Book review and contest: 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit

25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit by Jody RobbinsLooking for ideas for your next long-distance family road trip? 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit (Touchwood Editions, May 2017, $24.95, 368pp) is packed with them.

(Full disclosure: The book’s author, Alberta travel writer Jody Robbins, is a friend of mine, and she kindly used some quotes from me in the book.)

As the book’s title suggests, it encompasses most of the country, with suggestions for every province, as well as Yukon. There are lots of colour photos to inspire the armchair traveller, too.

Solid tips for real families

Unlike some family travel books, which are just general guides with a few tips for kids thrown in, this one is completely focused on making trips memorable for both parents and children. Did you know, for instance, that there’s a Kids’ Market on Granville Island in Vancouver, complete with six toy stores and a candy shop? Or that families can “solve a case” at the RCMP Heritage Centre in Regina? Or that kids can don pint-sized uniforms and go through foot drills, roll barrels of gunpowder and send coded messages as part of a program called A Soldier’s Life at the Citadel in Halifax?

Does it cover the National Capital Region?

Our region gets two entries in the book, one for Ottawa and one for the Outaouais, and Robbins has unearthed all kinds of gems. I’ll bet even many Ottawans didn’t know, for instance, that you can stay in a treehouse at Parc Oméga or drive a dog sled in summer with Timberland Tours.

Useful tips for travelling families

There’s also a large section of practical family travel tips in the second half of the book. On the topic of saving money, Robbins offers tips on negotiating lower hotel fees and making the most of loyalty programs. To minimize the stress of taking young kids to a sit-down restaurant, she recommends trying food trucks. She even has tips for travelling sanely with another family and for packing for a camping trip.

Win a copy!

Does it sound like a book you’d like to add to your travel collection? Well, you’re in luck—because I’m giving away my review copy! For a chance to win it, all you have to do is leave a comment on this post, telling me which one of the following activities covered in the book you’d most like to try:

  • searching for Ogopogo, the mythical creature said to live in B.C.’s Lake Okanagan
  • learning about dinosaurs at the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Alberta
  • photographing polar bears in Churchill, Manitoba
  • exploring a butterfly conservatory near Niagara Falls
  • howling with wolves near the Saguenay Fjord in Quebec
  • sea kayaking on the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick
  • watching for icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland
  • viewing the Northern Lights in Yukon

I’ll choose one name at random to win the book. Submit your comment by 11:59pm on Thursday, June 29, for a chance to win!

Want more tips on road trips from Ottawa—including info on hotel discounts, contests, festivals and other cool news? Subscribe to my free weekly e-newsletter! I will never spam you—promise.

Even if this post is shared on Facebook, that does not imply that this contest is sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.




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27 Responses to Book review and contest: 25 Places in Canada Every Family Should Visit

  1. Linda Cummings June 15, 2017 at 9:28 am #

    photographing polar bears in Manitoba!

  2. Kate Settle June 15, 2017 at 1:01 pm #

    So many great ideas! If I have to pick one it would be watching for icebergs in Newfoundland 🙂

  3. Susan Trites June 15, 2017 at 6:19 pm #

    oohhh! Northern lights in the Yukon! Sounds so great!

  4. Sarah June 15, 2017 at 7:30 pm #

    Can’t wait to take the little to see the Tyrrrell museum!

  5. Pauline Montague June 15, 2017 at 8:19 pm #

    I’d LOVE to watch the icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland.

  6. KAREN Russell June 15, 2017 at 9:36 pm #

    Icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland on my bucket list!

    • Karen Russell June 15, 2017 at 9:39 pm #

      Icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland!

  7. Linda Charette June 15, 2017 at 10:59 pm #

    watching for icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland

  8. Hollie Davies June 16, 2017 at 6:52 pm #

    OMG Polar Bears in Churchill. Totally on my Bucket List! I think quite a few of those on are my list!!

  9. Laura S June 17, 2017 at 8:51 am #

    They all sound great, but viewing the Northern Lights in Yukon is top of my list!

  10. Joanne Johnson June 17, 2017 at 1:50 pm #

    Learning about dinosaurs in Alberta. Thanks!

  11. joy June 19, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

    i would love to see the icebergs in Newfoundland!! thank you!!

  12. David Bayda June 19, 2017 at 2:03 pm #

    I’d love searching for Ogopogo in Lake Okanagan in BC! I’ll be in BC this summer.

  13. Cathy Boretski June 21, 2017 at 6:49 am #

    I would love to see the Northern Lights in the Yukon. of my bucket list.

  14. Janet G. June 21, 2017 at 7:44 am #

    Watching for icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland!

  15. Charmaine June 23, 2017 at 11:54 am #

    They all sound great, but watching for icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland would be at the top of my list.

  16. Bob B. June 27, 2017 at 10:14 am #

    Icebergs off the coast of Newfoundland for me.

  17. Shannon June 27, 2017 at 11:08 am #

    Sea kayaking on the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick, for sure!

  18. Leona June 27, 2017 at 11:20 am #

    I have done Tyrell and Niagara Falls but any of the others would be awesome, think Yukon or the sea-kayaking would top the list though.

  19. Deb June 27, 2017 at 2:33 pm #

    Northern lights in the Yukon hands down

  20. Elizabeth June 27, 2017 at 2:52 pm #

    Viewing the Northern Lights in the Yukon would be a dream come true!

  21. Terri-Lynn Veale June 27, 2017 at 4:18 pm #

    I have never been to the Yukon so I would like to visit there and seeing the Northern Lights would be beautiful!

  22. Dave June 27, 2017 at 4:45 pm #

    some great ideas and I would choose …viewing the Northern Lights in Yukon!!
    Love you blog…thank-you

  23. Mags Kilby June 28, 2017 at 7:00 am #

    Well! I will be visiting the interior of BC this year so I will definitely have my eye on the Lake Okanagon…. it hold be so cool to see Ogopogo!!

  24. Randi Saunders June 29, 2017 at 5:57 am #

    Northern Lights is most definitely tip of my list!

  25. Hollie Davies July 5, 2017 at 1:47 pm #

    I’ve been wanting to go to Churchill and photograph the polar bears forever! Bucket List Goals!!

  26. Laura Byrne Paquet July 6, 2017 at 11:50 am #

    The contest closed on June 29 but I’ve been a bit slow to post the results of the draw. We have a winner! Congratulations to Sarah, and thanks to all for entering!

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