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U.S. travel

To somewhat borrow a phrase from the band Simple Minds, “Don’t You Forget About Us.” It has often seemed to me that Americans forget about the impact Canadians have on their economy when it comes to tourism and travel. We’re easily their biggest market, but the Americans often get all jazzed and doe-eyed thinking about markets like China and Russia and Brazil and forget about those of us up here in Canada. I understand how that can be. I mean, I’m often critical of Canadian tourism for falling in love with the same countries and getting all exotic and in ... continue reading →

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WANDERING THE NAPA VALLEY IN CALIFORNIA – I often tell folks in Canada that I vastly prefer Sonoma Valley to Napa Valley when it comes to wine tasting and generally tooling around. But I think I have to them back on pretty even ground. I spent a lovely day in Sonoma a week or so ago. We then drove over to Napa for a night at the Napa Valley Marriott Hotel and Spa, which doesn’t look like a chain hotel. There are lovely flowers and a really nice-looking, free-form pool in a courtyard surrounded by large trees. They had an ... continue reading →

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SONOMA, CALIFORNIA – It started out weak, but ended strong. I was in Sonoma County, California the other day for a far-too-brief visit to the town of Sonoma and then to check out a couple wineries. After a short stop for lunch at a bakery/sandwich place in the pretty town of Sonoma, with its old-time square and sturdy City Hall, we headed up the road to check out the Eric Ross Winery. Of course, I was driving my Dad’s new Hyundai and the GPS took us on the most circuitous route imaginable; up and over steep hills and through canyons ... continue reading →

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Golf. Beautiful deserts. Spas. Cactus. Pretty good Mexican food. Those are some of the standard cliches you hear about Arizona. And with good reason. The golf is excellent, the desert landscape haunting and lovely, the spas to-notch, the cactus ever-present and the Mexican food to die for. 53_Vineyard-Wine_Photo Credit AOT But there’s so much more to the Grand Canyon State than that. Such as olive oils. Fresh citrus and tons of other produce, including organic honey. Great shopping in cities such as Scottsdale. And very good wine. We here in Canada may think of low-lying cities like Phoenix and wonder ... continue reading →

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MYRTLE BEACH, SOUTH CAROLINA – I’ve got a good round of golf going but I’ve left myself short on my approach shot. I line up my putt for a 20-footer that I need to make to save par. I really need to concentrate, but the loudspeaker is pounding out Jimmy Buffett’s “Boat Drinks” and the Hawaiian waterfall is rumbling and my pale blue golf ball is stuck up against a fake rock. Earlier in the day I had teed it up at Tidewater Golf Club in North Myrtle Beach, a tremendous layout with undulating greens that resemble the figure of ... continue reading →

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