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Southwest Ontario

I’ve been lucky enough to explore most corners of this vast country of ours. I’ve kicked around Quebec City, cycled around Calgary and even take a motorcycle sidecar tour of Halifax. I’ve also found more than a few places that I think deserve more attention than they get. Here’s a look at some of them. WOLFVILLE, NOVA SCOTIA With a tidy downtown that stretches only a couple blocks, this is a town you want to pick up and hug. There’s good local wine (try Luckett Vineyards on a nearby hillside with great views) and, of course, fresh seafood. I’ll probably ... continue reading →

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GRAND BEND, ONTARIO – I’ve spent many a day kicking down the streets of Lahaina on Maui. I’ve paraded down Duval Street in Key West and strolled the piers of California from San Diego to Santa Cruz. I’ve been lucky enough to hit the beaches of Thailand and Sardinia, of St. Lucia and Senegal. Yet somehow, despite some three decades living in Toronto, I’d missed spending any time in Grand Bend. It won’t happen again. Because there are few things I love more than a good beach town. And because Grand Bend might be the best beach town in Canada. ... continue reading →

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Jim Byers photo A boat leaving the pretty harbour in Port Dover. It’s a fabulous town that’s only 90 minutes from Toronto. ALONG THE LAKE ERIE SHORELINE OF ONTARIO – A kayak ride on what’s called the Canadian Amazon. A great story about one of Hollywood’s top actresses. And more fantastic food and wine. My final 24 hours driving the Lake Erie shoreline couldn’t have been any better. From top to bottom, it was extraordinary; with new sights and constant surprises that leave me very much wanting to go back. I started the final stretch of my road trip with ... continue reading →

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PORT STANLEY, ONTARIO – Call it a tale of two cities. Or maybe three. On the one hand, Port Stanley is your quintessential southern Ontario town. There are old-time B and B’s with giant porches and carpets of stunning flowers and quaint shops selling outdoor gear and fashionable women’s shoes and a cute coffee shop. There’s also a busy port, one of many lovely inlets on the north shore of Lake Erie, where brilliant white boats bob in dark waters surrounded by deep green hills. But there’s also a wild beach scene, with warm, gentle waters and endless sand and ... continue reading →

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JIM BYERS PHOTO The Lake Erie shore near Point Pelee is a peaceful oasis. ALONG ONTARIO’S LAKE ERIE SHORELINE – Great food. Wonderful people. Terrific wines. And great outdoor experiences. I really had no idea what I was in for when I told the tourism folks at Ontario’s Southwest that I wanted to do a trip along the Lake Erie shoreline. Truth be told, I’ve lived in Toronto for 33 years but had never seen the shore of this Great Lake except from an airplane. I know. I know. That’s terrible. But I think I’m like a lot of Toronto folks who ... continue reading →

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