Our Favorite Restaurants in Canmore and Area

picture of the Grizzly Paw patio
Grizzly Paw Patio

Grizzly Paw Brew Pub – located 222-8th street, Canmore AB.  (403) 678-0960 – within a 5 minute walk from our condo.  Not only is the food really great but this pub has it’s own brews on tap and you can order a sampler platter that offers a few ounces of each of their brews.  It also brews it’s own sodas.  The food has been consistently great for the past many years we have been coming to Canmore.  In the nicer months you can sit on the patio and take in a panoramic mountain view and as the weather gets cooler they turn on outdoor fireplace.  Check out their website for more info www.thegrizzlypaw.com

Trough Dining Company – located 725 9th street, Canmore (403)678-2820
We did walk to this place although it’s not as close to our condo as many of the others in our fav’s list – but the food was worth it!  The food was unique and the chef plays with the different tastes.  Upscale dining without pretension. www.thetrough.ca


Peyto’s cafe located at the Lake Louise Alpine Center Hostel, 203 village rd, Lake Louise (403) 522-2200.  About 1 hour drive from our condo. 
This area doesn’t have many restaurants and many years ago my husband stumbled upon this cafe that is attached to the Lake Louise Hostel.  The food is great value and offers soups, salads and burgers.   We come here yearly and make a point to stop in here while driving through Lake Louise.   The restaurant is casual yet cosy with a large fireplace and rustic timber style decor.

Murrietas Bar & Grill – located 737 8th st Canmore (403)609-9500
Up scale dining room is located on the upper level of a building in down town Canmore offers a great view of the mountains.  www.murrietas.ca

Crazy weed – located 1500 Railway Avenue Canmore (403)609-2530
Walking distance from our condo – we have not been to it’s new location but it’s still a fav’s!  Visit their website www.crazyweed.ca

 Tapas located at 633 10th street Canmore (403)609-0583 – easily walked from our condo
As the name implies these are little plates made for sharing.  The food is yummy!  Visit their website at www.tapascanmore.ca 

Rose & Crown located very close to our condo at 749 Railway Ave, Canmore (403)678-5168
Great food – casual pub and often there is live music

There are many, many more restaurants in the area and we look forward to trying them all!

enjoy the mountain fare!

Costa Rica condo was a blast

I went to Costa Rica on an Earthwatch expedition in mid April. In my group, we gathered data from coffee plantations in the Tarrazú region outside of San José. Here we worked on a research project studying pollinators (bees). These studies are being conducted to see if the presence of pollinators increase the coffee yield which is a self-pollinating plant. This is a small portion of an on-going project between Earthwatch and the coffee farmers.

Coffee plantation outside of San Marco

After my week in the mountains I rented the condo in Tamarindo Beach for a week. The condo was spacious and clean with a pool, and a nice large terrace. We ate all our meals on the terrace. Best of all, it was right across from the beach. The staff at the vacation rental office were very helpful in booking our excursions. It was the perfect ending to the trip. I highly recommend going to Tamarindo and booking the condo from the Krons.

Tamarindo Beach from the air
Tamarindo Beach at low tide

Deer on the Island

Deer coming out of a clearing
Deer coming out of a clearing
It is estimatated that there are approximately 30,000 deer on Manitoulin Island.  That’s a LOT of deer considering there are only 10,000 year round residence.   Over the years we have seen many deer on our property and out while driving around.  We spotted this one coming out of a clearing about to cross the road.  Manitoulin island is over 2,766 square km (that’s  1,068 sq miles for our American Friends).   you can see the Deer's shadow as she jumps through the snow
you can see the Deer’s shadow as she jumps through the snow

Our Favorite Restaurants in Tamarindo, Costa Rica

IMGP8720Here is our top restaurant picks for the town on Tamarindo where we have a vacation rental condo in the Sunrise Condo Complex.  We have tried to provide you with information to find these places but giving you an address is difficult because there are no street names in Costa Rica.  Everything is mapped by how far away it is in relation to local landmarks.  If you can not find these places just ask around – people here are extremely friendly!  

LA PALAPA (hotel and restaurant) 5 – 7 minute walk from our condo, just past the Hotel Dira on the beach side of the road.  They specialize in Seafood – but there’s something on the menu for everyone.  This is my favorite restaurant because of it’s beach location.  At night they light up the palm trees that frame this beach patio and it’s as if you are in paradise. 

EL COCONUT located on the main road in tamarindo about a 5 minute walk from our condo. Likely the most expensive restaurant we have ever been to in Costa Rica but well worth the money in my opinion!  and it’s not really that expensive by North American standards.  Featuring seafood and steak dishes, the chef makes each dish delicious with a creative flare.     

VOODOO LOUNGE located in Central Tamarindo (506)653-0100 about 5-7 minute walk from our condo
This place is fine dining with entertainment.  Great food! 

 MATAPALO located in the Hotel Diria 50 metres South of our condo (Sunrise Condo Complex) and just a two minute walk away. This world class hotel has a wonderful restaurant that features a wide range of local and international foods.  We suggest if you are going for dinner arrive early and enjoy a cocktail while watching the sunset from this ocean view patio.   

PIZZERIA/RESTAURANTE/HELADERIA PORTOFINO located across from the beach on the main road of Tamarindo about a 3-5 minute walk (towards the circle) from our condo.  This open air pizza shop/ice cream parlour is a great place to enjoy a pizza and a glass of vino in a casual setting.  This is a good choice for eating if you are starting to get a little home sick for food(…not that you will with all the variety in the area – i’m just saying IF YOU DO…). 

There are many, many more restaurants and as we explore more places we will extend our list.  Also feel free to ask around and check out the restaurants posted menus.

Buen Apetitio!

Our Latest Vacation Rental Home – just Minutes to DisneyWorld is ready to rent!

Large Living room with pull out sofa bed, Wii game system, and 42 in LED TV
Large Living room with pull out sofa bed, Wii game system, and 42 in LCD TV

It has been a long week and it’s only Wednesday!!!! We closed on our latest Vacation Rental Home in Kissimmee Florida last Friday ( March 12, 2010).  It’s a great town home in the Windsor Palms Resort community – Just a few minutes to Disney World.    Although the home is only 7 yrs old we decided it need a facelift & some new electronics. 

Dining area off kitchen
Dining area off the Kitchen
                 We spent hours removing wallpaper, painting, re-arranging some furniture and buying a few more items to ensure our renters have everything they will need for thier stay.  The house is layed out to accomodate a large family, two small families or 3 to 4 couples with a maximum occupancy of 8 people. 
upstairs master bedroom
upstairs master bedroom
We even picked up a portable crib to accomodate people with little ones.   Each bedroom has a 32 inch LCD TV mounted on the wall. One bedroom even has an Xbox 360 game system so the kids can play a video game or watch a movie and the living room has a Wii so the entire family can play together.  If we don’t have the movie or game you like the sundry shop in the club house rents movies and games.  
350 sq ft patio with 6 person hot tub, patio table and 2 lounge chairs
350 sq ft patio with 6 person hot tub, patio table and 2 lounge chairs
Many of the other town homes in this community have a splash pool in the patio area – we chose this condo because it didn’t have one… they take up so much of the patio you can only fit 2 chairs outside – Besides there is a huge pool at the club house and it only takes a few minutes to walk there.    Our patio is very private and backs onto green space. 
We hope you enjoy this place as much as we do! 

Is the Water in Costa Rica safe to Drink?

fresh drinksIs it safe to drink the water in Costa Rica?  YES and NO….  There are certainly places where I would not drink the water and places where I feel completely safe about consuming water right out of the tap.  If in doubt – don’t do it!   Bottled water is readily available throughout the country.

Over the past few years the quality of the drinking water in the touristy parts of Costa Rica has been getting better all the time.  To this day I still ask the restaurants if their water is filtered or even bottled and then take that into consideration when ordering a drink, weather or not to have ice cubes, bottled beer or a mixed drink.  If they dont have filtered water I don’t order a salad or uncooked veggies. It also depends on the location, if you are in the larger towns like Tamarindo then chances are the water is filtered but drinking out of a garden hose at a hut in the Jungle might not be such a good idea.  Always bring plenty of water with you on day trips, and if you are on an organized tour they will likely prodive you with bottled water.

purified water snowconesOur condo complex (Sunrise Condominium in Tamarindo) has installed a water filtration system – so we never have to worry when we are drinking the water at our condo or washing the fruits and veggies.  If you are staying in a home, condo or cabana without a filtration system I would suggest purchasing large bottles or containers of water for drinking, food preparation, brushing your teeth and for making ice cubes.

Osprey Nest on Manitoulin Island

Osprey Nest on telephone pole

We found this nest on a telephone pole close to a bridge near Lake Wolsey (Gore Bay twp) in October 2008 and the Osprey was still living in it then – likey getting ready to move south for the season.


Ospreys eat fish almost exclusively.  So when the lakes freeze over they head south.  Unlike bald eagles which have been spotted all year round on Manitoulin Island.

ATV tour in Costa Rica

This is us & our good friends the Walker's on a ATV tour in Costa Rica
This is us & our good friends the Walker's on a ATV tour in Costa Rica

PROCEED WITH CAUTION…. this tour brought out the dare devil in all of us!   We had a wonderful afternoon of trail riding, off road-ing and for a split second I was airborne.  Our guide took us over a few homemade bridges that despite being made of 2X4’s, old doors or anything else they had laying around got us over creeks and streams successfully.   Our guide took us to a beautiful waterfall where we could jump off a cliff and go swimming in the river.

Coming soon… our lastest Vacation home just minutes to Disneyworld!!!

This great Clubhouse has something for everyone
This great Clubhouse has something for everyone

A few weeks ago we went to Kissimmee Florida to look for a new Vacation Rental Home. We found one and are just weeks away from closing the deal.

The Vacation Rental home is located in the Windsor Palms Resort community – Just minutes from Disney world. This gated community and is a full resort with a clubhouse including pool, hot tub, games room, business center, fitness room, beach volleyball, basketball court, playground and a movie theatre! …it’s really cool – you can even request the movies!


Windsor Palm Resort Movie Theatre
Windsor Palm Resort Movie Theatre

The Town Home is nicely laid out with 3 bedrooms each with its own private bathroom – this makes it perfect for either 3 couples or 2 families with kids. There is even a sofabed in the living room for extra sleeping options.

We chose a unit with a hot tub (that’s a spa to our American friends). The back yard is screened in and very private because it backs onto a conservation area.

We look forward to the closing date and adding it to our website!

Municipality of Central Manitoulin Boat Launches

All public boat launches are free to use.  Please be courteous and ensure that others have easy access to the launch of you are parking a vehicle near the launch.

Big Lake – at Highway 542 where it meets the lake on the North West side.

Kagawong Lake – Perivale Road West, South West, shortly after Perivale Road branches to Perivale Road West, and Perivale Road East, across from the Penticostal Camp.
This is the closest public boat launch to our vacation rental cottages.  The launch is less than 5 minutes south of the cottages by car and about the same by boat/motor.

Lake Huron – at the south end of Providence Bay at the Wharf.

Lake Manitou – at the Sandfield Government Dock.

Lake Mindemoy – at the Mindemoy Government Dock.

Windfall Lake – on Dial Road

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