Monday, March 29, 2010

Free $500 on Rocky Mountaineer

This offer came into the office today:)
Until May 14, 2010, Rocky Mountaineer are celebrating their 20th year with a very special offer. Book a qualifying Rocky Mountaineer rail tour of 7 nights or more between April 12 and May 14, 2010 and receive a credit worth $500 per couple to enhance your vacation with your choice of added experiences!

Where Canada´s Wilderness Begins

"On British Columbia’s North Coast you don’t control nature, you pay attention to her every mood. This is a place where eagles, bears, and whales outnumber people. An area with over 10,000 years of First Nations history. Where fishing is both a job and a form of recreation. A place where being friendly and out-going is just the natural way to be. This is Canada like you have never experienced. Join us in Prince Rupert, and let us share with you the history, the people, and the many moods of British Columbia’s North Coast."

Ideally situated on British Columbia's beautiful North Coast, only a short distance from the Queen Charlotte Islands and Ketchikan Alaska, Prince Rupert is easily accessible by air, rail, cruise ship, ferry, car, or rv.

The excellent sport fishing, exceptional wildlife viewing, top notch attractions, and extensive outdoor activity options make Prince Rupert the ideal choice for a family vacation, a corporate retreat, or a solo getaway.

This year, we invite you to discover, experience and explore Prince Rupert, BC.

The Northwest Coast of America came to European attention during the Age of Discovery, when Spain, England and Russia all competed to expand their influence on the Pacific coast, but it was trade that brought Europeans into direct and lasting contact with the First Nations of the coast. At first British and American ships visited in search of the prized sea otter pelts but eventually the Hudson’s Bay Company expanded their territoryto include permanent trading posts. The fur trade led the newcomers to see that the real wealth here was salmon, the bounty of the sea that formed the foundation of the First Nations lifeways. By the end of the 19th century dozens of cannery villages were scattered throughout this area to take advantage of the rich salmon runs of the Skeena and Nass rivers. The selection of Kaien Island and the Port of Prince Rupert as the terminus of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway, and the arrival of the first surveyors on the future site of Prince Rupert in 1906, was the beginning of today’s city.

Today, the city of Prince Rupert remains at the edge of wilderness, secure in a sheltered inner harbour and protected by a rim of islands along the famed Inside Passage. We are a diverse mix of people, with varied interests, and guests often comment on the rich cosmopolitan culture found in our city. Superb museums and outstanding attractions defy our small population and remote location, and our lives are enriched by an extraordinary visual and performing arts community. Scenery, wildlife, sportfishing, heritage, and culture are part of our daily life.

Outstanding ferry and rail connections and new cruise facilities offer fun and easy travel alternatives, and have brought us into a new chapter in the Prince Rupert story

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Trout Point Lodge - Nova Scotia

I am off here in May - reading this makes me even more keen to check it out as it is one of the very few places on our website that I have not visited. Nova Scotia is developing an excellent reputation for good food and of couse is lucky enough to have a vast larder in its backyard!

Savor beautiful Nova Scotia river country at Trout Point Lodge, a luxury nature retreat offering superb outdoor recreation, outstanding cuisine, & engaging culinary vacations. An unparalleled place for relaxation & enjoyment of the outdoors, Trout Point's 200 acre wooded estate borders the Tobeatic Wilderness Preserve & the pristine waters of the scenic Tusket & Napier Rivers. Enjoy kayaking, cooking lessons, wood-fired hot tubs, river swimming, hiking trails, & nature walks amidst natural splendor. A true eco-lodge, Trout Point follows sustainable tourism practices. Your stay includes gourmet Creole-style meals—so just arrive in our serene world, and relax with no further worries, bills, or concerns. (Non meal-plan options are also available.) The Lodge is located just 30 minutes by car from the Yarmouth International Ferry Terminal, with daily service from Portland and Bar Harbor, Maine, USA.

The Dining Room serves fresh Nova Scotia seafood in daily-changing fixed menus inspired by the French New World, including Cajun, Creole, and local Acadian specialties. Salmon, scallops, halibut, haddock, tuna, mussels, and other seafood pulled straight from the sea just hours before; wild chanterelles, porcini, or seabeans; garden-fresh organic produce; and always homemade breads and desserts form a part of every candlelit dinner.

Trout Point's cooking vacation programs offer participants complete culinary get-aways, including double occupancy in luxury Trout Point guest suites, all gourmet meals, culinary instruction in the Lodge's teaching kitchen, and field trips to unique food destinations. These learning vacations generally focus on the use and preparation of fresh seafood. Daily cooking lessons are also offered to regular guests, happening almost every afternoon. The Seafood Cookery School teaches beginners and advanced cooks alike how to identify, choose, and prepare fresh fish and shellfish using the French Creole sensibilities of our Louisiana-trained instructors.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Norstead Viking Village - Newfoundland/Labrador

A Viking Village and Port of Trade on L'Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland is a non-profit organization that was created to take history out of the exhibit case and place it in the hands of visitors. Join costumed interpreters in the dim light of the Viking-style Chieftain's Hall and listen to mysterious Viking tales.Check out info on the blacksmith forging iron. Step aboard the full-scale replica of the Viking ship "Snorri". Learn how the Vikings mastered the North Atlantic. Use a simple notched stick to measure distance by the stars. Get you "Runes" told by the wise women. Shape clay into pottery the way the Vikings did. Spin sheep fleece into yarn using ancient drop spindle technology, dye the yarn bright purple, pink, or rusty yellow using local plants and berries....weave it into cloth at the loom.

Located about two km from L'Anse aux Meadows UNESCO World Heritage Viking Site, the only authenticated Viking site in North America, Norstead replicates a Viking port of trade as it may have looked during the Viking era (790-1066 AD). The four-hectare site has a boat shed with its very own Viking ships, including the 54 foot replica Viking knarr which sailed from Greenland to L’Anse aux Meadows in 1998 with a crew of only nine men. There is also a chieftain's hall, church, and a workshop, with costumed interpreters who bring the site to life. All buildings, which consist of wood paneled walls and earthen floors, have been created to convey the look and feel of the Viking Era.

Norstead, which won the provincial Attractions Canada award for “Best New Attraction”, was the centerpiece of a series of events held in 2000 to mark the 1,000th anniversary of the Vikings' arrival in the New World. Those events generated widespread media coverage and helped the site attract 28,000 visitors in its first season of operation. The aim of the site is to ensure that visitors have the opportunity to gain a broader understanding of Norse life, while having fun through an enriched travel experience.

Source and more information:

Monday, March 08, 2010

Gaspé Peninsula - Québec - a journey around Canada from the Canada holiday specialists

The imposing Gaspé Peninsula, jutting out into the Atlantic, offers its inhabitants and the many visitors who flock to the area beautiful vistas of the sea and mountains. As big as Belgium, with just over 30,000 square kilometres, its population of more than 100,000 people is concentrated in waterside towns and villages, and the mountains of the interior have largely remained a wild and virgin territory that is much appreciated by outdoors enthusiasts.

The mountains at the heart of the Gaspé Peninsula are among the tallest in Quebec. Mount Jacques-Cartier, for example, reaches 1,268 m and is the highest summit in the southern part of the province. But these mountains are only a shadow of what they once were, as gradual erosion – particularly by glaciers during the most recent ice age – transformed the once towering peaks into undulating plateaus.

The Gaspé is but the northeastern tip of the Appalachians – an extensive mountain chain that begins as far away as Alabama in the United States. Hikers who walk the length of the famous International Appalachian Trail are very proud of their accomplishment once they reach the end at Cap-Gaspé. But few of them realize that they have only seen half of the Appalachians, the next section beginning on the island province of Newfoundland in the Atlantic, and continuing to the other side of the ocean, into the highlands of Scotland and Norway...

Thursday, March 04, 2010

The Heritage of Banff National Park - Alberta

It was the first in Canada and third in the world when it was created in 1885 after a natural hot springs was discovered. Banff National Park soon became a tourism icon around the world, as well-known as our Mounties in red serge jackets and felt hats. Maps were charted, luxury hotels were built, mountains were climbed and tourists arrived with the train, then cars and air travel. Banff - named for Banffshire, Scotland - and Lake Louise are located within the park which forms part of the UNESCO.

In the fall of 1883, three Canadian Pacific Railway construction workers stumbled across a cave containing hot springs on the eastern slopes of Alberta's Rocky Mountains. From that humble beginning was born Banff National Park, Canada's first national park and the world's third. Spanning 6,641 square kilometres (2,564 square miles) of valleys, mountains, glaciers, forests, meadows and rivers, Banff National Park is one of the world's premier destination spots.

Banff National Park and Lake Louise encompass a vast, untamed territory begging to be explored. Find adventure in the stunning Canadian Rockies – home to breathtaking wild animals, soaring eagles, and pristine rivers flowing from 1,000 glaciers. Treat yourself to a scenic drive on The Icefields Parkway, Bow Valley Parkway, or TransCanada Highway. Each of these roadways offers spectacular scenery and a sublime, relaxing escape. You’ll love natural wonders like Columbia Icefield, Johnston Canyon, Castle Mountain Junction, and Bow Glacier.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Fossil World Discovery Center - Alberta

Drumheller Alberta Canada leading attractions are the Royal Tyrrell Museum, Fossil World Discovery Center, World's Largest Dinosaur and Reptile World.

Fossil World Discovery Center delivers quality family edutainment for memories and learning that will last a lifetime. There is real magic in coming into the Drumheller badlands and experiencing as a family all the dinosaur models, the world class Fossil World Discovery Center.

Drumheller is a total immersion into understanding dinosaurs, fossils, minerals and the natural history of Alberta. There is something here for everyone in the family and we can promise you a memorable and meaningful family learning time together.

Drumheller is known as the Dinosaur Capital of the World, because of its location in the heart of the Canadian badlands and the abundance of dinosaur fossils found here. The hills of Drumheller are still filled with buried dinosaurs. There are so many dinosaurs in our hills that new excavations could continue for a 100 years or more.

This is as close as you will get to a real T.Rex and live to tell about it. This dinosaur is simply the finest animatronic dinosaur made in the world. It is so well done and so realistic you will be amazed. Be sure your batteries are charged up to capture and bring home your family memories.

Tuesday, March 02, 2010


I am just back from a fabulous few days in Whistler and Vancouver - the sun shone, the atmosphere was unbelievable and of course the sport was amazing. However, Whistler is also really good in the summer as well.
Summer in Whistler-Blackcomb, British Columbia

There are few places in the world that can match the endless adventure and entertainment that Whistler Blackcomb squeezes into a summer. From a sightseeing gondola ride to a mountaintop restaurant to an alpine hike with 360 degree views; from a bear viewing tour to a glacier walk; from a day in our mountain bike park to an afternoon of mini golf, there is an activity with just the right amount of adventure to suit just about anyone.

Nothing compares to the PEAK 2 PEAK Alpine Experience. The journey between the two Mountains provides a 360-degree window into Whistler Blackcomb’s alpine environment, its surrounding peaks, changing seasons and wildlife habitat, but sightseeing is just the start of your adventure. Looking for an epic hike to an ancient glacier? A gentle stroll on an alpine walking trail? A tour of black bear habitat? High tea at an alpine hut? Wine tasting on a mountain-top patio? The choice is yours with the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola. Access 50+ kilometres of hiking trails spread over 19 trails, including six new options on Blackcomb Mountain. From easy to epic, there’s something for everyone.

Whistler is truly North America's finest four-season mountain resort with golf to match. In the summer Whistler is home to some of the finest signature golf courses in the world.

Nicklaus North is the only golf course in the world to bear the name of its legendary designer. One look and you'll see why it was this spectacular track to which Mr. Nicklaus decided to attach his moniker. It is 6,908-yard, par 71 gem framed by snow-capped peaks and glacier-fed lakes. Nicklaus North Golf Course weaves between ancient fir trees and blends seamlessly with the incredible natural surroundings. It contains all the hallmarks of classic Nicklaus design, from the trademark bunkering to long, challenging par threes and is a must-play for any golfer visiting Whistler.

Rising above Whistler Village are the vast coastal hemlock-cedar forests of the Whistler Blackcomb ski area. These forests interspersed with ski trails provide diverse food and shelter for some 50 black bears. Experience the pristine views of wildlife, glacial peaks and memorable sunsets in a 4x4 vehicle. Travel through deep old growth coastal hemlock-cedar forests, visit active bear dens, daybeds and feeding sites. Witness evening play between a mother and her cubs.