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U.S.A.

Have Canadians thrown off our love affair with the U.S. in favour of exotic Asia? A new report from hotels.com suggests that could be the case. The study of bookings made by Canadians on their site in 2016 found that Los Angeles dropped from the 8th most popular international destination in 2015 all the way down to 20th, while Washington D.C. dropped from number 19 in 2015 to 35th last year. Some U.S. cities still did extremely well. New York was number one and Las Vegas was number two overall for bookings by Canadians, while Orlando was fifth. (The other ... continue reading →

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THIS ITEM ORIGINALLY APPEARED ON POSTMEDIA AND SUN MEDIA WEBSITES ACROSS CANADA JUPITER, FLORIDA – I’ve seen plenty of turtles in my day. But this is the first time I’ve raced one. I’m on a stand-up paddleboard tour of the Jupiter Harbour area, just south of the brilliant blue Loxahatchee River. We’ve just turned the corner around a low-lying island when I spot a turtle below me in the water, perhaps one meter to my left. I’m excited to see one in its natural environment, so I move my paddle to the right side of my board and try to ... continue reading →

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FORT LAUDERDALE – I wasn’t sure about this. I generally trust tourism board folks when they suggest things for me to do in their area. After all, they’re the experts. Still, as a long-time lover of Hawai’i and Polynesian culture, I was a bit skeptical when the folks at Fort Lauderdale’s tourism office hooked me up with dinner, drinks and a show at a place called Mai-Kai Restaurant, a short drive from the city’s famous beaches. Having seen some pretty lame Hawaiian dancing in various parts of the world and having sampled a few too many too-sweet Mai Tai’s that ... continue reading →

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THIS STORY ORIGINALLY APPEARED JAN. 18 ON POSTMEDIA AND SUN MEDIA WEBSITES ACROSS CANADA LOS ANGELES – I’ve been given a tough assignment by the tourism folks in Los Angeles; tour the city and eat at places that even A-list celebs have trouble getting into. Sip a glass of wine or two with your meal. Stay at a couple of glam hotels. Tour the Grammy Museum in advance of next month’s Grammy Music Awards and the Academy Awards. Take the Warner Bros. Studio VIP Tour. Eat and drink some more. I can drink from $200 bottles of wine and nibble ... continue reading →

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So this is random. We took our kids and their significant others to see the play Come From Away in Toronto yesterday. We all loved it; great acting, wonderful writing and good music (especially the live band at the end). It’s such a lovely, affirming story about how folks in tiny Gander, Newfoundland took in folks whose planes were forced to land there on 9/11. A horrible day, but one filled with much kindness; especially in this little town where folks opened their homes (and showers) to total strangers and, as Newfoundland folks would do, thought nothing of it. I’ve ... continue reading →

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