Niagara Falls- Ontario, Canada

Niagara Falls is nature at its mightiest. More than just a look at a waterfall, a visit is a full vacation surrounded by the natural beauty of the area and the luxury that has drawn tourists from around the world.

A great introduction to the Niagara Falls is from the water with tour from Niagara CruisesVoyage to the Falls boat tour visits Great Gorge, American Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, and the most famous, Horseshoe Falls. Whether you decide to see the Falls in the daylight, illuminated at night, or both, there is no better way than floating up close to the massive wall of moving water. You will almost certainly get wet if you are on the open/outdoor areas of the boat, make sure you wear your (free with purchase of ticket) parka they hand out. If you don’t take the night cruise, make sure you take the time to see the falls lit up at night- it’s a beautiful sight, and one you will be glad you took the time for. Before or after your ride, take advantage of “access to the Lower Landing and Falls viewing area” for a whole different viewpoint of Niagara Falls.

There are plenty of options to get close to the water on foot with the White Water Walk. Viewing platforms and a wooden boardwalk offer an up close look at the trillions of gallons of water that make the “Niagara River’s Class 6 white water rapids”. Rising above you are the walls of the Niagara Gorge, cut down by the power of the river to reveal “410-million-year-old rock layers”. The views you will get on your walk next to the raging waters are breathtaking and like none you will see anywhere else. It’s also a lovely stroll, one that anyone at any age can take.

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If you are looking for a different angle to view the river, try the Whirlpool Aero Car. Over a century old (just celebrating it’s centennial in 2016) the trip takes you over “3,500 feet across the Canadian side of the Niagara River”. You will cross the international boarder between the USA and Canada during your trip. From the antique cable car, you look down over the Niagara Whirlpool, like seeing the eye of a storm from above.
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The 5 Most Beautiful Natural Attractions in Canada

Canada is known for many things, but one of the reasons why many people decide to plan a visit is to take in the country’s natural beauty. Canada is renowned for its multitude of National Parks, each one featuring unique and different natural wonders to take in. For the outdoorsy type, one of Canada’s parks or popular tourist spots is perfect and each of them provides opportunities to indulge in nature and get plenty of fresh air while enjoying the sights. Here are 5 of the most beautiful locations in Canada for the first time or well seasoned traveler.

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Niagara Falls

The Niagara Falls are located in Ontario, directly across the border from the United States. They are a part of the large, flowing Niagara River that makes up a 36 mile length along the area. The falls are known for their pretty scenery as well as their high power flowing strength, which is used for hydro power. There are three waterfalls that make up the Falls are named Horseshoe Falls, American Falls, and Bridal Veil Falls. Niagara Falls hotel options are plentiful, as the Falls are an extremely popular tourist destination for travelers worldwide.

The Niagara Falls region has tons of entertainment options, from clubs, pubs and shopping malls all the way up to amusement parks and museums. It is also known for its vibrant nightlife with thousands of visitors from the greater Ontario area and Northern United States filing the streets. The region offers the perfect blend of natural beauty and urban charm which makes it a perfect destination for the whole family.

Gros Morne National Park

Located on the coast of Newfoundland, Gros Morne National Park offers fantastic views of nature and exciting activities for hikers and outdoorsmen. The park is located in the cold region of the country, and is the second largest park in Atlantic Canada. Summer and spring are the best times are the year to visit due to there being more options of activities when the weather is warmer. During the warmer months, hiking, fishing, boating, and more are available to Park visitors. If you are lucky, you might even be able to catch a glimpse of some of the protected wildlife that roams Canada’s parks.
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The Algonquin Resort in New Brunswick

The summer can be the most exhausting time of the year. Figuring out what to do with the kids, the heat, planning your holiday- you can wear yourself out just thinking about it, and I haven’t even mentioned the events yet. It seems like there are always a million things to do, so many places to shuttle off to, and never enough time to do it all. When you need a break, you want to go to a place where your days were carefree and relaxed, sprinkled with fun and one of a kind adventures. Of course, I am talking about The Algonquin Resort.

20140820_152600This resort is amazing. The staff is helpful, knowledgeable, and will help take care of everything for you. Not only is the resort elegant and historical, but they offer amazing perks to make your stay as carefree as possible. You have  the option to hit the greens, go to the spa, take in a game of tennis, and enjoy the indoor or outdoor pools. Then retire to your room, where you will enjoy a historical look and modern conveniences. Some of the rooms offer panoramic views of the picturesque Passamaquoddy Bay, which is lovely.

20140821_072903In addition to offering lovely rooms and a true feeling of luxury, the variety of experiences available for guests offers something for everyone, the kids, the golfers, the lovers and the adventure seekers.  The food at the resort is top notch, with several restaurants to choose from, as well as buffet style options. Children’s menus are available as well, although I always reccomend you have your kids try something fun and new while traveling.  Why not experience new food while in a new place?

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DIGBY PINES GOLF RESORT & SPA

  Located on the western coast of Nova Scotia, overlooking the Bay of Fundy, the Signature Resorts of Nova Scotia property is the perfect escape for travellers looking for a secluded getaway. With a rich history dating back to 1929, the property is comprised of a main lodge which includes 85 guestrooms and 31 independent cottages ranging from one to three-bedroom accommodations.

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            “This new alliance with Choice Hotel’s Ascend Collection is a great way for us to reach a growing audience of travelers who appreciate the distinct characteristics only found in independent hotels,” said Gerry Chase, president and COO of New Castle.  “With summer upon us, we look forward to sharing Digby Pines with guests who will enjoy the magnificent scenery and local attractions, including our golf course.”
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Digby Pines Golf Resort and Spa

Nestled in a setting so lovely you might never want to leave is the Digby Pines Golf Resort and Spa. Located in the scenic town of Digby, Nova Scotia this resort offers a one of a kind stay with the natural beauty of the area, the superb amenities and the unforgettable hospitality of the staff.

nova scotia hotelsDigby Pines features rooms and cottages to accommodate your needs. From luxurious king size beds to cozy little twins, the rooms are charming, very comfortable, and handsomely appointed with all of the great things you want on your trip. Flat screen tvs, phones, hair dryers, wireless internet. Cottages include fireplaces and verandas as well.

20140822_145840Several dining options are available such as Churchill’s Restaurant and Lounge, a Nova Scotia restaurant, Terrace Cafe – enjoy your dining experience outside on our terrace and the 19th Hole Clubhouse & Eatery. {The food at all 3 places was exceptional!}

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Jolly Breeze- Whale Watching on the Bay of Fundy

Disclosure- this was part of a media trip.  All opinions are my own and honest. For more information, please see “I Disclose”.

Please read the whole article on This Girl Travels!

whale watching in the bay of fundySometimes you find a special place.  One of those places that not only makes you slow down and really appreciate where you are, your surroundings, and the people you are with, but that will also truly make memories that will last the rest of your life.  The kind of place you frequently find yourself saying “do you remember that time when…..”   One of those places is Canada’s beautiful Bay of Fundy.

The Bay of Fundy has the highest tidal range in the world, according to The Guinness Book of World Records. Burntcoat Head, Nova Scotia has the highest tides in the world, with rises that swell more then 50 feet in some places during high tide.  There is diverse and flourishing sea life in the Bay of Fundy, as well as (as would be expected) a large fishing and lobstering community.

Should you find yourself near the Bay of Fundy (or should you desire to find yourself there), some experiences are not to be missed.  First, bring your appetite, as the seafood fresh and delectable.  If you are so inclined, you can catch your dinner yourself- there are fishing excursions available, or you can rent (or bring your own) kayaks or canoes.  With water, water, everywhere, watersports are plentiful and easy to come by- in many places, you will see signs for fishing and aquaculture wherever you look.

low tide bay of fundyIt is an amazing thing to walk on the ocean floor when the water has receded away.  You can do this yourself, or under the eye and guidance of a tour group or guide.  For me, this was the only option, as I was not familiar with either the area or the tides, and didn’t want to find myself (or my young son) washed away with the next one.  Another perk to being with a tour guide is that they can point out all sorts of fun things that I would not have noticed or been able to identify on the ocean floor- different types of seaweed, crabs, and shellfish.  We took a great tour called “Plankton, Periwinkles, and Predators” that we booked through our hotel in Nova Scotia, the Digby Pines (http://www.digbypines.ca/).  The hotel was beautiful, with tons to do for families both on the grounds and nearby, and the rooms were clean with various sizes available, including cottages for rent.  You can also book the tour independently however, via www.GaelTours.ca. Led by a father/daughter duo, you and your family will explore the area from the very top (where no water reaches) down to the very bottom, where water has only recently drained. It gets a bit soggy, so bring your puddle-jumpers and pants you don’t mind getting dirty in.
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Top 5 Attractions in Toronto with Kids

Once Winter has rolled around, there are fewer places on earth better than Toronto for getting your family into the holiday spirit. Every year, there are multiple seasonal events that are fantastic fun for kids and a darn good time for grown-ups too. Here are five of the best.

Toronto Christmas parade in 2008.

Holiday Parades
Every year, the Greater Toronto Area holds weekly Santa and Christmas-themed parades that are pure joy for little ones, featuring as they do, lights, music, floats, marching bands and a host of colorful characters—including the guest of honor, Santa Claus. The parades and events take place in 23 different locales, every Saturday, in and around Toronto, throughout November and into early December. The event not to be missed in 2013 is happening at The Junction Train Platform on December 7th between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. Arrive early to meet Santa and his elves, enjoy story-time with Mrs. Claus and spend the rest of your day indulging in gift-shopping, craft workshops, or perhaps watching some seasonal dancing.

Cavalcade of Lights
The lighting of the tree in Nathan Phillips Square has been dazzling families for almost half a century now. These days, the focus isn’t only on the holiday tree though, thanks to the spectacular fireworks display, wide variety of family-friendly live music and ice skating rink dance party that all come with the event. A celebration of this magnitude may be a little overwhelming for younger children, but your pre-teens will be in heaven. In 2013, the Cavalcade of Lights is happening on November 30th, starting at 7 p.m.
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