Miscellaneous, writers, trees, timmies etctra
Favorite thing: Old and new, what was trendy are now dog eared and yellow, the glue has dried and spine broken, sometimes a page or two missing, but is was in the 5 for $ bin, or whatever, bringing about some moments of pleasant reading and escape from the ravages of consumer society.
Farley Mowat, Pierre Berton, Wayson Choy, Stuart McLean, and others tahn are around the house. where ????
Fondest memory: Once it was the CBC vinyl Cafe and Tim Hortons ambience, which has undergone too many supposedly progressive customer driven changes, now ( as of MMXIII-7) it is not being able to meet up with Canadian friends, whether it is to whine over politicians at all levels, the weather, price of gas aka petrol or whatever, the local library for it's almost free service and having to pay fines for books returned late . . . . . .alas. . .
the picture of red maples leaf flag waving, the knowledge that the Boreal Forests are real and surviving against the intrusions of of industrialisation and multinational corporations, oft disguised otherwise . . . . the country will eb around when i return . . . .
if ...... ...... ..... if . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Related to:
- Historical Travel
- Adventure Travel
Favorite thing: boy, you sure sound like you aren't looking forward to your travel. your uupset you have to stay in winnipeg for 3 nights, your upset you have to stay in jasper for 3 days. if you dislike via so much, maybe you better get use to flying or deal with greyhound. i hope you have a good time.
3 days in jasper is heaven. hopefully you can rent a car or book some tours. you can easily spend one days just waundering around town. hotels are very expensive in jasper these days. book early to try to get the best deals.
Favorite thing: I know only the Canadian part, think it is a great route you'll follow. Jasper-Banff-Calgary is very nice. We followed this route which was great, Vancouver-Victoria-Tofino-Campbell River-Port Hardy-Prince Rupert-Jasper-Banff-Calgary. In which it is better to replace Port Hardy-Prince Rupert, with Whistler-Kamloops.
Succes and have a nice trip, Canada is fantastic any way!
Fondest memory: The very best was Canada day 1st of July in Banff and then the Calgary Stampede after that. If you plan smart you can have both as well.Related to:
- Road Trip
- National/State Park
Favorite thing: My first trip into Canada was NOT fun. The only places I have been in Canada so far are Goose Bay and Vancouver. I have made some good friends from Canada though.
Fondest memory: So far, my best memory involving Canada (or Canadians) is probably wandering around Tombstone with Ed (Kaspian) or my time with a French Canadian girl named Sylvie. Too much alcohol to remember much of my trip to Vancouver.
Bringing in > CAD10K
Favorite thing: I was asked to go to the Cashier's Counter by the Immigration officer at YVR, upon arrival, to make a formal declaration, since I had indicated on my arrival/customs form that I had > CAD10,000 with me in various denominations (CAD, MYR, USD, Japanese ¥) - I had to show my bank draft for CAD8,000 to the cashier (thanks to the warning by VTers on bringing in a bank draft for CAD10,000, which would trigger a FINTRAC alert when I try to deposit it into a bank account, which might get my bank draft held for an indefinite period of time, perhaps even 6 months, longer than my period of stay in Canada!) and to just give the list of different currencies, their equivalent in CAD (which I had worked out in the plane) and everything was a breeze after that! She just wrote OK on my immigration/customs declaration form and the customs guys waved me on! :-)
How much currency you can bring into Canada?
Favorite thing: If you are bringing into Canada more than CAD10,000 worth of currencies in any denomination, just declare it on the Immigration/Declaration form. You will be asked by the Immigration Officer to go to the Cashier's Counter at the airport, upon arrival, to make a formal declaration, whereby you will be asked to show any prepaid financial instrument like a bank draft that you might have with you and to give the list of different foreign currencies that you have with you and their equivalent in CAD and everything will a breeze after that! The cashier will just wrote OK and roughly how much you are bringing into Canada, on your immigration/customs declaration form and the customs guys will just wave you on! They/FINTRAC are on alert for CASH of more than CAD10,000, not legitimate financial instruments like a bank draft issued by a legitimate foreign bank, which can be in any amount!
Just two more notes to those who might be interested/need to know for future advice to VTers who might post an enquiry on this subject matter: -
1) I went deposit my CAD8,000 bank draft into my new Canadian account and enquired from the teller about being red-flagged if I were to deposit a $10,000 bank draft (as per a Canadian VTer's warning on my post on how much cash to bring with me into Canada) and was advised that is simply NOT TRUE! In fact the manager, herself, advised me I can even deposit a $100,000 bank draft and it would be OK!
That the reporting to FINTRAC only applies to CASH deposits of CAD10,000 or more, not a prepaid financial intrument like a proper bank draft (like mine, with all the correct codes printed on it and drawn on a Canadian bank) or a wire transfer. That even for CAD10,000 or more cash deposits, which students are prone to bring with them, there's no problem with their access to it once deposited! The bank has to only report to FINTRAC. While the bank has to only hold a bank draft till it is cleared, in my case for only 10 working days!
2) The problem outlined by one VTer about her sister's CAD check being held back for 6 months in the US, to quote the Bank Manager, this is because "the US banking system is archaic", unquote, and they don't know how to clear a foreign check and need to send it back to Canada, for clearance.
Favorite thing: Montreal is the largest city in Quebec, and, with over 3,770,000 inhabitants in the metropolitan area, is the second-largest French-speaking city in the world, after Paris.
The islands on which Montreal was founded were first visited by French explorer Jacques Cartier in 1535. He was led to the top of a hill on one of the islands by members of the local Hochelaga Indian tribe. He was so impressed by the view that he christened it un mont réal, or "a royal mountain."
Later, in 1642, Paul Chomedey de Maisonneuve led a group of French Roman Catholics to the convergence of the Saint Lawrence and Ottawa rivers to establish a Christian community and port. They named their settlement Ville-Marie de Mont-Réal. The small settlement quickly grew to become Canada's first great trading center.
Nowadays, Toronto has overtaken Montreal as Canada's most important economic, commercial, and financial center. However, Montreal is more a cultural city, with the French-Canadian culture and language making Montreal seem more like Europe than North America.
Favorite thing: This was an answer to a forum question asking about the best sights in Vancouver and Calgary (posed by a fellow Aussie).
I haven't been to Vancouver but many people I know have really enjoyed it. We were in Calgary last month (and I have been lazy and NOT put any tips or photos up yet-sorry).I must say that whilst Calgary is a very friendly city as far as attractions go it definitely doesn't rate highly on my list. I hope I haven't offended anyone it is just my opinion. We did like the Calgary Zoo and the views of the mountains but... why just enjoy the views? It is only an hour and a half or so to Banff and it is really stunning in that area, lots of scenery and wildlife not to mention nearby towns like Lake Louise and Canmore. Or if you are not a mountain person head East to Drumheller. It is very interesting out there-weird and a bit freaky but interesting. Feel free to ask me for more info. We had 10 days and flew in and out of Calgary doing a loop up the Rockies to Edmonton and back down. Enjoy Canada the people are awesome and so like Australians in many ways.
Favorite thing: Toronto is a pleasant city located on the north shore of Lake Ontario. It is consistently rated as one of the most livable cities in the world. The population is a cosmopolitan mix of over 100 ethnic groups, and 49 percent of the population was born outside of Canada, making it one of the world's most diverse cities. The city is also Canada's financial, commercial, and cultural center, and is one of the top business centers in the world.
The area that would one day become Toronto was originally occupied by the Iroquois Indian tribe. Its name probably derives from the Iroquois word, ktaronto, which means "place where trees stand in the water." The Iroquois were later displaced by the Huron tribe.
In 1720, the French established a fur-trading post at a place that would one day be downtown Toronto. The French built Fort Rouillé at the site of the trading post in 1750, but abandoned it in 1759. In 1763, Canada came under British control. During the American Revolutionary War, there was an influx of British settlers into what is now Ontario as Loyalists fled the United States. Some began to form a settlement on the former site of the French trading post and fort. In 1793, the settlement was established as York, in honor of Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany. Fort York was built at the same time to protect the settlement and the strategic harbor on which it was located. During the War of 1812, American troops captured and plundered York in 1813. Fort York was also burned. In 1834, the City of Toronto was incorporated. The growing town increased in importance economically and politically. It was the capital of Canada twice: between 1849 and 1852, and between 1856 and 1858.
Nowadays, Toronto is the provincial capital of Ontario, and is Canada's largest city, with over 6,330,000 inhabitants in the greater metropolitan area. Its built-up area covers 230 square miles (630 square kilometers).
Travel in the north first and then the south
Favorite thing: I love Canada because of its diversity. I love the the multi-ethnicity of both the north and the south. I also loved the mixture of the English and the European culture in their food, architecture, etc.
Canada's parks are well-maintained and it remain one of the cleanest country I have visited. Their government is also very efficient that makes their people more relax and trusting. The people are warm and loving. They always promote peace, equality and equal opportunities!
Fondest memory: I love the ying-yang of its culture. I love the European-ness of the South and the Englishness of the North. I also love that the country open its gates to a lot of foreigners that make it more exciting to visit since these foreigners bring in their culture, traditions and beliefs!
room and board in exchange for a few hours work
Favorite thing: On a day in July I was blessed with a ticket to Canada from my Family for 6 months. Now I always found myself drawn to the road but never had the courage or know how to start. So with the opportunity to start my travels in Canada for six months this seemed to be a perfect place to start.
The only problem being income, I mean it's great having a ticket to a place I could have only dreamed of visiting but how could I afford to stay there for so long? so I started my search for cheap accommodation and by accident came across a website that offered room and board in exchange for 4-5 hours work a day. Which seemed fair, so I posted an ad and within 24 hours had a reply from a host willing to take me in so I accepted. and my dream became a reality as I could now have a place to stay and not having to worry about rent and food in my expenses (which helped a lot).
So now thanks to this website http://www.helpx.net/ I have managed not only to see most of the east of Canada but also I am now planning to see the world using this program as without the expense of room and board I can literally go and see the whole world and learn new skills at the same time while seeing countries that I could only of have dreamed about all thanks to help exchange it really helped as I had a base in Canada which I could return to at any point knowing there will always be a roof over my head and food in my belly. Which takes the worry away from certain aspects of my journeys Also i have learned how to build fences paint houses and learned about the real culture of Canada away from all the tourist traps and everything like that
This is not an advertisement just a way to provide fellow travellers with the same information as i have learned!!!
Fondest memory: my fondest memory of Canada was on my first night downtown was when I walked into a bar and was instantly made to feel welcome and felt like one of the family I now go to this bar quite frequently and talk to the guys I now call friends. Now my first ever time travelling alone on a country where your the foriegner these guys went above and beyond the call of canadian hospitality, Iwas invited to not 1 but 3 different thanksgivings!!!! The guys in that bar made my stay in Canada much more enjoyable. One of them even taught me to Play ice hockey!Related to:
- Budget Travel
- Family Travel
- Work Abroad
Favorite thing: Thank you to all the people who answered re the driving conditions in March
We are also visiting Canada in March 09 drinving from Vancouver to Calgary We have driven this route before but in September. We were thinking of renting 2 people movers as there are 9 of us. Would people mover be a suitable choice of vehicle if it had winter tyres on it.
MPH vs KPH
Favorite thing: Most American cars now have concentric scales on the speedometer. One is for MPH (miles per hour) and the other is KPH (kilometers per hour). When you are in Canada and the speed limit sign says 60, that is in KPH and that is about 40 MPH (120kph is 75mph).
When the local police are doing radar checks on the highway, believe me, that KPH to MPH conversion makes a big difference between getting a ticket and not getting one. ("Sorry officer, I was looking at the wrong scale" doesn't work at all with the Canadian police).Related to:
- Road Trip
Unpredictable Weather - Dress for all seasons !
Favorite thing: It was almost impossible to rely on the weather forecast in British Columbia (especially Vancouver Island) or Alberta. The weather would change several times within a day, a clear sky in the morning did not rule out overcast sky and rain in the afternoon and vice versa. Even locations within 30 km range could have totally different weather conditions, as we found out. So always pack suitable clothing for all kinds of weather and be prepared for quick weather changes, especially on Vancouver Island and in the Rockies.
Furthermore, if your mind is set on visiting Lake Louise or Maligne Lake, plan in several days stay in Banff or Jasper and leave some flexibility in your schedule. These sights are best enjoyed in fine weather, and if you have only one day in jour time table reserved, there is the risk that it might be a rainy day.
Driving during winter in the Rockies
Favorite thing: With winter tires you will be fine... You don't need chains, and even worse, chains are sometimes illegal on roads because it breaks the road. When you rent a car, make sure you ask for winter tires, although on the west coast, they might have only 4 seasons tires has they rarely have snow. I did the highway through the Rocky mountains many times during winter period through Banff, etc... and I never hit some snow, but you might get some. People on the west coast are pretty nervous about driving in snow as they rarely get some, so they might dangerous drivers into those conditions, I think you should be more scare of other drivers then yourself if you are being careful to not go too fast. You should try to rent a manual car (if possible). If you slide on snow, it is practical to downshift instead of breaking to get slower without sliding (when you feel that you are loosing the control, because it is not necessarily very good for the car to do that too often). But with winter tires, there is no danger if you are aware that it might become slidy and that you stay vigilant and if you are lucky, you will not even have any snow on the roads, except maybe at the ski resorts.
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