Into the Blue…Mountains

…Mountains, that is. Take a bite out of Ontario big apple country

Time was, Collingwood built lake freighters, navy trawlers and ice breakers. It then developed as a winter destination for skiing and eventually became an all season destination for hiking, caving, golfing, paddling and zip lining. Then, from Georgian Bay’s fruit basket, apples became the core of tourism.

What we’ve discovered is, an escape to The Blue Mountains, with its endless outdoor activities and festivals, offers many ways to appreciate and enjoy Ontario’s quintessential fruit: the apple. Continue reading “Into the Blue…Mountains”

The Bordeaux Wine Route

The world of wine swirls around Bordeaux. Bordeaux is a style, a quality, and a symbol of status. The soul of Bordeaux is vested in the newly minted La Cité du Vin. Is it shaped like a decanter? What is it? We ask. In fact, it’s a “non-shape.” It is an abstract representation of the flow of wine pouring into a glass. Sheer brilliance. A magnet for oenophiles and for those simply curious about the alluring and iridescent mica and glass structure, changing colours as it reflects the sun like a glimmering temple nestled on the riverbank. Continue reading “The Bordeaux Wine Route”

For the Love of Soba in Hyogo

With great anticipation I arrive at the impeccable Hoshinoya ryokan in Kyoto, Japan, and head to dinner. Seated in front of the chef’s counter, my host welcomes me and begins to prepare fresh soba noodles, apparently just for me. Humbly checking if all is to my liking, my waitress asks, “Yoroshii desu ka?” as my eyes glaze over and my mind drifts back to a long ago memory…of soba. Continue reading “For the Love of Soba in Hyogo”

Argentine Beef: Pride of the Asado

Argentina has more cattle than people. The “ocean of grass” through which cattle roam across the Pampas region, while endangered, is considered to be one of the richest grazing areas in the world. There is, on average, 10,000 square metres per cow. Naturally, the quality of an animal’s lifestyle and diet affects the quality of its meat. With freedom to exercise, they have less saturated and intramuscular fats, and because of their natural diet of grass, there is more vitamin E, beta-carotene and omega 3- and -6 fatty acids, which regulate fatty lipid absorption, decrease inflammatory processes, reduce cholesterol levels in the blood and improve overall blood circulation. Grass-fed beef also contains twice as much conjugated linoleic acid as grain-fed beef, which has anticancer properties and is proven to reduce cardiovascular disease. Continue reading “Argentine Beef: Pride of the Asado”

California Road Trip: Monterey

“The West is the best. Get here, and we’ll do the rest” – The Doors

There’s no rush here. None. If not for that enviable laid-back California vibe where the pace of life and conversation moves like a sip or two of wine while waves roll up on a quiet shore, then it’s the road that forces us to slow down and Cali-fornicate with that awesome majesty of the golden coast. Highway 1 from Carmel to Big Sur weaves and undulates like the whip of a rhythmic gymnastics ribbon. Awed by the “prophet on the burning shore” of which the Grateful Dead sings, around each bend lies another panorama that I can’t stretch my eyes wide enough to see. An endless sea of sapphire pours out from the horizon and laps the high rocky coves as I veer off the road into the storybook of Esalen. Continue reading “California Road Trip: Monterey”

Family Friendly Travel in Japan

Beyond the temples and the tech, tourists heading to Japan often wonder what there is to do with their children. Well, there’s a lot. Family travel in Japan offers incredible opportunities that are totally unique and so much fun. Here are DINE’s recommendations. Continue reading “Family Friendly Travel in Japan”

International Farmer’s Markets

Food trails and markets have become the tastiest part of any travel experience. They are the places where we can really sink our teeth into a taste of place. Write up a new bucket list of farmer’s markets. Here are some of the most incredible ones to experience. Continue reading “International Farmer’s Markets”

Tree Top Trekking in Stoufville

Kids love to climb. Parents only think they can. That’s why benches along the wooded path are full of parents beaming with pride as they catch their breath, while all the kids frolic above in the trees. No rest for me though, because my son’s rule is I have to catch him. He darts through a network of tunnels, while I crawl after him. He runs up wooden footbridges, scales 8-foot tall hammock nets between tree houses and descends back down slides. It’s no use. He’s too fast. Continue reading “Tree Top Trekking in Stoufville”