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  #1  
Old Posted Dec 5, 2019, 11:58 PM
LakeLocker LakeLocker is offline
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The great Canadian Christmas Travel Thread.

Going on a Quebec-Montreal-Ottawa-Toronto tour over Christmas.

It got me thinking who else is going on a big trip over the holidays?

What are good things to be doing in late December?

Where would you want to go?


EDIT: Might slip in a day trip to hamilton so I can say I've visited all the large metros.
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  #2  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 12:19 AM
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Making a quick visit to Montreal this month. Hard to believe it's been over 3 years since I was last there! Gonna see how my old haunts from my university days are doing and take a stroll through some of the areas that have seen lots of development over the past few years. Plus take in a choir concert at a beautiful old church in Mile-End. I'll only be there for a couple days, but I'm looking forward to the trip.
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  #3  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 1:53 AM
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Almost certainly going to spend Christmas in Gaspé in my gf's family, as usual. (Longer trip than Toronto-Montreal, to put it in perspective.)

I'd like to go spend part of this winter in Florida, if I can find the time for it.
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  #4  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 2:18 AM
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Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
Almost certainly going to spend Christmas in Gaspé in my gf's family, as usual. (Longer trip than Toronto-Montreal, to put it in perspective.)

I'd like to go spend part of this winter in Florida, if I can find the time for it.
Now http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=237363 #13 finally makes sense to me.
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  #5  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 2:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Dengler Avenue View Post
You mean that it explains how come I'm familiar enough with this road in winter? Sure I didn't think it was a secret.

As chance has it, my mom is also from the Gaspé, like my gf (that's pure happenstance though, we met in Southern Quebec). The difference is that my gf is from Gaspé (the town; in English the peninsula has the same name which can be somewhat confusing) to which there's only one possible road, while my mom's family is from the south coast, and there's three roughly equivalent ways to get there, each of which we've done countless times over the years.

(Now that A-85 is almost all twinned, the NB path has taken a clear edge though.)
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  #6  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 2:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
You mean that it explains how come I'm familiar enough with this road in winter? Sure I didn't think it was a secret.

As chance has it, my mom is also from the Gaspé, like my gf (that's pure happenstance though, we met in Southern Quebec). The difference is that my gf is from Gaspé (the town; in English the peninsula has the same name which can be somewhat confusing) to which there's only one possible road, while my mom's family is from the south coast, and there's three roughly equivalent ways to get there, each of which we've done countless times over the years.

(Now that A-85 is almost all twinned, the NB path has taken a clear edge though.)
I am familiar with it too because as a child we'd always travel from our home in Ontario across Quebec to spend Christmas with family in the Maritimes. It happened a few times that we almost missed Christmas due to the A-20 being closed between Lévis and Rivière-du-Loup. As a kid I was very familiar with all the motels on Boulevard Kennedy in Lévis and also Le Martinet in La Pocatière.

That stretch of A-20 is a great example of the impact of clear-cutting forest (for agriculture in this case) on blowing snow conditions. They've planted rows of trees as windbreaks in some places but much of the highway is still wide open all the way to the edge of the St. Lawrence.

You also have a similarly deforested stretch of plain north of Cobalt in NE Ontario along Highway 11. Again they've planted rows of trees here and there as windbreaks but it's not everywhere that is covered. Nor is it as effective as a full old-growth forest.

I almost never travel these roads in winter anymore. These days we don't visit my wife's family or my family in winter unless it's for a funeral. If we go by choice it's in the summer.
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Still a really nice group of people to spend Christmas dinner with, though.
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  #7  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 2:39 AM
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Lol when you first told me your story, I was wondering what you were doing in that area.
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  #8  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 6:15 AM
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I'll be leaving a frigid Seoul, and heading to the sunny shores of Thailand with a couple of days in Hanoi.
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  #9  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 4:32 PM
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I'll be leaving a frigid Seoul, and heading to the sunny shores of Thailand with a couple of days in Hanoi.
Are you hitting the Islands in Thailand?

Sounds similar to my trip last winter. Actually started in Seoul, flew to Phuket and then Krabi for some hiking, Phi Phi for some (a lot) of partying, Kho Tao for some scuba diving (and more partying), then Hanoi which we used as a base to check out Halong Bay and Sa Pa. Ended up staying an extra two nights for Tet in Hanoi. Made New Years at Time Square look like child's play in comparison.

One of the best trips I've done. I thought Hanoi was one of the most underrated cities I've been too, enjoyed it far more than Bangkok.
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  #10  
Old Posted Dec 14, 2019, 3:25 AM
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Are you hitting the Islands in Thailand?

Sounds similar to my trip last winter. Actually started in Seoul, flew to Phuket and then Krabi for some hiking, Phi Phi for some (a lot) of partying, Kho Tao for some scuba diving (and more partying), then Hanoi which we used as a base to check out Halong Bay and Sa Pa. Ended up staying an extra two nights for Tet in Hanoi. Made New Years at Time Square look like child's play in comparison.

One of the best trips I've done. I thought Hanoi was one of the most underrated cities I've been too, enjoyed it far more than Bangkok.
We'll split our time between Krabi and Bangkok. I've never been to Thailand before, so I definitely need to give Bangkok a fair shake.

Hanoi is just a two day stopover. We won't have much time in Vietnam - just enough to stuff my face with bánh mì and pho.
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  #11  
Old Posted Dec 14, 2019, 6:49 AM
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A couple days down in Seattle with my wife this weekend to take in a Christmas event. Then off to las Vegas on New Years day for four days.

Last year we went to New York for about a week at this same time. That was pretty amazing seeing the tree at Rockefeller and the various Christmas markets. Already thinking of heading there in 2020. Definitely puts you in the spirit.
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  #12  
Old Posted Dec 25, 2019, 10:42 PM
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Originally Posted by giallo View Post
I've never been to Thailand before...
What? You've been in Asia all this time and you haven't been to Thailand? How is that possible?

Only being partly facetious. When I lived in Taiwan I don't think I came across a single expat who hadn't been to Thailand. It's the obvious beach destination, as it's far easier to get onto the sand than if you're going to the Philippines. Plus the food is reliably amazing. And there are elephants.
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  #13  
Old Posted Dec 28, 2019, 6:09 AM
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Something I would like to do sometime, and I'm reminded of it when I watch the World Juniors, is go to that tournament when it's being played in Europe. I always see the pictures of these cities in the Czech Republic or wherever and think it would be cool to see those places and also be there for the tournament. I always wonder if there are any type of organized gatherings going on for fans that travel to it. A "Canada House" type of thing.
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  #14  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 10:14 AM
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I'm heading back to Queensland Australia to hang out with mates and celebrate a milestone B-Day on the beach. So excited for this.
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  #15  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 11:30 AM
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Staying home for Christmas, my step-sis from Halifax is coming here for a week. I'm also off from the 24th to the 6th, so we might go on a university tour with my daughter, depending on weather. She just got early acceptance to Ottawa, and she also applied to Queens and Carleton.
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  #16  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 2:58 PM
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I never travel at Christmas since most of my family is in and around Winnipeg so we stick around for all of the gatherings. The winter vacation comes after Christmas

One of my fond memories of being a kid, though, was going on train trips over the holidays to Toronto. I did it several times during the 90s... I just love the memories of rolling along through Northern Ontario with the landscape looking like a giant snow globe.
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  #17  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 3:03 PM
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I never travel at Christmas since most of my family is in and around Winnipeg so we stick around for all of the gatherings. The winter vacation comes after Christmas
.
I was just thinking that for francophones especially, leisure travel on Dec. 24-25 by couples or the smallest family unit (mom, dad and kids) is basically unheard of.

People do travel for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but it's to be with extended family somewhere else. No one I know goes to Punta Cana or NYC on Dec. 24-25.
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Still a really nice group of people to spend Christmas dinner with, though.
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  #18  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 4:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
I was just thinking that for francophones especially, leisure travel on Dec. 24-25 by couples or the smallest family unit (mom, dad and kids) is basically unheard of.

People do travel for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but it's to be with extended family somewhere else. No one I know goes to Punta Cana or NYC on Dec. 24-25.
Yeah, not many people I know do this regularly. I think it's a combination of the desire to be here for the holidays combined with the relatively high cost of vacationing over that period.

I have a few cousins who own residences in warm places that basically skip town right around Boxing Day, but that's generally it.
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  #19  
Old Posted Dec 6, 2019, 4:34 PM
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I actually prefer to travel on the 24th or 25th. The airports are quiet. People seem more relaxed and are in better moods. To be honest though I would much rather wake up in my own bed this year then travel to BC for a week.

Last edited by TorontoDrew; Dec 13, 2019 at 3:22 PM.
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  #20  
Old Posted Dec 7, 2019, 4:16 PM
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As someone who partakes in geocaching, I'm going on Christmas Day to an event in Oakville, right by the GO station....but just for a few hours. Heading back to Toronto see some family, then take a quick subway ride home.

Every year I take a bus to Peterborough to see some more family, usually on Boxing Day, until near the 31st. I've had mixed experiences with Greyhound...mostly on the way back to Toronto.....but the bus ride is fine as is.
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