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Holland

It’s a tough act to balance. Canadian destinations and cities around the world want tourists to come and fill the coffers of local hotels and businesses. But sometimes it’s too much. If you’ve been following the news, you might have seen protests in Barcelona, where locals recently protested the annual onslaught of tourists from Britain and other countries, who party all night in Las Ramblas after jetting in on cheap flights from the likes of Ryanair with money in their pockets. Venice also has complained, as has Iceland. Today I read a story about similar sentiments in beautiful Amsterdam, where ... continue reading →

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ST. MAARTEN/ST. MARTIN – Fine, flavoured rum. Sweet-smelling local soaps. And a dreamy beach resort with one of the best massages I’ve ever had. I had the good luck to spend roughly 24 hours in St. Maarten (and an hour or so on the French side, St. Martin) following my Caribbean cruise with Sea Dream Yacht Club. And found a lot to like. We started our day (my wife was with me, which is always great) in Marigot on the French side, where we strolled through the waterfront markets and bought some trinkets to take . home. It feels a ... continue reading →

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Year after year, Europe tops the charts of travellers from around the world. It seems we just can’t get enough of classic European cities such as London and Paris, not to mention Amsterdam, Barcelona, Rome, Zurich, Berlin and many others. With that in mind, the folks at TD Canada and Aeroplan and I are holding a Twitter chat about Europe on Wednesday, April 29 at 1 p.m. EST. Be sure to tune in (I’m at @jimbyerstravel on Twitter) and look for the #TDAeroplan hashtag. I’ll be chiming in with what I hope are useful tips and advice about using your ... continue reading →

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The other day I talked about my favourite Canadian destinations and travel bits for 2014. Here are some thoughts (okay, a LOT of thoughts) about the U.S. and a couple Caribbean and European spots I visited during the year. Most surprising U.S. destination: Apalachicola, Florida. A super-relaxed, fun town in a quiet section of the Florida panhandle with just the right mix of old-time charm and trendy, new shops. A very good brewpub, too. Most wonderful host: The delightful Anthony Hunte of Hunte’s Gardens in Barbados. A lovely man, great conversationalist and incredible gardener. His garden is always the highlight ... continue reading →

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BANFF NATIONAL PARK, ALBERTA – I’m standing in a pretty mountain bowl at Sunshine Meadows with small hills all around dotted with white and yellow flowers. The sky is that famous shade of Alberta blue and the deep grey hills are patchy with winter’s leftover snow. Our guide, Thalia Christou with White Mountain Adventures, points out the yellow Alpine Butter Cups and the western anemones, which look like yellow and white crocuses but grow interesting, fuzzy bits to stay warm. They look like they’ve grown hair in summer, causing Christou to refer to them as “hippie hair flowers.” We spot ... continue reading →

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