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Top 14 Winter Destinations for Canadians

Photo credit: EpicStockMedia via Shutterstock

Compiled, curated, and edited by Matt Gibson and Andrea Mueller || Photo credit: EpicStockMedia via Shutterstock

The Most Important Two Weeks of the Year


The two-weeks that you escape runny noses, nosey bosses, and noisy rush-hour traffic are precious. Nobody wants to squander their vacation in a destination that is anything less than amazing.

FlightNetwork.com understands that, which is why we wanted to find a way to provide our readers with a list of destinations guaranteed to result in a fantastic trip. Choosing the best destinations for Canadians is a subjective decision that depends heavily on personal choice.

We wanted to be absolutely positive that the destinations on this list would provide most Canadians with great experiences.  To ensure the quality of the destinations, we took a vote using the best possible voting method; our voters were thousands of Canadian winter vacationers, and they voted with their vacations.

We compiled the flight statistics for the top 14 destinations where Canadians traveled in winters past, and used them to create this list of the Top 14 Winter Destinations for Canadians in 2014.

They are listed from least to most popular.

The List

(click on the destination to jump to its profile)

14. Puerto Vallarta &
Riviera Nayarit

13. New York City
12. Paris
11. Riviera Maya
10. London
9. Fort Myers
8. Miami
7. San Francisco
6. Tampa
5. Phoenix
4. Los Angeles
3. Orlando
2. Las Vegas
1. Fort Lauderdale


 

Puerto Vallarta and the neighbouring Riviera Nayarit offer tourists a combination of traditional Mexican flavour with an edgier side for those who want an authentic Mexican experience, which brought just under one percent of international Canadian air travelers there last winter.

One of the most popular activities in the city is promenading on the Malecón, a 6,000 ft. pedestrian sea walk that is a cultural hub with artwork by local artisans, street performers, and award winning restaurants and bars.Puerto Vallarta is family friendly during the day and comes alive at night. Many choose to simply stroll along the cobbled streets of the city for the old world romantic feel and soak up the warmth of the people, the surroundings, and the culture of this wonderful Mexican city.

Just north of the city is the Riviera Nayarit, an idyllic strip of coastline lined small tourist towns with facilities ranging from ritzy, to authentic, to bohemian. The area is known for it’s authentic Mexican flavour, top-notch surfing, and amazing outdoors activities that include boat cruises, whale watching, snorkeling, fishing, ziplining, hiking, and enjoying fresh seafood and drinks at tables on the sand. The area is a favourite of budget-conscious Canadian snowbirds because of its exotic offerings and low prices.

There are also many day trips in the area surrounding Puerto Vallarta. Eco-friendly, historic, and cultural experiences are all available. The remote village of Coamihata located in the nearby mountains offers visitors the opportunity to experience the way the local Huichol Indians lived in ancient times.

The small colonial town of San Sebastian was settled in 1605 because of the silver and gold deposits in the area. An 18th century church and the cobbled square are the main attractions.  The town of Yelapa doesn’t have cars, electricity, or telephones creating an atmosphere of old world charm and a laid back, simple lifestyle.

For more information on visiting Puerto Vallarta check out the Visit Puerto Vallarta website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Puerto Vallarta

 

The Jalisco-style food in Puerto Vallarta kept us eating every chance we got.
~Shaun Kuschel from Over Yonderlust

You come here to be.  If you’re looking for entertainment, this isn’t the place – Bucerias is about the slow life and relaxing.
~Laura and Lance from Travel Addicts

The park and the center get thousands of visitors a year, many come for the events and stay for the beautiful beaches, scenery  bird watching, and hiking.
~Jason Batansky from Unfinished Man

 The 10,000 square-foot spa features all the elements one requires for ultimate indulgence, all surrounded by striking views of Punta Mita.
~Justine Stewart-Crompton from Room Critic

 

In Puerto Vallarta FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Café des Artists
Guadalupe Sánchez 740 • Col. Centro
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 (322) 222-3228

El Arrayan
Allende 344, Centro,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 322 222 7195

Taste Restaurant
Callejon de la Igualdad 129
Alta Vista,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 322-223 2484

Accommodations

Garza Blanca Preserve Resort
Carretera a Barra de Navidad Km. 7.5,
Zona Hotelera Sur,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 322 176 0700

Fiesta Americana 
Av. Francisco Medina Ascencio km.2.5,
Zona Hotelera Norte,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 322 226 2100

Now Amber
David Alfaro Siqueiros No. 164
Col. Zona Hotelera Las Glorias
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 (322) 226-2900

Attractions

Las Caletas
Local 13-C, Calle Mástil, Marina Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco; Mexico
1-888-526-2238

Vallarta Food Tours
Aquiles Serdán 242,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico
+52 322 151 4426

Puerto Vallarta Day Tours
339 Matamoros St
Puerto Vallarta,
Jalisco, Mexico
1-877-757-8687

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The winter season is a magical time to visit New York City. Just under one percent of Canadian air travelers seem to have felt that it was a good time to visit last year.

Whether during the weeks leading up to the holiday season or in the New Year, there’s plenty to see and do in New York City’s famous five boroughs. From visiting some of Manhattan’s (and the world’s) most recognizable landmarks and attractions — such as Times Square, Central Park, the Empire State Building, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art — to exploring the city’s lesser-known, must-see hot spots in the other four boroughs – The Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island – where one will find Yankee Stadium and Heritage Field, Flushing Meadows-Corona Park, and the Museum of the Moving Image, there’s no place like New York City.

The winter months in New York City also bring many annual favourites for both locals and visitors, including the winter installations of the semi-annual Restaurant Week, Broadway Week, and Off-Broadway Week, plus fantastic hotel savings with the Sunday Night Stays campaign.

Of course, there’s nowhere better for a shopping trip than New York City, especially along Manhattan’s iconic Fifth Avenue, in trendy SoHo, or the boutiques in other neighbourhoods like Brooklyn’s Williamsburg, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens or Jackson Heights and Forest Hills in Queens.

For more information on visiting New York visit the NYC & Company website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About New York City

 

The High Line Park is built on an old, raised train track. It’s the perfect place to get unique views of the city just below.
~Dalene and Peter Heck from Hectic Travels

Imagine soaring above the New York City skyline in an aerial cable car every day to get to school.
~Greg Goodman from Adventures of a Goodman

NYC is the unequivocal champ of United States tourism…
~Jennifer Miner of The Vacation Gals

…we have been 5 times with our boys and I have been asked many times “what do you do there with kids?”
~Sarah McCormack from Coffee with Julie

New Yorkers are actually a lot friendlier the they’re given credit for, so don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it.
~Andrea Mueller from Curious Around the World

 

In New York City FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Dutch Kills Bar / Blissville (Queens)
27-24 Jackson Ave,
Long Island City, NY 11101
(718) 383-2724

Cowgirl Sea-Horse (Lower Manhattan)
259 Front St,
New York, NY 10038
(212) 608-7873

Roberto’s Restaurant (The Bronx)
149 W 46th Street, 3rd Floor,
New York, NY 10036
(212) 391-1315

Accommodations

Z Hotel (Long Island City, Queens)
11-01 43rd Avenue
Long Island City, NY
11101

Bronx Opera House Hotel (South Bronx)
436 East 149th Street,
Bronx, NY 10455
(718) 407-2800

Aloft Harlem (Manhattan)
2296 Frederick Douglass Boulevard
New York,NY 10027
(212) 749-4000

Attractions

Circle Line Tour
Pier 83 West 42nd Street
New York, NY 10019
(212) 563-3200

The New York Pass
36 West 44th Street, Suite 1407
New York, NY 10036
(877) 714-1999

Soul Food and Jazz Tour
690 Eight Avenue
New York, NY 10036
(800) 660-2166

 

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Paris, the capital of France, is also the world’s leading tourist destination, and the destination of nearly one percent of Canadian air travelers last winter.  Famous for its architecture, monuments, charms, and joie de vivre, Paris is the perfect destination for epicurean visitors. Every restaurant, café, and wine bar is a true temptation, as are the fashion boutiques, since Paris is also the capital of Haute Couture.

From the beautiful shores of the Seine River to the top of Montmartre, Paris is full of irresistible sites to discover with your loved one, friends, or family: the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre Museum, the Notre Dame Basilica, the Champs-Élysées, the Luxembourg Gardens, the Pont-des-Arts, and the Moulin Rouge are just a few of the places travelers from around the world dream of visiting at least once in their lifetime.

Paris is a city filled with hidden gems and it is best seen by foot. Meander through cobbled alleys and streets and you might happen upon a Sunday afternoon street market selling antiques, vintage and curio. Once you’ve seen the major attractions seek out the lesser known ones, such as the stunning small church with spectacular stained glass, Sainte-Chapelle and museums such as the Musée du quai Branly.

On the outskirts of Paris, don’t miss Disneyland Paris, the National Museum of Archaeology in Saint-Germain-en-Laye and the Château de Versailles, the fabulous castle of the Sun King, Louis XIV.

For more information on visiting Paris visit the Rendez-vous en France website.

Paris photo credits: Title photo-Landmarks at Sunset: Atout France/Franck Charel |Quote photo-Bug and Eiffel Tower Atout France/CØdric Helsly | End photos from left to right: Atout France/Michel Angot, Atout France/Franck Charel, Atout France/Jean François Tripelon-Jarry
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What Bloggers Are Saying About Paris

 

Food, glorious food…Paris definitely does not disappoint the tastebuds!
~Jenny Freedman from A Taste of Travel

The Rodin Museum…His work is so sensual, you almost need a cold shower after you leave the museum!
~Andrea Mueller from Curious Around the World

But over the past few years Parisians have started to embrace beer culture and its becoming easier to find great beer.
~James Feess from Savvy Backpacker

But, by design or by good fortune, it’s not too difficult for a short-stay tourist to find the highlights of Paris.
~Michael Turtle from Time Travel Turtle

 

In Paris FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Au Clocher de Montmartre
10 Rue Lamarck,
75018 Paris, France
+33 1 42 64 90 23

Le Procope 
13 Rue de l’Ancienne Comédie,
75006 Paris, France
+33 1 40 46 79 00

Un Dimanche à Paris 
8 Cours du Commerce Saint-André,
75006 Paris, France
+33 1 56 81 18 18

Accommodations

Hotel Napoléon
40 avenue de Friedland,
75008 Paris – France
+33 1 56 68 43 21

Mamma Shelter 
109, rue de Bagnolet
75020 Paris
France
+33 1 43 48 48 48

Best Western La Villa des Artistes 
9 Rue de la Grande Chaumière,
75006 Paris, France
+33 1 43 26 60 86

Attractions

4 Roues sous 1 Parapluie 
22 Rue Bernard Dimey,
75018 Paris, France
+33 800 80 06 31

The Centre Pompidou
Place Georges-Pompidou
Paris 4e
+33 144 78 12 33

Bateaux Parisiens 
Port de la Bourdonnais,
75007 Paris, France
+33 825 01 01 01

 

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Located along the Caribbean coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo, Riviera Maya stretches across 81 miles of coastline, and was visited by more than one percent of Canadian air travelers last winter. The region starts 35 km south of Cancun, and extends from the southern jungle section of Puerto Morelos through Playa del Carmen, Akumal, and Tulum into the Sian Ka’an Biosphere ending with the town of Punta Allen.

In 1997 the Riviera Maya was recreated as a destination unto itself and is now considered to be one of the oldest and newest resort destinations in Mexico. The Riviera Maya is home to more than 10 major Mayan archaeological sites. Three of the region’s most popular archaeological sites include Muyil, Coba, and Tulum.

For the ancient Mayas, the Riviera Maya was an important religious and commercial center in the Postclassical period (1000 – 1550 BC). The city of Xaman Ha (today Playa del Carmen) was one of the major commercial centers thanks to its strategic location between Central America and the Yucatan Peninsula.

During the Maya reign, the ideal geographic location of the Riviera Maya was responsible for the growth and development of commercial ports such as those found in the cities of Muyil, Xel-Ha, and Pole (today Xcaret) that flourished significantly.

Now, the names of the destination cities along the Riviera Maya — Cancun, Playa Del Carmen, and Cozumel — are synonymous with international travel, luxury, exoticism, and culture.

For more information on visiting Riviera Maya check out the Riviera Maya website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Riviera Maya

 

Stay away from posh places frequented by lots of foreigners touting 2-for-1 margaritas.
~Ayngelina Brogan from Bacon is Magic

Tequila is to Mexico vacations as deep-dish pizza is to Chicago — it’s just one of those things you have to experience on its native soil.
~Raymond Walsh from Man on the Lam

This was a fresh water sinkhole, and the water level was about 150 feet deep.
~Alouise Dittrick from Traveler Ahoy

…so close I could touch it. But even from this distance of six meters, the shark appears gigantic.
~Hal Brindley from Travel for Wildlife

 

In Riviera Maya FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

La Casa del Agua
5ta. Avenida esq. Calle 2 S/N, Centro,
Playa del Carmen,
Quintana Roo, Mexico
+52 984 803 0232

La Cueva del Chango
Calle 38 entre 5a. Ave y el Mar S/N,
Zacil-Ha,
Playa del Carmen,
Quintana Roo, Mexico
+52 984 147 0271

Qué Fresco
KM 5 Carretera Tulum-Boca Paila,
Tulum, Q. Roo 77780
(415) 387-9806

Accommodations

Fairmont Mayakoba
Carretera Federal Cancún,
Playa del Carmen Km. 298
Riviera Maya, Quintana Roo,
+52 984 206 3000

Paradisus
5ª Av. Esq Calle 112,
Col. Luis Donaldo Colosio
Playa del Carmen
77719
+52 984 877 3900

Soho Playa
10 Avenue and 24 Street
77710 Playa del Carmen
Quintana Roo, Mexico
+52 984 267 3207

Attractions

Archaeological Sites
Insurgentes Sur No. 421,
Colonia Hipódromo,
México
D.F. CP 06100

Mayan Ruins Tours
Blvd. Kukulcan Km. 3.5,
Centro Empresarial Nautilus
Local 5 Zona Hotelera,
Cancun, Mexico
+52 (998) 849-4911

Kantun-Chi
Tour offices 20 Avenue,
between 4st. and 6 st. North.
Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo, Mexico
+52 984 803 0143

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Brimming with over 2000 years of heritage, historical — yet always cutting edge — London is the cultural capital of the world and one of Canadians’ favorite winter destinations, having received nearly one-and-a-half percent of our international air travelers last winter.

From historical sites and areas of natural beauty, to famous shopping areas, restaurants, entertainment and museums, London can provide something for everyone and for every budget. As the great Dr. Samuel Johnson once wrote, “When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life”.

He had a point. The question is not, “What does London offer?” The question is more, “What doesn’t London have?” The city is brimming with world-class attractions, shops, restaurants, special events, theatres, concerts, and art exhibitions.

There really is something for everyone.

In addition to the major visitor hotspots, London also boasts a fantastic range of hidden gems for those looking for something offbeat. You’ve probably seen Trafalgar Square, but did you know that in nearby St. Martin’s Church you can enjoy a charming afternoon tea beneath the street in the in the atmospheric and aptly-named Café in the Crypt?

London has much more to offer than just the city center. No two streets in East London are the same. As famous for Jack the Ripper as it is for Brick Lane, the area is a cultural melting pot that continuously blends the innovative with the traditional. There London’s hottest galleries and nightclubs are nestled among mosques and cockney markets.

Shoreditch might be best known for its hipster scene, but tucked away near Hoxton Tube you’ll find the Geffrye Museum, a fascinating study of how English domestic interiors have changed over the last 500 years with a series of magnificently appointed period rooms. The Victoria and Albert Museum may be one of London’s grandest cultural institutions, but its lesser-known sibling the V & A Museum of Childhood in the East End is a must for children and nostalgic grown-ups!

For more information on visiting London check out the Visit Britain website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About London

 

I couldn’t come to the UK and not have a Chicken Tikka Masala!
~Alyssa James from Alyssa Writes

London is the top choice for city vacations in the United Kingdom.
~Jennifer Miner of The Vacation Gals

The canal was full of surprises around every corner and way more entertaining than pushing through tourists on the Thames.
~Sherry Ott from Otts World

Big Ben is probably one of the single most recognizable monuments in the world, and a visit to London would not be complete without going to see it…
~Nicole Connolly from Suitcase Stories

 For me Brixton Market is why London is interesting.
~Ayngelina Brogan from Bacon is Magic

 

In London FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Dover Street Restaurants and Bar
8-10 Dover St,
London W1S 4LQ, United Kingdom
+44 20 7629 9813

Cinnamon Club
The Old Westminster Library,
30-32 Great Smith St,
London, United Kingdom
+44 20 7222 2555

MASH Steakhouse
77 Brewer Street
London W1F 9ZN
+44 0207 734 2608

Accommodations

The May Fair
Stratton St,
London W1J 8LT, United Kingdom
+44 20 7769 4041

One Aldwych
1 Aldwych,
London WC2B 4BZ,
United Kingdom
+44 20 7300 1000

Town Hall Hotel
Patriot Square,
London E2 9NF, United Kingdom
+44 20 7871 0460

Attractions

British Museum
Great Russell St,
London WC1B 3DG, United Kingdom
+44 20 7323 8299

London Eye 
Riverside Bldg, County Hall,
Westminster Bridge Rd,
London SE1 7PB, United Kingdom
+44 871 781 3000

Tower of London 
London EC3N 4AB,
United Kingdom
+44 844 482 7777

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Visitors escape the more congested areas of the state for the feel of authentic old Florida. History abounds, as Fort Myers was the site of one of the southernmost battles of the Civil War and home. It was also home to inventor Thomas Edison who worked tirelessly in his laboratory on the grounds of his 14-acre riverfront estate for 46 winters. Together with his best friend and next door neighbor, automotive manufacturer Henry Ford, Edison hosted well-known house guests like President-elect Herbert Hoover, aviator Charles Lindbergh, best-selling author Anne Morrow Lindbergh, tire manufacturer Harvey Firestone, naturalist John Burroughs, and cereal king John Harvey Kellogg. Today, visitors tour both Estates, as well as Edison’s botanical gardens, laboratory, and museum, which features Edison’s more than 1,000 patents and numerous antique Ford cars.

Fort Myers is the gateway to the Florida of days past, with 50 miles of unspoiled white sand beaches, exotic wildlife and lush foliage. Fort Myers, along with Sanibel and Captiva islands, offers a welcome change-of-pace from the been-there-and-done-that in Florida. This subtropical paradise is a favorite vacation spot for visitors from around the world. The area is the perfect sanctuary for families and couples to reconnect with loved ones in a quiet setting.

Visitors find a sense of inner peace in the alluring natural wilderness. There are a variety of accommodations to fit any budget and an abundance of recreational activities and adventures, including unique nature- and history-based tours and activities. Visitors enjoy highly rated wildlife viewing, renowned shell collecting, kayaking, outstanding fishing, golfing, biking, shopping, unusual spa treatments, out of the ordinary culinary experiences, and much more.

For more information on visiting Fort Myers visit the The Beaches of Fort Myers and Sanibel website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Fort Myers

 

Shelling is apparently best during the hour before and the hour after low tide…
~Melanie Wynne from Travels with Two

The Edison and Ford Winter Estate is an interesting place to learn about two famous men who contributed to the country we know today.
~Nathanael Nims from Wandering Educators

…sand sculptors and beach lovers from all of the globe congregate on Fort Myers beach to compete in, and bear witness to, the first ever all women’s sand sculpting event.
~Megan Claire from Mapping Megan

The white sand beach seems to be never-ending, the ambiance of Fort Myers Beach as a destination or community is unpretentious…
~Doreen Pendgracs from Diversions with Doreen

 

In Fort Myers FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Veranda Restaurant
2122 2nd St,
Fort Myers, FL 33901
(239) 332-2065

Thistle Lodge 
2255 W Gulf Dr,
Sanibel, FL 33957
(239) 472-9200

Bayfront Bistro 
4761 Estero Blvd,
Fort Myers Beach, FL 33931
(239) 463-3663

Accommodations

Sanibel Harbour Marriott Resort
17260 Harbour Pointe Dr,
Fort Myers, FL 33908
(239) 466-4000

Casa Ybel Resort
2255 W Gulf Dr,
Sanibel, FL 33957
(239) 472-3145

South Seas Island Resort 
5400 Plantation Rd,
Captiva, FL 33924
(866) 565-5089

Attractions

Edison & Ford Winter Estates 
2350 McGregor Boulevard,
Fort Myers, FL 33901
(239) 334-7419

J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge 
1 Wildlife Drive,
Sanibel Island, FL 33957
(239) 472-1100

Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum
3075 Sanibel-Captiva Road,
Sanibel Island, FL 33957
(239) 395-2233

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The tropical beauty of Miami and the beaches offers a fascinating blend of cutting edge urban chic and old-world charm that attracted nearly two percent of Canadian international air travelers last winter. The weather is brilliant and the top ranked beaches bring tourists and travelers to the Miami area year-round. The sparkling Biscayne Bay is the perfect backdrop for the big city metropolis that is Miami.

The city boasts arts and culture, world-class dining, shopping, and nightlife like nowhere else; Miami is a playground for grown-ups. Families, couples, and singles are all drawn to Miami for the eclectic mix of attractions and fun in the sun. It’s sits at the cultural crossroads of Latin and North America, which appeals to South Americans, Canadians, and Europeans alike.

Miles of white sand beaches with turquoise-tinted sparkling water lures people to this tropical paradise where they are able to explore a network of barrier islands, coral rock, and mangrove swamps. The city is home to 2 million people, many of whom arrived as tourists and liked it so much they decided to stay.

With 35 distinct municipalities spread out over 2,000 square miles there are many diverse neighborhoods such as Little Havana, South Beach (with it’s signature Art Deco architecture), Little Haiti, and Coconut Grove to name just a few.

For more information on visiting Miami visit the Greater Miami and the Beaches website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Miami

 

Located on Belle Island of the Venetian Islands right off of Miami Beach, The Standard hotel is an hidden gem in South Beach. (sic)
~Robert and Toni from Another Traveler

So whether you want to see snowbirds or eat stone crabs, Miami might be a place you should check out. ~Chris Christensen from Amateur Traveler

 …South Beach in Miami Beach. Before I went, it was South Beach. After. It was SoBe. Because now I’m in the know.
~Jan Ross from Wanderlust Wonder

The self-guided walk winds through sawgrass marshes which provide habitat for alligators, turtles, and numerous bird species including … the bird for which the trail was named: the anhinga.
~Cristina Garcia from Travel for Wildlife

 

In Miami FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Joe’s Stone Crab
11 Washington Ave,
Miami Beach, FL 33139
(305) 673-0365

Jaguar Cevice Spoon 
3067 Grand Ave,
Coconut Grove, FL 33133
(305) 444-0216

City Hall, The Restaurant
2004 Biscayne Blvd,
Miami, FL 33137
(305) 764-3130

Accommodations

Mandarin Oriental, Miami
500 Brickell Key Dr,
Miami, FL 33131
(305) 913-8288

Ritz-Carlton, Key Biscayne
455 Grand Bay Dr,
Key Biscayne, FL 33149
(305) 365-4500

Biltmore Hotel
1200 Anastasia Ave,
Coral Gables, FL 33134
(855) 311-6903

Attractions

Miami Seaquarium
4400 Rickenbacker Causeway,
Key Biscayne, FL 33149
(305) 361-5705

Zoo Miami
12400 SW 152nd St,
Miami, FL 33177
(305) 251-0400

Everglades National Park
40001 State Rd 9336,
Homestead, FL 33034
(305) 242-7700

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For 16 consecutive years the readers of Condé Nast Traveler magazine have voted San Francisco the “Best U.S. City”, a title it has earned by having some of the most incredible international cuisine, gorgeous natural scenery, and interesting cultural activities in the country. Those are also most likely the reasons that just under 2 percent of Canadian international air travelers visited the city last winter.

San Francisco is a city that begs to be explored. Measuring 49 square miles you can visit the most famous landmarks such as Alcatraz, The Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, and America’s largest Chinatown by foot or cable car. A stroll in the city can lead from Union Square to North Beach to Fisherman’s Wharf, Japantown and the Mission District.

With many diverse neighbourhoods there are numerous options for shopping and exploration.

The fog is very much a part of the San Francisco experience and adds to the romance of this most European of American cities. Ocean and bay views are often laced with fog, creating a mystic mood.

San Francisco has a rich heritage, having grown from a small village to a major city nearly overnight as a result of the 1849 Gold Rush. The writers of the “beat” generation, the hippies of the late 1960’s, and the large gay/lesbian population all played roles in San Francisco’s evolution.

Today, it is a focal point in the worlds of science and technology. Home to world-class performing arts companies, museums and galleries, San Francisco is often the backdrop of culture-changing events. The diverse cultural influences, proximity of the fresh ingredients, and competitive creativity of the chefs make it one of America’s greatest cities for dining.

For more information about San Francisco visit the San Francisco Travel website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About San Francisco

 

From the Mission to Pacific Heights, Chinatown to Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco really does have a neighborhood to suit all tastes.
~Amanda Williams from A Dangerous Business

Pier 39 is definitely a highlight with its festive atmosphere, street performers, a carousel, a marina, an aquarium, touristy shops…
~Freya Renders from Holiday Nomad

The market offers produce and flowers from small regional farmers and ranchers, many of whom are certified organic.
~Sherry Ott from Otts World

 Next time I go to San Francisco I want to eat at State Bird Provisions and try the nitrogen ice cream stand…
~Arnette from RTW Girl

 

In San Francisco FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Burritt Room + Tavern 
417 Stockton Street
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 400-0561

Boulevard
1 Mission St,
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 543-6084

Cliff House 
1090 Point Lobos Ave,
San Francisco, CA 94121
(415) 386-3330

Accommodations

Fairmont San Francisco 
950 Mason St,
San Francisco, CA 94108
(415) 772-5000

Four Seasons San Francisco 
757 Market St,
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 633-3000

Palace Hotel 
2 New Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94105
(415) 512-1111

Attractions

Alcatraz
San Francisco, CA
(415) 561-4900

Fine Arts Museums
(deYoung and Legion of Honor)
50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr,
San Francisco, CA 94118
(415) 750-3600

Exploratorium
Pier 15
San Francisco, California, 94111
(415) 528-4444

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With first-class hotels, distinct heritage, authentic culture, thrilling attractions, delicious cuisine and premier shopping, there is no better place to discover Florida’s riches than Tampa Bay. Last winter over 2 percent of Canadian international air travelers landed in the award-winning Tampa International Airport, which is just seven miles from downtown. That, along with the first-rate cruise port, make it easy to conquer Tampa.

The city is home to a vibrant waterfront district, culturally engaging venues and museums, and countless activities.

Authentic people and places make Tampa Bay a treasure to discover. Of course, there the climate isn’t too shoddy either, with a yearly average of 361 days of sunshine.

Pirates invade Tampa every January as part of the annual Gasparilla celebration. Also known as as the “Winter Strawberry Capital of the World,” locals and visitors enjoy Tampa’s annual Strawberry Festival. With thriving nightlife, world-class shopping, unique boutiques, delicious restaurants, and waterfront experiences, there is no wonder Tampa is a popular vacation destination.

For more information on visiting Tampa check out the  Visit Tampa Bay website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Tampa

 

In addition to beaches you can find museums dedicated to Dali and Chihuly…
~ Chris Christensen from Amateur Traveler

Touring the Big Cat Rescue brings a visitor face to face with nearly 100 big cats of all different species and backgrounds.
~Lauren Bassart from The Constant Rambler

The hostel is called ‘Gram’s Place’, named after influential musician Gram Parsons who was known in the 1960s for his solo work and his time with The Byrds…
~Michael Turtle from Time Travel Turtle

Having opened it’s doors in 2011, The Dali Museum houses the largest collection of Salvador Dali’s work outside of Europe.
~Alexandra Baackes from Alex in Wonderland

 

In Tampa FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Bern’s Steak House
1208 S Howard Ave,
Tampa, FL 33606
(813) 251-2421

Boca Kitchen & Market
901 W Platt St,
Tampa, FL 33606
(813) 254-7070

 Mise en Place
442 W Kennedy Blvd #110,
Tampa, FL 33606
(813) 254-5373

Accommodations

Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay
2900 Bayport Dr,
Tampa, FL 33607
(813) 874-1234

Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina
700 S Florida Ave,
Tampa, FL 33602
(813) 221-4900

Renaissance Tampa Hotel Intl. Plaza
4200 Jim Walter Blvd,
Tampa, FL 33607
(800) 468-3571

Attractions

Historic Latin Quarter of Ybor City
1600 East 8th Ave. Ste. B104
Tampa, Fl 33605
(813) 241-883

Tampa Brewery Tours
11111 N 30th St
Tampa, FL 33612-6439
(813) 972-8500

Florida Aquarium
701 Channelside Dr,
Tampa, Florida 33602
(813) 273-4000

 

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Things are just different in the desert. Different in a good way, and that attracted about two-and-a-half percent of Canadian international air travelers to Phoenix last winter.

Bask in the sunshine and natural beauty of the Sonoran desert and have experiences unlike any other. Some of the greatest adventures known to recreation enthusiasts are located nearby.

Boasting over 300 days of sunshine annually with average temperatures in the 70’s, greater Phoenix has one of the most comfortable climates in North America. The valley may be reminiscent of bustling saloons or gun-slinging cowboys as portrayed in old westerns, but most visitors’ fondest memories are of the charm of the Southwest.

Beautiful desert flora, soul-stirring sunsets, and real-life 21st century cowboys all attract visitors to the city. As America’s sixth largest city, Greater Phoenix is also the gateway to the world’s seventh natural wonder, the Grand Canyon, and the city’s history is a testament to the spirit of puebloans, ranchers, miners, and visionaries that settled The Old West.

Projected against this rich desert backdrop is a panorama of urban sophistication: resorts and spas that soothe the soul with treatments infused with Native American tradition; stadiums and arenas worthy of the biggest sports spectacles; and restaurants serving inspired cuisine to tables on patios with phenomenal views.

Over 200 Golf courses stay emerald green all year round. The shopping centers are as stylish and eclectic as the fashions they house. Of course, one mustn’t forget the outdoor desert playground inviting visitors to explore it by foot, jeep tour, river boat (or tube), or in a hot-air balloon.

For more information on visiting Phoenix check out the Visit Phoenix website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Phoenix

 

Not only is there history at the Heard Museum but there are also fine examples of art and sculpture on display by American Indian Artists.
~Mary Chong from Calculated Traveler

This November (2013) they are bringing back the the popular “Chihuly in the Garden” exhibit.
~Jeff Broman from Go Travelzing

…foodies across the nation have begun to take note of the local culinary scene, even labeling Pizzeria Bianco as the country’s best pizza producer.
~ Teresa Bitler on Sherman’s Travel

Learn about Frank Lloyd Wright’s style of desert architecture on the beautiful site of Taliesin West.
~Elizabeth Rose from Striped Pot

 

In Phoenix FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Barrio Café
2814 N 16th St,
Phoenix, AZ 85006
(602)636-0240

Kai
5594 Wild Horse Pass Blvd,
Chandler, AZ 85048
(602) 385-5726

El Chorro Lodge
5550 E Lincoln Dr,
Paradise Valley, AZ 85253
(480) 948-5170

Accommodations

Arizona Biltmore 
2400 E Missouri Ave,
Phoenix, AZ 85016
(602) 955-6600

The Canyon Suites at The Phoenician
6000 E Camelback Rd,
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
(480) 941-8200

Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa 
5594 Wild Horse Pass Blvd,
Chandler, AZ 85226
(602) 225-0100

Attractions

Musical Instrument Museum
4725 E Mayo Blvd,
Phoenix, AZ 85050
(480) 478-6000

Heard Museum
2301 N Central Ave,
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(602) 252-8840

Desert Botanical Garden
1201 N Galvin Pkwy,
Phoenix, AZ 85008
(480) 941-1225

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With its fascinating history and rich cultural heritage, Los Angeles is a trend-setting force to be reckoned with, and the destination of nearly three percent of Canadian international air travelers last winter. There are cultural activities galore with some of the best fine art museums in the country.

LA has a thriving restaurant and nightclub scene. There are also many options for live music and theatre such as The Getty Center or the Walt Disney Concert Hall. As the entertainment capital of the world, there is never a boring night this vibrant city.

There are hundreds of miles of trails for hiking and biking for active folks, and Michelin–starred restaurants for those who like the finer things in life. Whether you prefer to relax in a spa or indulge in some retail therapy, LA has a little something for everybody.

LA is, however, more than just a city. From the desert to the sea, and the mountains to the valleys, the diversity of the Greater LA area is astonishing. High-mountain adventure is available at Bear Mountain and its sister resort, Snow Summit, located in the nearby San Bernardino Mountains.

Disneyland is located in Anaheim just 45 minutes south of Downtown LA. Continue further south for a day of splashy fun at SeaWorld San Diego. For bargain hunters and shopping fanatics, several top-notch outlet mall centers are located just outside the city, including Camarillo Premium Outlets and Desert Hills Premium Outlets.

For more information on visiting Los Angeles visit the Discover Los Angeles website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Los Angeles

 

We walked over to New Orleans Square to refresh ourselves at the Mint Julep Bar with Mickey-shaped Beignets and of course, mint juleps.
~Kimmy Hayes from Afterglobe

In fact, if you move away from the busy promenade, you will discover a different Venice… colorful modern delis and small gourmet food restaurants.
~Sara Rodriguez from Mindful Travel by Sara

In the Bunker Hill district of downtown, you can ride “The Shortest Railway in the World” for the 298-foot incline to the top.
~Dana Carmel from Time Travel Plans

 Los Angeles is definitely a unique place where life revolves around ‘the biz.’
~Lisa Lubin from LL World Tour

 

In Los Angeles FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Loteria Grill
5 Locations
Los Angeles, CA
(323) 465-2500

Border Grill
445 S. Figueroa St.
Los Angeles,
CA 90071
(213)486-5171

Willie Jane
1031 Abbot Kinney Blvd,
Los Angeles, CA 90291
(310) 392-2425

Accommodations

Four Seasons Beverly Hill
300 S Doheny Dr,
Los Angeles, CA 90048, USA
(310) 786 -2212

The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles 
JW Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE
900 W. Olympic Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA  90015
(213) 765-8600

Loews Hollywood 
1755 N. Highland Ave.
Los Angeles,
CA 90028
(323) 491-1083

Attractions

Universal Studios Hollywood
100 Universal City Plaza,
Universal City, CA 91608
(800) 864-8377

Petersen Automotive Museum
6060 Wilshire Blvd,
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 930-2277

California Science Center
700 Exposition Park Dr,
Los Angeles, CA 90037
(323) 724-3623

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Orlando was the most visited tourist destination in the United States in 2011 with more than 55 million visitors. Many of those were Canadians, with just under four percent of our international winter air travelers landing in the city.

Orlando is a popular family destination for a reason. Between the world-class theme parks and luxury spas Orlando is the place where everyone can do it all and enjoy it all together. There are amazing attractions, name brand designer shopping, and fabulous cuisine.

Orlando is also a mecca for golfers. There are more professional golf tournaments held here than any other city. There’s a reason that Arnold Palmer lives there.

While most visitors are familiar with Orlando’s theme park locations, many are unaware of the personality and charm of the surrounding neighborhoods. To see the more local side of Orlando, visitors should explore Church Street of Winter Park. Church Street is the heart of the city’s commercial and cultural core, and home of Orlando’s “Cultural Corridor,” a 10-mile stretch of theaters, galleries and performing arts venues.

Winter Park is a charming, historic community with tree-shaded avenues. Once a major citrus-growing region, Winter Park was a popular retreat for well-to-do Northerners who traveled south by train in the late 1800s.

For more information on visiting Orlando check out the Visit Orlando website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Orlando

 

Although I wholeheartedly recommend a visit to Epcot any time of year, I was fortunate to be there during the annual International Flower and Garden Festival…
~Barbara Weibel from Hole in the Donut

One thing not to miss is the Shark Reef attraction.  The 10-foot-deep salt water pool is home to a number of small sharks, rays and tropical fish…
~Laura and Lance from Travel Addicts

Billing itself as “The Alligator Capital of the World” Gatorland certainly lives up to its name.
~Raymond Walsh from Man on the Lam

 I decided that making the 50 mile drive to Cape Canaveral and the Kennedy Space Center was a great way to spend an adult day in Orlando.
~Sherry Ott from Otts World

In Orlando FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Pirates Dinner Adventure
6400 Carrier Drive
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 248-0590

Texas de Brazil
5259 International Drive
Suite F-1
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 355-0355

Capone’s Dinner & Show
4740 W. Hwy. 192
Kissimmee, FL 34746
(407) 397-2378

Accommodations

The Alfond Inn
300 East New England Avenue
Winter Park, FL 32789
(407) 998-8090

Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress
One Grand Cypress Blvd.,
Orlando, Florida, 32836
(407) 239-1234

The Ritz-Carlton, Orlando
4012 Central Florida Parkway,
Orlando, Florida 32837
(407) 206-2400

Attractions

Orlando Balloon Rides
PO Box 560572
Orlando, FL 32856
407.894.5040

SeaWorld 
9205 Southpark Center Loop #400,
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 226-5011

Universal Studio
6000 Universal Blvd,
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 363-8000

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Las Vegas is recognized around the world as being one of North Americans’ favourite destinations. It’s certainly a favorite of Canadian international air travelers during the winter; four percent of them visited the city last winter.  Perhaps that’s because it captures people’s imaginations as a place where anything is possible. It’s a destination for those who want to recapture the child-like wonder of  magic, excitement, and a world where anything can happen (and often does).

Las Vegas has evolved over the years from a gambling-focussed city into a destination that offers fun for the entire family. However, with 24-hour casino’s, some of the worlds best restaurants, high-end shopping, golf, and world class entertainment, Vegas is still an excellent haven for adults.  They don’t say that “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” for nothing.

The Las Vegas Strip offers unmatched entertainment. Home to celebrity headliners Celine Dion, Elton John, Shania Twain, Rod Stewart, and Broadway favorite “Jersey Boys,” or “Million Dollar Quartet,” the entertainment scene continues to evolve and offer something for every taste. Cirque du Soleil also offers eight resident productions at Mandalay Bay.

No visit to Las Vegas would be complete without taking in a showgirl classic such as “Jubilee!” or laughing along to a performance of “Blue Man Group.” From thrilling roller coasters to exotic animal exhibits and erupting volcanoes to wax museums, Las Vegas’ attractions appeal to people of all ages, interests, and budgets.

For more information on visiting Las Vegas visit the the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Las Vegas

 

There is something so old-school about heading to Fremont Street and seeing the glittering lights beckoning people into the casino.
~ Diana Eldman from D Travels Round

We had a great time and I took a ton of photos…  I wanted to capture something a little different than the typical photos of Las Vegas.
~Bethany Salvon from Beers and Beans

So if you’re not into partying or gambling, are under 21, or just want a cheap Vegas getaway, here are some “other” things you can consider doing in Sin City that aren’t quite so sinful.
~Amanda Williams from A Dangerous Business

 Also, if you stay on like Sunday, Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday, you can get a spectacular rate. (sic)
~Kerwin McKenzie from Travel Advice

 

In Las Vegas FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Gordon Ramsay Steak
3655 Las Vegas Boulevard South
Las Vegas , NV 89109
(877) 796-2096

Scarpetta   
3708 S Las Vegas Blvd,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 698-7960

Nobu
4455 Paradise Rd,
Las Vegas, NV 89169
(702) 693-5090

Accommodations

The Cosmopolitan Las Vegas
3708 S Las Vegas Blvd,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 698-7000

ARIA     
3730 Las Vegas Blvd
Las Vegas, NV 89158
(866) 359-7757

Caesars Palace
3570 S Las Vegas Blvd,
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 731-7110

Attractions

Grand Canyon All American Heli Tour
4285 N Rancho Dr,
Las Vegas, NV 89130
(702) 648-5873

Neon Museum
770 Las Vegas Boulevard North
Las Vegas, NV 89101
(702) 387-6366

SkyJump
2000 S Las Vegas Blvd,
Las Vegas, NV 89104
(800) 998-6937

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Looking for a “beach chic” vibe? You’re not the only one. Nearly five percent of all Canadian international air travelers visited Fort Lauderdale for (most likely) exactly that reason last winter. Fort Lauderdale might be known as a hot spot for Spring Break college kids but don’t be deceived into thinking that’s what this city is all about; there is so much more to it than just partying.

Sometimes referred to as the “Venice of America” because of its intricate system of canals and waterways, Fort Lauderdale was actually named after Major William Lauderdale who was the commander of the troop of soldiers who built the first fort in the area during The Second Seminole War.

With over 23 miles of Blue Wave certified beaches and 300 miles of inland waterways — from the Intracoastal Waterway to the Everglades — there is something to discover for the whole family.  Fort Lauderdale also has a thriving art scene with museums and galleries to quench your creative thirst. The best place to get your culture fix is the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District on Las Olas Boulevard.

Shopping is another favourite pastime, and there are thousands of restaurants and café’s to choose from when you need to refuel.

The Greater Fort Lauderdale area as more than 34,000 choices of accommodation at a variety of hotels, luxury spa’s, and small boutique-style resorts. You can even camp at Hugh Taylor Birch State Park and truly get back to nature .

For more information on visiting Fort Lauderdale visit the Greater Fort Lauderdale website.

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What Bloggers Are Saying About Fort Lauderdale


A great getaway for adults and families full of pristine beaches, water fun, and a lively scene of outdoor cafes and bars.
~ Lisa Lubin of LL World Tour

The Venice of America…countless canals and waterways weave through Fort Lauderdale, offering more water activities than you could ever imagine.
~ Nathan and Sofia of As we Travel

The Fort Lauderdale of today is a sophisticated beach town with upscale restaurants, fabulous resorts and luxurious shopping.
~Susan and Joseph Sedler of Active Travel Pro

As a city surrounded by canals and rivers, it’s reminiscent of a more exotic Venice, complete with palm trees and bikinis.
~Caroine Eubanks of Caroline in the City

In Fort Lauderdale FlightNetwork.com Recommends

Restaurants

Steak 954 
401 N Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd,
Fort Lauderdale, FL
(954) 414-8333

Blue Moon Fish Co. 
4405 W Tradewinds Ave,
Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, FL 33308
(954) 267-9888

Sugar Reef Grill
600 N Surf Rd,
Hollywood, FL 33019
(954) 922-1119

Accommodations

The Ritz-Carlton
1 N Fort Lauderdale Beach Blvd,
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
(954) 465-2300

Marriott Pompano Beach Resort & Spa
1200 N Ocean Blvd,
Pompano Beach, FL 33062
(800) 228-9290

The Pillars Hotel
111 N Birch Rd,
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33304
(954) 467-9639

Attractions

Billie Swamp Safari
30000 Gator Tail Trail,
Clewiston, FL 33440
(863) 983-6101

Water Taxi
413 SW 3rd Avenue
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33315
(954) 467-6677

Sawgrass Mills
12801 W Sunrise Blvd,
Sunrise, FL 33323
(954) 451-3901

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Is there any destination that you would have liked to seen on the list? Leave a comment below and let us know!

About the Author: Matt Gibson

Matt Gibson is the Let's Roll blog manager. He also writes for the Huffington Post, About.com, and his own adventure travel blog.

  • Riley Hunter

    Don’t forget that Canadians also love Sayulita! Just 40 minutes away from Puerto Vallarta, is is certainly a hot spot as a vacation destination and a weekend getaway from Puerto Vallarta! All the information about Sayulita I’ve found on this site is great!

  • Ha ha. I actually wrote this while in Sayulita. I’ve been here a few weeks and am staying a few more.

  • Barb

    Come on, a million Canadians go to Cuba every year and it’s not on the list?

  • A lot of people have commented about Cuba’s absence. I’m going to look into it. But, apparently these places are more popular. I thought Hawaii would be on the list as well.

  • paul

    Matt, Barb is absolutely correct, i am stunded that Cuba is not on your list? I just come back form Cuba, its now been my 5 th trip and going again this January. I must say even the Cubans are happy that the canucks go to their ountry to visit, they call us their #1 fans.

  • Kimmy | AfterGlobe

    What a great article with a ton of resourceful information to be a part of! I’m also surprised to not see Hawaii on the list.

  • ronnie

    How is it even conceivable that Cuba is not on this list?

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  • Riley Hunter

    Don’t forget that Canadians also love Sayulita! Just 40 minutes away from Puerto Vallarta, is is certainly a hot spot as a vacation destination and a weekend getaway from Puerto Vallarta! All the information about Sayulita I’ve found on this site is great!

  • Ha ha. I actually wrote this while in Sayulita. I’ve been here a few weeks and am staying a few more.

  • Barb

    Come on, a million Canadians go to Cuba every year and it’s not on the list?

  • A lot of people have commented about Cuba’s absence. I’m going to look into it. But, apparently these places are more popular. I thought Hawaii would be on the list as well.

  • paul

    Matt, Barb is absolutely correct, i am stunded that Cuba is not on your list? I just come back form Cuba, its now been my 5 th trip and going again this January. I must say even the Cubans are happy that the canucks go to their ountry to visit, they call us their #1 fans.

  • Kimmy | AfterGlobe

    What a great article with a ton of resourceful information to be a part of! I’m also surprised to not see Hawaii on the list.

  • ronnie

    How is it even conceivable that Cuba is not on this list?

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