Combine a love of motorbikes with a taste for adventure, independent travel and awe-inspiring (and sometimes fear inducing) scenery and you have the most memorable trip of a lifetime - a motorcycle trip on the Sea To Sky Highway. The highway winds itself out of Vancouver, past Howe Sound, through Squamish and high up into the mountains around Whistler. From here, there's no going back, the roads in some places precarious, hug the mountain sides and take you past beautiful, crystal clear lakes and through dense alpine forest eventually arriving in sleepy Lillouet. From here the highway snakes back down, hugging the shores of the Fraser River, passing Hell's Gate, Hope (famous as the film location of Rambo: First Blood) and finally back to downtown Vancouver.
All this should be experienced on a Harley Davidson Electroglide. We rented ours from Cycle BC Rentals in Vancouver. Details of which can be found at www.cyclebc.ca, t: 1-866-380-2453.
We didn't book our accommodation in advance, but stumbled across the wonderfully welcoming and reasonably priced Reynolds Hotel (Reynolds Hotel, 1237 Main Street, Lillooet, www.reynoldshotel.com)
Flights were booked through Canadian Affair and in June cost about £350 each (www.canadianaffair.com)
A range of Harley Davidsons can be rented from Cycle BC Rentals, Vancouver (www.cyclebc.ca, T: 1-866-380-2453)
This small island off the coast of New Brunswick, though actually closer to Maine, is a quirky, scenic, friendly destination. Island life must be harsh in winter and thick sea frets envelope it regularly in summer, but it is a gem.
Our waitress at the Marathon Inn told us strange stories of stuffed bears being tied to posts and the sole settlement on the Western side of the island had an atmosphere of old world living, tough not sepia-tinged, that was unique.
The scenery is stunning too, with cliffs and bays and lighthouses. Don't expect haute cuisine, but do expect a hearty welcome.
Ferry from Black's harbour on the mainland.
Google map: tinyurl.com/ydoorlo
Amazing food, atmosphere and if you've a few quid to spare you can stay up there overnight in their one and only room. The next morning you can have breakfast before skiing down the un-tracked mountain before the lifts open.
A fly drive holiday in British Columbia and Vancouver Island is a really wonderful vacation and it’s very safe for families.
I had a few days in Vancouver then I picked up my campervan from Landcruise and drove to British Columbia Ferries for the beautiful journey over to Vancouver Island, where I saw all sorts of wildlife and whale watching (awesome).
Highway 19 is good and petrol is cheaper by half, than what it costs here in the UK, but not as cheap as it is in the southeastern part of America.
The campgrounds are all great and well maintained by the Province & National Parks www.env.gov.bc.ca/bcparks/ - www.pc.gc.ca/eng/index.aspx
At Port Hardy we got back on the ship and went up the inside passage to Prince Rupert and then drove back to Vancouver through the interior of this gigantic province.
My tour was put together by Landcruiser Canada which was a real help.
I love Canada and will be going again.
A fly drive holiday in Canada; departing from Toronto, exploring the rugged coast of the "great lakes" and camping at the Provincial Parks, that offer RV services and hot shower facilities for hikers and people on a canoe holiday, with tents.
This shoreline is magnificent, clear, drinkable water everywhere, good for swimming in July or August, but perfect for a canoe adventure.
A car ferry goes between Tobermory & South Baymouth, on Manitoulin Island (The world’s largest fresh water island) this trip is like a real ocean voyage, but shorter.
Museums are along the route, located in Sudbury, called Science North at sciencenorth.ca and Sault Ste Marie you’ll want to visit the “Bush Plane” museum www.bushplane.com with all sizes of aircraft and a brilliant aviation history and for train buffs; there is a rail tour through the www.agawacanyontourtrain.com Agawa Canyon.
The north shore of Lake Superior from the Sault to Thunder Bay is rugged, dramatic, beautiful, peaceful and so, so much more, it’s like no other coastal highway that I’ve had the opportunity to travel and I’ve been fortunate to drive many.
Enroute to Thunder Bay is a statue monument to Terry Fox, the young lad who’s life was beaten by Cancer, as he endevoured a fundraising run, across the country, with an artificial leg working as one, with his un amputated leg.
Returning from Thunder Bay; along Highway 11 (The world’s longest street) through North Bay and back to Toronto, runs mile upon mile of the Canadian Shield granite rocks and a tufted pine forest.
Our motorhome was rented from www.landcruisecanada.com and it was great! The petrol is cheap in Canada at about 1/2 the price of the UK, food is about the same as UK and the people are friendly.
Jackies is a local restaurant that serves some traditional take out Newfoundland food. You are piled high with the best stick to your ribs food on the island. In fact it was so good that we have coined a phrase. It started when we didn't have such great food experiences and would just look at each other and go "shoulda gone to Jackies" we now say it to each other when ever we have a bad experience with anything ... sorta fits and usually it's done in unison ... "shoulda gone to Jackies"!
PO Box 182, Rocky Harbour, Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland and Labrador A0K 4N0, Canada
Google map: tinyurl.com/yh2m9xy
Gorgeous B&B in a neighbourhood street a short walk from the main village. In a place that can feel like a snow theme park at times, the sense of being somewhere local is valuable. The friendly hosts make the whole experience feel like you’re staying with friends. Recommended for the people that don’t like megahotels.
We stayed at the 79-year-old Brock Hotel that is now a Crown Plaza Hotel but it retains all the charm that it had back in the day when Marilyn Monroe stayed there while making the murder mystery," Niagara" with Joseph Cotton released back in 1953. Marilyn's room was in a back corner of the hotel for her privacy, but the view from that room is now blocked by the casino so we stayed in a room exactly like it on the same floor on the frontside of the hotel facing the falls.
I think it is the only hotel in town where the windows open so we enjoyed the sound of the falls all night long and even from our in room jacuzzi.
Before our trip we watched "Niagara" several times and during our three days there, we visited each of the filming locations and made a real adventure out of it. Kinda romantic, don't you think? It was our 30th wedding anniversary and we have always travelled to England or Ireland or the Continent so this was a big change for us.
Don't miss the bell tower! Try it... you will like it.
I'm surprised that Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, or any of the Maritimes are not on the BeenThere list. They definitely should be, in my mind. Eastern Canada gets no love, imho.
Nova Scotia is beautiful. Drive through it to Sydney and then take the ferry to Newfoundland. From there, you can explore this (deceptively large) island via car, dodging snowstorms and trying to not run into moose.
But it will all be worth it if you drive all the way to the very Northern tip of Newfoundland. Not only can you sit there and stare across the water at Labrador, contemplating how far North you are, but you can also revel in the knowledge that you are standing at a UNESCO World Heritage site - L'Anse aux Meadows. Get in touch with your heritage, at this, the "first and only known site established by Vikings in North America and the earliest evidence of European settlement in the New World" (from UNESCO).
Seriously, pretty awesome to drive to an 11th century Viking settlement in the New World.
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The Okanagan valley is at the centre of a booming Canadian wine industry. Yes, you read that correctly, the Canadian wine industry. Try the family run Mission Hill winery with its gorgeous architecture and even more gorgeous Pinot Grigio. Across the valley there's the fabulous Calona Vineyards, where you can enjoy the Shiraz and the Sauvignon Blanc complemented by paintings from local artists. Or the gob-smacking pyramid-aged icewines of the Summerhill winery. The tours are a great way to laze away an afternoon.
Okanagan valley, near Kelowna, British Columbia
The Okanagan is a fantastic place for wine tasting. After happily enjoying all the usual haunts - Australia, France, Italy etc - I have never had so much fun as I did when wine tasting in Canada.
Wines there are really interesting and the experience is even more rewarding with the beautiful landscape surrounding you.
Mission Hill is a huge estate with some great easy wines for tourists and beautiful food. If it doesn't take your fancy there are countless boutique wineries around the region to choose from, particularly in the southern region around Okanagan Falls.
The area produces some wonderful reds, but by far my favourite was the icewine on offer. I'm really not a fan of sweet dessert wine but this changed my mind! It is made from grapes picked on the very first frost of the season and it is lovely on its own or in a champagne cocktail - look out for a Merlot Icewine if you can. Highly recommended and tastes mighty fine in a gin cocktail.
This region is definitely worth a visit for a surprising wine experience.
Mission Hill: www.missionhillwinery.com
We drove the few hours from Vancouver but you can fly to Kelowna.
THe Accounting for Taste B&B does customised wine tours and has beautiful views of Lake Okanagan: www.accountingfortaste.ca
Snowmobiling is great fun and is one of the best ways to enjoy the backcountry during the winter months. The scenery is spectacular and riding a snowmobile is thrilling. Not to be missed!
For some peace and quiet take the ferry to Toronto Island. You can hire a bike and cycle around the island in about two hours. Stop at the delightful Wards Island where you'll find a collection of truly unique houses and the board walk. The are beaches too. The view of the City from the ferry is stunning.
Take the ferry from Queens Quay at the bottom of Bay Street.
Less than five hours from Vancouver, an oasis of indulgence, relaxation and nature. A winery where you can stay the night!
Stroll through the vineyards then sample the produce whilst you learn about the bird that gives this place its name.
Take a refreshing dip in the pool, or just enjoy the view from your terrace, before treating your taste buds with a combination of fine wine and fine food. The chef and wine maker work together to give you a meal to remember.
A delicious breakfast to match the fabulous view may tempt you to stay another night! Expensive, yes, but worth every penny.
100 Burrowing Owl Place
RR#1 Site 52, Comp 20
Oliver, British Columbia, V0H 1T0
Toll Free: 877.498.0620
Prince Edward County is an up-and-coming wine-making region in Canada. While it is becoming known for Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs, an exploration of the many vineyards can lead to exciting discoveries. I particularly love visiting The Grange of Prince Edward. The fabulously restored rustic barn is in a wonderful countryside setting. I enjoyed wine tastings, and will definitely be returning to picnic in the grounds this summer!
Kayaking Clayoquot Sound - located on the west coast of Vancouver Island, you can kayak pristine waters within a beautiful inlet and the open ocean. The islands of the inlet are covered in old growth coastal temperate rain forest and further inland you can see the snow covered peaks of the mountains (even in summer).
Kayak for days or weeks, camp on deserted beaches, fish salmon and cook it over an open fire. Then return to Tofino and stay at a nice hotel, eat great food and enjoy some surfing, walking, whale and bear watching ...
Tofino is located on the west coast of Vancouver island, BC in Canada - from Nanaimo turn westwards and drive for 3 hours via Port Alberni.
Vancouver is often voted the best city in the world. However, there are a lot of homeless people there and they are concentrated in East Hastings road. It seems to be limited to that area only but be careful, we walked through and it felt really dangerous. Apart from that, everything else is beautiful
North of chinatown, vancouver
I have stayed at Atmosphere twice, in December of 2008 and again in April 2009, and plan to go back this year and every year if I can.
The first time I went, I was a woman traveling alone and was needing a little time to reevaluate my life. I was a little nervous about finding a place to feel comfortable and safe while staying alone. Patryck is so perfect -he fed me well, made me feel comfortable and welcome, and even sat up with me late at night when I needed to talk. My time at Atmosphere literally changed my life.
I returned in April with my husband, and again Patryck gave us a very warm welcome. Being at his place is like being at a spa - you come away so relaxed and rejuvenated!
Both times I stayed in the Passion room, and found the bed more comfortable than my one at home. The interior decor is very cozy and inviting, with a photo exposure of a new artist, incredible, and the food is amazing. The best part, is the host. My husband and I both fell in love with the place and the guy and find ourselves drawn back again and again. Now my sisters, brothers and I are sending my parents there for an anniversary gift.
I have stayed at many B&Bs, and it is the best! I give it my highest 5 diamonds recommendation!
1933 Panet street
Montreal h2l 3a1
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