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One way to beat the loonie: Stay in Canada

With the loonie dropping below 70 cents U.S. this week, Canadians are foregoing winter sun vacations and hunkering down for the season until winter ends or the exchange rate improves -- whichever comes first.

Even favourite Canadian pastimes like cross-border shopping and flying are on the decline as the price of American vacations, flights and goods could end up costing us 30% more with the current value of the dollar.

One solution? Don't leave Canada for your vacation.

“Our 2016 bookings already show that discerning Canadians recognize that they are going to get the most value from their travel budget by exploring Canada this year,” said Russell Markel, founder and president of B.C.’s Outer Shores Expeditions, in a statement. “The beautiful thing is, by wisely choosing to experience their own country this year, Canadians aren’t limiting their travel experiences.”

Here are five new experiences in Canada for 2016, sure to satisfy the travel itch and keep your bank account a little happier.

1. Be pampered... in downtown Toronto: The award-winning Spa My Blend by Clarins in the Ritz-Carlton, Toronto is offering a new package for men in the Gentlemen's Power Hour, which includes one of three express treatments: waxing, nail buff and file, anti-inflammatory eye treatment or therapeutic foot massage. Another option is the spa's popular Beer and Blokes package, a 2.5 hour service including hand treatment, facial, full body massage and a bottle of Mill Street organic lager. A couple's massage, facial or pedicure is highly recommended for partners who wish to join their gents for an afternoon of pampering. See ritzcarlton.com/toronto for a full spa menu.

2. Go on a cruise... on Canada's west coast: Outer Shores Expeditions offers cruising packages aboard a classic wooden schooner, with destinations including Pacific Rim National Park, Haida Gwaii Archipelago, Gulf Islands National Park and the Great Bear Rainforest. On select sailings, a photographer, archaeologist or ecologist will be aboard to offer insights to passengers. Rates for six-day, five-night cruises around the Pacific Rim National Park start at $2,995. See outershores.ca for more details and cruise options.

3. See the stars... in Jasper National Park: Alberta's Jasper National Park is one of the world's largest Dark Sky Preserves and a top place in Canada to star gaze and see the Northern Lights. Fairmont Hotels & Resorts is offering a new travel experience at the Jasper Park Lodge, where guests join experts at the Jasper Planetarium for an indoor, nighttime tour of the Rockies in the Planetarium's state-of-the-art domed theatre before drifting off to sleep in a Fairmont room. Rates start at $918 for two nights for two people. See fairmont.com/jasper for more information.

4. Get your festival on... in Montreal: Montreal is a city of festivals, with the Montreal en Lumiere festival, Igloofest, Nuit Blanche, International Jazz Festival, Just for Laughs comedy festival and Osheaga music festival all slated to take place once again this year. New is the Passeport MTL Culture pass, which gives visitors 24 or 72-hour access to the top festivals, museums and music events in Montreal, plus offers deals on tickets and public transit. See tourisme-montreal.org for full details.

5. Take a tea break... in Winnipeg: Embrace winter on the Prairies with the Fairmont Winnipeg's new F-scapes winter package. A guide will escort guests on a skate down the Forks River Trail, followed by a warm up in the thermal pools at Thermëa Spa. Back at the hotel, enjoy a tea tasting with the Fairmont Winnipeg's certified tea sommelier and discover how winter blends like spiced apple cider and peppermint hot chocolate are created. Guests receive two boxes of tea to take home. Rates start at $369 per night for two people. See fairmont.com/winnipeg for more information.

 

 

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Toronto Real Estate Board - IDX Last Updated: 8/20/2017 6:32:21 AM