Aussie Willy heading to Canada

Aussie Willy

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I am planning a very short notice trip to Canada for about 3 weeks. Have already contacted via FB some FSU Vancouverians (is that what you say?) to say I am booking flights. Hope to catch up for dinner. Also want to see the Butchart gardens so plan to spend a night in Victoria. And while in Vancouver must visit the best shoe shop in the world (La Differencia).

Reason - just been made redundant from work so got my payout and also have some money in hand from selling a couple of units and doing house renovations with that. Haven't had a decent holiday since my last overseas trip 3 years and work did my head in because of the nightmare client. The redundancy probably forced a decision I had been thinking about so I am not sad about leaving except for the people. So I need a break.

Anyway this time I am going to the east coast. Flying into Halifax. Wanting to see the Bay of Fundy (is on my bucklet list) from Truro but my travel agent friend has also recommend Peggy's Cove. And have Niagra Falls on my agenda too. The plan is to fly back home out of Toronto.

So your travel ideas would be welcome.
 
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You’re seeing more of the country than a lot of Canadians see! I have no intimate knowledge of any of those places but I hope you have a great trip :)
 

Japanfan

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I am planning a very short notice trip to Canada for about 3 weeks. Have already contacted via FB some FSU Vancouverians (is that what you say?) to say I am booking flights. Hope to catch up for dinner. Also want to see the Butchart gardens so plan to spend a night in Victoria. And while in Vancouver must visit the best shoe shop in the world (La Differencia).
I'm in Vancouver, and would love to come for dinner.

Also, I've heard that the Museum of Anthropology at UBC is well worth a visit (though I've never been, even though I've lived here for many years).
 

Aussie Willy

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I'm in Vancouver, and would love to come for dinner.

Also, I've heard that the Museum of Anthropology at UBC is well worth a visit (though I've never been, even though I've lived here for many years).
Definitely. I am in contact with PeterG, Overedge and Alilou on FB. They are all in for dinner. Will be great to catch up with the FSUers while I am there.
 

KatieC

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I can help with Niagara Falls, what month are you thinking of? There is a lot to see in that region, and do you like wine?
 

Aussie Willy

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Will be in Canada from 17th July until 5th August. Will probably do Niagara Falls on 3rd or 4th August. Not a big wine drinker but do like a drop of sparkling.

Have a skating friend who is also a travel agent and has been able to get me some good deals on flights and accommodation.
 

Josh78

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If you can make it work, take a day and go travel the Cabot Trail up along the coast on Cape Breton island -- just unspoiled nature (and there's a lovely little French town called Cheticamp along the way where the residents speak French (but you'll be fine if you don't as long as you're respectful)) --- in Halifax, DEFINITELY check out the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, it has an AMAZINGLY emotional Titanic exhibit full of so many artifacts from the ship and you find out just how big a role Halifax played in the recovery mission...
 

skategal

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You could easily do both Peggy’s Cove and Bay of Fundy (Truro) from Halifax as they are both only a 45 minute drive from the city. (Totally different directions of course.)

Halls Harbour has some of the highest tides in the world but that’s about 1.5 hours from Halifax so not so easy to do.

Looks like I’ll miss you in Halifax 😕 as we leave tomorrow for a 3 week trip to Asia.

But if you have questions feel free to PM me.
 

Bunny Hop

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Definitely try and get to Victoria if you are going to Vancouver. I highly recommend taking a sea plane flight to get there. The Royal British Columbia Museum is excellent (but pick and choose which bits you want to see if you are short of time), and I also liked Craigdarroch Castle Historical Museum (I was told before going it was 'tourist-y' but I didn't think so).

I also second the Museum of Anthropology at UBC whilst in Vancouver. We also found a small gem of an historic home in the Vancouver suburbs called Roedde House Museum.

Niagara Falls from the Canadian side is quite spectacular and shouldn't be missed.

For Toronto, if you're interested in history, I recommend Fort York, and also Casa Loma; otherwise there are great views from the CN Tower.

If you get to Ottawa a tour of the Houses of Parliament is fascinating.
 

Aussie Willy

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You could easily do both Peggy’s Cove and Bay of Fundy (Truro) from Halifax as they are both only a 45 minute drive from the city. (Totally different directions of course.)

Halls Harbour has some of the highest tides in the world but that’s about 1.5 hours from Halifax so not so easy to do.

Looks like I’ll miss you in Halifax 😕 as we leave tomorrow for a 3 week trip to Asia.

But if you have questions feel free to PM me.
I am in Halifax from about the 21st to 25th July I think.

I was thinking of hiring a car but just concerned about driving on the other side of the road to Australia. Still lots do it and I used to be a driving instructor. Just have to remember to look the other way?

Thanks for the suggestions. Much appreciated.

BTW - what is the weather like in Nova Scotia and around the east of Canada this time of year?
 

Bunny Hop

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I was thinking of hiring a car but just concerned about driving on the other side of the road to Australia. Still lots do it and I used to be a driving instructor. Just have to remember to look the other way?
My husband's tip is that the driver is always closest to the centre line of the road, regardless of which country you are in, and assuming you are driving a car set up for the country in question. When he was working in the US I drove his car once. It took concentration, but I managed fine - the hardest thing to get my head around was that when turning left you were going to the far side of the road rather than the near side. Not sure how I would have gone with a roundabout though (fortunately they are few and far between in North America).
 

KatieC

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I can pick you up wherever you are on the 3rd or 4th and drive you around Niagara Falls, the River Road, and Niagara-on-the-Lake. You can try the boat, whatever the Maid of the Mist is called now. And Maple Leaf Fudge! :)
 
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Dragonlady

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Will be in Canada from 17th July until 5th August. Will probably do Niagara Falls on 3rd or 4th August. Not a big wine drinker but do like a drop of sparkling.

Have a skating friend who is also a travel agent and has been able to get me some good deals on flights and accommodation.
I'm near Niagara Falls and could come for a lunch.
 

kalamalka

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Some bits and pieces of recommendations/observations:
  • If you want to see anything other than Halifax in NS, I'd highly recommend renting a car and braving the North American roads. It's almost all pretty rural (and lots of it is very pretty/historic), the towns are mostly small, and the driving should be about as un-stressful as driving on your "wrong" side of the road could be. Just rent the car to get out of Halifax, though - it's a very walkable city but more of a hassle to drive and park in. I also like the Annapolis Valley, Annapolis Royal, and Lunenburg and the towns nearby. I enjoyed the Cabot Trail and Cape Breton, but there's much more driving involved than going anywhere on the "mainland" of NS.
  • I second Bunny Hop's recommendation to take a seaplane flight (Harbour Air) from Vancouver/Victoria or reverse. It's about the most scenic half hour flight you can imagine, right from one harbour to the other, and at an altitude where you really see a lot of both cities and the islands in between. Ferry one way and seaplane the other is a good combination. There are flights pretty much every hour during the day. (Her other suggestions are good too).
  • Assuming the Vancouver/Victoria part is the beginning of your trip, I'm in Victoria and would love to see you again, and depending on the day could probably give you a bit of a tour around the city. (and/or I know Rosaleen would like to join any gathering in Vancouver, and I might be able to get over for that - but she can get anywhere that's accessible within the city without me if necessary)
 

skategal

Bunny mama
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I am in Halifax from about the 21st to 25th July I think.

I was thinking of hiring a car but just concerned about driving on the other side of the road to Australia. Still lots do it and I used to be a driving instructor. Just have to remember to look the other way?

Thanks for the suggestions. Much appreciated.

BTW - what is the weather like in Nova Scotia and around the east of Canada this time of year?
Oh awesome! Maybe we could meet up for a coffee or something.

Weather is usually nice and sunny with low to mid 20 Celsius or even high 20s.

However, this year is an unusual year and the weather has sucked so far. Cross fingers it will change soon.

The Annapolis Valley is usually 5 degrees warmer in summer than Halifax.

Definitely bring a raincoat.
 

Anemone

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If you get to Ottawa a tour of the Houses of Parliament is fascinating.
Ordinarily, I would second this recommendation. However, at present, our Parliament is housed in temporary quarters while the historic Centre Block & Peace Tower undergo some much needed repairs/renovations/upgrades to things like electrical and is expected to be closed for something like the next 10 years. Admittedly, the Parliament's temporary quarters are very nice, but anyone coming should be aware that the current Parliamant tours are for the temporary quarters, and not the historic Centre Block.

I recommend checking the RCMP musical ride tour dates and see if any of the dates match up with where you will be. It is worth seeing.
 

Aussie Willy

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Thank you for the offers of meeting up. A personalised guide for Niagara? That would be lovely and to do a lunch and coffee with anyone. Can definitely organise closer to the date. I will update my itinerary once I have confirmed things further.
 

alilou

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Finally found this thread! I'm definitely up for dinner in Vancouver, and don't mind arranging it. I have house guests arriving late on the 17th. I don't feel I can abandon them for dinner on the 18th, but the 19th should be fine. Will you still be in van on July 19th?
 

Aussie Willy

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So dinner on the 19th July? I leave Vancouver on the 20th to fly to Halifax.

I will plan to do a tour to Butchart Gardens on the 18th from Vancouver so won't be staying in Victoria.
 

kwanfan1818

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They have a lovely afternoon tea at Butchart Gardens. It's much nicer and more intimate than the one at the Fairmont Empress, especially during the summer. The latter is good during off hours in late Fall or Winter on a Wednesday afternoon, when there are a dozen other people in the cavernous room, and you can sit quietly looking out the window, watching the rain.
 
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alilou

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Anyone got any suggestions as to where we should eat in Van? Somewhere accessible.
 

Japanfan

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July 19 is a Friday, so we should take that into account - particularly with regard to parking, for those of us who drive.
 

kwanfan1818

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kalamalka, Rosaleen, and I had a very nice meal at a Thai restaurant in Cambie Village after an event at UBC. (Probably Can Nats last year.)

Here are some links I found by searching:

This one isn't dated, so I'm not sure how many still exist/exist in that space, or if there's now a construction site where they once were, except for Nuba, which is no longer there, and I don't think any of their locations are accessible :(:

I've been to Chambar (because the grownups wanted to go there): it's $$$$, but the meal I had was worth it.

Restaurants in hotels might be more accessible in general than stand-alones.


There are many Cactus Club Cafes, and I know we've all gone to one on Broadway with Rosaleen.

Dine Here has a listing of 456 restaurants:
 

alilou

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Sorry, I can't make dinner on the 19th :(
I completely forgot we're going to the theatre that night.
I'd love to see you again @Aussie Willy, and all the rest of the Vancouver FSUers, but it's not going to work for me this time :(
 

alilou

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Also alerting people here for the 18th in case it pans out -

@kalamalka @Rosaleen @jl22aries @manhn @Japanfan @Jojo @kwanfan1818 @genevieve @overedge @PeterG @nlloyd @victoriajh @jl @[email protected]

I know there are others - come out come out wherever you are!

Some restaurant suggestions
Bogarts - 121 Robson

Nuba - 146 E3rd

Sawasdee Thai - 4250 Main
 

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