canada with teenagers

Old May 9th, 2007, 11:40 AM
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canada with teenagers

We would like a summer vacation in Canada for a week with 17 and 19 year old girls. We like outdoor activities, shopping, theatr and sightseeing. Where do you suggest? We have been to Vancouver and Victoria. Thought about Montreal and Quebec City?
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Old May 9th, 2007, 01:08 PM
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Well, in the same breath you covered about 3,000 miles between Vancouver and Quebec! As a US citizen, Canada is my all-time favorite vacation spot (even if the current exchange rate is anemic and the Canadian government foolishly recently did away with the visitor GST rebate program). May I suggst that you try to narrow where you might like to visit, say, down to a province? Canada has oodles of places to do the activities you describe.
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Old May 9th, 2007, 03:16 PM
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Yes, as noted by stringer, "oodles" of potential places. Starting west, as you've done the coast, there are the Rocky Mountain National Parks - some of the most spectacular scenery in the world, great for outdoor activities and sightseeing, and although I haven't been in Banff for quite a few years, I'm sure you could find shopping and theatre somewhere in this huge area. You would probably fly into Calgary, a city with lots of amenities and could also shop there. An interesting side trip is east of Calgary to the Alberta "badlands" with Dinosaur Provincial Park and the Tyrell Museum of Paleontology.

Montreal and Quebec City give you a nice "taste" of French culture. Montreal also offers big city amenities, while Quebec's Old Walled section is full of historic charm. Up the St. Lawrence River from Quebec City is the picturesque Charlevoix region and the Saguenay - with very good whale-watching opportunities.

Toronto has lots to do, and could easily do a side trip to Niagara 1 1/2 hours away. Algonquin Provincial Park 2 1/2 hours north is very popular with outdoor enthusiasts - short and long nature/hiking trails, lots of wildlife, wilderness scenery.

The east coast has a special charm, less populated, small seaside towns and fishing villages, some "artsy" villages for shopping, some spectacular coastal scenery (e.g. The Cabot Trail and Cape Breton Highlands National Park.
Old May 9th, 2007, 05:46 PM
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How smart are the girls?

Montreal is the city for smart people -- Toronto the city for mall rats, although the smart ones like it, too.

If utdoor" means long walks in a city,. both Monteal and Toronto are fine places. Stores, old histporiacl places, parks, waterfront, live theatre, art cgalleries, giant malls.

The big difference is that Montreal is French -- no problem if you only speak English -- and that makes in very, very different from anywhere near home in the USA.

Montreal has a semi-mountain in the middle of town that's a giant park.

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Old May 10th, 2007, 08:38 PM
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Being a Canadian who has lived in western canada but grew up in Eastern Canada, I think your girls will love Montreal and Quebec City. Montreal is full of shopping, touristy things and culture. Quebec city is a little like paris~stay at the Chateau Frontenac if it is in the budget. It is on the st. lawrence river and there is a board walk right by the hotel. In Q. city you have lots of artists out and lots of history with the walled city etc.

You must take a horse and buggy ride around old quebec. It is pricey but fun.

In Montreal I would suggest a place called the Labryinith. It is a giant inside maze. My daughter loved it, but it was warm inside and really gave you a workout.It is down on the water by the imax theater.

If you don't want to drive from Montreal to Quebec city you can take Via Rail. I remember it to be about a 2 hr ride. You actually do not need a car for either city if you stay centrally.

Bon Voyage!
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Old May 15th, 2007, 08:41 AM
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As a Toronto native, I can assure you your girls will love Toronto. Teens love to cruise Queen Street West-lots of interesting, funky stores for many blocks geared to teens and twenties. A 10 minute ferry trip takes you to the Toronto Islands where you can walk, rent a bike or swim if you are brave, and take a break from the city. Lots of theatres large and small. Montreal and Quebec City are also favourites of mine.
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Old May 15th, 2007, 11:47 AM
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The more I think about it, the more I too, probably "would like a summer vacation in Canada for a week with 17 and 19 year old girls." Most anybody probably would.

Nowthen, in all seriousness, I think that your point of origin would help considerably toward making a suggestion as to your Canadian destination.

If you live in/near the center of the continent, then a trip toward the Atlantic ocean provinces would seem of interest.

If you live on/near the eastern seaboard, then perhaps an inland destination might offer the best contrast.

If you live toward the western half of the U.S., then perhaps Edmonton/northern Alberta/Cdn. Rockies would be convenient and unique.

Your daughters (I assume) would be quite content with Toronto shopping, with the mall in Edmonton, and with the various shopping areas in Montreal.

Quebec (city) is unique, and interesting, and worth 2 days if you are talking a trip of 7 day duration. I like the drive from Montreal to Q.C. along the St. Lawrence.

More details (and even vibes) from you would help us to offer personalized suggestions.

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Old May 15th, 2007, 12:51 PM
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I too live in Calgary and grew up in Ontario. My vote echoes some of the same sentiments above - go to Quebec!

I believe that Montreal and Quebec City have such great energy and offer a truly unique holiday in Canada. The cities are cosmopolitan (more so than Calgary IMHO), food and culture abound - it's almost like being in Europe. Besides - the shopping there is definitely better than in Calgary!

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Old May 17th, 2007, 11:47 AM
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Thanks for the insight. We are leaning toward Montreal and Quebec City.
Suggestions about where to stay on a moderate budget and things to do would be most helpful.
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Old May 17th, 2007, 12:03 PM
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As I wrote to another poster:

If you prefer outdoor adventures, go with Ottawa/Gatineau. Here are some activities

Aerial Parks and cave visit:



Ottawa tourism website:

If you prefer big city stuff, go with Montreal.

Biodome and insectarium:

Amusement Park (with the highest double wooden roller coaster in the world "Le Monstre"):

Montreal's Old Port Quays (with a very funny labyrinth and Segway's rentals):

And everything else you can think of about a world-size city.

Tourism Montreal:

And the best of all: Both cities are within 2 hours drive if you can't decide!

Have fun!
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