All posts filed under: North America

Toronto Cafes you Need to Check Out

There’s nothing like sipping a steamy latte on a lazy Sunday afternoon as you casually people watch or read your favorite book. ¬†This is starting to become a weekend tradition of mine so I’m sharing some of my favorite spots ūüôā Colette A beautiful Parisian inspired cafe right next to the Thompson Hotel on King and Portland. Colette boasts a bakery, bar, and lounge all cleverly divided with different atmospheres and decor. Aside form grabbing a cup of coffee served in a delicate porcelain white cup, you’ll want to try their brunch menu which includes classics like Eggs Benedict on a croissant or their Lemon Ricotta Pancakes. NEO Coffee Bar If you enjoy Japanese desserts, you will LOVE this place. NEO makes their desserts and coffees in house. You can watch the pastry chef decorate freshly baked green tea swiss rolls as you sip on your matcha latte. The design of the cafe is also very Japan-esque – clean cut and simple. Field Trip Cafe Just west of Ossington is a a humble little cafe …

V-day in Toronto

The moment New Years Eve activity wraps up, retail stores are suddenly decked out in pink and red hearts and boxes of chocolates wrapped in delicate bows. ¬†Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be the cheesy and cliche roses and fancy dinner. ¬†Make it fun this year with your significant other or your girl friends with a unique experience! Sweet Tooth Duo What’s more thoughtful than buying your sweetheart a box of chocolates? Making them together! Toronto offers some fun courses on making your favorite confectionaries from chocoalte to french macarons. ¬†In fact, this would be a perfect girls night out option too for the single ladies. Purdy’s Truffle Making Class Le Dolci’s Cupcake making or Parisian Macaron class Artistic Couples This is a great opportunity to get creative with paint cafes! They offer classes or free style options. Just purchase a canvas, and you have access to all the paint and tools needed to create your masterpiece. They usually have a cafe or bar in the lounge as well, so you can sip on your …

2016 Winterlicious Top Picks

Between Jan 29 – Feb 11, enjoy a 3 course meal for a fixed price. This is a great chance to try out the plethora of dining options in Toronto. Also a great opportunity to hit up your coveted list of fancy restaurants that you would normally need to sacrifice a paycheck to entertain¬†your tastebuds. ¬†Here are my personal favorites based on past experience. Canoe –¬†Contemporary Canadian. ¬†$28 Lunch // $45 Dinner One of the most highly requested restaurants for Winterlicious/Summerlious, Canoe sits on top of the TD building on the 54th floor. Soak in the bird’s eye view of Toronto as you dine, or better yet, come during sunset for a extra special touch to your meal. The service is excellent and each dish is carefully crafted together like a work of art. Be prepared to experience a variety of unusual textures and tastes that Canoe aims to incorporate in all its seasonal dishes. Where: 66 King Street West, 54th Floor (TD Tower) Estiatorio Volos¬†– Modern Greek. ¬†$23 Lunch // $35 Dinner This is …

Road to Hana

Driving to Hana is one of the most popular things to do in Maui. It is a one day mission as there is only one route that will take you to Hana. The bar was set pretty high as everyone we spoke to raved about the amazing scenery and beautiful waterfalls and bamboo forests to behold. ¬†Along the way you will see very lush rainforest-like terrains, scattered fruit stands and¬†hiking paths. One’uli is a black sand beach which is a pretty interesting stop if you have never seen one before Some food stands to serve hungry drivers about halfway to Hana. Arguably the most interesting thing on the drive is Kipahulu National Park where you can hike to see the ‘Ohe’O Gulch and the grand finale which is taking the Pipiwai trail to see the 400 foot Waimoku waterfall. ¬† The hike to Waimoku is a fairly easy 2.5mile trip one way. ¬†You will see a lot of interesting landmarks along the way including some pineapple trees and this one tree that has trees growing …

Sunrise on top of Haleakala

At every destination you will be a told a list of “must-do” things. Sometimes those turn out to be tourist traps, other times you walk away with a glorious memory. Sunrise at Haleakala was definitely the latter. This is a trip that is not for the faint of heart. There is a price to pay and I’m not talking about the $15 entrance fee into the summit. Be prepared to wake up at 3am dressed in insanely un-Hawaiian winter clothes and drive up a windy road up to the summit in a half asleep daze. Be prepared to stand up to some of the windiest conditions 10,000 feet above ground that will leave your face and hands stiff from waiting in anticipation for the sun to peek above the horizon. All of this sounds pretty awful for a trip that promised nothing but bikinis and short shorts 24/7, but let me tell you… Haleakala is a breath taking experience and you will regret nothing. When we reached the top, it was still very early and …

Paradise Island, Maui

Maui is the all encompassing definition of island life – pristine beaches, tropical palm trees and glorious sunsets. Although K & I planned a good handful of fun activities like surfing and snorkeling, we were determined to slip right into the chill lifestyle of Mauians for the duration of our one week excape. ¬†Maui is known for a few must-eat food items: Macadamia nuts, tropical fruits, and Kona coffee. ¬†On our first day, we had a delicious hearty breakfast made with local ingredients at Leoda’s Kitchen & Pie Shop. ¬†I had their Banana Pancakes which was like eating the best banana bread in breakfast form. ¬†K had their house Frittata and a side of Coconut French Toast drizzled in condensed milk. ¬†Two thumbs up for this place! After breakfast we set off to explore the island by driving along the highway that hugs that parameter of Maui. Almost every strip of the drive was filled with views of the dazzling ocean and mighty mountains in the background. There are plenty of spots for scenic views. …

Cheap and Cheerful – Ideas for getting out of the City during the Holidays

Everyone can appreciate a breather from the daily grind during the Holidays when stress levels can run high. ¬†If booking expensive flights and hotels during the holidays is not your cup of tea, here are some ideas for having fun in and around Toronto without breaking the bank. Montreal City A 6 hour drive East of 6ix, Montreal is a Toronto road trip favorite and there’s plenty of reason why you should consider crossing over to Quebec to join in some winter favorites. Enjoy a culinary experience at the Nordic Terrace under a yurt! Let the Foodlab grace your senses with a eclectic blend of digital and nomadic traditions. Sample smoked fish, grog, hot wine, cheese and more! ¬†December-February : Tuesday to Friday – 5pm to 10pm Ready to get your party on? ¬†Buckle up and join one of the biggest winter music sensations – Igloofest! ¬†This outdoor festival runs from January 16 – Feb 8, 2015. ¬†Get your tickets here. Montreal has a great selection of¬†bars. ¬†Check out favorites like Lo√Įc, Datcha¬†and Chez Dallaire¬† …

10 Fun Things to do in November [Toronto]

Now that I am back in Toronto, it’s hit me that there are an overwhelming amount of events, concerts, and activities to do in the city. I looked into what was happening in the month of November and thought I’d share¬†some interesting ones with my readers. Concerts/Shows/Exhibits The Weeknd Scarborough born multi-platinum selling artist returns home with The Madness Fall Tour. Nov 3 – 5 at the Air Canada Center Buy Tickets Sleeping Beauty on Ice Watch elegant skaters dance to the classic fairytale on ice Nov 20 – 21 at the Sony Center for the Performing Arts Buy Tickets Calvacade of Lights Bundle up and head outside to watch fireworks, the lighting of the Christmas Tree and free performances Nov 28 at Nathan Philips Square More Info Andy Warhol Revisited A¬†Toronto Warhol exhibition of iconic paintings and prints opening Canada Day. ¬†The exhibition includes over 120 works from Revolver Gallery. Tues – Sun 10am – 8pm Buy Tickets Getting into the Spirit Santa Clause Parade Gather in the heart of Toronto to watch the …

Canadian Rockies: The Ultimate Road Trip [Part 2]

Part 2 of Kittie and Samiha’s Rockies experience in Canada! ¬†Here’s Part 1 in case you missed it. Rockies Heli Canada We also made a stop and did a helicopter ride over the mountains with Rockies Heli Canada! It was a 20-minute ride called the ‚Äú6 Glaciers Tour‚ÄĚ and was simply breathtaking. The views were incredible and it feels completely different when you‚Äôre up at over 9,000 ft! We flew over 6 different glaciers and through the valleys, but also over the Cline River. The road you see below there is the David Thompson Hwy, which is another incredible drive that takes you to Edmonton, instead of Banff. Off the David Thompson Hwy and along the Cline River, we stopped near the Kootenay Plains and had a little picnic. It was the perfect spot and gave us a moment to sit, relax and enjoy the surrounding scenery. Banff Banff is home to the famous Lake Louise, but rarely do people talk about Moraine Lake, which is just a few minutes drive away. Both are beautiful …

Canadian Rockies: The Ultimate Road Trip [Part 1]

Today¬†I have a special guest post from fellow Excapers Kittie and Samiha! ¬†If you¬†enjoyed my previous post on my Yosemite trip, you’ll love what these two travelers have in store for you on their Rockies experience! Living in Canada, we‚Äôve all heard about the Rockies, but few of us rarely get the chance to see them in person. Until you‚Äôre there, you wouldn‚Äôt believe the grandeur of it all. You feel like a tiny speck in the universe against the backdrops of these gorgeous and majestic mountains. We took the ultimate road trip through the towering mountains of British Columbia and Alberta, accumulating in: +2,500 km (+32 hrs) of driving, 8 cup noodles, 1 heli-tour, 0 grizzly bears, 10 lakes and probably over 100 mountains. Squamish & Whistler Our first stop was driving up through the popular Sea-to-Sky Highway to Squamish and Whistler, BC to visit the Sea-to-Sky Gondola and Whistler Village‚Äôs PEAK 2 PEAK gondola. It was a test of acrophobia (fear of heights) that day, but the views were definitely worth every bit! …