Secrets for Visiting the Remington Carriage Museum
Secrets for Visiting the Remington Carriage Museum January 18, 2018 · 3 min. readDisclaimer: While the thoughts and opinions are my own, this article was brought to you by a third party. Also, this article may contain affiliate links.
The Remington Carriage Museum in Cardston, Alberta boasts North America's largest carriage collection, interactive displays, a working restoration shop, gift shop, concession, and beautiful parklike grounds. With 270 carriages in 64,000 square feet, how do you begin to explore "The Best Indoor Attraction in Canada"? (source: Attractions Canada)
1. Plan Ahead: Check the museum's Special Events page so you can time your visit right. From equestrian events like the RCMP Musical Ride to the holiday Festival of Lights, there is always something fun going at the museum! In summer, the museum offers carriage rides and wagon rides (extra charge), weather permitting.
2. Short on time? Hit the must-sees first!
Watch the 15 minute movie "Wheels of Change" set in the year 1899. It provides a good introduction to the rise and fall of the carriage industry. Runs on the hour in summer, or when people are there in winter.
Check out the new exhibit, McLaughlin Story: 150 Years of Carriages, Cars and Canada Dry, that was built for Canada's 150th birthday.
Visitors with kids won't want to miss Horse University, the virtual mini chuckwagon races, and virtual wagon ride.
Get a photo taken in a movie stagecoach built by Don Remington and used in the Shanghai Noon and Crossfire Trail.
Visit the Restoration Shop for a blacksmithing, woodworking, or metalworking demonstration and learn how carriages are built and repaired.
3. Take a FREE Guided Tour: Knowledgeable and passionate staff bring the horsedrawn era to life with their stories. They also point out features you might miss if exploring on your own - beautiful Tulip lamps and squeaky leather suspension (used for 2,000 years!), for example - and tell you who those people in the cutouts are. Love royalty? Queen Elizabeth II has ridden in two carriages here!
4. Ask Questions: Don't be shy; museum staff love to answer questions.
5. Take a Break: Go for a walk around the grounds, or take a carriage ride (summer only), grab a bite to eat at the concession, or browse the gift shop, then explore the rest of the exhibits as time allows.
A few months ago I entered a contest for a trip for two to visit Philadelphia on Two Bad Tourists. Normally contests like this are limited to United States residents so when I saw this one was open to Canadians I jumped at the chance. I've never won something like this before, so I actually forgot about it until I got the emailing saying I had won. Two Bad Tourists then worked alongside Visit Philly to organise the trip for me and my mother to explore Philadelphia for three days. Visit Philly paid for our flights, hotels and gave us a VIP Pass to experience the city to our heart's content. It is thanks to them that this trip is possible.
Several movies and television shows have tried to capture the essence of Philadelphia over the years – from the boxing Blockbuster Rocky, to the paranormal thriller The Sixth Sense, to It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and even Boy Meets World – but each described the city differently. There is no easy way to approach a city as dynamic as The City of Brotherly Love. With countless layers of art, history, religion and the paranormal, Philadelphia is a city unlike any other throughout the United States.
One thing that surprised me the most about Philadelphia was the history. The city was founded and designed by William Penn, who is also the state of Pennsylvania's namesake. Born in London, England in 1644 he lived through The Great Fire of 1666 and The Great Plague of London from 1665-1666. Both events shaped Penn's life so he designed the city to be strictly stone buildings (to stop fires from spreading) and to have plenty of space between the buildings (as to prevent illness from spreading). This led to the older areas of the city to have winding corridors between old stone walls.
The Island of the Dolls is in Xochimilco, a borough south of Mexico City. While it would be faster to take a car from Mexico City to Xochimilco, the traffic is dense and the roads are very congested. Instead, if you're going there, I'd recommend taking metro, which is easy and the cheapest in the world. What you gain in comfort, however, you lose in speed, as the train ride takes about 2 hours.
Mexico City and Xochimilco both sit in the Valley of Mexico. Until about a millennium ago, the whole region around Mexico City was surrounded by a massive body of water. Over the centuries due to both climate change and interference by humans, most of this water has dried up, for the exception of Xochimilco. With networks of canals crisscrossing the borough, car transportation is difficult and water transportation is essential. I'm sure there were motorized boats somewhere in the waters of Xochimilco, but I never saw any. Instead, canoes and rafts are common on the water. However, the most popular vessel is a trajinera – a colourful gonadal-like boat that is pushed along the water with a wooden pole.
Xochimilco is known worldwide for their Floating Gardens market, which are essentially canoes floating down the canals, selling wares to tourists on trajineras. These include things like food, drinks, silver rings, trinkets, ponchos and sombreros. Occasionally other trajineras full of Mariachi bands will approach tourists and offer to play beside them on the water.
Love poutine, Justin Trudeau and just about everything Québécois? G Adventures had the right idea including Montréal in two of their Canadian tours, but Montréal isn't the only noteworthy place to visit in Québec. Now, this tour doesn't give Québec the justice it deserves either, but hopefully it inspires you to take your time to explore the wonders it has to offer. Québec is a beautiful province with a long history, stretching back over four centuries, so this tour is dedicated to the incredible history and culture of French Canada.
Our fictional tour starts in Montréal. If you've read my Five Historic Canadian Cities article last week, you already know Montréal is one of Canada's most lively cities. Packed with some of Canada's most impressive scientific museums, Montréal is also home to an archeological and historical museum, Pointe-à-Callière. Inside one of the most unique buildings in Old Montréal, this museum ventures deep into the history of the city and explores its foundation, its struggles and its changes. With 375 years of history, to uncover this museum starts off with the discovery of Hochelaga and showcases various sections of the original sewer system. The museum also has several illustrations showing the plagues and fires that once decimated the early city. The museum also has an interactive section about the pirates that once terrorized the St. Lawrence River. This museum is one of my absolute favorites, so if you love museums as much as I, you'll want to check it out.