Canada is big, beautiful and, thanks to a weak loonie, relatively cheap.
For those reasons and more, the New York Times named Canada the number one destination to visit in 2017.
The full list, published online Wednesday, describes Canada as a “world unto itself” with “cosmopolitan cities, barely explored natural wonders and everything in between.”
The feature also highlights Canada’s 150th anniversary, an historic celebration in which more than 200 national parks and historic sites are offering free entry all year -- “from the turquoise lakes and mountain peaks of Banff in Alberta to the rolling dunes and red sandstone cliffs of Prince Edward Island along the Atlantic Coast to the newest reserve, the glacial-rounded Mealy Mountains in Labrador.”
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau endorsed the article in a tweet Wednesday afternoon.
Besides Canada’s bucolic charm and much-anticipated sesquicentennial, the New York Times says the U.S. exchange rate makes visiting especially cheap these days.
“So 2017 offers an ideal time to go north,” writes Remy Scalza.
Indeed, many Americans already got the memo. Reports suggest that the low dollar has been enticing U.S. travellers north of the border for at least 12 months. Last January, when the loonie was trading around 70 cents to the U.S. dollar, hotels in Montreal and ski resorts in B.C. and Alberta noted bumps in business.
The Canadian dollar saw a sizeable leap on Wednesday as it jumped from .70 of a U.S. cent to 75.14 cents U.S. amid rising commodities.
Other top destinations on the New York Times list included:
2) Atacama Desert, Chile
3) Agra, India
4) Zermatt, Switzerland
6) Dubrovnik, Croatia
7) Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
8) Tijuana, Mexico
9) Detroit, Michigan
10) Hamburg, Germany