Why Canada is Such a Popular Holiday Destination in the Autumn Months

A Country That Has Something for Everyone

There's far more to Canada than moose and maple syrup. This is a country that boasts both great scenery and plenty to do.

When you think of places to visit as the weather grows cooler, chances are Canada wouldn't be first on your list. As well as being looked over in favour of warmer destinations, this is a country that has often been overshadowed by its southern neighbour, America. Now though, it's come into its own. So if you're thinking of jetting away on an autumn holiday this year, here's why this is such a popular tourist destination; along with some things to do and the best places in Canada to visit.

Beautiful vistas
Spectacular scenery is always one of the country's main selling points, but in the latter part of the year it seems almost otherworldly. Canada's lush forests come to life in the autumn, with the leaves turning beautiful shades of red and gold. If you're a photography enthusiast, then you're guaranteed to get plenty of incredible shots. If camping is more your cup of tea, then head to Muskoka, Ontario. Just a couple of hours away from the hustle and bustle of Toronto, it's the perfect place to reconnect with nature. You'll also find plenty of rental cottages there if you don't fancy sleeping in a tent! For those hitting the road, the Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia is one of the best routes to take. The scenery really has to been seen to be believed.

Hikes galore
Autumn is also peak hiking season in the country, with the Canadian Rockies welcoming locals and tourists alike. There are a number of trails for hikers to choose from. The Sunshine Meadows route was voted one of the best hikes in Canada by Lonely Planet, firmly cementing its popularity. From November you can wander across snowy planes before warming up with some well-earned hot chocolate and snacks.

Unique food and drink
The local cuisine is good reason to visit too – although that is the case all year round! The obvious things like maple syrup and bacon aside, there are some really tasty dishes to sample. Poutine is a favourite of Canadians, with some people even starting a petition to make it the country's national dish! For those not in the know, poutine is a meal consisting of fries smothered in cheese curds and gravy. It may sound odd, but it's totally delicious – and a perfect autumn warmer too.

If a cheeky tipple is more up your street, then how about sampling some Canadian wine? Yes, we know it isn't quite as warm as say, Italy or the south of France. What it does have in abundance though is ice – and that's the special ingredient in ice wine. The grapes are left to freeze on the vine, which concentrates their juices. The result is a wine that's rich, sweet and perfect with dessert. This technique is also used on apples too; creating what is known as, you've guessed it, ice cider!

It's time to experience all Canada has to offer
Although it's short, autumn is undoubtedly the most vibrant season of Canada's year. Picture postcard scenery along with plenty to do means that it is the perfect time to visit our other neighbours across the pond. Whether you choose to get in touch with nature on a long hike or spend your trip sampling plenty of food and drink, you'll come home with some truly fantastic memories. 

Disclaimer: This is a guest post. The author's view is entirely his/her own, and don't necessarily reflect the opinions of TravelQuest-ny.com.

Amazing ancient rock engravings - The Newspaper Rock

   I'm always fascinated to wood carved and ice sculptures, but seeing a stone art was neat! Just imagine standing in the location where people long ago carved those messages in the stone. Newspaper Rock is the earliest form of communication. It's amazing to see in person what's been around for a long time. The writings are all still very visible they are great representative drawings of ancient writings..

  Location: 14.5 Miles North of South Entrance (Rainbow Forest Museum), Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona

More than 650 images adorn the boulders - one of the largest concentrations of petroglyphs in the park. Below rock images are about 650 to 2,000 years old. People have live in those times have carved these images on stones. To this days these images are visible and is evidence that humans lived there once.

The greater variety of petroglyphs on Newspaper Rock includes (human like figures, animal like figures, spiritual figures,  geometric, hands and tracks) 

The blacker shades tend to be higher in manganese oxides, while redder tones indicate a higher amount of iron oxides. 

When rocks are exposed to the elements, a patina called "desert vanish" forms on the surface. Native people used sharp tools to chip into this veneer of iron and manganese oxides, clay minerals and organic material, revealing the lighter colored rock beneath. 

Jack Daniel's Whiskey Distillery: The History, Design and Innovation

   Who was Jack Daniels? Most of us are familiar with the name Jack Daniels, even if you aren’t a whiskey fan like me.  Jack Daniels was born in Tennessee in 1850 and died there in 1911. 

He was a small man, only 5 foot 2 inches and he is also a man of style. 

   Growing up in Tennessee, Jack Daniels learned how to make whiskey at the age of 7. He learned from a man in town who ran a small distillery. After some time, the whiskey became popular and the man began to be pressured to choose one over the other he chose religion over whiskey and sold Jack the business.  At 13, Jack Daniel officially owned his own whiskey business! The industry, which he helped to found in Tennessee, is today one of the biggest operations in the nation and one of the most popular American name brands of all time. 

One of Tennessee’s most famous trademarks has been Jack Daniel’s whiskey.
The Sinatra Select has quickly become a favorite bottle of many collectors. It was sold in a very sturdy gift box and came with a small booklet explaining the relationship between Jack Daniel’s and Frank Sinatra.
Jack Daniel's is the oldest registered distillery in the country. The company has produced many different bottles for its whiskey, and older bottles are highly sought-after by collectors.

It is one of the first designed jugs made for Jack Daniels.
Present day Square Bottle

Jack Daniel's Whiskey Distillery: The Making Process

   We made it to Lynchburg, Tennessee  specifically to come here. Even though I am not a massive fan of hard liquor, I must say, I personally enjoyed this tour. I was expecting like a thirty minute briefing on a free tour, but we were on the tour for almost two hours. You go through the entire process of Jack Daniel's whiskey being made, from the burning of the charcoal, to the barreling of the whiskey. It's amazing to see how it's made. Moving on down you get to tour the different buildings that have the mash and you can even smell the "white lightning" that will float your way. You'll get to see the barrel making & then tour the buildings that hold the barrels that are aging. 

   Some of the tour allows photos & some don't that areas where the magic happens.  At the end you can have some free lemonade.  Technically it's not legal to any store in the county to sell liquor but you have an option to buy some whiskey they have for sale at the distillery. At the end of the tour, we bought a bottle of Single Barrel Jack, a whiskey glass and fridge magnet. It's so worth the money to commemorate this experience. I will talk about the history and show more photos on my next post. 

The Jack Daniels distillery is the first/oldest distillery in all.
182 Lynchburg Highway, Lynchburg, TN 37352 ; phone# 931-759-6357

The Entrance to the Distillery
Three types of grain used to make Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey - corn, rye and malted barley.
The three are combined according to ratios that were developed by Jack himself many years ago. 
Milling & Mashing: After being ground, the grain is mixed with water taken from the nearby Cave Spring. In addition to the water a little spent stillage from previous whiskey batch is added. The mixture of grain water, called mash is cooked over high heat in the mash cooker. 
Barreling & Mellowing: The barrels are placed in a barrel house where the whiskey matures. The maturation process imparts much of the whiskey's taste and all of its distinctive color as the seasonal changes in temperature force the whiskey in and out of the world.
Sugar maple wood stacked by piles for the charcoal
One of the secret of a good whiskey is  by the good quality of burned barrels

The inferno that burns up the sugar maple wood into charcoal

The Horix Filler inside the White Rabbit Bottle Shop
One of the building where they process and stored the whiskey barrels
This natural spring comes right out of the Tennessee mountains provides all the water needed to make their product.  The limestone surrounding the water as it flows acts as a sponge that absorbs iron.  So the water coming out of the spring is completely iron-free, a very important and unique element in this whiskey.
Jack Daniel himself

Andrews Bald Day Hike

The trail had a lot of man-made steps out of rock and timber. It also had a lot of planks over the land for pathways. The trail went downhill most of the way there and it had a few rocks and roots here and there. Once we get to the top of Andrew's ball we had a beautiful view of the mountains. The viewing area was about as big as a football field. We brought some food and had a nice, little picnic out there and baked in the sun for a while. There was a lot of room to spread out. The climb back up to the parking area was pretty steady and much more difficult. It's a good place to get your cardio workout. It took us almost 3 hours including the stay at the top. 

Directions to Trailhead: From the Sugarlands Visitor Center near Gatlinburg, drive 13.2 miles south on Newfound Gap Road to Clingmans Dome Road. Turn right onto Clingmans Dome Road and drive another 7 miles to the end of the road. Due to its popularity, the parking area for the highest point in the Smokies is quite large. Andrews Bald is accessed via the Forney Ridge Trail, which is located at the far end of the parking lot.

Hiking Distance (Roundtrip Length): 3.5 Miles
Trail Difficulty Rating: 5.30 (moderate)

A reminder of God's amazing creation
The trail begins from the Clingmans Dome parking lot and drops elevation to get to Andrews Bald. 
Forney Ridge Trail

Rocky Trail

Butterfly vs Bee
Great view at highest point


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