Canada Journals

Moving about in Canada

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A March 2010 trip to Canada by MagdaDH_AlexH

Leaving Nanaimo Photo, Vancouver Island, British Columbia More Photos
Quote: The collection of articles and reviews that deal with various transportation options in Canada
The dome car Photo, Canada, North America
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Canada has a vast land area (it is after all, the second biggest country in the world) but the routes for traveling across it are somewhat limited by geography, climate and distribution of the population (and with the population, the road and rail infrastructure).Any route for traveling across Canada can be split into three main sections: the eastern, the middle and the western. The middle section is the longest and in many way the easiest to decide, as there are relatively fewest options. The eastern and western sections are more complicated as many detours and alternative options are possible.Road or rail?Before you start to plot the route, you need to...Read More
Our
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Rent a Wreck is a budget car rental company that operates on a franchise basis in the US, Canada, Scandinavia and Iceland. In addition to renting cars they also offer second hand vehicle sales. The company motto is "Don't Let the Name Fool You".We were recommended Rent-a-Wreck by a fellow Brit we met on Vancouver Island and when we decided to hire a car for a week towards the end of our stay, and found out that as it was a "Long Weekend" (something equivalent to our Bank Holiday Monday) and thus many high-street rental companies locally were closed. I did a little price research on the Internet and found out that not only they were open, but they also seemed to have significantly cheaper r...Read More
Leaving Nanaimo Photo, Vancouver Island, British Columbia
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Vancouver Island is a large island off the coast of British Columbia, not far from Vancouver city. Most travellers will be arriving there from Vancouver or its environs (although it's also possible to travel to the island from the US). This article covers the options for travelling to Vancouver Island from mainland Canada.The island is 270 miles long (stretching roughly along the NW-SE axis) and approximately 70 miles wide, although the spine of the island is mountainous while the coast often indented and thus the actual road distances are much larger. The principal way of travelling to Vancouver Island is by using the services of BC Ferries. Vancouver has two ferry terminals, ...Read More
The dome car Photo, Canada, North America
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One can argue that Canada, as a single national entity, was created as much by the construction of the railways as by any Acts of the British parliament. These railways originally carried people as much as cargo and provided cultural as well as economic links between various parts of this vast country. Alas, no more - or, nearly no more.Nowadays, Via Rail deals with what's left of passenger services on the vast Canadian National rail network, used mostly for (and ruthlessly prioritising) freight trains. Canadian Pacific, which originally opened the Rockies to the visitors, and arguably created tourism in Canada, has no passenger service left at all, with the Rocky ...Read More

Les Escoumins to the Halifax Train

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Waiting for the train at Riviere du Loup Photo, Quebec, Canada
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We leave Les Escoumins (where we had the most enjoyable three days including wonderfully sunny Easter weekend graced with sightings of belugas and fin back whales) on a rainy Easter Monday, by a crowded bus. Our lovely host Mannu sees us off at the bust station and persuades the bus driver to let us off at the turn for the Saint Simeon ferry rather than at the normal stops a couple of kilometres up the road. The bus is packed with people going back to Quebec and Montreal after Easter at home. In Tadoussac it gets so busy that some people need to stand. As the bus crosses he Saguenay fjord on the small car ferry, the grey skies start to clear and some blue appears in the south and over the...Read More

FlyThomasCook: you get what you pay for

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Waiting for the plain at Glasgow Photo, Scotland, United Kingdom
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We have now left the UK - in fact, left Europe, and as I am writing it we are airborne, on the way to Canada on-board a Thomas Cook plane. Eeeek. I have expected bad (considering the prices we paid one should not expect much) but this flight makes the concept of piling them high and selling cheap more real than any previous flight I have been on. Possibly with the exception of now departed Flyglobespan journey to Portugal. And this is from a person who normally flies Ryanair everywhere. I do need to be honest though, and say what's good and what's bad. The main Good Thing is the price: we paid less than 150GBP one way, all inclusive, and this has to be good fro travelling well ...Read More

Public Transport in Toronto

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Toronto subway entrance Photo, Canada, North America
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Public transport in Toronto is surprisingly good and much better than what I expected of a North American city. The system is completely integrated and easy to understand and use. Essentially, it consists of a thick network of buses supplemented with trams (street-cars) combined with a three-line underground (subway) system. There are also some local trains (GO trains) which are mostly for commuters and a typical visitor will not find much occasion to use them. Each single one way journey on the bus/subway system costs 3 CAD, and in some cases you need to obtain what is called "a transfer" to be able to change vehicles, in others the transfer is seamlessly automatic, without a ...Read More

Vancouver Airport

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Vancouver Airport Photo, Vancouver, British Columbia
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Vancouver airport (YVR) is the main airport that serves western Canada and it serves major international and Canadian destinations as well as many local and regional airports. The airport is located in the southern area of the city and is easily accessible by public transport, car or taxi. The public transport connection is provided by the new Canada Line of Vancouver's Sky Train (which is actually an underground train for a substantial part of this line). It takes approximately 30 to 45 minutes to get to the airport by car (this varies vastly depending on traffic and will be much longer in the rush hour) from central Vancouver areas and around 1 hour by public transport. A taxi cost aroun...Read More