Thursday, July 16, 2009

Travel Destinations in Our Own Backyard

The other day, I happened upon a web banner for the "Locals Know" campaign. Since I was, at the time, planning a mini vacation to Toronto, I clicked the link to check out what the website has to offer. The main messaging of the website urges Canadians to "Discover the Canada you don't know." Is that a challenge, Canadian Tourism Commission? As their press release for the campaign explains, they aim to inspire Canadians to explore Canada's "surprises and secrets" such as "desert-like dunes in the middle of the country", "volcanoes on the verge of the Pacific", and "tropic-like waters within hours of vibrant cities." Tell me more!

Visitors to are encouraged to post their own "spots" - they must be in Canada and they should be places that "most people have never heard of." As I perused through the photos, I noticed that there were in fact intriguing Canadian hot spots that I was unaware of. For example, check out this photo of beautiful turquoise water. Can you believe that this is an Ontario destination? Crazy!

The website also boasts travel deals from "partners" of the campaign. Most of the deals here in Ottawa are care of Ottawa Tourism. The great thing about Ottawa is that, as Canada's Capital, there are countless tourist attractions. That said, these attractions are not just for tourists! People come from miles around to see our great museums, check out the Byward Market or Parliament Hill, attend Bluesfest or the Jazz Festival or the Casino du Lac-Leamy Sound of Light festival... I could go on forever! What's your favourite Ottawa attraction or activity? (My favourite attraction is Saunder's Farm at Halloween-time, located just outside of the city in Munster.)

Although I didn't end up finding any deals to take advantage of for my upcoming trip, I did find that the site was inspiring in that it reminded me that you don't need an expensive plane ticket to experience something new and exciting!