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That more Americans are visiting Toronto is good news. The fact they’re staying longer and spending more is even better. Tourism Toronto released its 2015 visitation numbers today, showing a five per cent rise in overnight visits and a 10 per cent hike in U.S. numbers. Overall, Toronto attracted 14.03 million overnight visits last year, the first time they’ve gone over the 14 million mark. The city’s previous best was in 2014, with 13,365,800 overnight visits. Montreal earlier this month announced they attracted 9.6 million visitors last year, while Vancouver said they brought in 9.4 million folks. Numbers from the ... continue reading →

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Not only do they have the number one pick in today’s NHL draft, almost certainly Connor McDavid, but the folks in Edmonton also can lay claim to living in a city that’s definitely on the rise. I’ve been in town a few times in the past few years and have been happy to see so many new developments to go along with old favourites. Here are some photos that show a city that is most definitely moving up. Now let’s see how the NHL Oilers can do! The Art Gallery of Alberta is a great symbol of the renaissance of ... continue reading →

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I’ve been saying for years now that the federal government in Ottawa doesn’t understand tourism and doesn’t give it the support it should. Now I see that MP Elizabeth May and TV comedian/pundit Rick Mercer are saying the same thing. Here’s my Globe and Mail blog from Friday, Feb. 20…. http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/travel/travel-news/when-will-the-government-give-tourism-the-respect-it-deserves/article23115880/

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Jim Byers photo Pull up a Muskoka chair at the Killarney Mountain Lodge and watch the boats go by in the channel. KILLARNEY, ONTARIO – Low-key, country charm and a dash of city glam. Folks heading to fabulous Killarney, Ontario are lucky to have several places to stay. I tested out two outstanding – and very different – properties during my visit. Killarney Mountain Lodge is a low-rise, old-fashioned kind of country spot with a big, screened-in porch, a central unit with several rooms and a series of small, wooden cottages spread over acres of grass and lovingly tended, colourful ... continue reading →

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It’s a touch late for booking that trip to Dublin or Galway (or anywhere else in Ireland) for St. Patrick’s Day. On the other hand, there are great locations right here in North America to go green come Monday. I can’t think of many better places than St. John’s, Newfoundland, which seems more Irish to me than parts of Ireland. They’ll be having a grand old time in town on Monday, for sure. Also awesome would be Cape Breton or Halifax in Nova Scotia, where you’ll find a serious Irish influence and great dancing and music. Of course, you could always ... continue reading →

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