Toronto City Guide: 12 Fun Things to Do in Toronto!

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Looking for things to do in Toronto, Canada? This blog post is full of XX fun places to eat, drink, shop, and explore in Toronto! Thanks to Sorel for partnering with us on this Toronto city guide, they make the perfect fall and winter boots to explore and travel in, because you don’t have to sacrifice any style to keep your feet comfortable while you’re walking all day in a new city.

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Best Things to Do in Toronto:

#1 The Perfect Pizza and Instagram at Oretta

Toronto has a ton of beautifully designed restaurants, with one of the most Insta-famous being Oretta. You can stop in to their cafe for a quick coffee and snack to go, or sit and stay a while enjoying yummy Italian food inside their gorgeous restaurant.

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#2 Succulent Shopping at Portland Market

Maybe not the most practical if you have to fly home, but we always love a good plant store! Portland Market is an urban jungle oasis, full of gorgeous greenery and succulents to remember your trip by.

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Things to Do in Toronto #3: Eat at Chubby’s Jamaican

Named one of the best restaurants in Toronto, Chubby’s Jamaican is a delicious, casual Jamaican restaurant with a healthy culinary twist. Whether you’re coming for the tropical rum drinks or the Jamaican wings, you’ll find a hit here.

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#4: Sip a Cocktail Named after Drake at Her Majesty’s Pleasure

Drake is the unofficial spokesperson for the 6, so it makes sense that there would be a few drinks named after him! We are obsessed with Her Majesty’s Pleasure cocktail bar, and when you’re not calling for champagne, you can sip on the Champagne Papi cocktail.

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#5: Call the Party Line at Convenience

Convenience is a retro convenience store, bar, and restaurant with a love of vintage, and in the pink bathroom downstairs you’ll find a cool “party line” to peak your curiosity while you wait to use the loo.

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Things to Do in Toronto #6: Visit the Drake Hotel Rooftop

The Drake Hotel is not named after that Drake, but it is one of the hottest spots in the city. Even if you’re not staying there, it’s worth a visit to their creative rooftop for a cocktail, this is one of our favorite things to do in Toronto!

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#7: Shop the Sorel Flagship Store

Sorel’s flagship store in Downtown Toronto is a gorgeous store, and you can find all their fall and winter styles here in one place! Whether you’re looking for a gift to bring home or a new pair of shoes to walk around the city in, you’ll find the perfect pair here.

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Things to Do in Toronto #8: Drink in the Dark

We love the dark, neon accented bars and restaurants in Toronto! While they don’t make for the best photos, they do make great experiences and are fun things to do in Toronto! We love SoSo Food Club for delicious, modern Chinese (with vegan options) and the cool speakeasy Mahjong Bar.

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#9: Craft Beer Tasting at Otto’s Bierhalle

Otto’s Bierhalle is one of the prettiest breweries we’ve ever visited! This gorgeous, German-inspired bierhall has an extensive beer list and a great menu full of comfort food, sausages, and sharing platters.

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#10: Shopping at Loversland

Technically, this is a bridal-inspired boutique, but it’s full of gorgeous garments that are perfect for yourself, or your engaged friend! Whether you’re looking for cute accessories for your beach vacation / honeymoon or some cute lingerie, Loversland is a destination for the romantic.

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Things to Do in Toronto #11: Visit Kensington Market

Kensington Market isn’t actually a market, but it is a unique, eclectic neighborhood in Toronto that’s perfect for exploring. Whether you’re tasting beer at Kensington Brewing or plant shopping with your smoothie at The Organic Press, there’s lots to see and do! You can check out this guide for more things to do in Toronto’s Kensington Market.

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#12: Stock Your Tiki Bar at the Cocktail Emporium

If you wish your house was more like a tiki bar, this is the place to be! The Cocktail Emporium in Kensington Market is a one-stop shop for all things cocktails, and the coolest spot to shop for unique cocktail recipebooks, stir sticks, and every kind of cocktail glass you could ever need.

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Those are 12 of our favorite things to do in Toronto, but we know there’s so much more! Tag your photos #heynowtoronto on Instagram so we can see yours, and you can follow us on Instagram at @localwanderer for more travel inspo.

This post is in partnership with Sorel, you can shop all the shoes seen in this post here!

Quebec City to Montreal Road Trip in the Ford Ecosport!

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This summer we got to check off one of the trips on our travel bucket list: a road trip through Quebec! We had the best time enjoying Quebec City and Montreal, connecting more with the french heritage of our country, and eating soooo much good food! So excited to share some of our faves in this post!

To celebrate the new Ford Ecosport being available in Canada, Ford asked 13 Canadians to drive the car across the country and explore a new part of Canada, and we got to drive a leg of the trip! You can see some of the highlights from our trip in the video below too :)

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Things to Do in Quebec City

We flew from Vancouver to our first stop, Quebec City and picked up the Ford Ecosport! Quebec City is one of the oldest cities in North America, and it’s full of so much rich history and culture. We loved the Saint-Roch neighborhood, which is less touristy and full of cool coffee shops and breweries. We loved the Noctem Artisans Brasseurs for craft beer on the patio, and Cafe Saint Henri for delicious donuts and coffee in a cool, airy space.

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The best meal we had in Quebec (poutine aside) was as the amazing Chez Muffy restaurant inside the gorgeous hotel Auberge Saint-Antoine. Even if you’re not staying at the hotel, it’s a great spot to treat yourself to classical French cuisine in a comfy, farm-to-table environment. Definitely a great date night spot!

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Over in Quebec City’s fort, it feels like you’re stepping into Europe, instead of the other side of the country. All the historic buildings, forts, and hotels that look like castles are so fun to gaze at and wander through!

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A visit to Chateau Frontenac is a must when visiting Quebec City, even though it’s a little touristy it’s still fun to walk along the boardwalk, it’s so beautiful! Even though we were only in Quebec City for a day, we had plenty of time to see both the local and touristy side, and have an amazing dinner to remember.

Next, it was time to pack up the Ford EcoSport and head to Montreal! We love the size of this car, it has a ton of space without being too big or bulky (or hard to park), and there were lots of smart storage solutions in the trunk too! The perfect sized car for a cross-Canada road trip, and we loved how the trunk door swings out sideways like a regular car door.

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GETTING TO Montreal

Our road trip to Montreal was only about 3 hours, and we had so much fun listening to our favorite albums in the Ford EcoSport. This car is soooo techie, with a ton of outlets, which we loved! The car even had it’s own wifi, so it was nice to be able to watch Instagram Stories and Youtube videos in the car without using up long-distance data.

We stayed at the stunning and modern new Hotel Monville in downtown Montreal. This was a super cool hotel, and we definitely recommend staying here!

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Where to Eat and Drink in Montreal

When visiting Montreal, we had one priority: eat and drink alllll the yummy things. Montreal has an amazing food scene, and there are so many places left to try on our list! We walked to Lov Restaurant, which was just a short walk from our hotel, and absolutely loved it! It’s like Montreal’s version of The Butcher’s Daughter, and their kombucha mojito was incredible.

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After Lov restaurant, we had the best dinner of our trip at Le Vin Papillon. The terraces (patios) in Quebec are so amazing, and we had an incredible meal with some friends in a backyard terrace with good wine and delicous, fresh food hot off the smoked grill.

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The next morning we grabbed coffee next door at La Finca coffee, and then went to visit Old Montreal and the Plateau neighborhoods! In Old Montreal, the rooftop at Perche is a welcome escape from tourists and has very cool views and tropical vibes.

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The Plateau and Mile End are our favorite neighborhoods in Montreal, and we just love to wander down the streets walking from neighborhood to neighborhood and checking out all the cool bars and restaurants along the way. Honestly…there is just SO much in Montreal, it’s really easy to wander into rad spots like Bar Darling.

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We had so much fun exploring a new side of Canada, and honestly we fell soooo in love with Quebec! Everyone we met in Quebec City was so nice and friendly, and really encouraged you to practice speaking French. And Montreal, well it’s definitely the coolest city in Canada so it’s hard to not have a good time there!

Our last leg of the trip was driving the Ford Ecosport to Ottawa, and passing it on to the next adventurer. Luckily, the vehicle has built in GPS so we never got lost, and we can’t wait to return again. Thanks to Ford Canada for having us on the trip!

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What We're Packing for TIFF!

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We are so excited to be packing up our bags and heading to Toronto International Film Festival this year with Sorel! TIFF is one of the premiere film festivals and we're excited to explore Toronto, get dressed for fall, and spot a few celebrities! And of course, we'll be sharing a Toronto city guide with you too featuring all our fave finds. 

We travel a LOT, and along the way we have found a few products that we always pack to make travelling so much more enjoyable, so we thought we would share some with you guys!  Let us know if you like these packing posts, or what other kind of travel hacks, travel beauty, or "packing" posts you'd like to see from us. 

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CLEAN BEAUTY FINDS PERFECT FOR TRAVEL

First up: some of our clean beauty faves for travel! Travelling is absolutely brutal on your skin, whether it's the germs and A/C on the planes drying out your skin, switching climates, and the toll of timezone and jet lag.

One of the clean beauty products we swear by is Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask, and it's seriously trending right now (for good reason). Created by the blogger Marianna Hewitt, the mask instantly revives and moisturizes dehydrated skin and actually helps your tired undereye bags. We wore it basically every day when we were in Europe this summer, you can buy it online or at Sephora (in Canada now too!). 

We also always travel with lavender oil, which is essential for calming us on airplanes or helping us sleep in new beds! Right now we're trying out some new essential oils from Vitruvi, a local Vancouver brand. Moon Juice's reishi powder is perfect for adding to coffee when travelling to help boost your immune system and reduce inflammation. While not "natural," we're trying out The Chemistry Brand's Glow Oil right now as an alternative to self tanner. 

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We're also obsessed with the new travel kit from Pink House Natural Solutions, which features travel sized versions of their amazing clean beauty products. Our faves are the raspberry face cream, champagne glow stick (the best highlighter EVER, we wear it every single day), and natural dry shampoo. They also have a natural deodorant and face wash too! You can purchase online or at local stockists across Canada. 

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FALL TRENDS WITH SOREL

One of our favorite things about travelling to new places is shopping (obviously), and we were actually super excited to see that it was going to be cooler in Toronto...hello, fall clothes. Here's a peak at what we'll be wearing at TIFF and into the fall season! 

By now you probably know that we are obsessed with Sorel shoes and live in them all year long (they have the best sandals too). Sorel's mules are sooo comfy, so when we saw the new After Hours mule in this cool wine color, we knew they'd be perfect for long days of walking around the city.  We paired it with a vintage blouse and this cool black denim pinafore from Frank & Oak's new fall collection!

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One fall trend we are currently obsessed with is patterns, fanny packs, and mustard yellow.  Bring on all the Clueless-inspired plaid, please. This outfit is perfect for TIFF, whether you're going to a film screening or heading out to dinner after! We're going to be living in these Sorel Campsneak slip ons, and this billowy blouse from Zara is super comfortable. You can snag this suede bum bag from Boohoo for less than $20, and for all the curvy girls out there, Gap's Curvy denim line is the best and we love these new high waisted jeans. 

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Since we'll be at TIFF for opening weekend, we have to have looks for the after parties too! We are pretty obsessed with the new Frank & Oak fall collection, and we're packing this mustard yellow cord skirt too, paired with a turtleneck body suit. Another fall trend we are very into this year is primary colors and ankle socks with boots, so we'll be rocking the Sorel Margo Chelsea boot with these red socks from Topman. 

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Now, off to Toronto! Let us know any of your fave spots in the comments, and stay tuned to our Instagram and our stories for all the TIFF action and fall looks with Sorel! 

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This post is in partnership with Sorel, one of our favorite brands ever! 

Prince Rupert Travel Guide: A Perfect Weekend in Northern BC

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Heading to Prince Rupert, BC? Whether you're looking for places to eat or things to do in Prince Rupert, this travel guide is for you! 

When you think about gorgeous places to visit in British Columbia, there's a lot of options, and usually you hear about the islands, the Lower Mainland, or the Okanagan. But what about Northern BC? This was our first time visiting Northern BC, but it definitely won't be our last! We loved the beautiful scenery, chill vibes, and it's a super affordable getaway. 

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Where is Prince Rupert, anyway?

Prince Rupert is a small port city in Northern BC, and when we say north, we mean north. Not only did we literally see signs pointing to Alaska, we also got a little glimpse of Alaska while we were whale watching! But more on that later. 

While it may be the rainiest city in Canada, we had an absolutely beautiful weekend visiting Prince Rupert in the summer. The town is only about 12,000 people, but there is really good food, a craft brewery, and lots of fun nature activities for every skill level, from whale watching or bear watching to hiking, fishing, and canoeing. Next time we visit we will definitely be renting a boat! 

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Exploring Prince Rupert's Cow Bay

Prince Rupert is a major port city (it has the deepest natural harbour in North America), so the town is very walkable and all centered around the boats of Cow Bay. This is where you'll find a lot of local gift shops, restaurants, and the local coffee shop. Cruise ships going to Alaska will pull in to visit, and if you're heading to Haida Gwaii you will travel to Prince Rupert first and then take a float plane! So even if you think it's just a stopover, it's worth it to stay and explore around for a day. We loved all of the quirky cow references, keep an eye out for lots of planters or bins painted in cow print!  

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WHERE TO EXPLORE IN PRINCE RUPERT, BC 

We are very happy to tell you that Prince Rupert has some seriously amazing food! Since the city is right on the water and it's a huge fishing town, you have to eat allllll the seafood when you're visiting Prince Rupert. Even the casual fish and chips place we stopped at turned out to be the best fish and chips of our life! 

Cow Bay Cafe is a great Prince Rupert restaurant for dinner, we were seated on the patio overlooking the harbour and it was so beautiful! We loved their fresh mussels and clams, and their pasta was surprisingly SO delicious too. 

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Since we were so far up north, the sun sets way later, so you can have a full day of sunshine and enjoy the sunset around 9-11pm, depending on when you visit. How adorable is this restaurant?! 

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Another cool spot we discovered in Prince Rupert was the Sunken Gardens, which is a stunning community garden run by volunteers! It's definitely worth a little stroll to look at all the incredible varieties of plants and flowers. 

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Now, you probably already know that we seriously love our BC Ale Trails, and we're delighted to tell you that there is now a Northern BC Ale Trail too, with breweries in Prince Rupert, Smithers, Terrace, and Prince George. We were thinking that for our next vacation to Northern BC, it would be fun to do a road trip through those towns with our guys! 

Wheelhouse Brewing is Prince Rupert's craft brewery, and they serve cider, wine, and kombucha too so it's a welcoming place for everyone. There's plenty of board games, lots of delicious beer (with some tap features as well), and a really chill, neighbourhood feel. All the locals in Prince Rupert were SO nice, it's easy to strike up a conversation anywhere you go.

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Another one of our favorite restaurants in Prince Rupert was the Japanese restaurant Fukasaku! Sushi is a great choice in Prince Rupert because all of the fish is just SO fresh, and Fukasaku was actually the first sushi restaurant in Canada to be 100% Ocean Wise certified. The restaurant is very unassuming, and you might not even know it was there because it's actually tucked away inside a gift shop! 

Fukasaku is all about local sustainability, and even the chairs and tables are made from local cedar. We had the Omakase, which is a 5 course Chef's choice meal that varies per day. It was honestly the best sushi experience of our life, and not only was it incredibly delicious but it was also REALLY affordable at $45 per person! If you were to have this experience in the city it would be about triple the cost, so we definitely recommend this restaurant for your trip to Prince Rupert. 

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THINGS TO DO IN PRINCE RUPERT, BC

Now that we've talked about all of the shopping, eating, and drinking you can down in town, it's time to get to the incredible scenery surrounding Prince Rupert and Northern BC. This is a beautiful road trip destination, and we set off to explore the area on a short drive to the North Pacific Cannery. 

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The North Pacific Cannery is located a short drive away in Port Edward, BC and it acts as a "living museum that illustrates the multicultural, isolated, industrial lifestyle of the West Coast fishery for the local community and the world to experience." There are daily tours, or you can wander through at your own leisure to learn about the important history of the longest running cannery in BC. 

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When it comes to adventure, there are a TON of options in Prince Rupert! You can check out a bunch of adventure ideas here, but we kept it pretty chill with an easy "hike" through the Butze Rapids Trail. It was more like a nice, long, walk so it's perfect for every skill level and is kid friendly too! Keep an eye out for this adorable rope swing as well, what more could you want on a sunny day? 

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Prince Rupert Whale Watching 

Last but CERTAINLY not least, one of the top things to do in Prince Rupert is to go whale watching! Now, we have been whale watching before in places like Tofino, but nothing compares at ALL to going whale watching in Prince Rupert. We went on Prince Rupert Adventure Tours, which had a very nice boat that was comfortable for the 4 hour whale watching tour! You can buy snacks and drinks on board too, because who doesn't want a little wine with your watching, right? You can watch from your seat inside, or head to the observation decks

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The reason why whale watching in Prince Rupert is so great and popular is because you are almost guaranteed to see a whale. While nothing is guaranteed when it comes to nature, there are a LOT of whales around here and we saw about 9 or more on our tour! We followed a pod of whales around and watched while they used "bubble netting" to catch their fish, which is rare and somewhat specific to this region. Basically, the whales were all jumping out of the water at the same time a lot and it was pretty epic. At the end of your tour they also share photos with you from their huge zoomed lens, which you can see below! 

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Oh, and did we mention that we could see Alaska from our boat? Not up close but still...prettttty cool! We highly recommend Prince Rupert Adventure Tours, like we said we have been on a couple whale watching tours before but this was WAY better than anything we've experienced so far! You can also go on a Grizzly Bear watching tour if you go earlier in the season, Prince Rupert is also home to the biggest Grizzly Bear Sanctuary

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We had a very relaxing, fun, and adventurous weekend in Prince Rupert, BC! We highly recommend visiting if you want to get to know BC more, or if you're visiting Vancouver and want to get a taste of the real Canadian experience. It's a 3 hour flight from YVR Airport, so you can easily make it a great weekend trip. We're just scratching the surface here, so check out Prince Rupert Tourism for more things to do, places to explore, and restaurants to eat at! 

Looking for more travel inspo? Follow us on Instagram @localwanderer for our favorite places in BC and around the world! 

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Thank you to Prince Rupert Tourism for hosting us for the weekend! 

Escape to The Salty Pear, a Natural Oasis on Salt Spring Island

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One of favorite places to visit in BC is the Gulf Islands, so we were super excited to visit The Salty Pear, a family run farm and B&B on Salt Spring Island. Think orchards, forests, adorable cabins, and a Scandinavian-inspired sauna, all the elements you need for a restorative and relaxing weekend in British Columbia, Canada. 

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Where to Stay on Salt Spring Island: the Salty Pear

Salt Spring Island is like the Bali of BC, it has amazing food and the local markets are worth the visit alone! We stayed at The Salty Pear, which had all the things we love about localism: there's an art gallery on site, a  "glamping mobile," and a camping casita. Annika Siemsen and her husband Jorge Siemsen live in a beautiful house on the property, and they made sure we have the most delightful stay.

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We woke up each morning to farm fresh eggs for breakfast, along with local coffee & other goodies. We stayed in the Camping Casita, which is uniquely built with two doors and two rooms. One door leads to the kitchen and the other to the bedroom, and there's a window connecting both rooms so it's a pretty cool experience for two people! There's also a really cute patio to lounge on in the mornings or evenings.

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We visited for the weekend with our friends RayRay and Tyler, who stayed in the glamping mobile, and it was the perfect chill weekend together! It's so nice to escape the city, be surrounded by nature, and just breathe it all in.

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Along with cozy quarters, the Salty Pear also has a very cool Scandinavian-inspired sauna, which you can book for a sweat session even if you're not staying there! 

There was also an outdoor tub, which fit all four of us for a warm DIY hot tub in the evening. 

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Things to Do on Salt Spring Island:

The good news is there is lots of things to do on Salt Spring Island! The best way to see Salt Spring Island is to take a little road trip in the Salty Pear's vintage VW, and Annika and Jorge took us to some of their favourite spots.

Salt Spring Island Cheese is an adorable farm where you can sample local cheeses and even pet some goats and farm animals! Kizmit was our favorite lunch spot, and they have good coffee + incredible vegan options there too.

 

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If you're feeling thirsty, check out Salt Spring Wild Cider for locally grown cider, or the local food trucks parked just around the corner from the Salty Pear. Our favourite was the crepe truck, which even had gluten-free crepes! Definitely try the sweet potato, spinach, and onion crepe, it's delicious. 

It's also worth visiting Nook + Salt for locally made ethical fashion and home goods too!

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Close to the Salty Pear is Salt Spring Island's "downtown" shopping area, where we loved wandering the Saturday market during the day! We couldn't get enough of the fresh flowers, produce, and moonshine ;).

We will definitely be back for the market alone, there was so many fresh gluten-free and vegan goodies that ACTUALLY taste amazing. If you want to visit this magical little island, you can book the Salty Pear here

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Best Brooklyn Airbnb: The Funky Loft Bed & Breakfast

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Looking for a good Airbnb in Brooklyn, NY? If you're wondering where to stay in Brooklyn, look no further than the Funky Loft Bed and Breakfast!  We love staying in glam hotels, but we also love staying in cozy b&b's where we feel 100% at home, and we instantly felt like we were living like the locals do at the Funky Loft! Plus, their prices were super affordable at less than $100/night.

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The Best Airbnb in Brooklyn

The Funky Loft was even better than we had imagined! The loft is located in Brooklyn's hip and artsy neighborhood of Bushwick, and is super close to the train which makes it easy to get around New York City.

The Funky Loft is made up of three individual rooms with a common area and kitchen, and every corner has a ton of thought and design put into it. We loved the stunning plant-filled living room that is made complete with an indoor swing! Our host Marcella welcomed us personally upon arrival, giving us a fabulous tour of the place and making us feel comfortable and cared for. 

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You can book the entire loft for a friends trip, or you can just book a room to stay in. They have heat and central A/C (which is essential in NY summers), plus a washer and dryer which is always a nice bonus. And of course, because we work remote so much, we always need to book places with fast wifi, which you'll find here! You can also save 10% when you mention "Local Wanderer" at booking.

If you're new to Airbnb, you can get $40 in free Airbnb credit when you sign up with our code here! You don't have to book now, just sign up with our code and the credit will be waiting for you when you want to book. 

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We enjoyed meeting other travellers staying in the other rooms, and really enjoyed hanging out in the open kitchen and living room area for breakfast. There's a stunning piano, incredibly cute decor, and bright light that enhances anyone's mood. 

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At the Funky Loft, you'll also be provided with breakfast (like our favourite Lucky Charms), coffee and tea, and a "shareable fridge" section in case you feel like a snack. If you want to book your stay, you can find more info and choose your room on their website here, which will then direct you to Airbnb where you can use our code to save $$$!

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Looking for more Brooklyn faves? Check out our Brooklyn Travel Guide or follow us on Instagram @localwanderer to get inspired about where to plan your next trip! 

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Brooklyn Travel Guide: Where to Eat, Drink, & Stay in Brooklyn, NY

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Heading to New York City? For our recent trip, we skipped Manhattan, booked a hotel in Williamsburg, spent almost all of our time in Brooklyn, and LOVED it! We are so excited to share some of our favorite places to get coffee, eat delicious meals, and sip on cocktails in Brooklyn, NY with you. 

But let's be clear: there are so, so, so many amazing restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and cool neighborhoods in Brooklyn that it would be nearly impossible to do a comprehensive Brooklyn travel guide! So these are just some of our favorites that we experienced :)

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Where to Stay in Brooklyn: The Williamsburg Hotel

Staying in Williamsburg instead of Manhattan was the best idea we ever had, and we will definitely be staying in Williamsburg again in the future. It's close to so many cool bars, restaurants, and shopping. 

We stayed at The Williamsburg Hotel, which you can book through Expedia.ca! We are always looking for good deals when travelling, and areas you can save the most money on are flights and hotels. The Williamsburg Hotel has the best location, we were within walking distance to SO much and we loved the decor of the hotel as well. 

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Hotel rooms in New York City are notoriously tiny, but we found that our King Room was totally spacious enough for the two of us. The beds were insanely comfy, and we loved the pink bathrobes so much that one night we decided to just order in Postmates, watch a movie, and relax in our gorgeous room.

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Our room came with a small balcony that had a view of the Manhattan skyline too, and we loved having coffee there each morning! Not to mention the perfect bathroom for selfies! To book hotels in Brooklyn, visit Expedia.ca 

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Best Coffee Shops in Brooklyn, NY:

Sweatshop Coffee in Williamsburg is an Australian coffee shop serving up delicious flat whites and the most incredible avocado toast! This was the perfect first pit stop for us to fuel up on caffeine, fight the jetlag from our red eye flight, and capture our first NYC Instagram post.

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Grade Coffee is a tiny coffee shop in Williamsburg that's perfect for grab and go! 

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If you're looking for a spacious space with good wifi and plenty of outlets available, settle in at Restaurant Norman for the day! They also have food and a bar, so you really can chill there all day long. 

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If you love baked goods and a delicious macaron, make your way to Woops! Bakeshop, they have a few locations around NYC too. 

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Where to Eat and Drink in Brooklyn, NY

One of our favorite spots for years has been Maison Premiere, an oyster and cocktail bar in Williamsburg. Since we were visiting in summer this time, we got to sit outside and enjoy the gorgeous green patio! This is the perfect happy hour spot in Brooklyn. 

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One of our absolute favorite places in Brooklyn is Westlight, the trendy rooftop bar at the William Vale Hotel. This is where you want to be at sunset! The bar has an incredible patio with sweeping views of the Manhattan skyline, which is the perfect setting to take in your vacation. We also had dinner here and really loved our meal, and the cocktails are incredible too. 

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If you're looking for a healthy meal in Brooklyn, head to Amituofo Vegan for plant based, Asian inspired dishes!

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Heal Haus is a wellness destination, where you can get your healthy smoothie fix or unwind in one of their daily yoga and meditation classes! 

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For shopping, we really loved the Concrete & Water shop in Williamsburg! They have a ton of cool brands for both women and men, plus unique and handmade objects and mementos for your home. You can shop online too :) 

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Well, that's it for this trip to Brooklyn, NY! We can't wait to go back and discover even more amazing food, drinks, and shopping. Have a fave Brooklyn spot that we missed? Let us know in the comments! 

You can follow us on Instagram too at @localwanderer, where we share travel gems from around the world 🌎 

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This post is in partnership with Expedia.ca, our favorite place to save $$ and book our hotels! 

The Coolest Palm Springs City Guide

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Our new Palm Springs City Guide is here! Palm Springs is one of the best places to visit all year long, whether you're coming to party at Coachella, explore architecture at Modernism Week, or just want to relax by the pool in the sunshine.

Our Palm Springs City Guide gives you everything you need to know to plan for your upcoming vacay, from things to do in Palm Springs to the best restaurants, shopping, and where to stay in Palm Springs:

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FUn Things to Do in Palm Springs

One of our favorite things to do in Palm Springs is to explore all of the beautiful architecture, and there's a ton of architecture or home tours that you can take around town. Palm Springs is full of bright doors, and we highly recommend taking yourself on a bike tour of all the gorgeous houses if you're looking for fun things to do in Palm Springs. We rented bikes from Bike Palm Springs and biked all around the flat city checking out the historic houses in this self-guided tour.  

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A visit to #Thatpinkdoor is a Palm Springs classic - I mean, any house that has it's own Instagram hashtag must be, right? If you're looking for That Pink Door's address or location, you can find her at 1100 East Sierra Way in South Palm Springs (not too far from The Ace Hotel). 

 Shoes:  Mohinders  

Shoes: Mohinders 

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Even though we've been to Palm Springs countless times, there's still fun things to do that we haven't checked off our list yet! Like visiting the Moorten Botanical Gardens for a perfect selfie shot, or feeding the giraffes at The Living Desert.

Another  incredible Palm Springs experience is participating in the long table dinners at Sparrows Lodge. You need to book ahead, but we just loved this dining al fresco experience and will definitely do it again! We also loved exploring the cool art collection at the Palm Springs Art Museum, and if you get a chance to book a tour to Albert Frey's house, Frey House II, definitely do it! 

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Best Pools in Palm Springs

Obviously, you have to have to spend some serious time by the pool in Palm Springs while you're there. The good news is that you're not confined to the pool at your hotel! You can pool hop in Palm Springs, with most pools being open to the public if you buy a drink, eat some food, or sometimes, pay a small cover charge. 

If you're looking to party, the pool at The Saguaro is super fun with a great poolside bar, tacos, and music. The Ace Hotel pool is kind of an inbetween, with lots of people lounging but there's still some music to groove to. The pool at Arrive Hotel is just stunning, and a really great place to lay out with good food and drinks. Last but not least, Holiday House has killer margaritas and an amazing lawn / shaded area, complete with shuffleboard.

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The Saguaro pool

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Arrive hotel pool

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Ace Hotel pool

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Holiday House pool

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Arrive Hotel pool

BEST RESTAURANTS IN PALM SPRINGS

Wondering where to eat in Palm Springs? Palm Springs is in the middle of a cultural renaissance, and there are SO many amazing restaurants and bars to choose from. Our current obsession is Azucar Restaurant, with their modern boho decor, incredible cocktail menu (hello, blood orange margaritas), and gorgeous rooftop bar! This is definitely one of the best restaurants in Palm Springs, I mean...just look at it:

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Other good restaurants in Palm Springs are King's Highway at the Ace Hotel, you can eat by the pool or inside their cool '60s restaurant. This is one of the Palm Springs staples, and we come here to eat every time we visit! 

Norma's at The Parker hotel is also famous for their brunch, but it is pretty pricey so check the menu before you go. Another favorite Palm Springs restaurant is  Reservoir at Arrive Hotel, which is great for both lunch and dinner. 

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If you're looking for a serious good cocktail, head to Bootleger Tiki for some tropical drinks! Next door is Ernest Coffee, which is where you'll want to spend your mornings if you're a fan of Stumptown Cofeee. Also a great spot to work if you need to! Ice Cream & Shoppe is the place to go to cool down with some gelato or ice cream, and they have a totally rad gift shop of curated goodies (and a #palmspringsisbetter neon sign).  If you're in South Palm Springs by the Saguaro or Ace, then you'll want to hit up Koffi for coffee.

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Where to Shop in Palm Springs

There's a ton of really great mid-century mod furniture shopping in Palm Springs, but if you don't want to break the bank, head to The Frippery for some cute and curated vintage shopping!

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Somewhat new to Palm Springs is The Shops at 1345, a shopping destination full of amazing  Moroccan rugs at Soukie Modern, cute and colorful desert goodies at Palm Springs Style shop, and a ton of other really cool vendors.

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If you're in Palm Desert, we love love love the vintage store The Fine Art of Design. Amidst all the luxury brands and big stores in Palm Desert, we found the lovely local boutique Elizabeth & Prince, where you can easily get into stylish Palm Springs vacation mode.

Where to Stay in Palm Springs

When it comes to where to stay in Palm Springs, there are SO many amazing options! Honestly…you can’t go wrong. Here are some of our favourite places to stay in Palm Springs, based on where we have personally chosen to stay!

Best Palm Springs Hotels: The Saguaro

We have stayed at the Saguaro Hotel a bunch, and we love it! The hotel grounds are super colourful which makes the perfect backdrop for your Instagram photos, and it’s really reasonably priced too. Definitely spring for a pool view room! This is where you want to stay if you want a lively atmosphere and fun pool to hang out at -  the DJ is always playing!

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Best Palm Springs Hotels: Ace Hotel

We are regular visitors to all of the Ace Hotels, and the Ace Hotel Palm Springs is one of our favourites! We love the rooms with the big patios, perfect for happy hour with your friends. The huge beds are super comfy too, and it’s nice to be close to a great pool, a cool bar, and a yummy restaurant.

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Best Palm Springs Hotels: The Parker Palm Springs

The Parker Palm Springs is a super hot spot Palm Springs hotel, and it’s pricey too. Located a bit away from the centre of the “city”, you’ll want to stay here if you’re looking for a resort-like hotel that has a ton of amenities, secluded in the luxury of peace of quiet. Think lots of lawns, fire pits, and a celebrity or two from LA. If you don’t stay here, come for a drink at least, it’s pretty cool!

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Best Boutique Hotel in Palm Springs: The Amado

If you are looking for something in between an Airbnb and a big hotel, then the Amado is perfect for you! It’s very peaceful, with just 5 units and a common pool. The rooms are big with a kitchen, dining area, and living room, so it’s like your cool home away from home in the desert.

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Best Airbnbs in Palm Springs:

There are a TON of really amazing Palm Springs houses for rent on Airbnb, so if you’re going with a big group of people definitely check those out! We recently stayed at the picture perfect Flamingo House and LOVED it. We also really loved having our own pool to hang out at with our girlfriends, and a huge kitchen to cook in. Not to mention this incredible design!

Get $40 in free Airbnb credit for your first stay! Just sign up at this link here and your credit will be there for you when you need it - you don't even have to book right now! :)

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We hope you enjoyed our Palm Springs City Guide! This is honestly our favorite place to visit, and this is our most popular blog post ever so we are very excited to have it all updated for you guys.

You can check out all our Palm Springs blog posts here, and don't forget to follow us on Instagram at @localwanderer for even more travel inspo!

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Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments! 

The Port Moody Ale Trail is Vancouver's Best Kept Secret

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We recently visited the Port Moody Ale Trail, and we had the BEST weekend sitting on patios, sipping craft beer, and indulging in yummy tacos. The BC Ale Trail has come a long way since our original road trip along Vancouver Island's "beer belt," and you can find a ton of craft beer road trips or day trips on their website! Last spring we checked out the Fraser Valley Ale Trail too, so obviously it was time for us to explore another one this spring! 

And trust us...the Port Moody Ale Trail is a hidden gem if you live in Vancouver. 

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Port Moody Ale Trail

This was our first visit to Port Moody ever, despite growing up in the Lower Mainland. Port Moody is a small, oceanfront town about 35 minutes east of Vancouver, and honestly we were shocked at how much we enjoyed our weekend there! One of the best things about the Port Moody Ale Trail is that all of the breweries have PATIOS. There is nothing better than enjoying a flight of local craft beer outside on a warm sunny day, but unfortunately that is a rare luxury when you live in the city. If you want to do a brewery crawl in Vancouver with your friends on a weekend, it's basically impossible because it's so busy and the breweries are so small.  

But in Port Moody, all of the breweries are quite large, with a ton of space both inside and outside, and did we mention they all sit along the waterfront too? 😍 

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It's also super easy to get to on public transit, which is important if you're going to be day drinking all day! All we had to do was just jump on the Skytrain and take the brand new Evergreen line right to Port Moody, and all of the breweries and restaurants are right there in walking distance. 

There are 4 breweries in just 3 blocks, so next time you and your friends want something fun to do, head to the Port Moody Ale Trail! It's honestly the perfect day trip that requires minimal effort and planning. 

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Where to Wander in Port Moody

A great place to start your day in Port Moody is at the adorable cafe Gabi & Jules. They have the cutest pink espresso machine, and a ton of baked goods, coffee, and tea for you to start your day with! It's about a 10 minute walk west of the Skytrain, and you pass a ton of cute local shops along the way too. 

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They're also famous for their pie & ice cream, and sometimes you just have to split a pie for breakfast, right? When it looks as good as this salted caramel apple pie does, you definitely need to indulge.

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In addition to the spots we're sharing, there's also a few other spots in the Port Moody Ale Trail that you can check out too! You could also start your day with a breakfast panini or wrap from Caffe Divano and take it to go to enjoy along the water. Burrard Public House, St. James Well, Gallery Bistro, and Brew Street Craft & Kitchen are all other local watering holes where you can enjoy beer and fill up on some yummy food!

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Parkside Brewery on the Port Moody Ale Trail

Alright, now it's time to get to the BEER! We absolutely LOVED Parkside Brewery, we've been drinking their beers for a while but have never visited the actual brewery before! There was a taco truck placed out front, astro turf on the patio, and a ton of cool people and their even cooler dogs lounging around in the sun.

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Parkside Brewery was definitely our favorite as far as atmosphere goes, and it was bumping in the late afternoon! The tacos from Taqueria del Pueblo were soooooo delicious and the perfect snack to our flights of beer. Parkside even has their own popsicles too for a summer treat! 

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GROWLER ROOM AT Romer's 

After all that eating and drinking (and we're just getting started) we needed to go on a little walk! We walked east through the trails along the waterfront until we came to Romer's Burger Bar for some craft beer and seriously good burgers. They have a "growler room" upstairs which is home to beers from all of the Port Moody breweries, so you can try out a bunch all at once! 

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Yellow Dog Brewing on the port moody ale trail

Yellow Dog Brewing was the original brewery in Port Moody, opening in 2014. Last year they opened a big, modern tasting room, and when you walk in you're greeted by a giant neon yellow dog on the wall, so you'll know you made it to the right place. We also loved the spacious picnic area in the backyard, and the beers were sooo good too. We drink Yellow Dog at home a lot so it was fun to actually get to visit the brewery! 

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Twin Sails Brewing on the port moody ale trail

Next door to Yellow Dog is Twin Sails Brewing, and these two breweries are top contenders for the best breweries in all of BC! If ranking beer is your thing, check out this detailed blog post that our beer obsessed friends made, who declared that Twin Sails has "the most amazing and diverse collection of IPAs from any brewery in B.C."

You'll notice most of the beers are the same colour, and that's because Twin Sails originally set itself apart by focusing on German beers like lagers, pilsners, and hefeweizens, but now they're all about the more unique beers (beer brewed with real crab, anyone?). We loved their oh so trendy Hazy IPAs!

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TACO TIME AT TAPS AND TACOS

If you're looking for lunch closer to all the breweries, just make your way up the road to Taps & Tacos! They have cool vegan options like the jackfruit taco, which looks exactly like a pulled pork taco. But what really blew us away was the Korean Pork taco, it hit just the spot after a day full of beer and we will definitely be stopping here every time we're in Port Moody.

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Whether you're wandering through the trails or walking down the oceanfront pier, there's a lot to see and do in Port Moody within walking distance of the breweries and Skytrain station. You can even hop into a historic train car outside the Port Moody Station Museum, or find your next read at the bookstore inside a train car!

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Moody Ales on the Port Moody Ale Trail

All of the breweries along the Port Moody Ale Trail are distinct from each other, which means you won't get the same beer (or vibes) twice. Moody Ales focuses on ales, and you'll find a lot of unique flavours here ranging from a lemon matcha saison to a nitro vanilla porter. We should also mention that every brewery on the Port Moody Ale Trail has cider too, and most had wine options as well. So you can bring along all of your friends for a fun day trip, even if they don't like (or can't drink) beer!

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Honestly, as two "city girls" we were a little hesitant to take public transit out to the suburbs on the weekend but we're SO happy that we did! Even though we live down the street from all the breweries in Vancouver's Mt. Pleasant, it was nice to get out and enjoy some good beer outside by the water. 

You can find more info (and a handy map) about the Port Moody Ale Trail here, or check out BC Ale Trail's website for other fun, beer oriented summer trips!

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This post is in partnership with Port Moody Ale Trail 

Why We Love Modernism Week in Palm Springs

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It's our favorite weekend of the year - Modernism Week in Palm Springs! Also known as our "annual inspiration trip" with our friend Elizabeth Gilmore. We attended our first Modernism Week last year and quickly fell in love, it's hard not to! 

Modernism Week is a celebration of design, architecture, and style over 10 days in the desert. And what better place than the mid-century modern capital, Palm Springs? If you love colour, sunshine, beautiful houses, and an excuse to get all dressed up, this is definitely the vacation for you.

 Coat:  Dollskill  

Coat: Dollskill 

 Shoes:  Mohinders , Bag:  Anthropologie , Bathing Suit:  Nu Swimwear

Shoes: Mohinders, Bag: Anthropologie, Bathing Suit: Nu Swimwear

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Moroccan Modern Show Home at Modernism Week

One of the best parts of Modernism Week is visiting all the incredible homes, many of which are only open for tours during Modernism Week itself. This year, the showcase home was "Moroccan Modern," a one of a kind custom-built home from 1975 by architect Hal Lacy that was recently renovated. 

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The shape of the house is centered around an incredible courtyard and pool, with the rooms acting like a wall to give you total privacy and seclusion. Since we live in Canada, we are obsessed with the idea of indoor/outdoor living, which is so popular in the desert! We loved the pink door too, obviously. 

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 Dress:  Topshop  

Dress: Topshop 

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Where to Stay for Modernism Week: Saguaro Palm Springs

Every year for Modernism Week we have stayed at the Saguaro Palm Springs! We love this hotel for many reasons, mainly that it's just so damn cute. The colorful rainbow walls were repainted just in time for Modernism Week by Dunn Edwards, and the hotel makes the perfect backdrop for a weekend of Instagram shots. 

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 Shoes:  Mohinders

Shoes: Mohinders

Plus, you just have to love this pool! We took a quick break from home tours to soak up the sun by the pool, order a margarita, and just relax. We love their hotel restaurant El Jefe for tacos, and the Saguaro is one of the more affordable places to stay in Palm Springs (along with being so picturesque). Make sure you choose a room with a pool view  at the Saguaro- it's SO worth it!

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Palm Springs Door Tour

Some things are just so fun that you have to do them twice! The Palm Springs Door Tour (hosted by Palm Springs Style) is a super fun event for Modernism Week that is basically a dream for millennials like us. You start at the Saguaro hotel, and embark on a cute, self-guided bike tour through all the beautiful neighborhoods of South Palm Springs, stopping at all the bright doors along the way! 

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 Shoes:  Mohinders , Swimsuit:  Nu Swim

Shoes: Mohinders, Swimsuit: Nu Swim

This is the perfect chance to see some of the architecture in Palm Springs while also getting in a lot of Instagram pics. ;) When the tour is over, you're met with a fresh, cold cocktail back at The Saguaro. For your bike rental, cocktail, and the tour, it's only $20! So make sure you snag tickets next year, this event is only open during Modernism Week

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Vintage Trailer Show at Modernism Week in Palm Springs

New to us this year was exploring the Vintage Trailer Show at Modernism Week! 

This was surprisingly one of our highlights of the weekend, we had no idea how much we would love it! The Vintage Trailer Show is a curated collection of vintage trailers, campers, buses and motor homes all decorated with their own vibes or theme. Apparently this is one of the largest vintage trailer shows in the United States! 

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We are SO glad that we ended up going, it was super cool to get to see all of the hip trailers decked out and to learn more about them from their owners. There was everything from super rare RVs that looked straight out of a 1950s magazine, to new, modern trailers fit for a young couple. We definitely recommend attending this show next year! 

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Palm Springs Art Museum

Palm Springs is known worldwide for it's architecture and design, so obviously it would have an incredible museum! We loved visiting the Palm Springs Art Museum for the first time, it was full of modern art and the building itself was so stunning to wander through. 

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We loved their outdoor sculpture garden, and their new cafe Persimmon is set to open soon! Because who doesn't want to enjoy rose and charcuterie at any opportunity?

We even got a sneak peek of their new exhibit which is on now - and it's all about Andy Warhol! If you're visiting for Coachella, definitely stop in at the museum and check it out. 

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Visiting Frey House II at modernism week

Another incredible activity that we feel so lucky to have experienced is visiting Frey House II, Albert Frey's house!! When he died, he left his house to the Palm Springs Art Museum, and the house is only open to tours once a year, during Modernism Week. 

This was such a special experience to visit the home of one of our favorite architects, high up in the hills of Palm Springs. It was like stepping into the past, and if you ever get the chance to go, definitely go. The tours sell out fast each year! 

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The Hidden Frey at Modernism Week

The Frey fun didn't stop there, we also had the unique opportunity to visit the Hidden Frey during Modernsim Week too! This newly restored 1966 tennis estate was the featured home of Modernism Week, and it's named the "hidden" Frey because the property is relatively unknown. 

The house is sunken from the street and truly hidden from view, with the tennis court and home below street level.

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We had the best time visiting Palm Springs for Modernism Week 2018, and hopefully we will be back next year too! We can't recommend it enough - it's the perfect time to escape to Palm Springs for some sunshine, get inspired by all the amazing art, design, and architecture, and also just hang out with your friends or loved ones in an amazing city!

Heading to Palm Springs? Check out all our fave spots in our guide here:

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This post is in partnership with our friends at Modernism Week - thank you for having us be part of the #PSModSquad again! 

24 hours in Whistler Village at the Crystal Lodge

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Living in Vancouver, we are always ready for a road trip to Whistler! It's the perfect little escape from the city, and we recently visited for just a short 24 hours with Whistler's Crystal Lodge. Whether you stay for a day or a week, there's so much to explore in Whistler, and this trip we got to try a few new things too! 

Planning a trip to Whistler? You can view all of our favorite Whistler spots and posts here

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We hit the road with our bestie Lindsay from Treasures & Travels blog and started the trip by venturing through Squamish. 

We often find ourselves stopping the whole way to Whistler, no matter how many times we visit. Alta Lake and Lost Lake are two of our favourite spots to visit in both winter and summer for the epic scenery and calm water. 

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When we got to Whistler, we ended up visiting the gorgeous Audain Art Museum for the first time!

The museum is a mesmerizing display of art from local BC artists. The architecture of the museum is stunning and very forest-like, reflecting the presence within. We definitely recommend visiting, especially if you're a BC local and looking for something new to do in Whistler! 

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While in Whistler, we stayed at the Crystal Lodge, which is the perfect spot to stay within the village if you're wanting to be close to everything! We finally got to visit Basalt, a wine and salumeria located upstairs/above the hotel facing the village.

We were obsessed with the charcuterie boards and cocktails, specifically the Bour•geoi•sie that features St Germain Elderflower Liquor, Gordon's Gin, Orange Marmalade, Lemon Juice and Sparking Wine. We also loved their selection of wines, including some of our favourite wine from BC's Okanagan like Covert Farm's Rose and MoonCurser's Syrah. 

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Where to Stay in Whistler Village

We had never experienced staying right in the thick of the village, and we loved our stay at Crystal Lodge, with windows facing the mountains and village walkways. We didn't hear a sound all night, and really enjoyed our cozy and minimal room. We also enjoyed a Vegan Scramble and Egg's Benedict from the Wild Wood Pacific Bistro, which was voted the #1 Brunch spot in Whistler.

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In the morning, we woke up and found ourselves going up the gondola as every local usually does. The Peak2Peak gondola is our favourite adventure to satisfy that craving for snow on a time crunch. The glass bottoms are very romanticizing, if you're not afraid of heights!

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After taking in the snow and beautiful day, it was time for aprés and a local beer at Beacon's Pub & Eatery, along with deep-fried pickles and massive Caesar's served in a boot glass. Sooo yum!

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We had such a fun 24 hours in Whistler village! Looking for more things to do in Whistler? Check out our Whistler City Guide

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This post is in partnership with Crystal Lodge