Story by Vacay.ca Staff
It’s been a spectacular few months for Canada’s favourite online travel magazine — ahem, that’d be Vacay.ca, of course.
Founded to showcase the best destinations in Canada and to spotlight the astounding array of cultures within the nation’s borders, Vacay.ca’s advocacy journalism has delivered unprecedented attention for the locales featured within its webpages.
CBC and the Charlottetown Guardian both reported that Vacay.ca delivered so much traffic to the Basin Head beach website that the webmaster had to boost its bandwidth in order to prevent crashing of the site. Basin Head’s Singing Sands Beach was named the No. 1 Beach in Canada by Vacay.ca this month and that has led to global attention for the small sandy spot in tiny Souris, 90 minutes by car from Charlottetown.
“Traffic more than tripled in no time and I had to expand the broadband width to get it going again,” Wallace Rose, who operates BasinHead.com, told reporter Steve Sharratt of the Charlottetown Guardian. “It was really quite unbelievable.”
The CBC said, “In under two days, 10,000 people checked out Wallace Rose’s site” after the Vacay.ca ranking was released. A CTV Atlantic News report quoted PEI resident Deb Sioen as saying she heard of the accolade for the beach from the United States. “I was talking online with somebody from Tennessee and I mentioned what beach we were coming to today and they said back to me that it’s the number one beach in Canada,” she noted.
The popularity of the beaches list has not surprised Vacay.ca Managing Editor Adrian Brijbassi, who has seen the publication’s content spark attention and go viral on social media time and again.
“The amount of attention the Best Beaches in Canada list has earned has been nice to see. While Vacay.ca was the first publication to produce an authoritative ranking of Canada’s best restaurants, other outlets had attempted to create lists of the best beaches in the country. I think the reason our list is so much more successful than predecessors is because our travel experts are actually out in the country visiting and experiencing the places we spotlight. Our audience knows that a Vacay.ca ranking carries legitimacy and credibility,” said Brijbassi, who calls upon Vacay.ca’s team of travel and industry experts to vote and debate on the publication’s carefully chosen rankings.
Singing Sands earned the top spot because of its warm waters, family-friendly atmosphere, cleanliness, and the unique quality of its quartz sand that emits a sound when someone walks on it.
Previous Vacay.ca lists have included the 20 Best Places to Visit in Canada in 2013, which was led by Fortress Louisbourg in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. That destination saw a spike in visitation that it correlated to the Vacay.ca ranking and Brijbassi was named the keynote speaker for the island’s annual tourism conference.
The hugely successful Vacay.ca Top 50 Restaurants in Canada Guide, which released its second edition in May, has boosted business for several of the eateries honoured.
“People have come to trust that when a destination or establishment makes it onto one of our curated lists, it is an honour well deserved,” Brijbassi says. “Even more importantly, making it onto one of the Vacay.ca rankings has proven to lead to increased revenue for Canadian small businesses and tourism destinations. As advertisers smartly make the shift away from impressions and move their dollars toward publications that demonstrate audience action based on advocacy, Vacay.ca is positioned to be a leader in the rapidly evolving digital media space in Canada.”
Vacay.ca Wins Awards
Calgary-based correspondent Jody Robbins has done amazing work for Vacay.ca for more than a year and she was rewarded with an honourable mention at the 2013 Travel Media Association of Canada (TMAC) Awards in Saskatoon last month. Robbins’ photograph of a paddleboarder standing on his head in Lake Okanagan in British Columbia earned an honourable mention in the Best Travel Photo category.
Earlier this spring, Vacay.ca contributor Bobbie Hasselbring won the Excellence in Travel Media Award from Saskatchewan Tourism for a series of stories that included her piece on Regina’s dining hot spots.
Congratulations to both outstanding travel journalists!
More Great Lists Coming Soon
Up next for Vacay.ca, a ranking of Canada’s Best Streets. Watch for that list in the coming weeks. And please send in your votes for your favourite streets. Email firstname.lastname@example.org.