended Coastal Adventures Sea Kayaking , www. The man of the house used to row 16km to get to his fishing grounds, leaving his wife and 13 daughters at home. Costumed local guides offer tea and hospitality. If you enjoy a creamy seafood chowder, the one here is to die for. Other specialties on offer include lobster, seafood and steaks. Wealthy American sportsmen and glamorous Hollywood starlets regularly journeyed north to fish its rivers and hunt in the vast forested interior.

Gradually New Brunswick slipped into relative obscurity; a terra incognita lying between Quebec and Nova Scotia. But the unspoiled wilderness is still there. So are gentle green valleys dotted with farms, colorful fishing villages along the coast, and a maritime culture melding the heritage of the early Acadian and British settlers with strong aboriginal traditions and those of recent immigrants. The Trans-Canada Hwy cuts a roughly diagonal swath across the province from its northwest corner to the southeastern tip en route to Prince Edward Island.

To see New Brunswick, you have to get off the highway and explore its small towns and villages, scenic river valleys, wilderness parks and coastal islands. New Brunswick offers outstanding opportunities for enjoying the great outdoors.

Whale-watching around Passamaquoddy Bay and Grand Manan is so good it comes with a sighting guarantee. Sea-kayak outfitters offer a rigorous day out on the waves. The inland lakes and rivers have unlimited opportunities for canoe-tripping. There are 64 covered bridges and 70 lighthouses in New Brunswick. Many places still bear their aboriginal names although the Aboriginal people who today number around 17, are now concentrated on small pockets of land.

Following in the wake of explorer Samuel de Champlain, French colonists arrived in the s. The Acadians, as they came to be known, farmed the area around the Bay of Fundy. In they were expelled by the English, many returning to settle along the Bay of Chaleur. In the years following, the outbreak of the American Revolution brought an influx of British Loyalists from Boston and New York seeking refuge in the wilds of New Brunswick.

These refugees settled the valleys of the St John and St Croix Rivers, established the city of Saint John and bolstered the garrison town at Fredericton. The majority of the population still has British roots. Irish ancestry is dominant in Saint John and Miramichi. Through the s lumbering and shipbuilding boomed and by the start of the 20th century other industries, including fishing, had developed. That era of prosperity ended with the Great Depression. Today, pulp and paper, oil refining and potato farming are the major industries.

The church parking lots are generally full on a Sunday morning, but so are the pubs on a Friday night, and there is some overlap in clientele. Country and gospel music are popular in these parts, but every sizable town has a small alternative music and arts scene and a few young people walking around with pink hair and black clothes.

You will rarely have a problem being understood in English or French. There are four distinct seasons. Summers are generally mild with occasional hot days. The Fundy shore is prone to fog, particularly in the spring and early summer.

The primary tourist season lasts from late June to early September. Many tourist facilities beaches, organized tours and some accommodations in resort areas shut down for the remainder of the year. Kouchibouguac National Park encompasses a serene land and seascape of tidal marshes and estuaries, sand dunes, beaches and forest. Fundy National Park is a big chunk of rugged coastline on the Bay of Fundy. There are 12 provincial parks scattered throughout the province.

There are also several designated historical sites including colonial forts and homes of prominent people. The Fundy Coast is a major bird migration corridor, with great viewing in spring, summer and fall. Other creatures of interest include black bear, moose and deer, which inhabit rural and wilderness areas, whales in the Bay of Fundy, and Atlantic salmon in the Miramichi River. For concert listings and events, pick up the free [here] tabloid in Fredericton, Saint John and Moncton.

Follow the Old River Road through Gagetown to the port city of Saint John, stopping at a few pottery studios along the way. The next morning, head west along the Fundy coast to catch the ferry to Grand Manan Island. Take your pick of whale-watching tours, hiking, cycling or relaxing on the verandah with a book. Stop for a dip in the ocean at Parlee Beach near Shediac, then head north toward Bouctouche.

Get a taster of Acadian culture at Le Pays de la Sagouine, then round out the experience with a visit to the modern village of Caraquet and a time trip to the early 19th century at Village Historique Acadien.

Alternatively, head up to the Miramichi for a few days of salmon fishing and tubing on the famed river. Outdoor Adventures Start with a couple of days camping by the ocean, kayaking along the dunes and exploring the cycling and hiking trails at Kouchibouguac National Park. Take a sea-kayaking expedition in Passamaquoddy Bay, then spend a week canoe-tripping through the Chiputneticook Lakes.

These are open from mid-May to mid-October only. WestJet also flies into Saint John from Toronto three times a week. Click here for airline contact details. The three-hour crossing can save a lot of driving. From Saint John between late June and early September, departure times are 9am and pm daily with an additional am crossing on Tuesday and Thursday.

From Digby, departure times are 1pm and pm with an additional 5am sailing on Tuesday and Thursday. During the rest of the year, ferries run once or twice daily in both directions. Even with a reservation, arrive an hour before departure. Walk-ons and cyclists should be OK any time.

For Fundy Isles ferries, see the section dedicated to the islands Click here. BUS Acadian Lines ; www. For information on the daily bus service between Bangor and Calais, Click here. Traffic is generally light, although crossing the Maine border usually means a delay at customs.

These accidents are almost always fatal for the animal and about five people a year die this way. Eighty-five percent of moose-vehicle collisions happen between May and October and most occur at night. Slow down when driving after dusk and scan the verges for animals, using your high beams when there is no oncoming traffic. High-risk zones are posted. Its grassy banks are mowed and dotted with fountains, walking paths, playing fields, tall elms and willows.

The small downtown commercial district is a neat grid of redbrick storefronts. Surrounding it are quiet residential streets lined with tall, graceful elms shading beautifully maintained Georgian and Victorian houses and abundant flowerbeds. A canopy of trees spreads over the downtown, pierced here and there by church spires. The French followed in but were eventually burned out by the British, who brought in Loyalists fleeing the United States after the American Revolution.

Fredericton really came into its own the next year when the British government decided to form a new province by splitting New Brunswick away from Nova Scotia.

The Westmorland St Bridge connects the downtown area with the north shore residential areas. Further east, Hwy 8 crosses the river on the Princess Margaret Bridge. Visitors Centre , ; www. Westminster Books ; King St Stocks regional authors. Also in summer the Calithumpians Outdoor Summer Theatre performs daily at pm weekdays and 2pm weekends. The free historical skits are laced with humor. Threaten your kids! The lower section of the barracks is now used as artisan studios.

Beaverbrook Art Gallery This relatively small but excellent gallery ; www. The exceptional collection includes works by international heavyweights and is well worth an hour or so. When the Legislative Assembly is not in session, guides can show you around. When the assembly is in session, visitors are welcome to observe. The representative of the queen moved out in after the province refused to continue paying his expenses, and during most of the 20th century the complex was a Royal Canadian Mounted Police RCMP headquarters.

It now evocatively captures a moment in time with tours led by staff in period costume. Oh what the hell, you know you always wanted a mullet! Old Burial Ground The Loyalist cemetery Brunswick St, at Carleton St; 8am-9pm , dating back to , is an atmospheric, thought-provoking history lesson of its own, revealing large families and kids dying tragically young.

The Loyalists arrived from the 13 colonies after the American Revolution of On offer are weekly passes, guided canoe and kayak tours, one-hour to three-day river ecology trips, and instruction in either canoeing or kayaking.

They range from m to Pick up a map at City Hall. For bike rentals, Click here. Tours depart from City Hall at 10am, pm and 5pm daily. Silver Wave Film Festival ; www. Often travelers luxuriate in their own room. Wind down on the front porch swing. Carriage House Inn , ; www. The grand common room is furnished with polished hardwood floors, antiques, comfy sofas, fireplaces and grand piano. The 10 high-ceilinged guest rooms upstairs feature four-poster beds, period wallpapers and original artwork.

There is a deep verandah for lounging. Delta Fredericton , ; www. All the amenities of the upscale hotel chain plus a secluded patio bar with a fabulous view of the river and nearby islands.

Return to beginning of chapter EATING For a small city, Fredericton offers a wide, cosmopolitan cross-section of restaurants and most are in the walkable core. Mixed in among the or so stands are some selling handicrafts, homemade desserts and flowers. There is also a restaurant where Frederictonians queue to catch up and people-watch. Enjoy your meal on the rooftop patio. Daily lunch specials include Jambalaya with cornbread, quiche and salad and a range of wholesome, hefty sandwiches.

The largely authentic, south-of-the-border food, including tamales and enormous burritos, is savory, plentiful and never greasy. The Mexican drinks go down well with the Latin music, too. Great for a casual, flavorful meal. No alcohol. Have a freshly-made pastry and iced coffee under the trees or a hearty German meal in the homey schnitzel parlor. Open for dinner by reservation only.

Dishes range from coconut curry with mussels and maple baked salmon to pasta incorporating local sausage and mushrooms.

The Atlantic salmon is superb. Among other things, he gave it an art gallery in It includes an impressive collection of European masters.

They thought the time had come for them to be sent across the pond. The art gallery board said to forget it. Then things got ugly and litigious. In , an independent arbitrator ruled that of the artworks in dispute, 85 were gifts from Lord Beaverbrook to the gallery. Forty-eight other mainly minor works had to go back. The current Lord Beaverbrook has appealed the decision.

Pub meals are served daily, too. Lunar Rogue Pub ; King St; am Lunar Rogue has a good beer selection and a fine assortment of single malts. Try Picaroons, the local microbrew and enjoy summer on the patio. For the scoop on concerts, art gallery openings and other happenings around town, pick up a copy of [here] www. They were covered to protect their load-bearing timbers from rot and to keep the snow off and are generally high and wide because cartloads of hay pulled by horses had to pass over them.

As recently as , there were bridges in New Brunswick. Today, 64 bridges remain, more than anywhere else in Canada. Though age, fire and flooding have taken their toll, most of the bridges are still part of the secondary road network, not idle relics.

Click here for flight details. In-province visitors can get a one-day pass. Avis, Budget, Hertz and National car rental agencies Click here all have desks at the airport and downtown.

Service is halved on weekends. Two automobile routes carve through the valley: the quicker Trans-Canada Hwy Hwy 2 , mostly on the west side of the river, and the more scenic old Hwy on the east side, which meanders through many villages. A community of costumed staff create a living museum by role-playing in 11 houses, a school, church, store and sawmill typical of those used a century ago, providing a glimpse and taste of pioneer life in the Maritimes.

Demonstrations and events are staged throughout the day and horse-drawn carts shunt visitors around. The prosperous Loyalist life reflected here can be tellingly compared to that at the Acadian Historic Village in Caraquet. Situated where the Meduxnekeag River flows into the St John River, it has a historical core of lovingly preserved Victorian homes and public buildings. It serves colorful, healthful fare like quiche, soups, salads, sandwiches, luscious desserts, coffee, a local microbrew and martinis to world beat music.

Acadian Lines bus stops at the Irving convenience store ; Connell St. The photogenic m-long Hartland covered bridge over the St John River was erected in and is a national historic site. The picnic tables overlooking the river and the bridge at the tourist information center are five-star lunch spots fixings at the grocery store across the road.

Otherwise, the village has a rather forlorn atmosphere. Check-in is after 5pm. A far more scenic route albeit about twice as long follows the gentle, meandering St John River through rolling farmland and a couple of historic villages down to the Fundy coast. Start on the north side of the river in Fredericton, and follow Rte south through Maugerville to Jemseg. At Exit , pick up Rte South which will take you to the Gagetown ferry landing admission free; 24hr, year-round.

This is the first of a system of eight free cable ferries that crisscross the majestic St John River en route to the city of Saint John.

You will never have to wait more that a few minutes for the crossing, which generally takes five to 10 minutes. The top-notch staff will show you through the exhibits spanning pre-colonial aboriginal history in the area, 18th-century settler life, and up to WWII.

Gagetown Cider Company ; Fox Rd; pm offers tours by appointment. Explore scenic Gagetown Creek by boat. Gagetown Camping ; www. The grand old farmhouses and weathered hay barns dotted at hundred acre intervals along the valley belong to that earlier age.

The hilly 42km piece of road between Gagetown and the ferry landing at Evandale admission free; 24hr, year-round is especially picturesque, with glorious panoramic views of fields full of wildflowers, white farm houses and clots of green and gold islands set in the intensely blue water of the river.

A hundred years ago, Evandale was a bustling little place, where a dance band would entertain riverboat passengers stopping off for the night at the now abandoned Everleigh Hotel the big Victorian mansion up from the ferry landing. On the other side of the water, Rte takes you the short distance to the Belleisle ferry admission free; 24hr, year-round. The ferry deposits you on the rural Kingston Peninsula, where you can cross the peninsula to catch the Gondola Point Ferry admission free; 24hr, year-round and head directly into Saint John.

In this area, school kids are still given two weeks off in the autumn to help bring in the harvest. Especially engaging are the archival photographs and recorded oral histories of local elders recounting a hardscrabble life growing up in the New Brunswick potato belt. The museum is 2km off Hwy 2 at Exit toward Centreville on Rte If you are cycling up the valley on the Trans Canada Trail Click here or looking for a bed for the night, there are two appealing options in the area.

Besides the Harvest Cafe see opposite , Florenceville has a half-dozen middle-of-the-road restaurants serving three meals a day. Mt Carleton is little known and relatively unvisited, even in midsummer. Hunting and logging are prohibited in the park, and all roads are gravel-surfaced. The nearest town is Riley Brook, 30km away, so bring all food and a full tank of gas. At the entrance to the park is a visitors centre ; www.

There is also another office ; dnr. In the park itself, the Nictau and Nipisiguit chains of lakes offer easy day-tripping through a landscape of tree-clad mountains. For experienced canoeists, the shallow and swift Little Tobique River rises at Big Nictau Lake, winding in tight curls through dense woods until it joins the Tobique itself at Nictau.

The more remote Nepisiguit River flows out of the Nepisiguit Lakes through the wilderness until it empties into the Bay of Chaleur at Bathurst, over kilometers away. The lower reaches of the Tobique, from Nictau, through minute Riley Brook and down to Plaster Rock is a straight, easy paddle through forest and meadow that gives way to farmland as the valley broadens, with a couple of waterfront campgrounds along the way.

Fiddles on the Tobique ; late Jun is a weekend festival held annually in Nictau and Riley Brook. It is a magical idea: a round of community hall suppers, jam sessions and concerts culminating in a Sunday afternoon floating concert down the Tobique River from Nictau to Riley Brook. By some accounts, the event has been damaged by its own popularity, devolving into a boisterous booze cruise.

Others call it a grand party and good fun. On land, Bill Miller ; www. Also worth a stop is the Tobique Salmon Barrier admission free; 9am-5pm , signposted from the road at Nictau, located at the confluence of the Little Tobique and Campbell Rivers. There is a spectacular view from the Department of Fisheries office situated on a bluff overlooking the water. From here, officers keep a hour watch on the Atlantic salmon, which are trucked up by road from below the Mactaquac Dam at Fredericton and held here until spawning time, in order to protect their dwindling numbers from poachers.

The knowledgeable staff oversee demonstration projects devoted to organic agriculture, wind and solar power, biodiesel production and straw-bale construction. You can tour the site, hike 10km of forest trails and enjoy the view atop Skedaddle Ridge named for the American Civil War draft-dodgers who settled here , or sign up for a weekend workshop a calendar of events is on the website. The center is a half-hour drive from Hartland. Call or check the website for directions, pack a picnic and enjoy the scenery along the way.

The park has a 62km network of trails, most of them are loops winding to the handful of rocky knobs that are the peaks. The easiest peak to climb is Mt Bailey; a 7. Most hikers can walk this route in three hours.

Plan on three to four hours for the trek and pack your parka; the wind above the tree line can be brutal. The most scenic hike is the Sagamook Trail, a 6km loop to a m peak with superlative vistas of Nictau Lake and the highlands area to the north of it; allow three hours for this trek. All hikers intending to follow any long trails must register at the visitors center or park headquarters before hitting the trail. Outside the camping season mid-May to mid-September , you should call ahead to make sure the main gate will be open, as the Mt Carleton trailhead is With so few sites available, the park campground can occasionally fill up.

Reservations are suggested, by sending an email to the park office Click here in St Quentin. Williams Brook and Franquelin Campgrounds and the backcountry Headwaters campsite in the park were all closed at the time of research due to government budget cuts. It has toilets, showers and a kitchen shelter, but no sites with hookups. RV drivers often have their noisy generators running, so tenters should check out the eight tent-only sites along Armstrong Brook on the north side of the campground.

A grand log hunting lodge set on the banks on the Tobique River, it is busiest during fall hunting season, but is also a supremely relaxing base for hikers, canoeists and wildlife enthusiasts. There is also a pool table, big screen TV, floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace, a few dining tables and huge picture windows framing a serene view of the river slipping by just a few meters away.

The cozy log-walled guest rooms are spick and span and nicely accented with plaid fabrics. A long, deep verandah invites lounging after dinner. The town of Plaster Rock, situated 54km downriver toward the Trans-Canada Hwy Rye , also has several serviceable motels and a couple of casual restaurants.

The Grand Falls are best in spring or after heavy rain. In summer, much of the water is diverted for generating hydroelectricity, yet the gorge appeals any time. Among the displays is a scale model of the gorge showing its extensive trail system. Buy the boat ticket at La Rochelle first, as it includes the stairway to the base of the gorge.

Maple Tourist Home , ; www. The Acadian Lines bus stops at the Irving gas station ; Broadway , right in the center of town. Hwy known locally as the Renous Hwy cuts across the province through Plaster Rock to the east coast, slicing through forest for nearly its entirety.

It is most tedious, but fast. Watch out for deer and moose. For many, this affection obsession? Twenty rinks are plowed on Roulston Lake, which is ringed by tall evergreens, hot chocolate stands and straw-bale seating for the odd spectators drawn to the four-day event. The tournament is wildly popular, with amateur four-person teams traveling in from all 13 Canadian provinces and territories, 35 American states to date, and 15 countries as far flung as England, Egypt and the Cayman Islands.

Anyone can register to play, but they will have to defeat the Boston Danglers, who scrambled over squads like the Skateful Dead, the Raggedy Ass River Boys and the Boiled Owls to put a lock on the championship trophy several years running.

If you want to play, register early. If you want to watch, pack your long johns and a toque wool hat and book your accommodation asap. If the motels are full, the organizers keep a list of local folks willing to billet out-of-towners in their homes for the weekend. Nevertheless, it makes a convenient stopover for those traveling east from Quebec. Here there are 80, plants to brighten your day, all accompanied by classical music!

Kids might prefer the insectarium. In summer, simple institutional rooms are available at University of Moncton ; www. Several motels line the Hwy and old Hwy 2 Boul Acadie. A city landmark since the s, this is a total classic right down to the seasoned, uniformed waitresses. The you-name-it menu includes more-than- acceptable Italian, Chinese, seafood and basic Canadian fare. The bus terminal ; Victoria is across the street from the Bel Air restaurant.

The resort town of St Andrews, the serene Fundy Isles, fine seaside scenery and rich history make this easily one of the most appealing regions of the province. Whale-watching is a thrilling area activity. Most commonly seen are the fin, humpback and minke, and less so, the increasingly rare right whale.

Porpoises and dolphins are plentiful. It is home to Ganong, a family-run chocolate business operating since , whose products are known around eastern Canada. Once a year, during Chocolate Fest ; www.

You can walk the main street easily from here. There are also a few run-down motels on the outskirts of town if you are desperate. In Bangor, immediate connections are available to Boston and New York.

They leave from the Angelhom restaurant, but call to confirm the location as this changes. In Bangor, buses use the Greyhound terminal and connect to Bangor airport. Greyhound passes cannot be used from Calais.

Blessed with a fine climate and picturesque beauty, it also has a colorful history. Busy with holidaymakers and summer residents in July and August, the rest of the year there are more seagulls than people. King St is its main cross street. The main tourist office ; www. Sights Huntsman Aquarium Museum ; www. The aquarium features most specimens found in local waters, including seals feedings at 11am and 4pm and sharks. Kids love the touch pool. The research center also offers week-long summer field courses for amateur enthusiasts both students and adults.

His former cottage of 50 rooms and the unusual bathhouse with its tidal swimming pool can be visited at low tide when you can drive on the hard-packed sea floor. Be careful! Two-hour visits, by tour only, run once or twice a day, depending on the tides. You must use your own vehicle. Various changing exhibits run through summer.

Stretching for km along the international border, the forest-ringed Chiputneticook Lakes offer canoeing enthusiasts the chance to slip away into the wild for a few weeks.

It includes the St Croix River, a popular three- to four-day paddling route beginning south of the lakes. There are a couple of fishing lodges on Palfrey Lake accessible via Rte Day-trippers can use the scenic lake-shore campsites at Spednik Lake Provincial Park free; maintained by volunteers where there is a hiking trail through the woods, primitive toilets and fire rings. Bring your own water. Take Rte 3 north from St Stephen then bear left on Rte to reach the park gate.

Canoe rentals are available in Saint John and Fredericton. Note: the lakes are not patrolled by the park service, and paddlers should be experienced and well-equipped. The park is at the northwest end of Water St. Centennial Park, opposite the blockhouse, has a picnic pavilion.

Atlantic Salmon Interpretive Centre ; www. Activities Eastern Outdoors ; www. Tours Several companies offering boat trips and whale-watching cruises have offices at the Adventure Destinations complex by the wharf at the foot of King St. Sleeping Kiwanis Oceanfront Camping ; www. Picket Fence Motel ; www. There are ocean views from the garden. No tax, check or cash only. Treadwell Inn , ; www. Fairmont Algonquin Hotel , ; www. Note the doormen dressed in kilts.

There are a couple of places for a drink, be it high tea or gin. Sadly, these days, there is nowhere in town to hear live music. Cocktails are available at the Fairmont Algonquin Hotel. Food-wise, there are several nice choices. Pesto pizza, smoked meat sandwiches and crepes for lunch; crab cakes, salmon and steak for dinner.

With grand scenery, colorful fishing wharves tucked into coves, supreme whale-watching, uncluttered walking trails and steaming dishes of seafood, everyday stresses fade away and blood pressure eases. The three main islands each have a distinct personality. Their herds would often take days to pass by a single point. Keep your distance, though; for more, see the boxed text below. About half a million of these furry critters patrol the forests and bushland just about everywhere except Prince Edward Island, southern Alberta and southern Saskatchewan.

But it never hurts to be prepared, as the old boy scout saying goes. The endangered grizzly bear and the smaller black bear both hang out in Canada, mostly in the Canadian Rockies. Just to confuse you, black bear are sometimes brown and some grizzlies are almost black. The way to tell them apart is to look for certain distinguishing characteristics: the grizzly has a dish-shaped face, small and rounded ears and a prominent shoulder hump.

Both grizzlies and black bear are intelligent opportunists who quickly learn that humans come equipped with tasty packages of food. Never feed these majestic animals. Always use bear-proof bins provided at campgrounds to store your food properly, and keep your campground tidy by picking up all scraps. Bear basically only attack if their cubs are around or if they feel surprised or threatened. Your best defenses against surprising a bear are to remain alert, avoid hiking at night when bear feed and be careful traveling in places where visibility is obscured.

If the bear sees you, slowly back out of its path, avoid eye contact, speak softly and wave your hands above your head slowly. Never turn your back to the bear and never kneel down. If a bear charges, do not run or scream which may frighten the bear and make it more aggressive , because the bear may only be charging as a bluff. Drop to the ground, crouch face down in a ball and play dead, covering the back of your neck with your hands and your chest and stomach with your knees.

As we said before, bear attacks are really quite rare. Give the bear, and other animals, the respect they deserve and the space they need. If you see one on the side of the road, consider not stopping. If you do decide to pull over, move on after a few minutes. If simple steps are taken to minimize human encounters, it will help ensure future generations of visitors have the chance to see wildlife that is still truly wild.

It stands up to a fearsome 3m tall and has a distinctive hump between its shoulders. Grizzlies are solitary animals with no natural enemies except humans. Although they enjoy an occasional snack of elk, moose or caribou, they usually fill their bellies with berries and other vegetation. Pretty much the only place to observe them is from late September to early November in Churchill, Manitoba, one of their major maternity denning grounds.

For more information about these fascinating creatures, Click here. Another formidable predator is the wolf, which can be every bit as fierce and cunning as is portrayed in fairy tales, although it rarely attack humans. Belugas are the smallest, typically measuring no more than 4.

They are chatty fellows who squeak, groan and peep while traveling in closely knit family pods. Each one chows down about 40 tons of krill per day. Minkes can grow to 10m and are likely to approach boats, delighting passengers with acrobatics as they, too, hurl themselves out of the water a bit more easily than the lumbering humpback.

Everyone loves these cute little guys, a sort of waddling penguin-meets-parrot cross, with black-and-white feathers and an orange beak. They hang out in the Atlantic provinces, especially Newfoundland. The true ruler of the sky, though, is the bald eagle, whose wingspan can reach more than 2m. It was Canadian banker Charles Broley who first connected the dots between DDT and the plummeting population of these regal birds.

That was in the late s, and things have been looking way up since then. Trees cover nearly half of the country, providing living space to roughly two-thirds of the estimated , species of plants, animals and micro-organisms living in Canada.

Stretching from coast to coast and from the US border to the Arctic tree line, they are highly diversified and have adapted to the soil, climate and weather conditions. Further south, tundra transitions to taiga, better known as boreal forest, named after Boreas, the Greek god of the north wind. Cold-tolerant conifers such as pine, fir and spruce thrive in this harsh climate of long winters and short but warm summers.

Ontario hosts the parkland zone, which marks the transition between the eastern forests and the prairies. Trembling aspen is the dominant tree. Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta are best known for their flat prairie grasslands, now mostly covered in cultivated grains.

Short, mixed and tall grasses once blanketed this region but, except for a few protected pockets, these are a thing of the past. BC has the most diverse vegetation in the country. The Rocky Mountain forests consist of sub-alpine species such as Engelmann spruce, alpine fir and larches, with lodgepole pine and aspen at higher elevations. In the rainforest-like climate of the Pacific coast, the trees soar skyward. There are ancient, gigantic western red cedar, Douglas fir, western hemlock and Sitka spruce species.

Some are more than years old, making them veritable Methuselahs of the tree world. Actually, the pitcher plant chows down mostly on insects, captured via its water-filled trap. Keep an eye out next time you walk through a bog. Flip to it for the lowdown on activities, itineraries, costs and history. Each province also runs its own system of parks and reserves. There are literally hundreds of them, mostly used for recreation but also, to a certain extent, to protect wildlife and historic sites.

Many are just as spectacular as the national parks. The best-organized provincial parks offer similar infrastructure to their national cousins, including interpretive centers, equipment rental and campgrounds. Parks in the territories tend to be small, simple and inexpensive to visit; they are often used for overnight camping, although facilities may be basic.

It birthed Greenpeace, for crissake! The group launched from a Vancouver living room in Vancouver is also the home of environmental pioneer David Suzuki, a retired professor from the University of British Columbia UBC who has been writing about sustainable ecology for more than 30 years. The Green Party www.

Alberta and British Columbia offered the strongest support, Manitoba the least. Apparently not. Meanwhile, the clock ticks. The average annual temperature has increased by 0. Take the Yukon. Shorter winters have dissolved their ice-based seal-hunting habitat, and all of a sudden, nearby humans are starting to look like juicy T-bones Click here for more. Climate change also has bizarre economic ramifications. And the Olympics are headed to Vancouver in , but will there be enough snow for the slopes and bobsleigh runs?

Take as much as you want! In the early s, Atlantic Canada faced the horrifying fact that the cod were fished out. The greatest fishery in the world, in business for more than years, was now kaput. Cod were even listed as endangered in For additional information, Click here. Polar Bear, meet Walrus. They used to be strangers, until global warming brought their habitats together. Most hiking and camping advice is common sense. First, know what you are getting into. Get trail maps and take a few minutes to talk to a ranger about trail conditions, dangers and closures.

Rangers can also confirm if your abilities and equipment match the needs of your trip. Once in the wild, do everything possible to minimize your impact. Stick to established trails and campgrounds. Use a gas stove for cooking or make fires in established fire pits only. When you leave, take out everything you brought in and remove every trace of your visit.

Try to learn about local conservation, environmental and cultural issues before your trip and during your visit. Ask questions and listen to what locals have to say. And finally, support tourism companies and environmental groups that promote conservation initiatives and long-term management plans. Along the same lines, companies strip huge areas of forest and soil cover to access coal, iron, nickel and other mineral resources.

These ore deposits are developed all the time, particularly in seldom-visited northern regions such as Labrador and the Northwest Territories, where there is little public scrutiny or attention. Recently there has been a spate of oil and natural gas development in the Atlantic provinces, much of it on the ocean floor, with untold consequences for marine life for an example of such actions, Click here.

In northern Alberta, oil is coaxed from oil sands, a messy process that requires huge amounts of energy and poisons the atmosphere with greenhouse gases Click here for more. Nearby, plans are underway for a controversial km-long pipeline, the Mackenzie Gas Project, to be tunneled beneath the wilderness of the Northwest Territories.

Their website www. Is that good enough? Stay tuned. Not even close. And I can explain it all in two simple words: endless and staggering. No matter what your ability, no matter what your taste, there is something here for you. Adventures for the rank beginner or the seasoned veteran are all over the place, even just on the edge of, and sometimes within, city limits.

Whatever outdoor activity you can imagine, it exists in the highest of quality, right here in Canada. But, for nearly half the year, much of Canada really is snow-covered, and hockey and beer-drinking really are favorite pastimes. But there is so much more here than that oversimplified pictorial and those stereotypical flannels. Welcome to the most abundant, most breathtaking, least busy playground on the planet. Welcome to half the world.

Hills in the flatlands, like Saskatchewan and southern Ontario, are built on available or creatively used geography river hills or garbage dumps.

Damn cold. But instead of complaining about it, Canadians are apt to do something in it. Find a snow-covered hill not too big and slide uncontrollably downhill. Combine this motorized activity with backcountry skiing to access tons of powder. Canadians have a chronic fishing problem. Fish from inside an ice shack, drill into the ice, turn on the space heater and drop your line. Snowpack ranges from 2m to 6m-plus, depending on how close the resort is to the Pacific Ocean.

Medicine Hat, Alberta, with days sans rain. Cross-Country Nordic Skiing Instead of swishing through the snow, go straight on a set of Nordic skis. Most ski resorts in Canada offer a groomed network of cross-country ski trails which are much cheaper than a downhill lift ticket. Compare lung capacity with Canadian national team members at the Olympic site in Canmore, Alberta.

Ski Touring Ski touring, downhill skiing with a backpack instead of a lift, is the cheapest way to tap into the deep and dry snow that is world-renowned in BC. Rogers Pass in Glacier National Park has the most beautiful glacier tours and tree skiing within a single-day tour. Or fly into a backcountry lodge like Blanket Glacier Chalet www. BC towns like Revelstoke, Nelson and Golden are touring hubs and have a number of shops that can provide gear, maps and information on snow conditions, where to park etc.

That said, Canada has revolutionized mountain biking and provides an expansive landscape for two-wheeled exploration. The entire 18,km trail some of it river routes will link communities from coast to coast to coast and provide for multi-use access to cyclists, snowmobilers, horseback riders and hikers. Check www. Most popular ski areas like Panorama www. Or you could choose shorter regional rides. The east coast, with more small towns and less emptiness, is a fantastic place to pedal, either as a single-day road ride or a multi-day trip.

Sure, we use plastic and fiberglass today, but boat design and techniques have hardly changed. No longer used for hunting, this double-bladed, covered-deck paddlesport is still the most efficient human-powered way to move across lakes and along coastlines.

Make sure you have a solid Eskimo Roll for righting yourself when you flip. Luckily www. As old as kayaking, and equally Canadian, is the canoe. Travel a thousand miles by train and you are a brute; pedal five hundred on a bicycle and you remain basically a bourgeois; paddle a hundred in a canoe and you are already a child of nature. Here are some of our favorites, to help you decide which way to turn your toes.

Also, k. Also visit the Parks Canada site www. Watch wild animals, cross unbridged rivers and see not a soul. Access is via Whitehorse. Take a compass and GPS; the alpine plateau is crisscrossed by a web of caribou trails. An offshoot will head northwards from Calgary through the Yukon to Tuktoyaktuk in the Northwest Territories, with a branch extending east through Nunavut to Chesterfield Inlet on Hudson Bay.

The TCT will be the longest such trail in the world, linking millions of travelers, hundreds of communities and dozens of landscapes.

Its entire length will take about days to cycle, days to ride on horseback or days to walk. The now-disbanded organization in charge of the celebrations wanted to leave a lasting legacy, and provided enough seed money to launch the project in This entitles them to have their name inscribed on one of dozens of Trail Pavilions along the route. So far approximately , people have immortalized themselves in this fashion.

The TCT is knitted together from existing and new trails. Much of it, including all of the Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island sections, will run along former railway tracks.

For now, the TCT remains a work in progress. More than half of it is currently unstable; it is scheduled for completion in the fall of From here you can march through dense spruce and pine forests that burst into a stunning bright-yellow canopy in the fall.

Then ascend into alpine meadows that are carpeted with wildflowers and surrounded by crumbling glaciers and azure lakes. This trail network weaves together pristine lakes with some of the largest peaks in the Rockies. And the BC Parks system www. There are sizable mountains out east, too. For the serious backpacker looking for the least beaten path and the biggest mountains east of the Canadian Rockies, plan on visiting Torngat Mountain National Park in Labrador.

Though portions are near cities like Hamilton and Toronto, it is surprisingly serene. Backroad Mapbooks will show you the way. Outdoor recreation and camping overviews accompany each book, but make sure you cross-reference with the locals. Canmore, just outside Banff, is the ideal place for beginners and beyond.

Climbing shops, a climbing school www. All levels of climbers bask in the spring sun while climbing the plus gneiss and nice, too! It features hundreds of tours, from day trips to summit missions to epic traverses. While Canadians are practically born on skates, it might take you a couple of hours to get the hang of it. Skating has spawned many a Canadian pastime and takes regional forms. Grassroots hockey, aka pond hockey, takes place in communities across Canada every night on a frozen surface.

All you need is a puck, a hockey stick and a few friends to live the hockey dream. Winnipeg, Manitoba, notorious for chilly winters, has 3km of cleared ice on the Assiniboine and Red rivers. In Alberta, you can race in the Sylvan Lake 50km Marathon on a 10km track, the longest in the world. They just don a pair of warm mitts, a down jacket, crampons and an ice axe, and are pretty well ready to take on the most abundant and consistent ice climbing in the world.

Banff, Kootenay, Yoho and Jasper national parks remain frozen for six months a year, and by early November notorious routes like Polar Circus and Curtain Call are in full form. As in summer, Canmore is the place to get started and take a lesson. With www. Great for climbers, hikers and sightseers. Give yourself a couple of weeks to work your way up ft or m this ice-riddled Kluane National Park massif.

For better odds all around, watch out for the more common and visible Canadian critters. The Arctic has tusked narwhals and belugas, while Nova Scotia has humpbacks, minkes and the rare North Atlantic right whale. Polar bear can be spotted in Churchill, Manitoba on the shores of Hudson Bay. Operators will tour you around the Polar Bear Capital of the World in elevated tundra buggies. At one time 60 million bison roamed the North American plains.

Over 50 grizzlies live on this 45,hectare refuge. A few eco-tour operators have permits for viewing this at-risk species.

The mountain national parks Banff, Jasper, Kooteany, Yoho also offer a chance to see these rare omnivores. But driving, hiking or cycling in Algonquin Provincial Park is a golden opportunity to see each and every one. Return to beginning of chapter FISHING It should probably come as no surprise that some of the best fishing in the world can be found in a country that harbors more freshwater than any other.

Elaborate native societies based their entire nutritional structure around fish, and fishing has since become a sacred recreation. Calgary Stampede www. Logger Sports www. See pros carve chairs, hand-saw at lightning speeds and cut trees with pinpoint precision in this heritage event held in Squamish, BC, in the first week of August. Yukon Quest www. Survivor Kananaskis www.

Last one standing wins. Held the last weekend in May on the Kananaskis River, one hour west of Calgary. Less controversial than a hockey scrum, fights at the end of a fishing line are equally exciting.

The fiercer, the longer and the more unpredictable the fish fight, the better. And on just about any Canadian freshwater lake, you could get yourself into a serious brouhaha. Northern Saskatchewan contains some of the most productive lakes, and many are serviced by fishing lodges.

Check local, provincial and federal fishing regulations wherever you are; most hardware or fishing shops can tell you everything there is to know. Scuba divers can become one with one of the most abundant and diverse marine areas on earth from the perfectly-placed ocean cities of Vancouver and Victoria. Ocean life here also benefits from the cold, nutrient-rich water.

June and September are best for mere mortals, but if you want to test some of the fiercest storms the Pacific can dish out, try surfing in winter. First-timers will enjoy the challenge with many great surf schools both east and west. Tofino, outside Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, has a superb choice of surf schools and offers the most variety for learning.

Squamish, BC Click here, benefits greatly from a wind-funneling venturi effect, which gets wild in Howe Sound. No trees hold back the wind; only power-generating wind farms compete for a chunk of the gust. Sheltered lagoons offer safe learning locations for testing kiteboards or seeking shelter during heavy days. Today, horses help all kinds of people, from couch potatoes to the uberactive, get out to enjoy the landscape. Be ready to get down and dirty. Most Ontarians live in the south within a few hundred kilometers of the US border, where winters are bearable and steamy summers lure folks outside.

No longer a steadfast political filing cabinet, contemporary Ottawa is as hip as you want it to be. Year-round, Ontario celebrates its diversity with a cavalcade of festivals. And if you must seek out wildlife, there are some excellent national parks here too.

The first Europeans on the scene were 17th-century French fur traders, who established basic forts to facilitate trade links with the Mississippi River. With the arrival of the British Loyalists around , large-scale settlement began. The northern continental climate sees bitterly cold winters and mild summers. This creates steady precipitation throughout the year, heavy summer humidity and much milder winters than in the north. That said, the entire province is blanketed with heavy snowfalls during winter.

In the south, where most of the population lives, winter snow melts rapidly in spring. As summer draws closer, the strip of land bordering the USA gets increasingly hot and sticky, particularly the Niagara Peninsula. There are also provincial parks here, offering hiking and camping facilities. Make reservations with Ontario Parks ; www. Charismatic megafauna has largely been evicted from southern Ontario due to development and agriculture, but the further north you travel, the more likely you are to spot hairy roadside individuals no, not lumberjacks.

Two Weeks Feel like a road trip? Heading northwest, take a paddle through the expansive Algonquin Provincial Park, visit Manitoulin Island for a dose of aboriginal culture, and try Sudbury and Sault Ste Marie for a history lesson on shipping and mining in northern Ontario.

Continue westward and base yourself in Wawa for a few days. Greater expanses of unexplored nature lie ahead as you roll on toward Thunder Bay and beyond. Air Canada www. CanJet www. First Air www. BUS Greyhound Canada www. Booking bus tickets at least seven days in advance can sometimes halve the fare. The big car-hire companies have offices in larger towns. Click here for key highways. Ontario Northland www. Its Northlander service connects Toronto with Cochrane, from where buses go to Hearst and Kapuskasing.

Dramatic shifts in weather elicit almost schizophrenic behavior from the locals. Humidity clogs the avenues and the streetlife hum approaches a roar. Spanked across the face by bitter February, locals head underground into the PATH network of subterranean walkways. And of course, winter is hockey season!

Overlayed by typically laconic Canadian attitude, Toronto is as unpretentious and tolerant as it is complex. Tommy Thompson Park, an artificial wildlife oasis, juts abstractly into Lake Ontario; the Toronto Islands rustle their leafy boughs at the city skyline.

In the British took over and John Simcoe, lieutenant governor of the new Upper Canada, chose the site as the capital formerly at Niagara-on-the-Lake and founded the town of York. The Americans looted and razed York, but held sway for only six days before Canadian troops booted them out and hounded them back to Washington. Like many big cities, Toronto had a great fire; in about five hectares of the inner city burned, leveling buildings. Amazingly, no one was killed. Well over one million immigrants have arrived since: Italian, Portuguese, Chilean, Greek, Southeast Asian, Chinese and West Indian immigrants have rolled into the city in waves.

Just offshore are the Toronto Islands. The Church-Wellesley Village is a gay parallel universe a few blocks to the east. Lester B Pearson International Airport is 27km west of downtown. MapArt www. Shuffle over to St Lawrence Market for lunch then head up to Bloor-Yorkville to splash some cash in the shops. Compensate with a thrifty dinner in Chinatown. Afterwards, ride the ferry to the Toronto Islands; hire a bike and wheel away the afternoon.

Back on the mainland, nibble on late-night mezes Greek tapas and drinks in Greektown. A trashy night club-hopping through the Entertainment District is a mandatory T.

TheatreBooks Map; ; www. Metro www. Now Toronto www. Toronto Life www. Toronto Star www. Toronto Sun www. Where Toronto www. CIUT Edge Hospital for Sick Children Map; ; www.

Money American Express , ; www. Instead, tackle the banks, or try Money Mart Map; ; www. Thomas Cook www. Tourism Toronto Map; , ; www. Most homeless people are more likely to be assaulted or harassed than to do so to you. The Toronto Islands are where locals retreat for a bit of peace and quiet.

North from the lake, modernity and history collide at Dundas Sq: shopping centers, office blocks, museums and majestic theatres all stake their claim. Suburban East Toronto and The Beaches are less edgy but are still interesting to explore. Car-parking in Toronto is expensive and traffic congestion is an issue; public transportation is usually the best option.

Ferries for the Toronto Islands dock here. Its primary function is as a radio and TV communications tower, but relieving tourists of as much cash as possible seems to be the second order of business. Tours include a brain-scrambling video wall screening footage of past sporting glories, concerts and events, a sprint through a box suite, a locker-room detour sans athletes and a memorabilia museum.

In between times the facility hosts everything from wedding expos to Wiggles concerts. Rooms overlooking the field can also be rented at the Renaissance Toronto. Performances sometimes take place on the covered outdoor concert stage by the lake. Today, a handful of the original log, stone and brick buildings have been restored.

In summer, men decked out in 19th-century British military uniforms carry out preposterous marches and drills, firing musket volleys into the sky. Tours run hourly from May to September.

When lakeside fishers noticed that northern pike were spawning here each spring, the city took it upon itself to create this new habitat.

Aside from the pike, look for monarch butterflies, mallard ducks, goldfinches, dragonflies and red-winged blackbirds.

Contact the Harbourfront Centre box office left for performance schedules and guided tour details. Additional attractions like the human-sized MegaMaze and House of Blues concerts at the Molson Amphitheatre ; www. Discounted passes may be available after 5pm and for grounds-only admission. On rainy days, many of the rides, activities and restaurants close. The shuttle runs daily from June to August, and on weekends in May and September, departing every half-hour between 9am and 7pm.

Other events held at Exhibition Place throughout the year include the Grand Prix of Toronto and a slew of spectator sports and indie design shows. At other times the grounds are often spookily bereft of visitors.

Financial District The area around Union Station is busy night and day with hot-dog vendors, shivering office workers smoking in doorways and fans heading to hockey games at the Air Canada Centre. Even visitors unfamiliar with this super-fast, ultraviolent sport will be impressed with the interactive multimedia exhibits and hockey nostalgia. A succession of glass cases displays otter, bear, eagles and carved Inuit figures in day-to-day scenes.

Old York Historically speaking, the old town of York comprises just 10 square blocks. But today the neighborhood extends east of Yonge St all the way to the Don River, and from Queen St south to the waterfront esplanade. The restored, high-trussed South Market houses more than 50 specialty food stalls: cheese vendors, fishmongers, butchers, bakers and pasta makers.

Inside the old council chambers upstairs, the St Lawrence Market Gallery ; admission free; 10am-4pm Wed-Fri, 9am-4pm Sat, noon-4pm Sun has rotating displays of paintings, photographs, documents and historical relics.

A few steps further north, the glorious St Lawrence Hall is topped by a mansard roof and a copper-clad clock tower that can be seen for blocks. Chemicals, sewage and fertilizer runoff have traditionally fouled the waters, and, although the situation is improving, only the brave and stupid dare to swim at city beaches. For most citizens, Lake Ontario is simply a big, gray, cold thing that stops the Americans from driving up Yonge St. For the record, Lake Ontario is the 14th largest lake in the world and the smallest and most easterly of the five Great Lakes: km long, 85km wide and m deep.

Be sure to tell the locals all about it. Wedding parties shoot photos against a backdrop of redbrick and cobblestone; clean-cut couples shop for leather lounge suites beneath charmingly decrepit gables and gantries. In summer expect live jazz, exhibitions and food-focused events. You can peek at the radio newsrooms anytime or attend a free noontime concert in the world-class Glenn Gould Studio. Both are east of the Queen St shopping district. Out the front is Nathan Phillips Square, a meeting place for skaters, demonstrators and office workers on their lunch breaks.

The fountain pool becomes an ice-skating rink in winter Click here. Now housing legal courtrooms, the hall has an off-center bell tower, interesting murals and grimacing gargoyles. Constructed in , the stunning Winter Garden was built as the flagship for a vaudeville chain that never really took off, while the downstairs Elgin theater was converted into a movie house in the s. Public tours are worth every cent.

Click here. When it opened in , it was the first church in Toronto not to charge parishioners for pews. Workshops teach batik making, weaving, knitting and all manner of needle-stuff. Prices will rise once renovations are complete and opening hours are subject to change; check the website for updates.

The Leafs lost their first game to the Chicago Blackhawks in , but went on to win 13 Stanley Cups before relocating to the Air Canada Centre in Over the years, Elvis, Sinatra and the Beatles have all belted out tunes at the Gardens. Rumors that this much-loved piece of city history was going to be demolished were only partly true. The Gardens were bought by grocery chain Loblaws in , with a shopping complex redevelopment slated to begin in early we hope the chunky art-deco facade survives.

The new work involves a magnificent explosion of architectural crystals on Bloor St, housing an array of new galleries. The Chinese temple sculptures, Gallery of Korean Art and costumery and textile collections are some of the best in the world.

Kids file out of yellow school buses chugging by the sidewalk and rush to the dinosaur rooms, Egyptian mummies and Jamaican bat-cave replica. The on-site Institute of Contemporary Culture explores current issues through art, architecture, lectures and moving image. Peruse some 19th-century French chestnut-crushing clogs, aboriginal Canadian polar boots or famous modern pairs worn by Elton John, Indira Gandhi and Pablo Picasso. Permanent and rotating exhibits cover the evolution of shoemaking, with a focus on how shoes have signified social status throughout human history.

Spread over three floors, collections cover several millennia; various rooms focus on 17th- and 18th-century English tavern ware, Italian Renaissance majolica, ancient American earthenware and blue-and-white Chinese porcelain.

The central St George campus is venerable indeed. West and north of U of T lies The Annex, a residential neighborhood populated primarily by students and professors.

It overflows with pubs, organic grocery stores, global-minded eateries and spiritual venues. He later lost everything in land speculation, the resultant foreclosure forcing Hank and his wife to move out.

The castle briefly reopened as a luxury hotel, but its big-band nightclub attracted more patrons than the hotel ever did, and it too failed.

Lit by Victorian gaslights, the interior contains three generations of furnishings, art and fabrics. Viewing is free, but security regulations are in full force. Dating from , sociable Hart House ; www. Eating here is an absolute joy, and shopping is a blast. The streets are full of artists, dreadlocked urban hippies, tattooed punks, potheads, junkies, dealers, bikers, goths, musicians and anarchists. Shady characters on bicycles whisper their drug menus as they glide by; hooch and Hendrix tinge the air.

The further west you go, the more traditional things become, with aromatic bakeries, sidewalk gelaterias and rootsy ristoranti. Permanent holdings only number about works, curated since , but award-winning temporary exhibitions promote new artists from Nova Scotia to BC. Completed in , the m bridge arcs 40m above the Don River, linking east and west Toronto. Structural engineer Edmund Burke cunningly included a lower deck for future rail transport in his design.

At a peak rate of one every 22 days, around folks decided to call it quits here. The solution? The park is open to the public on weekends and holidays; cars and pets are prohibited. Summer schedules offer interpretive programs and guided walks, usually with an ecological theme. To get here on public transportation, take any streetcar east along Queen St to Leslie St, then walk m south to the gates.

Alternatively, hire a bike or some in-line skates and follow the Martin Goodman Trail all the way here. Kids follow the farmer around as he does his daily chores, including milking the cows at am. Toronto Islands Once upon a time there were no Toronto Islands, just an immense sandbar stretching 9km into the lake. On April 13, , a hurricane blasted through the sandbar and created the gap now known as the Eastern Channel.

The islands are only accessible by a minute ferry ride Click here. Squeezed together on a few hundred acres are an antique carousel, goofy golf course, miniature train rides and a sky gondola. Far Enough Farm zoo presents kids with plenty of opportunities to cuddle something furry and step in something sticky. Further south are changing rooms, snack bars, bicycle rentals opposite and a pier striking out into the lake. Thanks to climate change, winters nowadays are too mild for it.

Bus 30B picks up at High Park subway station, then loops through the park on weekends and holidays from mid-June to early September. The High Park streetcar drops off on the east side of the park. If you exit the park by Colborne Lodge at the south gates, walk down to Lake Shore Blvd W and catch any streetcar back east to downtown.

Elizabeth Simcoe named the spot in after Scarborough in Yorkshire, England. Several parks provide access to clifftops, from where views shoot across Lake Ontario.

You can also access the shore at Galloway Rd further east. Unless you have wheels, getting to the bluffs can be a drag, and if you do have a car, parking is limited. One option is to take the subway to Victoria Park, then bus 12 along Kingston Rd. Nature paths start near the bridge and wind back to the secluded Todmorden Mills Wildflower Preserve www. Along the way you can connect to the Don Valley mountain-bike trails at Cherry St.

On the Toronto Islands opposite the south-shore boardwalk and the interconnecting paved paths are car-free zones. You can also cycle or skate around hilly High Park opposite. A recreational cycling club, the Toronto Bicycling Network ; www. Rental operators include: Community Bicycling Network Map; ; www. Alternatively, hook up with one of the following groups for hardy day hikes: Hike Ontario ; www. These artificial rinks are open daily weather permitting from 10am to 10pm, mid-November to March.

Toronto Windsurfing Club Map; ; www. Get off the bus at Commissioners St and walk 10 minutes south. Beyond the digital stock-market displays, turn left and take the stairs up to the Design Exchange 9; ; www. Shuffle through the basement, diverting right through a zany striped corridor and up some stairs to be spat out onto Temperance St. Pursue the signs to the Eaton Centre 14; Click here , window-shop your way to the north end of the mall then take the escalators up two levels.

Queues can be lengthy; most rides operate rain or shine. Wonderland is a minute drive northwest of downtown Toronto on Hwy Exit at Rutherford Rd, 10 minutes north of Hwy Climb a rock wall, catch a criminal with DNA fingerprinting and race an Olympic bobsled at the excellent, interactive Ontario Science Centre Map; ; www.

Over high-tech exhibits and live demonstrations wow the kids and the adults at the back, pretending not to be interested. Also here is the giant domed Omnimax Cinema.

Black Creek Pioneer Village ; www. The village is on the southeast corner of Steeles Ave and Jane St, a minute drive northwest of downtown. A handy online resource for parents is www. Seats 20; bring your own food and drink.

Since the s, its cutting-edge productions have focused on radical new plays with contemporary Canadian themes. Post-performance chats with cast and producers happen regularly. Sign up for a workshop on erotic photography or Bondage ! Need a comic book fix? Beguiling Map; ; www. Check the website for events. Shuffle in under the rusty ballroom sign for live bands playing honky-tonk and classic rock.

Some of the weirder city festivals include Caribana, with its booty-licious carnival parade; Nuit Blanche a sleepless night of kooky urban art experiences; and the always in-your-face Toronto Buskerfest. Favorites include: New Tribe Map; ; www. Tat-a-Rama Map; ; www.

Way Cool Tattoos Map; ; www. For shorter excursions, just show up and buy a ticket at the quay; reservations are recommended for brunch and dinner cruises. Keep in mind that ferries to the Toronto Islands offer spectacular city views for half the price! Mariposa Cruise Lines Map; , ; www. Sunday brunch and dinner-and-dance cruises, too.

Toronto Tours Map; ; www. Bus Toronto bus tours are convenient, but with TTC day passes Click here being so cheap, a do-it-yourself tour makes perfect sense.

Gray Line Tours Map; , ; www. Buy tickets on board. Moose Travel , ; www. ROMBus Map; ; www. Toronto Hippo Tours Map; , ; www. Cycling tours allow you to cover a bit more territory. Try the following companies: A Taste of the World ; www. Reservations recommended.

Civitas City Walks ; city. Heritage Toronto ; www. Reservations not required. ROMWalks ; www. Sights On Bikes ; www. Many events are free. Pride Toronto ; www. Late June. National Aboriginal Day ; www. Toronto Downtown Jazz Festival ; www. Grand Prix of Toronto ; www. Beaches International Jazz Festival ; www. The air show and Labour Day fireworks take the cake. Caribana ; www. Toronto Buskerfest ; www. Films of all lengths and styles are screened in late September, as celebs shimmy between gala events and the shiny new film-fest HQ.

Buy tickets well in advance. Virgin Music Festival ; www. Nuit Blanche ; www. Late September. Readings, discussions, lectures, awards and book signings. Check hotel websites for internet discounts and package deals. Downtown Toronto offers historic hotels, boutique digs and lakefront properties.

Budget beds are harder to find, but there are some top-quality youth hostels around town. A handy online resource is www. Booking agencies are another way to save time and money.

During Pride Toronto opposite , about a million visitors descend on the city. Click here for drinking and entertainment options.

In Toronto became the first city in North America to legalize same-sex marriage; apply at City Hall Map; ; www. In September , an Ontario Court also recognized the first legal same-sex divorce. Helpful Toronto resources include: Community Centre Map; ; www. These days the hotel insists that guests sign a waiver stipulating there will be no such free double-plays. Refurbished throughout, it maintains a few old-fashioned features, including a fine lobby and a warm welcome at the hour reception desk.

Rates include health club privileges. Strathcona Hotel Map; , ; www. Tour desk and on-site pub, too. Fairmont Royal York Map; , ; www. Rates rise with demand. The Epic tearooms and the Library Bar are both worth a look. Beds in quad rooms may not cost any more than those in larger dormitories, so ask when making reservations. Pub crawls and quiz nights keep things lighthearted. Cosmopolitan Map; , ; www. Suites have lake views, bedroom-sized showers and sexy design.

Staff are serene and courteous, directing you to the Asian fusion restaurant, gym and spa. Absolute opulence. Holiday Inn on King Map; , ; www. Standard rooms have lake or city views, while the seasonal rooftop pool gazes onto the CN Tower. Children under 12 stay and eat free; service is stern but efficient.

Days Inn Toronto Downtown Map; , ; www. Reception at times seems dramatically understaffed, but staff are bubbly with their apologies. Gay and lesbian travelers welcome. Delta Chelsea Toronto Downtown Map; , ; www.

Prices vary with season, day of the week and occupancy. The courtyard is perfect for lounging about. Studios have kitchenettes; management can be a little standoffish.

Gloucester Square Inns Map; ; www. Ceiling fans revolve above Persian rugs, McCausland stained glass and Chinese urns. Samantha Fox once bounced around in the attic suite. Free parking. Comfort Hotel Map; , ; www. Renegades under 18 stay free. Down-to-earth wood-and-brick decor; kids stay free! Holiday Inn Toronto Midtown Map; ; www.

The location is also prime, near U of T and the big T. Windsor Arms Map; ; www. The distinguished atmosphere makes you want to whisper! Breakfast includes croissants, bagels, yogurt, fruit and fresh muffins. Global Guesthouse Map; ; singer inforamp. It fills up quickly, so book well in advance. Castlegate Inn Map; ; www. Their three houses 37 rooms are all within striking distance of U of T and Yorkville.

The whole place is furnished and decorated with interesting antiques and collectibles. The cheaper rooms share a bathroom. Check-in across the road at No Annex Guest House Map; ; www. Wooden floors, handmade bedspreads and crafted copper bowls highlight the spaces. Casa Loma Inn Map; ; www. Each of the 26 rooms has a TV, fridge, microwave and immaculate bathroom. No breakfast, but Bloor St is just minutes away.

Madison Manor Map; , ; www. All rooms have a bathroom; a few have a fireplace or balcony. Continental breakfast included; kids excluded. You could wallow around on the shady patio or watch movies in the lounge, but hey, snap out of it! Kensington Market is right outside! Free breakfast, linen, internet, lockers and Saturday night barbecue. The vibe is relaxed but not lax, with good security and helpful staff.

Beaconsfield Map; ; www. Eclectic suites have a bathroom and either one or two bedrooms. Drake Hotel Map; ; www.

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