How to Capture Your Canadian Staycation Memories this Summer

Canadians will be sticking closer to home this summer, but there are still plenty of places to explore right in our own backyard! It’s time to play tourist in your own town, while local destinations are relatively tourist-free. Here are a few ways you can enjoy your staycation at home in Canada, while still capturing some great summer memories.

Road Tripping

Swap out a flight abroad for a road trip in your own province this summer. Canada has an abundance of natural beauty, so there is plenty to see right here at home! In BC, do a quick day trip up the Sea-to-Sky Highway to Whistler, or a longer drive up the Alaska Highway to Mile 0 in Dawson Creek. For Alberta residents, The Cowboy Trail or the Trans Canada from Lake Louise will make for good road trip memories. In Saskatchewan, Cypress Hills and Grasslands National Park are both worth a scenic drive. Meanwhile, recommended road trips in Manitoba include a drive to Steep Rock which has lots to see along Highway 6, and Yellowhead Highway to Minnedosa Valley.

If you’re planning to vlog the experience, having a Panasonic LUMIX G100 Vlogging Camera with Tripod Grip (available for pre-order right now) in tow will make capturing the journey a breeze. It has features for both beginners and experts, including 4K video, Frame Marker, V-LogL recording, audio tracking that auto-adjusts, and a lightweight design that supports one-handed recording. The Sony VZ-1 Camera for Content Creators and Vloggers, and the Nikon Z50 Creators Kit (now available for pre-order) are also great choices for the budding vlogger. You can check out our full selection of gear for vlogging and streaming here.

If you have a dashcam, you can also turn that video into a time-lapse video to add to your vlog!

When documenting your road trip in photos, don’t forget to snap photos of mile markers, small-town city signs, scenic views, a couple of good shots of the windy road (we love a photo with some leading lines), and any unique stops you make along the way. Oh, and a group shot of your road trip crew, of course!

Hiking or Camping

Explore Canada’s stunning outdoor destinations this summer with a hike or some camping (or both!). There are lots of great hikes you may have seen on Instagram but have yet to venture out to – like Joffre Lakes in BC, which has spectacular views and a campground at Upper Joffre Lakes. For some picture-perfect hikes in Alberta, check out these suggestions in the Rockies. Saskatchewan is home to Meadowlake Provincial Park which boasts the province’s longest developed hiking trail and has 12 campgrounds with over 800 campsites. In Manitoba, the Spirit Sands & Devil’s Punch Bowl hike at Spruce Woods Provincial Park is a must, plus the park also offers some great camping spots.

When hiking or camping, it’s a good idea to take a camera along that is rugged enough to withstand the elements, while also offering you great image quality to capture those spectacular views while out in nature. Especially if you’re planning to venture into the wilderness quite a bit this summer, it’s worth upgrading to a camera like the Nikon Coolpix W300, which is dustproof, shockproof, freezeproof and waterproof. It also offers stunning high-resolution photos, 4K Ultra HD videos, time-lapse videos, superlapse videos and even music montages! The onboard GPS, eCompass, Altimeter, Depth Gauge and more will also help you easily track and view your course, steps taken, altitude, depth, and even atmospheric and water pressure. It’s the perfect hiking and camping companion.

From camping candids to wildlife sightings and landscape views, having your rugged camera by your side will ensure you capture every moment of your time in the outdoors.

Adventuring

Looking for an adrenaline rush? There are plenty of great options locally – from surfing on the West Coast in Tofino, to mountain biking and ATVing in the Rocky Mountains and on the Prairies. You can capture the exhilarating ride hands-free with a GoPro strapped to you for a unique perspective.

If you’re mountain biking, try the GoPro Seat Rail Mount which captures the action from the back of your seat, or this Handle Bar Mount for a front view. For ATVing, fasten your GoPro with a Vented Helmet Strap if you have a vented helmet, or use one of the Helmet Front and Side Mounts to help capture all the action. Surfers can mount their GoPro right to their surfboard, with the GoPro Surfboard Mount Kit.

Of course, the camera itself is the most important part. We have a selection of GoPro cameras that are rugged and waterproof – exactly what you need while adventuring. With Voice Command, just say “GoPro, take a photo” or “GoPro, start recording” to capture those extreme action shots hands-free.

Pool, Lake or Beach-Going

Summer vacation wouldn’t be complete without a trip to your nearest pool, lake or beach! Take advantage of spots that are close to home this season – check out some of our favourite beaches across Western Canada here.

Of course, if you’re going to be by the water, a waterproof camera is a must to avoid any smartphone mishaps. The Panasonic DC-TS7 Waterproof Camera can go down to a depth of 31 metres, so you can not only get it wet, but you can dive right in and get some great shots underwater without an additional waterproof case needed! The viewfinder is also designed for intense sunlight, so no matter how bright it is at the beach, you’ll always be able to compose the perfect photo. You also may want to add a floating strap to your camera, so if you become separated, you’ll be able to spot it floating on the surface. If you’re looking for some tips for taking better photos at the beach this summer, check out our blog on capturing beautiful beach views.

We hope your summer is full of new and exciting experiences this year, even if your plans are a little closer to home than you may have originally envisioned. Between driving, camping, hiking, biking and beach-going, we’re sure your camera will be full of photos of your summer adventures in the great outdoors! To preserve those memories, compile your photos into a personalized photo book from our Photolab that you can look back on for years to come. They’re printed on high-quality photo paper with exceptional inks, and every image is reviewed and corrected as necessary by our professional Photolab technicians. You can even customize your photo book’s cover, with linen, leather, soft cover and photo cover options. Text can also be added to help document your road trip stops or notate where you caught that breathtaking sunset.

If you took some beautiful scenic shots while on your summer road trip or hike, then you may want to think even bigger! We can print your images as enlargements up to 44×96 in size. Or really take your wall décor to the next level by printing your image on an aluminum metal panel or a canvas gallery wrap.

Click here to get started with printing your summer memories!

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Technology Buffs

It’s almost December! Have you started your holiday shopping yet?

Starting with last week’s gift guide for the home cook and continuing this week with our gift guide for kids (and parents), London Drugs is setting you up for success this holiday season with gift guides for everyone on your list. Today we’ve got a great list of gifts for technology buffs. Know a techie who’s always got the latest gadget? We’ll help you pick out the perfect gift!

Here’s our guide to help you buy a gift for the techie on your list that you know they’ll love.

1. Tech Tools for Tracking Health

Wearable technology is all the rage, and nobody’s doing it better than health and fitness companies. You can track your heart rate, steps, activity level, sleep, body fat… we even have portable machines for tracking blood pressure and glucose levels. It’s finally cool to want to be healthy!

gifts for technology buffs

Give the techie in your life the Fitbit Ionic, which has all the functionality of the previous Fitbit watches plus is water resistant up to 50 metres–perfect for tracking one’s swims. This version of the Fitbit also includes an NFC chip so you can pay at a contactless terminal with your credit card, from your wrist! If your techie friend is really adventurous, they may prefer the functionality of a Garmin smart watch, great for multisport tracking with GPS and full colour maps. Pair a smart watch with the Fitbit Aria or another smart scale, which track body fat percentage and wirelessly sync stats so they can track progress over time.

2. Make Mornings Bright with the All the Right Gear

gifts for technology buffs

Looking for something to help you start your day right? Try this gentle alarm clock that mimics the sunrise. A great gift to help them wake up in a more gentle way for those early morning workouts. Need more motivation to get out of bed? This running alarm clock literally runs away from you, forcing you to face the day. Like to listen to music or podcasts before drifting off to sleep? This eye mask has built in wireless headphones and full button controls. 

3. Outfit Your Home with Smart Technology

Smart home devices have come a long way in the last few years. Nest is leading the way, having developed a thermostat, smoke detector, and security camera you can control with your smartphone. Other companies have taken their lead, creating water sensors to detect leaks, smart locks for the front door, and smart outlets that allow you to turn on and off anything you have plugged in from your phone. Techies can set timers for the outlets their lights are plugged into, or just reduce their energy footprint by turning outlets off. Upgrade your techie friend’s home with technology and give the gift of peace of mind!

gifts for technology buffs

If they truly love using technology to make their life easier, or if they’ve always dreamed of having a robot butler, then get the techie in your life Google Home, the voice-activated speaker with built in Google Assistant.  With an “OK, Google,” they can ask it questions (Math! Definitions! Sports scores!) or tell it to play a song or movie on their Chromecast. It also connects with Nest and other smart devices. “OK, Google. What’s the perfect gift?”

gifts for technology buffs

 

4. Get the Perfect Shot

 

Technology keeps getting better and better, especially when it comes to photography. No techie should be without a good quality digital SLR camera like the Canon Rebel T6i pictured below. They have all the functionality of an analog camera with manual control, but with amazing features you can only get in a digital camera: snap amazing high-definition shots, view and edit using a touchscreen LED, and even take 4K video.

gifts for technology buffs

 

For the adventurous techie, the GoPro is the way to go. Waterproof up to 30 metres and able to go up to 120 frames per second, GoPro cameras take incredibly smooth videos in difficult conditions. Perfect for exploring the beauty of Canada! Or try a drone with a built in HD camera for gorgeous aerial shots.gifts for technology buffsIf they already have the latest in digital photography equipment, a lightweight tripod or an external hard drive to back up their photos will always be welcome.

 

5. Small Stocking Stuffers

One of the best things about technology is all the accessories. Perfect to supplement a larger gift, or pop them in a stocking for extra Christmas cheer. Things like batteries (never included, why?) and battery chargers. Or AV cables and adaptors.

gifts for technology buffs

 

For someone travelling during the holiday season, nothing is more useful than a soft electronics accessory bag for all the cables and accoutrements of laptops, phones, and other devices–except maybe this all-in-one plug adaptor good for more than 150 countries. 

6. Fashion Accessories for the Tech-inclined

In cold December weather, these texting gloves for men and women allow for uninterrupted texting. Or bring a pop of pattern to your friend’s phone with a fun new phone case. If they take work with them on the go, these beautiful laptop totes are a stylish answer to the messenger bag. 

gifts for technology buffs

For more gift-giving advice for the kids (and parents) on your list, speak to an LD Expert today. To make a purchase, visit London Drugs in-store and online.

We’ll be back next week with a top gift guide for DIYers. See you then!

See all of our 2017 Holiday Gift Guides here:

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Kids (and Parents)

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for the DIYer

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for Music Lovers

2017 Holiday Gift Guide for the Home Cook 

World’s First Ever Smart Drone Launches at London Drugs

Our buyers recently attended the Global Drone Summit at 3DRobotics’ headquarters in Austin, TX to test out the newly launched 3DR Solo Drone, which is now available for pre-sale at London Drugs. The Summit was the first of its kind, and brought together distributors and retailers from around the world, including London Drugs, to get a sneak peek at the world’s first ever smart drone.

DSC_0112The London Drugs buyers spent 3 days with the 3DR team and SVP Colin Guinn learning about Solo, flying drones, and filming aerial videos. Having had the chance to test out the drone first-hand, their assumption that the Solo is a must-have for any video or photography enthusiast was confirmed.

Arguably the most evident advantage of the Solo was its GoPro functionality. In fact, Solo is the first drone to access the GoPro API. 3DR worked very closely with GoPro to have custom firmware written for the Solo that allows the user to fully control the GoPro while the drone is in the air. This means starting and stopping video, taking photos, and even changing camera settings from DSC_0094the ground. The result is a full HD video feed, directly to iOS or Android, or through an HDMI port, that allows you to see what you’re capturing up above.

Among the most impressive features was most certainly how easy the Solo was to fly, from automatic take-off and landing, to the return-to-home push button, to the emergency break pause button. For anyone who has never flown a drone before, Solo makes it easy to fly and film, straight out of the box.

After learning the ins and outs of flying, the 3DR team walked our buyers through Solo’s Smart Shots: a series solo drone flyingof presets that allow the user to capture amazing cinematic aerial shots, all with just the push of a button. Choose from selfie, cable cam, orbit or follow, and Solo does the rest. They captured some stunning shots using the cable cam, which made the camera movement between two points into one steady, flawless motion.

Once all their captured footage was downloaded and edited, the result was an eye-catching video full of beautiful, stabilized aerial shots: mastered with just a click of a button on the Solo. For those looking for the most cutting edge video and photography tool, the possibilities really are endless with the 3DR Solo drone. You can pre-order your own Solo drone now. The Solo will be available in stores on June 27th.

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Tech Talk: GoPro

If you haven’t already heard, GoPro’s are the next big thing and London Drugs has all the accessories and items you need to capture the perfect video. On Monday, April 20th, London Drugs tech expert David Levett sat down with anchor Darrell Rumold on CTV Morning Live in Regina to discuss the latest GoPro and some of the newest accessories to go with it.

The GoPro HERO4 Black is the most advanced GoPro ever. It features improved image quality and a 2x more powerful processor with 2x faster video frame rates. The high-resolution 4K30 and high frame rate 1080p120 video  enables a stunning, immersive footage of you and your world.gopro hero4 black

David discussed a few of the accessories that can be paired with the GoPro HERO4. The GoPro Scenelapse is a mount for the GoPro that gives a 360-degree panorama. David suggested attaching the mount to the top of a car to get a perfect circulating shot. For those that are interested in seeing what the world is like from their dog’s point of view, they can purchase the GoPro Dog Harness. David explained how individuals would be surprised by the images their dog’s see by simply attaching their GoPro to their pets.

For those that are into other activities such as target shooting, David suggested to check out the GoPro Gun Mount. Individuals can attach their GoPro to the end of their shotgun to document their target shooting. Or, for those that are into documenting the social events with their friends, the GoPro Selfie Stick is perfect for their social gatherings. The selfie stick gives individuals the ability to take photos of himself or herself with more than one person.

Solo_White_AngleHowever, the latest accessory to come into London Drugs stores that will take your GoPro filming to the next level is the 3DR Solo Drone. The Drone has the ability to take GoPro’s up to 400 feet and can be controlled as far as a mile and a half away from your starting location. Individuals can tap into the GoPro camera attached to the drone from their smart phone, giving them a bird’s eye view.

The GoPro and its accessories can be used for a variety of activities. Whether you like to document taking your dog for a walk, or view your house from 400 feet in the air, the GoPro HERO4 has accessories to give you what you need with a high quality, durable camera. Make sure to check out all the different GoPro accessories here.

Tech Talk with GoPro and 3DR Drone

If you haven’t already heard, GoPro’s are the next big thing and London Drugs has all the accessories and items you need to capture the perfect video. On Monday, April 20th, London Drugs tech expert David Levett sat down with anchor Darrell Rumold on CTV Morning Live in Regina to discuss the latest GoPro and some of the newest accessories to go with it.

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