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The Atlantic Maritime coast of Canada extending from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick in the south to Labrador and Newfoundland in the north features some of the most pristine coastal landscapes in the world, along with historic towns, fishing villages and an abundance of marine life and native fauna.
Maxxim Vacations (tel. 800/567-6666; www.maxximvacations.com) offers a selection of self drive and escorted tours to some of the most scenic and stunning locations in Canada, especially around the Atlantic Maritime region.
The "Maritime Magic" 10-night self-drive touring vacation guides you through some of Canada's most picturesque locations, taking in vibrant cities, coastal towns, sandy beaches, unique coastline and fishing villages and culminating in one of the most scenic drives in the world, the Cabot Trail. The package includes round-trip airfare to Halifax, 10 nights accommodations in selected hotels, Bed and Breakfasts or country inns, 10-day mid-size car rental with unlimited mileage, Halifax Gray Line City Tour, a lobster supper on Prince Edward Island and admission to Pier 21 national historic site, Hopewell Rocks and the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic. Visit Halifax, Lunenburg, Annapolis Royal, Saint John, Moncton and Charlottetown. With daily Departures from May 1 to October 31, 2006, this trip is priced from $1,549 from Atlanta, $1,539 from Boston, $1,649 from Chicago or New York, $1,659 from Miami or $1,729 from Los Angeles.
The "Quaint and Quiet Country Inns" seven-night self drive vacation takes you through Nova Scotia's coastal communities as you drive the Lighthouse Route on the South Shore, and the Evangeline Trail along the Fundy Coast. Visit the communities of Annapolis Royal, Wolfville, Digby and Lunenburg. The trip includes round-trip airfare to Halifax, seven-nights' accommodation at selected Bed and Breakfasts and Country Inns, seven-day midsize car rental with unlimited mileage, Halifax Gray Line City tour and admission to Grand-Pre, Pier 21 and Fort Anne (all national historic sites) and the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic. There are daily Departures from May 1 to October 31, 2006 and the package costs $1,199 from Atlanta, $1,189 from Boston, $1,289 from Chicago, $1,299 from Miami or New York and $1,369 from Los Angeles.
The Maxxim "Whale Study Week" is an opportunity to participate in actual whale research. For groups with a special interest in marine mammal biology, special evening presentations on marine mammal entrapment research, whale biology, dolphin intelligence, whale distribution, and general marine ecology are included. The program is suitable for any nature enthusiast who is interested in whales and includes round-trip airfare to St. John's, all ground transportation (including airport transfers), six-nights' accommodations, breakfast and lunch daily, two group dinners, whale watching from both boats (three-days) and land (two days), assisting the local coast guard with a whale census and acoustic research, the services of an experienced naturalist guide or whale researcher. Expect to see marine birds, humpback and minke whales but you may also be fortunate enough to encounter dolphins and fin whales. This trip is priced from $2,549 from Boston, New York or Atlanta, $2,589 from Chicago, $2,649 from Los Angeles and $2,769 from Miami.
Caravan Tours (tel. 800/227-2826; www.caravantours.com) features an eight-day Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island land-only tour that is priced from $895 per person based on double occupancy. The trip starts in Halifax and includes airport transfers, seven-nights' accommodation (two in Halifax, two on Prince Edward Island, two in Baddeck, Cape Breton and one in Dundee, Cape Breton), 13 meals, and sightseeing. Visit Halifax, Peggy's Cove, Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton, the Cabot Trail and the Fortress of Louisburg. Highlights include whale watching, the French-speaking village of Chéticamp, the Flowerpot Rocks at Hopewell Cape, and Jourimain National Wildlife area. 2006 departure dates are May 15, 22 and 29, June 5, 12, 19 and 26 and October 2 and 9, 2006. July, August and September weekly departures cost an additional $100.
Freshtracks (tel.800/667-4744; www.freshtracks.ca) offers several independent packages to help you experience the best of the east. The self-drive "Tides and Parks of Atlantic Canada" tour is for those adventurers who have the time and would like to see all four of the Maritime provinces. The trip includes accommodation for 19 nights (two nights each in Halifax, St. John's, Digby, Baddeck, Charlottetown and Corner Brook, one each in Twillingate, Gander, Moncton, Fredericton, Bridgewater, Sydney and Clarenville. Also featured are wildlife viewing at Gros Morne National Park, ferry passages from North Sydney, Nova Scotia to Channel-Port-aux-Basques, Newfoundland and from Argentia, Newfoundland to North Sydney, (car and passenger), a personalized Canada roadbook, local sightseeing and attractions, daily itinerary highlights, provincial maps with city guides, hotel vouchers, customized day-by-day routing maps and provincial Maritime taxes. Highlights of this Canada holiday include Prince Edward Island, Cape Breton, the Bras d'Or Lake, Cabot Trail and Newfoundland's magnificent coastline, where you'll have the opportunity to see whales and massive icebergs. Departures are from Halifax every Tuesday and Sunday throughout the summer (June 6 to August 27, 2006) and the tour is priced at $1,695 per person based on dual occupancy. For an additional $285, participate in additional activities including a seven-hour Peggy's Cove Express boat tour, a four-hour whale watching and wildlife tour on Brier Island, three hour sea kayaking at P.E.I. National Park and a two-hour wildlife viewing cruise at Twillingate. Airfare to Halifax, airport transfers and car rental is additional, but Freshtracks can arrange your car rental for you.
The cycling enthusiast will find the Atlantic coastline of Canada a paradise. If you are keen to cycle and sleep under the stars but would prefer doing it in a group, Atlantic Canada Cycling (tel. 888/879-2453; www.atlanticcanadacycling.com) runs a variety of tours from three to ten-days throughout the summer and early fall. These are camping adventures but they can also assist you with cabins or Bed and Breakfast accommodation (for additional cost). They provide a comprehensive ride guide -- all about what you will see on route- history, culture, trivia, camping facilities, luggage transportation, bike mechanic assistance, support vehicles for breakdowns or tired riders, daily route maps and a tour escort. You must supply your own tent and sleeping bag. Their Newfoundland Bicycle Tour Deer Lake, Trout River, Rocky Harbour, Gros Morne National Park, Cow Head, Hawke's Bay, St. Barbe, Labrador, Pistolet Bay, St. Lunaire and St. Anthony) is from June 24 to July 3, 2006 and is priced at $755 per person if you book by May 24, 2006 or $844 is you pay after that date. The Cabot Trail Bicycle Tour (Baddeck, Ingonish and Chéticamp) is from September 2 to 4, 2006 is priced at $119 before August 2 and $135 after that date. The Nova Scotia Bicycle Tour visiting Church Point, Annapolis Royal, Aylesfor, Lunenburg, Liverpool, Shelburne, Barrington and Yarmouth is from August 16 to 25, 2006. It is priced at $640 per person if you pay by July 16, 2006 or $728 after that date. All taxes are included and non-Canadians are eligible for a partial rebate of the tax.