Take A Closer Look – Polar Bears in Churchill

July 19, 2018 | Andrea Rempel

Churchill, Manitoba, Canada, is a town located on the edge of the Arctic that has a distinctive frontier town feel. It comes alive every time a new group of tourists comes to visit. The people are friendly, and the scenery is spectacular. The northern point of the Canadian Shield as the boreal forest ends and the Taiga begins is where this magical place resides, complete with snowshoe hares, ptarmigans, arctic foxes, snowy owls, and the majestic polar bear. Read More >

Advantages of Small Ship Sailing

July 12, 2018 | Sandra Jensen

There are many advantages of taking a cruise. You can experience the open sea, some of a country’s finest harbours, and learn about different cultures. You can sit at the Captain’s Table, you only need to unpack once, and you can choose to do as many or as few shore excursions as you like. The size of ship makes a difference as well, and here at The Great Canadian Travel Group, we know cruising.  Read More >

Salar de Uyuni – Bolivia Salt Flats

June 21, 2018 | Karen Pearson

Driving through Salar de Uyuni in the dark, I felt like I was at home on the prairies, driving down a gravel road in the middle of January. The salt looked exactly like snow in the glow of the headlights.

We climbed to the top of Isla Incahuasi to watch the sunrise, and as the sky began to brighten, it truly felt like we were on an island. In the dim pre-dawn light, the salt seemed like a lake surrounding us.  Read More >

A Travel Blog – By a Travel Agent

June 13, 2018 | Natalie Rozière Hébert

My glamorous life as a travel agent you say?  “Oh Nat can I fit in your suitcase”? And “oh please take me with you”?  And the famous; “ I want your job”.  Truth be told, you should be jealous!

Yes, I obviously love to travel and I have mastered the way to do it.  I only need a carry on for a 7 day trek (includes at least 1 pair of high heels), I know exactly how long it will take me to drive into the city to catch my 6am flight and I could probably do it with my eyes closed.  The Park n’ Fly staff all know me very well and I am always running into clients at the airport.  My suitcase remains packed other than taking the dirty clothes out, washing them and putting them back in.  Read More >

Farm Visit in Peru

June 01, 2018 | Karen Pearson

One of the many activities offered by Tambopata Eco Lodge is a visit to the nearby farm that supplies most of the produce served to guests and staff.

As our boat neared the dock, we were greeted by the farm’s friendly dogs. The first task was to feed the numerous free-range chickens. After that, our guides displayed most of the fruits grown on the farm and explained what each one was. Sampling many of the fruits was the best part of the tour. We tried papaya, plantains, lady-finger bananas, carambola, lemon, orange, grapefruit, and fish-eye peppers. Noni, a super-fruit related to the acąi which looks a bit like a spotted potato, was the least favourite; the consensus was that it smells and tastes like stinky feet or blue cheese.  Read More >

One of the Top Beaches in the World in… Scotland

May 14, 2018 | Margot Kalinowsky

Who would have thought that in 2012, Luskentyre Beach on the Isle of Harris in The Outer Hebrides was voted by The Sun Newspaper one of the “Top Beaches of the World”? One thinks of the Caribbean, Floridian, Thai, Fijian sand beaches as being the most beautiful and softest sand in the world.  However, in the Outer Hebrides there are hundreds of stunning deserted beaches to walk along. I have been lucky enough to have walked on many beaches around the world but beach walking in the Outer Hebrides was a totally different experience.  Read More >

It’s Good To Be A Queen

May 04, 2018 | GCT Bear

For this adventure I became Lady Amelia Bearheart. While in Scotland I visited the magnificent Stirling Castle, about an hour outside of Glasgow. Stirling castle is arguably the most impressive and historically important castle in Scotland. Seen for miles around, its imposing position has played a hugely strategic role throughout the centuries. Once home to Scottish Royals including Mary Queen of Scots.  The building has been subject to many bloody sieges and much political intrigue. Read More >

Taking the Road Less Travelled

April 10, 2018 | Andrea Rempel

Over-tourism is a concept that not many people realize is an epidemic to certain areas. Travel trends are changing – destinations, activities, even how one gets to and from the destination is changing. There is a lot of focus on studying the economic and ecological pros and cons surrounding certain areas, but we all still have so much to learn. What is attractive to adventurers one season (or even a few years), may be a forgotten place in the next season. And with offsetting our carbon footprint being ever-present in at least the backs of our minds, travelling anywhere is a little hard to swallow sometimes. And you may be thinking, why is a travel agency writing about over-tourism? Well, because tourism is our life. Travel is our life. And if the places we love are destroyed by over-tourism, that hurts our business, our love.

To bring home this point, the Philippines just announced that they are closing the popular tourist destination of Boracay for six-months because they are concerned about the sustained environmental damage to the beaches and clear blue water over the last 40 years, according to CNN. Last year alone, the island was visited by over 1.5 million tourists. Boracay is home to about 17,000 people, many of whom rely on these tourists for their livelihood. The island will be closed to tourists on April 26, 2018.

We are not saying that visiting these popular destinations needs to cease and desist, but maybe an exploration of the lesser travelled road will provide you with the quiet solitude you require to rejuvenate your body and soul and let you experience a different place than your fellow travellers.

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This is What a 104 Year Old Pipe Organ Sounds Like

March 21, 2018 | Andrea Rempel

Imagine yourself sitting amongst strangers on metal benches, that were surprisingly comfortable, waiting in anticipation for someone to come to the stage that is laid out before you in an open-air pavilion. The architecture that surrounds you is pristine, built in 1914, and looks like someone has taken great care in preserving the history of this beautiful venue. That’s because they have.

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Au Diable Vert – the Velovolant (flying bicycles)

March 13, 2018 | Karen Pearson

Imagine you are sitting in something that looks somewhat like the seat and roll cage from a race car, without the race car around it. Imagine you are hanging from a cable 15 feet above the ground. Imagine you begin to pedal, which propels you slowly through the trees, the ground falling away until you are 60 feet or more above the ground. Imagine that it is peaceful, the only sounds made by the breeze rustling the trees, some birds chirping, and the occasional squirrel squeaking. Imagine that all you can see are the treetops surrounding you and perhaps the next rider, depending on your location along the one-kilometre trail. Imagine that the only sensation is the gentle swaying of your pod and the occasional bump as it runs over a connection in the cable.

Now imagine you have vertigo or are scared of heights. That was me exactly. Read More >