Escorted Tours Canada
Language: English and French
Currency: Canadian Dollar
Time Zone: There are six key time zones across Canada. The furthest point East of Canada (Newfoundland) is GMT-3.5, the furthest time zone westerly is GMT-8.
Tipping: A standard tip in a restaurant across Canada is 15%, it is rare that it will be included in the bill.
Canada - an introduction
If you're looking for a holiday with a difference then Canada escorted tours are most definitely for you especially if you don't mind travelling long haul. Not many people know this, but Canada is actually the second largest country in the world and you cannot fail to be impressed by the diverse landscapes of snow-capped mountains and beautiful National Parks all waiting to be explored once you land. With so much to see and do on escorted tours Canada from mist-covered seascapes and vibrant cities all vying for your attention, you'll even forget that it's cold!
As this country is huge in size, careful planning is required when taking escorted tours to Canada to ensure you get to see all the very best sights. A visit to Banff and Jasper National Parks should feature high in your itinerary as the scenery here is absolutely stunning. There's also an abundance of wildlife and the area is perfect for bird-watching so do take a camera or binoculars so you don't miss a thing. Both parks offer a diverse range of activities such as biking, climbing, hiking and much more so you can keep fit whilst exploring at the same time. Jasper National Park is also home to the magnificent Columbia Icefields, one of the only Icefields in the world that is accessible by road.
Canada is home to some of the best cities in the world and the first stop on your list should be Toronto which is surprisingly often mistaken as being the capital city. Aside from this confusion, climb to the top of the CN Tower, enjoy the amazing views whilst sipping a cocktail or two in the Roof Lounge. Take to the ice in the Harbourfront Centre or get back to nature by visiting Toronto's Islands where you can literally eat your way around the world from dim sum in Lai Wah Heen to ice-cream from La Paloma – lots to tickle those taste-buds that's for sure!
For those who do not know, Ottawa is actually Canada's capital and is famous for its amazing collection of museums from the extremely modern Museum of Civilization to the historically beautiful Museum of Nature. The nation's capital is brimming with different cultures and this has a positive effect on the cuisines available. Here you can try the dynamic flavours from Africa, France, the Caribbean or Eastern Europe without having to leave Canada. Just make sure you don't leave Ottawa without skating on The Rideau Canal which freezes over in winter and becomes one of the largest skating rinks in the world.
Canada escorted tours typically include; return flights plus coach travel when you arrive, hotel accommodation in a good standard hotel and a variety of included or optional excursions so you can really see the best of the resort you're visiting. Meals are not always included so don't be surprised if you discover the board basis to be room only but this shouldn't disappoint as it allows you to sample local delicacies and the food on offer is usually of great value.
Things to do
Canada certainly lives up to its reputation of being the second largest country in the world, so when you take escorted tours here you will find an abundance of things to do and places to visit. Let us inspire you with this:
A province located on the eastern coast, Québec has a large French speaking population and is a popular destination throughout the year. The winter months tend to attract a high number of visitors due to its easy access to the nearby ski slopes and the summer is busy because of the wide variety of things to see and do. Whilst in Québec, visit the Parliament building, Québec Castle and the Old Town as well as exploring the Castle that dominates the city skyline.
Toronto and The Niagara Falls
The largest city in Canada and located on the shore of Lake Ontario, Toronto is a relatively modern city. A major attraction for visitors is the CN Tower which reaches far above the other buildings in the Toronto skyline. From Toronto you are in easy driving distance of the Niagara Falls, famous across the world, and viewable from both America and Canada.
A coastal seaport in British Columbia, Vancouver is a metropolitan city on the western coast of Canada. Whilst in Vancouver, why not take a harbour cruise and enjoy the sights? Or perhaps visit Stanley Park, take a trip to visit Granville Island, explore downtown, take a trip on a cable car to the top of Grouse Mountain or ride on the Rocky Mountaineer Train.
What is a visit to Canada without seeing the world-famous Rocky Mountains? There are four national parks located within the Canadian Rocky Mountain Peaks; Banff, Kootenay, Jasper and Yoho. Together these parks are known as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and consist of unique landscapes, peaks, glaciers, waterfalls, lakes, caves and canyons - you won't be left disappointed!
Thinking of travelling to Canada? Check out the average temperatures for when you plan to visit courtesy of BBC Weather
Tips & Advice
To help you have an enjoyable holiday in the Canada, take a look at these useful tips and advice provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO):
Health and Travel Insurance
When travelling to Canada, ensure you have comprehensive travel insurance and accessible funds which can cover the cost of repatriation and any medical treatment abroad should it be necessary.
Like with any holiday, you should take reasonable precautions that will protect yourself from petty crime. Never leave your luggage or handbag unattended. Thieves often target hotels, therefore be sure to secure your valuables and your passport in a hotel safe. Before you head off on your holiday, make sure you leave photocopies of important documents with family or friends in the UK. Always try to keep a photocopy of your passport with you for ID.
Should you need to contact the police call 911. Calling the emergency services is free from a public pay phone. If you accidently lose your passport, make sure you contact the Consulate or British High Commission immediately.
Local Laws and Customs
Don't attempt to bring animal, meats or dairy products into Canada without declaring them at customs. Banned food products will be confiscated and could lead to you being fined.
Any visits to farms must be declared within 14 days of arriving. .
Although legal in the UK, the plant Qhat (Khat), is illegal in Canada. Never attempt to bring it into Canada, penalties for doing so may include imprisonment for up to 10 years.
Usually British Citizens don't need a visa when visiting Canada for short periods. If you intend to travel to Canada for a longer period or have a different type of British nationality you will need to check the various entry requirements by contacting the Canadian High Commission. When you arrive in the country, you must be able to show you have enough funding to support yourself for the duration of your stay.
If you are unsure about whether you will be allowed to enter Canada, for example, if you possess a criminal record, check the Canadian Citizenship and Immigration website and with the Canadian High Commission before travelling.
Your passport must be valid for the entire duration of your stay. No additional period of validity is required beyond the travel dates.
British Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are also accepted for entry, airside transit and for exits from Canada.
If you are travelling with a child or children, where only one parent is present, you should carry a consent letter from the non-travelling parent. Immigration officers do have permission to question children using simple and appropriate language in order to establish if there should be any concerns about child abduction.
Any other nationality looking to visit Canada must contact the local embassy to check visa requirements.
For further information about Canada, you can visit the tourist board website here