Trip suggestions please

Apr 28th, 2010, 04:56 AM
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Join Date: Apr 2010
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Trip suggestions please

I am visiting Canada from the UK . I would like to experience activity trips in Ontario and Quebec in June and July, and BC in August (train ticket purchased). Has anyone got any suggestions for good, fun outdoor activity locations?

I am mid 50s, very active and single - therefore not too keen in family oriented activities (always feel left out of these) and would prefer to be in a mixed environment (families, couples, singles).

As I am here (Toronto at the moment) for an extended 5 month period I am looking for activities that won't stretch the budget. I would rather fly or use the train, rather than drive.
ZakW is offline  
Apr 28th, 2010, 05:29 AM
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My first thought is the Bruce Trail Hiking club.
The Bruce trail is a well loved, and beautiful trail running from Niagara to Tobermory. The club has different walks in different areas most weekends.

If you go to I see they have free urban walks, some with other activities as well.

If you google Toronto hiking clubs, it turns up more hiking and outdoor choices.

That will get you started in the Toronto area..
good luck and enjoy your stay here.
kodi is offline  
Apr 28th, 2010, 10:57 AM
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If you enjoy the theatre, consider the Stratford Festival(Stratford) and the Shaw Festival in Niagara on the Lake... in addition there is a huge Niagara Wine Region, with bike tours, the natural part of Niagara Falls, the gorge, JetBoats and walking trails... all of these available via rail or bus... the wine region in the summer features Jazz, Food, and outdoors... hope this helps
garyt22 is offline  
Apr 28th, 2010, 12:13 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
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Niagara Wine Country was my first thought too. It's beautiful. Niagara-on-the-Lake has bicycle tours of the wineries. Book a bed and breakfast so you have a place to rest your head should you end up a little tipsy.

Montreal and Quebec City are both wonderful cities. Delicious food. Both have old towns where you can just wander into little boutiques and galleries and cafes.

If you like the outdoors, Algonquin Park is beautiful. You're likely to see Canadian wildlife. Lots of flora too. Take a camera.

And Niagara Falls, while definitely touristy, is still pretty magnificent.
clgarbas is offline  
Apr 28th, 2010, 02:20 PM
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Bruce Trail is a good suggestion; non-members can go on the bus trips out of town for a couple of bucks more than members; usually in the summer they have a hike on the Toronto islands on Thursday nights. Hikes are free in the city.

Toronto Field Naturalists have free walks/hikes in the city, too.

So does the Lost Rivers group:

Heritage Toronto offers free walks starting in May:

NOW Magazine is free on Thursdays and has a Daily Events section.

Toronto Swing Dance Society is a group that just likes to dance - it's not a singles club - you don't need a partner and there's a lesson at every dance - most of us are in your age group - usually a dance twice a month on Fridays -'s $10 for non-members.
Morningglory47 is offline  
Apr 29th, 2010, 03:36 AM
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Canada Day (July 1) in Ottawa might be worth a train trip for you.

Whatever your plans, plan to stay OUT of a big chunk of downtown Toronto on June 26 and 27th when the G20 are meeting. The security area keeps getting bigger and the plans more complicated. Don't plan any walks in Trinity Bellwoods Park. ....
Morningglory47 is offline  
Apr 29th, 2010, 02:45 PM
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Well, thank you so much all for some great responses. I will look into all of your suggestions, particularly the Bruce Trail club and the winery tours in Niagra on the Lake - I like cycling and wine. Good tips about the G20 and Ottawa on Canada Day.

Morningglory47 - I enjoy dancing, particularly salsa and modern jive so I may well pop along one of these Fridays.
ZakW is offline  
Apr 29th, 2010, 05:09 PM
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If you like cycling, the province of Quebec has some of the most extensive bicycling trails in the world. just Google the Route Verte. Montreal is a wonderful city for biking, with bike only trails cris-crossing the city. The Lachine Canal route is perhaps the most popular, but you could spend a week just exploring the city by bike. Both Montreal and Quebec City are great walking cities, and Quebec City is quite unique in North America. There is also a very nice wine route that meanders thru some beautiful countryside just outside Montreal.
zootsi is offline  
Apr 30th, 2010, 04:25 AM
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Many thanks zootsi. Montreal is on my agenda and will deifitely do the city cycle and wine route there. Any suggestions for accommodation?
ZakW is offline  
Apr 30th, 2010, 06:18 AM
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I would think that a b&b would be the most interesting accommodation for someone traveling alone. Lots of interesting breakfast conversation with great travel tips. There are dozens of nice, inexpensive b&b's in the plateau area near the bike trail that runs thru Parc Lafontaine. Here are a few we've stayed at, but there are many more.
Au Gîte Le Rayon Vert
B&B Maison Saint Louis
Pierre et Dominique Bed & Breakfast
Check out the BBcanada website.
zootsi is offline  
Apr 30th, 2010, 09:14 AM
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Here's a salsa site and this practice spot is popular:

Hope you can make it to TSDS one Friday night - I'm usually on the door but not on May 14. Be sure and say hi.
Morningglory47 is offline  
May 3rd, 2010, 05:25 AM
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Many thanks Morningglory47, if I make it along I'll be sure to say hello.

Zootsi- thanks for the B&B suggestions. I'll be making some arrangements today.
ZakW is offline  
May 4th, 2010, 05:29 AM
Join Date: May 2010
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For bicycling in Ontario check out the new Bicycle Ontario web site You can bicycle in may different locations or have a look at the Events Calendar for organized rides including the Bike Train from Toronto. Bike rentals are available in Toronto and Niagara.
Bikeon is offline  
May 14th, 2010, 04:50 AM
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ZakW - Definitely consider visiting Stratford - it's an easy train trip from Toronto and has really excellent & varied theatre, great dining options, and lots of outdoor activities as well. There's a shop that rents bikes, good hiking trails, and lots of lovely gardens.

Here's a page with some of the things to do:
G_Hopper is offline  
May 15th, 2010, 12:55 PM
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We traveled in British Columbia and Alberta using Canada's VIA Rail ( wide range of prices and promotions available)and the wonderful ferry system.

Here's what we did:

Vancouver to Jasper by train:

Jasper to Price Rupert by train:

Prince Rupert to Vancouver using ferries--an economical way to see the Inside Passage:

You might want to check other stories on my website for ideas for Ontario and Quebec.
LindaFasteson is offline  
May 17th, 2010, 11:24 AM
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I just saw that someone already suggested one of the first things that came to my mind: the Toronto Field Naturalists but here's a bit more information on them. . They have monthly meetings Sept through May with interesting experts speaking on nature-related topics. They also offer frequent walks with the starting points usually accessible by public transit. Non-members can join in, although members are provided with additional services and information. I think you'll find a varied mix of people with lots of singles in your age group.

I'll reinforce some of the other suggestions too: Stratford is a favourite of mine for daytrips or an evening of theatre and dinner (I live within easy driving distance) and Niagara wine country is one of our favourite weekend getaways. Ottawa is very nice for 2 or 3 days. If getting into some more natural settings is of interest, Algonquin Park a couple hours north is lovely - lakes, forests, rugged hills, and offers a very nice Visitors Centre with excellent displays as well as a wide selection of hiking and nature trails. They do offer organized activities, but these would attract a lot of families. Without a car though I'm not sure how easy it is to get there or get around once there. Assuming you don't want to either camp or stay in a pricey resort, there are more reasonable accommodation choices just outside the park.
mat54 is offline  
May 17th, 2010, 12:17 PM
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If you're heading up to Ottawa, go rafting! There's tons of places up there that offer it. And if you're headed west, Calgary Stampede is always fun. Be sure to spend a few days in Banff and Canmore, you might not want to leave. Good trails through the Kicking Horse, some of the best actually. And a must do is surfing in Tofino if you're up to it. Canada has so much to offer and each province is different from the others. Head east in the fall, Cabot trail in October is one of the most beautiful places in the world.
canadian8bacon is offline  
May 27th, 2010, 09:03 AM
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If you are planning to go from Toronto to Quebec (Montreal) at some point, I would suggest travelling by VIA rail with potential stops in Kingston and Ottawa.

KINGSTON is small city at the mouth of the St. Lawrence River that is a 2-hour train ride east of Toronto. Find a hotel or B&B in the charming downtown/waterfront area.
From there, you could visit Wolfe Island (, part of the Thousand Islands) which is only a short (and FREE) ferry ride away, and offers a scenic, rural environment that is best experienced by bicycle IMO. Canoeing/kayaking along the waterfront would be great too. There are some nearby yacht clubs where I'm sure you could rent water equipment. From downtown Kingston, you could also bike/walk over the bridge to Fort Henry (, which is historically very significant to Canada. If you want to slow down for an evening, pick a restaurant, ANY restaurant... I've heard that Kingston has the most restaurants per capita in Canada! There are always great shows happening at the Grand Theatre located downtown, and some interesting museums, including Google "Kingston tourism" for many more ideas.

From Kingston you could again take VIA rail to OTTAWA (about 2 hours). For Ottawa, I definitely second the above suggestions to go rafting ( and to visit on Canada Day! The city is packed on Canada Day, but in a great way. The atmosphere is friendly and celebratory, and there are tons of free activities on Parliament Hill and in nearby parks.

You are lucky to be able to experience so much of Canada in this trip! It is a beautiful country and I hope you enjoy it all.
sjb9 is offline  

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