Day 1: Australia – – Toronto
Depart on your Air Canada flights from Australia to Toronto. A transfer to the hotel waits upon your arrival. Check into your room and head downstairs for tonight’s welcome drink and orientation meeting with your tour manager. The meeting is scheduled for approximately 7pm.
Day 2: Toronto – Niagara Falls – – Niagara-on-the-Lake – Toronto (B, D)
Your first full day of touring starts on a spectacular note: with a trip to the cascades of Niagara Falls. A heart-pumping boat ride takes you to the foot of the falls, and travellers should prepare to get splashed by the fall’s spray – all a part of this unforgettable experience! Once you have seen the falls up-close, the group travels to nearby Niagara-on-the-Lake for lunch at leisure. This is followed by a wine tasting at a local vineyard before returning to Toronto. There is a welcome dinner tonight to celebrate your arrival in Canada.
Day 3: Toronto – Ottawa (B)
Drive out to the shores of the St. Lawrence River and make a stop in Kingston, Canada’s first capital city. Enjoy lunch in the city at your leisure and explore however you like. Continue to see some of the landmarks around the Thousands Islands region, such as Boldt Castle, the Statue of St. Lawrence, Thousand Islands International Bridge, aboard a scenic cruise. Head to Ottawa upon disembarking and have the evening as free time once you have arrived in the current Canadian capital city.
Day 4: Ottawa (B)
Discover the sights and atmosphere of Ottawa with a guided city tour. Some of the highlights covered on this excursion include Parliament and the National War Memorial. You have free time in the afternoon. Check out the Rideau Canal (and even skate across if you’re visiting during winter!), wander through the stalls of ByWard Market, have a picnic on a grassy patch at Major’s Hill Park, explore the exhibits at a local museum or gallery, or tuck into helpings of local cuisine – syrup- or chocolate-covered Beaver Tails, cheese curd-topped poutine, and Obama cookies.
Optional: Rideau Canal Cruise with Dinner. Head out onto Ottawa’s famous Rideau Canal on a scenic evening cruise. Learn about the canal and its status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to on-board commentary. Dinner at a local restaurant is included once you disembark. Hotel pick-up and drop-off is also included. Tour duration is approximately three hours. Additional cost applies.
Day 5: Ottawa – Quebec City (B, L)
Leave Ottawa behind as the tour travels to Quebec City. This is the only walled city in North America and claims to be the most French city in the world (outside of France, that is!). Before reaching Quebec City there is a stop at a Sugar Shack to sweet tooths can indulge with a range of maple products. A lunch of classic Quebec cuisine is served – including maple syrup and taffy, of course! You will have the opportunity to explore Quebec City’s maze of old-world shops, arcades and quaint cafes upon arrival. The rest of the evening is yours as free time.
Day 6: Old and New Quebec City (B)
Become acquainted with the sights of Quebec City today. See some of the best-known landmarks, including Place Royale, the city’s original settlement with UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Take in one of the oldest churches in North America at Notre-Dame-des-Victoires, and hop into the funicular to Chateau Frontenac at the top of Cape Diamond. Explore the winding lanes of the Old City and take to window shopping (or actual retail therapy) at the boutiques. The afternoon is at your leisure.
Optional: Half-Day Quebec Tour with Lunch. This afternoon excursion sees you travel to Ile d’Orleans to experience the charms of rural Quebec and the stunning scenery around St. Lawrence River. An 18th-century flour mill is the setting for your included lunch. Next it is onto the Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre Shrine, the second-oldest pilgrimage site in North America. While at the shrine you will learn about its history and admire its collection of stained-glass windows, artwork and mosaics. The final stop before arriving back in Quebec City is Montgomery Falls. Tour duration is approximately six hours. Additional cost applies.
Day 7: Quebec City – Montreal (B)
On the agenda today is travelling to Montreal, the largest city in Quebec. Montreal sits on an island within the St. Lawrence River and is named after Mount Royal, the triple-peaked hill that can be found in the heart of the city. There is much to explore upon your arrival, from boundary-pushing art galleries to historic waterfront port buildings, quaint residential areas and a thriving food scene. Travellers with an appetite will love the city’s culinary offering and can seek out samples from any of the incredible patisseries, English-style pubs, old-school Jewish delis and fine-dining restaurants dotted across Montreal.
Day 8: Montreal (B)
A city tour of Montreal sees you take in sights include Jacques Cartier Square, Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal, Place d’Armes and St. Joseph’s Oratory. Head up to viewing points atop Mount Royal to cast your gaze across uninterrupted panoramas of the city. You have the rest of the afternoon to continue sightseeing at your own pace. Some ideas on other things to do in Montreal include meandering through Jean-Talon Market, exploring the habitats at Montreal Biodome, going for a ride on the Grande Roue de Montreal, visiting local museums and galleries, or continue feasting on Montreal specialties such as smoked meats, poutine and craft beers. Reconvene with your fellow travellers for tonight’s group dinner.
Day 9: Montreal – – Saint John (B)
A transfer takes you to the airport for your one-way flight to Saint John on the Bay of Fundy. A hotel transfer will greet you upon arrival. This city is well-known for the Reversing Rapids, and is a great launching pad for exploring New Brunswick. If time allows explore the galleries, architecture and breweries in the city’s downtown, and return to the hotel for this evening’s welcome drink and orientation meeting with your tour manager.
Day 10: Saint John – Bay of Fundy – Prince Edward Island – Charlottetown (B, D)
Explore the Bay of Fundy and New Brunswick area today with an excursion to Hopewell Rocks. These stacks were caused by tidal erosion and their appearance – sandstone formations topped with trees – has earned this site the nickname, ‘Flowerpot Rocks’. Visitors can walk along beach in between the formations during low tide, and even explore some of the caves worn into the rocks. Challenge yourself to pinpoint which of the rocks have been named Lover’s Arch, Dinosaur Rock, Mother-In-Law and ET! Fundy Bay also happens to be where you will find the world’s highest tides; the water levels can be as tall as five-storey buildings at high tide. The group continues to Prince Edward and its capital, Charlottetown, after lunch. Sit down to a welcome dinner with your fellow travellers this evening.
Day 11: Charlottetown (B)
The day starts with a visit to the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and is followed by a walk in the Garden of Hope. Drive to the island’s north coast to stop at the Anne of Green Gables Museum. This rugged landscape was the inspiration for the novels and is now a popular destination for avid fans of Lucy Maud Montgomery’s pigtailed heroine. There are multiple other Anne-themed sites and attractions across the island, including the Campbell house where Montgomery once lived. Next on the agenda is a stop at Cavendish, a destination known for its red-sand beaches and dune-lined shores. Back in Charlottetown, an orientation tour will help you get your bearing and introduce you to some of the city’s charms. Dinner is of your own choosing and the evening is free time.
Optional: Acadian Dinner and Musical Experience. Enjoy an evening of authentic Acadian cuisine such as poutine rapee, chicken fricot and coquille Saint-Jacques, as you listen to traditional songs performed by local musicians. You may even have the opportunity to try your own hand at fiddling or step-dancing. Additional cost applies.
Day 12: Charlottetown – Baddeck (Cape Breton Island) (B, L)
An early departure time sees you head out across the Northumberland Strait towards Nova Scotia. Follow the Canso Causeway away from the mainland and to Cape Breton Island. This isle is also known for being the ‘Celtic heart’ of Nova Scotia. Arrive in the village of Baddeck, a quaint hamlet located on the banks of the Bras d’Or Lake. Have lunch at a local restaurant and follow with a visit to the Alexander Graham Bell Museum and National Historic Site. Look in at the museum’s displays of model replicas, photo exhibits and films that chronicle the life and work of Bell. You have the evening as free time.
Optional: Sunset Cruise on Bras d’Or Lake. Take to the waters of Bras d’Or Lake and keep your eyes trained on the skies as majestic bald eagles come to circle the cruise boat. Sail past Alexander Graham Bell’s mansion at Beinn Bhreagh, and move along the pristine Baddeck shoreline. You are travelling aboard a 1970s-built Schooner with wishbone rig, a vessel reminiscent of old-world sailing voyages. Additional cost applies.
Day 13: Baddeck – Cabot Trail – Baddeck (B, L, D)
Strap on your most comfortable walking shoes as the group travels to the Island’s famous Cabot Trail. This path winds through the spectacular landscape along the Margaree River and the surrounding highlands area. Admire its pristine beauty – one of the last-remaining protected wilderness areas in Nova Scotia. The trail takes its name from John Cabot, an Italian explorer sent on sailing missions by England’s King Henry VII. At the time of its completion in 1932, the Cabot Trail was the first route to connect previously isolated fishing villages. It continues to play a vital function in linking the island’s eight major communities. A picnic lunch is one of the best ways to appreciate the serene nature of the trail. There is also a visit to Cheticamp, an Acadian village where you can pick up handicrafts and souvenirs. Return to Baddeck in the late afternoon and have dinner as a group at the hotel.
Day 14: Baddeck – Halifax (B)
Leave Baddeck behind as you head to Halifax. There is a lunch stop before arriving in the city and immediately setting out on a guided tour of the historic waterfront. Appreciate the blend of old and new, and learn about Halifax’s heritage. Some of the sights you’ll take in on this tour include the Old Town Clock, St. Paul’s Church, City Hall, Government House and the Titanic Memorial. You may also stop for a stroll among the blooms at the Victorian Halifax Public Gardens or to see the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. The remainder of the day is yours as leisure time.
Day 15: Halifax – Peggy’s Cove – Halifax (B, D)
Travel to Peggy’s Cove this morning. A small rural community located on the eastern shore of St. Margaret’s Bay, the town is known for its lighthouse – which happens to be one of the most photographed of its kind in Canada! Return to Halifax to learn about Nova Scotia’s rich maritime heritage at the Maritime Museum. Here, you can brush up on local legends and legacies, as well as walk through the permanent exhibition dedicated to the HMS Titanic. Three ships from Halifax played a key role in rescuing and recovering victims of the infamous naval disaster. Sit down to a farewell dinner with your fellow travellers tonight; this is your final evening in Eastern Canada.
Day 16: Halifax – – Australia (B)
A transfer will take you to the airport at the appropriate time and you will begin the return journey to Australia.
Day 17: In flight
Day 18: Australia
Arrive back in Australia today.