Ranging from Extraordinary to Absolutely Ordinary, Travelocity.ca Selected the Best of the Best Insider Spots from More Than 30,000 Entries
TORONTO, ON (March 14, 2005) - What was built in 1894, drops 58 feet and was named "The Crookedest Street in the World" by "Ripley's Believe It or Not!"? If you guessed Lombard Street in San Francisco, guess again. The state of Iowa holds the answer to this stumper, but it's certainly not the only province or state with little-known hidden gems to boast. For travellers looking to uncover local treasures, Travelocity.caSM has released its list of Local Secrets, Big FindsSM for 2005. This online collection will send you straight to the heart of your destination, revealing insider spots across North America that are often overlooked by tourists and are the very places where the locals go.
Travelocity.ca's editorial team culled down more than 30,000 entries to develop this exclusive list of Local Secrets, Big Finds. From natural wonders like Canada's disappearing lake in Jasper, Alberta to one-of-a-kind events such as ostrich racing in Chandler, Ariz., these finds are sure to pique the interest of locals and visitors alike.
"Travel is at a record high and no matter where travellers are headed, whether for business or leisure, these local secrets will come in handy," says Amy Ziff, Travelocity.ca's editor-at-large and industry expert. "Who doesn't want to do as the locals do? Our goal in compiling this list was to make exploration simple and fun by pointing travellers in the right direction to find authentic local flavour no matter where you go."
Each of the 578 finds, including picks from every province in Canada and state in the U.S. is highlighted on Travelocity.ca's site at www.travelocity.ca/localsecrets. Ziff also showcases 26 of the local hot spots as "Editor's Top Picks for North America."
Still wondering what street in Iowa championed over San Francisco's Lombard Street as the most crooked in the world? Here's the answer to that, along with a few of Ziff's other top picks:
- Snake Alley in Burlington, Iowa - The folks in Burlington proudly note that "Ripley's Believe It or Not!" labeled Snake Alley "The Crookedest Street in the World" - take that Lombard Street in San Francisco! The Alley, which drops 58 feet, had both practical and aesthetic purposes. German immigrants in 1894 built it so horse-drawn carriages could get downtown without going down the steep inclines of other streets while appreciating the allure of a winding hillside, similar to the vineyards in France and Italy.
- Tam Tam Concerts, Parc Jeanne-Mance, Montreal, Quebec - At the base of Mount Royal, in Parc Jeanne-Mance, is where the Tam Tam is held every Sunday during the summer. Tam Tams are drums, and the drum jam sessions are open to anyone. Many Montrealers "of all ages" look forward to this summertime activity, because "after all the winter months, it allows you to see how the people of Montreal really are--without the bulky coats." On top of that "you get to relax and have fun… with nothing more in mind than peace and harmony and having a good time." "There is no date of start or finish" and "no time either." everything is flexible and depends on the weather and levels of light; "it starts when people want to show up."
- Cap Pelé - Cap-Pelé, New Brunswick - In the summer, "this is a nice place where you can really relax." The "beaches are beautiful" and the waters are the "warmest north of Virginia Beach." Time your visit right, and you might be able to participate in Acadian festivities, shop at a crafts fair, or catch a performance of the community theatre. Whenever you go, "the people there are really receptive" and are happy to "share their culture." "Due to the fact that it is not too well known," local restaurants and attractions are "not overcrowded, and prices for everything are very realistic."
- El Convento Rico - Toronto, Ontario. - The sign to El Convento Rico is discreet, but you can't miss the Blockbuster store next door. "Once a gay Latin club," it is now considered "Toronto's most mixed bar" and welcomes "people of all sexes and orientations." Wear "whatever you feel like" and "just be yourself." There's "great mixed music, everyone is cool, and no one cares who or what you are." The drag show is fabulous--"very interactive."
- Mystery Lake in Jasper, Alberta - Located right outside of Jasper Park, this lake offers great fishing and winter sports, but only if you time it right. Named by Indians, Mystery Lake disappears in the fall and returns in the spring. The disappearing act takes place over a period of three weeks each winter.
More Details on Travelocity.ca's 2005 Local Secrets, Big Finds
After querying millions of Travelocity.ca and Travelocity.com members to reveal the favourite quintessential finds in their area, Travelocity.ca's editorial team narrowed down more than 30,000 customer responses to unearth the best local spots in each province and state and is now sharing the list of Local Secrets, Big Finds with travellers across North America.
Travelocity.ca is a leading Canadian full-service travel Web site, providing reservation capabilities for hundreds of airlines, including Air Canada, WestJet, Skyservice and CanJet Airlines, nearly sixty thousand hotels around the world and best-in-class car rental companies. Travelocity.ca also offers thousands of vacation and cruise packages, Last Minute Deals, direct online booking of VIA Rail, and a vast database of destination and travel information. Travelocity.ca is a proud sponsor of the Children's Wish Foundation.
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