Discover The Wonders Of Canada

If you have had your fill of European destinations and want to try something new, Canada has more than most to offer the adventurous traveler. It’s vast open spaces and glorious scenery combine for a truly impressive traveling adventure.

You now require an eTA to visit Canada for tourism, transit or business trips that are going to last less than six months. You can find out lots more information and details of how to apply on the Canadian eta website so check this out several months before you leave. Make sure that you have adequate travel and health insurance in place and that your passport is up to date. If you are participating in sports such as skiing you may need additional insurance.

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Vancouver is a chic coastal city and an ideal base for your trip but it’s the outdoors that makes this area truly spectacular. Here are some sights that you cannot miss. Whatever your tastes in outdoor adventures, Vancouver, and the surrounding area has something to offer you that you will not be able to resist!

Stanley Park for garden lovers

There are more than 1,000 acres of space at Stanley Park making it one of the largest urban parks in North America. There is something for everyone there. You can take a relaxing stroll around the flowering gardens and wooded areas spotting the natural flora and fauna. For the more adventurous, you can hire a bike or some roller blades and check out the Seawall 5.5-mile path.

Grouse Mountain for winter sports lovers

True adventure is a short 15-minute drive from downtown Vancouver. On Grouse Mountain you can ski, snowboard, snowshoe or ice skate. If that is a bit much for you there are gentle sleigh rides as well. If your trip is in the summer, you don’t have to lose out. Swap winter sports for zip lines and trekking. The 1-mile long aerial tramway to the gorgeous Observatory restaurant is not to be missed.

Whistler Blackcomb for the gondolas

Travel a little further from Vancouver (around two hours) and you reach Whistler Blackcomb – a vast 8,000 acres of pure fun. There are two mountains and oceans of space where you can ride the PEAK 2 PEAK gondola. This is a perfect destination for a winter or a summer break so take your pick. Winter sports include skiing and snowboarding but in the summer, you can go mountain-biking along challenging trails and try out outdoor adventures like zip trekking. The area is well serviced by more than 130 restaurants so refueling after your exercise is not a problem! If the weather does turn a little bad you can always head indoors to one of the 200 shops!

Sea safari for water lovers

A coastal city has got to have coastal adventures and Vancouver does not fail in this. You can spot seals, whales, and blue herons in the waters near the city. You can choose from a sedate kayak trip or a thrilling sea safari from Howe Sound.

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What to do in the Dordogne

Nestled in the heart of south-western France lies the beautifully serene Dordogne area. Between the Loire Valley and the Pyrenees mountain range, you can spend your time enjoying what this fabulous region has to offer to any lover of the outdoors.

Book one of the mountain bike holidays that are available in the area and explore on two wheels. You can hire cycles from Etang de Coucou to tour the hamlets and villages, or venture into the rural countryside and catch the breathtaking landscapes. Try your hand at quad biking, with many sites available including one at Hautefort.

France, Périgord, Dordogne, Beynac Castle

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The area certainly isn’t short of water sports holidays either. Sure, you’re in the heart of the south of France without a beach for miles, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the watery wonders that the Dordogne River has to offer. There is also a large leisure lake at Lanouaille for you to visit.

Travel to La Roque-Gageac for some great fun canoeing down the river. Spy local wildlife as you go and moor on the shingled shorelines for an ice cream or light refreshment. Wade in the shallow freshwater to cool off from the heat before arriving at base and grabbing a spot of lunch.

For the sport fanatics, there are 18-hole golf courses in both Perigeux and Brive for you to attempt to get holes in one, or the courts at Agnan will keep your thirst for tennis thoroughly quenched.

Combine this with the oodles of heritage, history and natural beauty and your itinerary will be jam packed for the duration of your vacation. Hire a car so that your possibilities are endless. With chateaus and quaint villages dotted all over the Dordogne, not to mention the high quality wines, confit de canard and foie gras to sink your teeth into, you will be sure to wish to return to the south of France again and again.

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Camping In Comfort: Taking The Stress Out Of The Great Outdoors

Camping is one of those vacations that people have incredibly strong opinions on. People either think that camping is the best thing ever, that it reconnects you with the world around you and makes you feel alive and free from the trappings of everyday modern life. Or they think that it’s uncomfortable, inconvenient and pointless. After all, why spend your time in a cramped tent feeling cold and damp when you can be spread out on a large bed in a hotel suite? Of course, the challenge comes when you’re not such a fan of camping, but you’re outvoted, either by friends or family and end up getting dragged along against your will. When that happens, you have two choices. You can sulk the entire time and make yourself and everyone around you miserable, or you can do what you can to make the whole thing as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. Here are just a few ways to make the most of your time camping when you’re not such a fan of the great outdoors.

Get comfortable

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The biggest complaint that a lot of people have when it comes to camping is that it’s uncomfortable. Having to spend their vacation lying on the hard ground feeling cold and miserable is far from their idea of a good time. It’s lucky then that there are plenty of ways to make camping a much more comfortable experience overall. Thermal sleeping bags allow you to stay nice and warm regardless of the weather outside, while something like the lightspeed air bed allows you to sleep soundly without worrying about waking up with a broken spine from sleeping on a tree root all night. Sure, camping is never going to be the same experience as a five-star hotel, but that doesn’t mean it has to be uncomfortable and unpleasant.

Bring a touch of home with you

There was a time when, if you were going on a camping trip, you had to leave everything about your home life behind. All you had to keep yourself company and entertained was the world around you, a book, and maybe a deck of cards if you remembered to pack it. However now, thanks to things like smartphones and wearable technology, you can bring the comfort and convenience of home with you. This way you can enjoy miserable, rainy days in a tent streaming your favorite shows, instead of sitting around feeling bored.

Embrace it

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Of course, if you really want to get the most out of an experience, the very best thing to do is to just embrace it. Throw yourself into it without worry or hesitation. Think of it like getting into a cold shower. It might be jarring at first, but you get used to it very quickly and often come to enjoy it far more than you thought you would. Get stuck into all of the things that really make camping fun: getting away from technology, enjoying the simplicity of the world around you, taking things slowly and being totally self-sufficient. You may never be the true survivalist type, but if you embrace the joy of camping in all its glory, you may well discover a passion that you never even knew you had.

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