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Little.Kopit

Travel Canada

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This is just to introduce myself.

I go by Little.Kopit. Lord knows why I can have a two word name.

My forte in helping people is travel in Canada, especially Atlantic Canada.

Ok, what is Atlantic Canada - Newfoundland & Labrador, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island & New Brunswick

atlanticcanadamap-16.jpg

Re. the rest of the country, I've also lived in Quebec & Ontario and have only two provinces I've not slept in. It's very useful to use http://www.google.ca/ the same way you use google for AU domain. You get to what you want faster.

Of course, I answer all those border, pet........ questions all over Canada.

:)

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I appreciate the introduction. We are traveling from Alabama to the Maritimes - New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and PEI. We don't have a firm itinerary yet, except that I do want to go to Fundy Park to see the tides. Any tips as far as roads to avoid in our motorhome, or tips will be great. We'll be arriving early June this year (2012) for 16 days in country.

Waynbe

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Little Kopit - good to see you posting here.

For the rest of you - Little Kopit is a wealth of information about Eastern Canada and the Maratimes. If any of you have any questions at all about that area in particular and things Canadian in general, she can provide definitive answers and information.

GM

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We live in New Port Richey, Florida and are preparing for a July 5, 2012 departure for Nova Scotia and we would luv to avoid the New Jersey/New York area.

Anyone have any thoughts-- and/or any other suggestions?

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I am now in Nova Scotia, so perhaps I can answer a few of your questions. I have just come up from Alabama. Although it would be perhaps just a little out of your way, if you want to avoid New York/New Jersey (and the rest of the megalopolis starting with Richmond Va), I would suggest you come up I-75 to I-81 to I-78 to I-287 to I-84 and then over to I-95. You get some hills that way, but you avoid all of the big cities. There are some toll roads, but not nearly as many as there are going straight up I-95.

As for what you can bring into Canada, check out the CBSA website. They are pretty thorough. We followed what we found there, and we had no problems at all at the border. We had maybe a 15 minute wait - since the agent took our passports and disappeared, I assumed he was checking us out. He came on board, asked a few questions, looked around a bit, and that was it. Thorough, efficient, and pleasant.

I have found a couple of tips I was going to post elsewhere, but I can just post them here. The major roads in New Brunswich and Nova Scotia are at least as good as the US roads. Our motorhome is 12'6" high, and we have had no problems with low overpasses. Most overpasses here are at least 4.3 meters high (roughly 14 feet). That said, things can change very quickly when you get off the main roads. I would stay on the main roads with your RV and explore the side roads with your toad. I simply set my GPS to show metric and the speed limits and the distances were no problem. You might want to add a metric converter app to your iPad or smart phone, though.

There are two things I have found about the Canadian main roads, at least in this part of Canada. I have not found the same to be true in Ontario or Quebec provinces (at least, the portions I have traveled). First of all, there are a LOT of hills here, and the grades can be pretty steep. I have had no problem with my motorhome, but you will want to be sure your motorhome's radiator is clean and the cooling system is working its best. Second, the services are few and far between. So far, I have not found anything comparable to our rest areas. If you need a rest, you'll have to get off the highway at an exit. But, again, the services that can handle an RV are few and far between so plan ahead. I would recommend you never let your fuel tank get below half full. Oh, and be prepared for sticker shock. I paid the equivalent of $4.65 per gallon for diesel today (6/10/12). I paid $3.69 for diesel when I left home (Alabama) last week.

This has been a trip we have dreamed of. We have about 2 more weeks here in the Maritimes. I would say the scenery ranges from beautiful to absolutely breath-taking. I'm having a ball, and I hope you will, too.

Wayne

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Another practical driving tip I forgot to mention in my previous post. Unlike many places in the States, when you see a curve posted for, say 45 k/ph, they mean it. The posted speed on curves is definitely a maximum safe speed for your RV, and even for your toad.

Yesterday we were in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Wonderful, beautiful place. The roads are mostly good, very curvy but mostly good, but I would not bring a RV into the park that is larger than 24 feet. Besides, you will want to stop often on the trip around the park (about 68 miles from tip to tip) to take in the breath-taking scenery. For the ones coming here in July, check out the whale watching in Pleasant Bay. There are, of course, other places, but you will find the prices in Pleasant Bay somewhat cheaper and the service very good. If you are hungry, a seafood meal at the Rusty Anchor is delightful - and you might even see whales playing off shore while you sit on the patio and enjoy your meal.

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Travel to the Fortress of Louisbourg in Cape Breton via the St. Peters highway and plan to spend a day at the fortress. When you leave Louisbourg travel around the Cabot Trail east to west and don't try to rush the trip, allow 3-4 days in Cape Breton. As mentioned above, there are many hills, you will use your brakes quite often even with an engine or transmission braking system. Visit the Alexander Graham Bell Museum in Baddeck if the history of the telephone or the history of aviation interests you. If you can avoid rain, you are certain to enjoy this area.

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I second what capearc said. I would leave your RV at the campground and enjoy the sights via car. The hills in the Cape Breton National Park are quite literally 12% and 13% grades. But absolutely worth the drive. Plan more than one day for the 185 miles of that whole Cabot Trail if you can. If it's not raining, you'll want to spend time at each of the many pull-offs to be blown away by the view.

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I have heard that there is a Walmart that allows overnite guests in Montreal and that is very near the public transportation, just off the motorway. A lot to take in. but, sound familiar?

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