Saint Patrick’s Day brings Ireland and all things Irish to a lot of people’s minds. And, those of us lucky enough to be Irish or are of Irish descent, particularly so!
My ancestors on both sides of my family emigrated to Canada from Ireland back in the mid to late 1800s. My maternal Grandmother’s family home in County Antrim is a special place to me from a genealogical standpoint, nestled as it is at the foot of nearby Mt. Slemish. It’s where my Grandma Hannah was born and raised, and is the land she left behind when she left for Canada. But, I discovered, it was also a very significant place for Saint Patrick. Read More >
There are so many things that we miss when it comes to travel, such as exploring new places, trying new things and meeting new people. What I miss the most, are those extremely peaceful moments where you can just take it all in. Whether you are enjoying a beautiful hike, or standing on the Antarctic Peninsula surrounded by penguins, those moments that you take to look around and just breath. Examine the flora, count the penguins or search the beauty in each unique iceberg.
Shortly before the pandemic began, I decided to apply for the 200-hour yoga teacher’s training, mainly to deepen my own personal practice. I had been practicing yoga for over 12 years and found it to be a huge part of my life, helping to keep me grounded and, most importantly, positive. Towards the end of 2020, I had completed the 200-hour teacher’s course. This accomplishment helped me immensely, especially on those days when it was hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. After spending the first year voluntarily teaching online, I am now teaching one class per week and loving it!
My passion for yoga along with over 25 years in travel has led to my interest to ‘Wellness Travel.’ There are several fantastic options, from hiking in the rainforest to be one with nature, joining a yoga and meditation retreat or experiencing a culinary and spa package. Taking care of yourself should be important, as we need to focus on what makes us happy and complete. It’s been an emotional and trying two years, and I now feel that it is time to rebuild ourselves, our lifestyles, our happiness!
Please contact our office for more ideas on wellness travel, and make sure that you take care of you!
Canada’s three most well-known groundhog weather predictors and their cousin south of the American border are at loggerheads this Groundhog Day.
Nova Scotia’s celebrity groundhog, Shubenacadie Sam, and Quebec’s Fred la Marmotte both predicted a long, cold winter ahead, while Ontario’s Wiarton Willie claimed an early spring is on the way. The United States’ Punxsutawney Phil agreed with Sam and Fred, heralding six more weeks of winter.
Our modern Groundhog Day may have links to ancient beliefs of the dividing day between winter and spring, with February 2nd landing midway between the winter solstice and the spring equinox.
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When you think of Northern Lights something mysterious and wondrous comes to mind.
Have you ever wondered how those bright dancing lights are created? They are actually collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the earth’s atmosphere. In the northern hemisphere, they are called Aurora Borealis; in the southern hemisphere, Aurora Australis.
The colours can appear as green or pink, but have also appeared as shades of red, yellow, green, blue and violet. They can look like patches in the sky, scattered clouds, light streamers, arcs and rippling curtains. But, I’m sure we can all agree, no matter what colour they are or what shape they take, they will always be a magical sight!
We feature several Northern Lights tours on our website for you to choose from, or we can customize a tour for you if you don’t see one that suits you.
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Coming to the end of 2021, another difficult year for travel, I think back over my time in the industry. More than 20 years ago I went to college to become a travel agent because, well, I loved to travel. The job was presented as hard work for little pay; but the idea of learning about and perhaps experiencing the world outweighed the drawbacks. I was enchanted by the excitement of discovering exotic destinations, tasting different foods, and experiencing traditions unlike my own.
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Republishing this blog from 2020 with the revision to include that 2021 was similar to 2020 but was more of a “Stink, Stank, Stuck” kind of year! It seemed like a lot of the year we were spinning our wheels, stuck in a rut of continuing restrictions, lifting of restrictions, new restrictions…..
I think we can all agree, 2020, in the words of the Grinch, “Stink, Stank, Stunk”!
Even though this year we can’t get together in large groups with family and friends, as we usually would be for December festivities, there is still much to be thankful for and to celebrate.
December is truly a month-long time of celebrations, spanning many religions and beliefs. So, on this 1st day of the month, Happy December! And no matter what holiday traditions you celebrate in your household, may you stay healthy and safe.
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This Remembrance Day we’d like to honour members of our own families and friends who have served during war time and in regular military service.
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Today, 30 September, 2021 marks the first official National Day for Truth and Reconciliation here in Canada.
It’s not a “holiday”, at least it shouldn’t be seen as one, even if it is a day off work for some. It is meant to be a day of learning, a day of listening, a day of trying to understand Canada’s colonial and settler history and the many injustices done in the name of a “civilized” society. And the systematic injustices that are still happening.
For me it’s a sad day as I think of all the children who lost their lives in Indian Residential Schools and lay in unmarked graves across our country. All the children who survived residential schools but whose lives were irreparably damaged. All the parents who had their children torn away from them and their hearts broken. All the families whose beloved children, grandchildren, sisters, brothers, nieces and nephews were taken away by force. Some to return, often changed into strangers, some never to return.
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It is my passion to plan holidays, for myself as well as my clientele. In 2006 that started with a plan to visit Europe while attended a FIFA World Cup soccer match in Hamburg. Match tickets were not that easy to get. They were done on a lottery draw basis, so we picked 3 options in Hamburg and proceeded to plan our vacation around those matches “just in case” we were lucky enough to get tickets.
As it turned out we did get tickets but we didn’t receive confirmation of the game until well into our vacation, only 24 hours prior to the match. We had just checked into our hotel in Copenhagen when the email came confirming the game for the very next day. This meant we had to cut our time in Copenhagen short, but this was the experience of a lifetime! We were to see Czech Republic vs Italy. Italy would then proceed to win the World Cup that year. Amazing experience and great start to our dreams of travelling for Rugby, which is really our passion.
These dreams took root quickly as in 2007 the Rugby Union World Cup was to be held in France with some games in the UK. We are staunch All Blacks fans(the national team of New Zealand). Taking a good look at the schedule we saw that in 2007 one of the quarter finals was to take place in Cardiff, Wales. With our calculations, the All Blacks should qualify for that game, so we took our chances and put our names in for that game. As with the FIFA World Cup, tickets did not get confirmed until later, but at least it was earlier than 24 hours prior and we could make our travel plans a little easier.
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It might seem a bit odd for us to be talking to you about sun, sand and surf holidays when most of North America is suffering through extreme heatwaves. But, turn your mind back to those days in January and February, when the wind was howling, the air brisk and you were shovelling snow, not sand. Remember how much you wished you could be on a beach somewhere or on the deck of a cruise ship, sipping a cocktail and watching the world go by?
A recent survey of over 4,000 Canadian “snowbirds” showed that 91% intend to head south this winter, to the southern states in the US, Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean. 83% plan to be away at least 3 months.
Now is the time to be putting your winter holiday vacation plans into place. Travel is re-opening, slowly but surely. The resorts and hotels that are open, the cruises that are setting sail and flights that are taking off to whisk you away, are rapidly selling out for winter 2021-22. This season there will be much more demand than there is supply, especially as a number of tourism suppliers have ceased operations.
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