A Weekend in Canada


We took a short drive up over the Canadian border this past weekend.  When one considers the fact that Canada is only a few hours away – at least, a few hours from New Hampshire – it’s rather strange that it feels so far.  After this weekend, I plan to make it up there more often.

Obviously, Canada is a big country, so when visiting you have to pick a location.  This weekend we managed to sneak in a quick trip to both Montreal and Ottawa, both of which are absolutely beautiful locations – and most importantly, both worthy of many future visits.  The graffiti in Montreal is mind-blowing, and Ottawa is a stunning capitol.

Before I go, I’ll leave you all with some pictures:


photo 3

photo 2

photo 1






22 thoughts on “A Weekend in Canada

  1. it is amazing how different country separated by an imaginary line of a border can see such a change in attitude and style. As a bored watcher of those border control programmes it amazes me how much veiled hate there is from the Canadian guard to you Americans, which may explain why the rest of the world feels it from your border force.

  2. I’ve been to Ottawa twice, and to many other parts of and cities in Canada many times. To date – four provinces, including the cities of: Toronto, Windsor (Ont), Ottawa, Vancouver, Victoria (BC), Winnipeg (Man.), and Hull (Quebec). It’s always a great country to visit – I’m glad you had a good time!

    • I definitely want to make it out to Toronto and BC at some point. The marked difference between just Ontario and Quebec is interesting; I get the sense that western Canada is similarly unique.

  3. Living in Michigan – Toronto is a easy six hour drive (hint: do NOT cross the border at Detroit, go via Port Huron-Sarnia). It’s harder than it used to be because of the insane border laws now. Toronto is like I’ve always imagined New York to be but cleaner and safer (and a bit smaller) – great theater, great shopping, great restaurants, museums, lots to do, even professional sports teams (if you’re into that). I didn’t see much of Vancouver when I was there, but Victoria BC was great – it’s so British. Seriously, all the ideas one has about England from Agatha Christie novels and British costume drama? That’s Victoria. the flower gardens, and tea shops, and everything – it’s just fantastic. I was really, really young when I was in Winnipeg, so I don’t remember it well and I’d like to go back (same for BC). The only time I’ve spent in Quebec I was literally lost there – I drove to Hull from Ottawa to go to the Civilization museum, which is fantastic btw, and got totally lost on my way back. But people were nice and I got to my friend’s house in suburban Ottawa eventually.

    • Thanks for all of the great tips, I will keep all of this in mind for future trips up there. I look forward to checking out BC at some point!

      Also, before I forget – so crossing the border at Detroit is a time consuming affair, I take it?

      • From where I grew up, and am living again (aarggh), it makes no sense to go to Canada via Detroit. That’s actually going out of your way to the South (SE). Yeah, I know it seems weird – but the Ontario Peninsula is actually south of parts of Michigan. From where I currently live – Toronto is almost due East (and my latitude is virtually the same as Toronto’s). But even without that – Detroit’s two border crossings are s…l…o…w and the border guards are rude. Port Huron-Sarnia is much nicer (and the drive via London to Toronto is quite pleasant).

  4. Oh – and I forgot to say, Canada has as much variety between provinces as the US has between states. I’d love to visit Eastern Canada sometime, especially as I have an aunt living in PEI. One major difference though is Canada, with a few notable exceptions is an URBAN country – most people live in, or near, the major cities. The US, despite all publicity to the contrary, is still a rural country – with most people living in rural or semi-rural areas.

    • That’s an interesting insight. I can’t yet speak for Canada – not enough experience – but that is certainly true of the US. Although the big cities are packed to the brim, there are for more rural locations/towns/populations than urban ones.

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