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Joseph Rosendo's Travelscope

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"Bonjour" means good day in French and it is always a good day in the French speaking Canadian province of Quebec, especially in the lively cosmopolitan city of Montreal. By taking to Montreal's streets, neighborhoods, natural places and waterways, Joseph discovers that joie du vivre is not just a French phrase; it's a way of life in Montreal. And summer is the time for celebrating. From music and dance to fireworks and circus acts, festivals abound! In addition, to the official celebrations every one of the scores of cultural neighborhoods throws a party!

Myanmar or Burma, by either name, or both are acceptable, exudes an aura of the exotic, mysterious and alluring. Even the names of its former capitals, Mandalay and Rangoon, evoke a lyrical glow. Yet, it's the magnetism of its ancient temple architecture that draws visitors to the valley of the Irrawaddy River. Joseph embarks on an Irrawaddy River adventure from golden pagodas to colorful markets, from working villages to frenzied cities where unimagined new sights, sounds, smells and emotions capture his attention.

Joseph visits Nicaragua and discovers the untouched beauty of the land and a population ready to embrace travelers. In spite of a history of trials and tribulation, today Nicaraguans are a people filled with good cheer and gifted with open hearts. Long overlooked by tourists, the country has preserved what is a treasure chest full of surprising attractions. While Nicaragua owes its cultural vitality to its Spanish roots, its natural gems are ageless. From volcanic landscape to teeming rivers and untrammeled rainforests, the program reveals a country that is a traveler's dream.

Joseph visits Northeast Ontario, Canada, a vast land of trees, water and rock that has served many. It has been home to aboriginal people for more than 10,000 years. To illustrate the aboriginal people's connection, on Manitoulin Island Joseph joins his First Nations guides at a pow wow, on a hike along the Niagara Escarpment, in handcrafting a drum and at an aboriginal feast. He also visits a Roman Catholic church which endeavors to be a gathering place for native and non-native alike by incorporating the symbols, traditions and beliefs of both.

Joseph takes off for Northwest Ontario, a region distinguished by Canada's great outdoors. On the 300-mile drive along the Trans-Canada Highway from Thunder Bay, on Northwest Ontario's eastern edge, to Kenora, near its Western border with Manitoba, the granite outcroppings of the Canadian Shield are revealed and the boreal forest covers the landscape. And there's water, water everywhere. Within its 204,000 square miles there are just 250,000 people, yet there are 5,000 wilderness camps and lodges and 150,000 fishable lakes.

Ontario's Central Counties offers a mosaic of historic gristmill villages, verdant farmlands and towns that thrive because of their multi-cultural population. During his Central Counties explorations Joseph cycles through the rich Durham farmlands on an agri-tourism adventure that includes fruit wine tasting and a visit to Tyrone Mill, one of only two operating mills in Ontario. In the York region he steps back in time at the Black Creek Pioneer Village for a taste of what life was like in the early days of Canada and fast forwards into the present at the Taste of Asia Festival in Markham.

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