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Guest post alert!! Today I’m so happy to feature a piece from my lovely friend Nicole about her experience in America’s neighboring country – Canada! Last month, film connoisseur Nicole attended the Toronto Film Festival and it seems, fell in love with the city and country.  I loved this post when I read it, and it definitely inspired me to tag along with her when she attends the festival next year! For more on Nicole, check out her articles as the Washington DC Examiner for Examiner.com and follow her on twitter @nicolebmurphy.

OH CANADA, I LOVE YOU

To most, ‘TIFF’ is just a nickname for Tiffany, but in the film world it only means one thing: the Toronto International Film Festival, which I had the honor of attending this year. Not only was it the first time I attended a film festival, it was the first time I traveled to Canada! I have to say, I instantly fell in love with Toronto and everything it had to offer. It’s the perfect mix between the culture and big city lights of New York and the cleanliness and lower population that a city like Chicago has to offer.  Because of the diversity within Toronto, travelers can experience a variety of cuisines all within a few city blocks (I personally enjoyed the best cheeseburger I’ve ever had!). There is also something to be said about how friendly Torontonians are to tourists and genuinely want to know about where you’re from and how you are enjoying your trip to Canada. I always felt welcomed as a part of the city which is rare when visiting another city, let alone another country!

Below are a few pictures from my experience that I hope you will enjoy, but just to sum up my trip:

1) The film festival was a success (if you have the opportunity to go see “Silver Linings Playbook,”  “Much Ado About Nothing” or “Disconnect” go see them!)

2) I would go back every year for the film festival (I know, nerd) and to visit Toronto again. It’s the only city where I really felt at home the moment I arrived and I know if I ever get injured or sick, healthcare is on them.

3) Yes, Zac Efron is just as hot as you imagine him to be in person.

Me on the Toronto Film Festival red carpet AKA the place where you can take a picture and look halfway important (notice there’s no actual red carpet…or any carpet for that matter.)

The Royal Ontario Museum. The architecture is unreal.

Zac Efron at the premiere of his film “The Paperboy”. I didn’t get the craze in 2005, but 2012 is a new time and new year.

Toronto skyline – love.

Niagara Falls. The Falls on the left are on the Canadian side and the one behind my head is the American side of the Falls.

Before I boarded my flight back to the U.S., I had the opportunity to visit a town called Niagara-on-the-Lake. It reminds me of the small town in “Gilmore Girls” – cute shops, friendly people and the best fudge you’ll ever taste! The town also has amazing wineries and the first golf course built in North America!

My view of America from Canadian soil!

Thanks Nicole! I, like Nicole, cannot say enough wonderful things about Canada. The country has a diverse culture, great skiing and super friendly residents.

Also – just wanted to shout out my favorite people/things about Canada ummm Drake, Julia Dimon, Alan Thicke and his son Robin Thicke (who may not actually be Canadian) Robyn Gayle (Tarheel!) and their national women’s soccer team, Mont Tremblant and maple syrup. YAY

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