As a child, my summers started with a 12-hour car ride from the middle of Alberta to the interior of British Columbia. My sisters and I would only be allowed one break, so we’d settle in for the ride, limbs all askew, reading books, playing car games but mostly just idly looking out the window. As the golden hue of the Prairies morphed into the majesty of the Rocky Mountains, we would call out familiar landmarks along the way — the Calgary Tower, the Three Sisters mountain range, the Enchanted Forest theme park — each one bringing us a step closer to two or three highly anticipated weeks of waterskiing, boat rides and ice cream. Maybe you have similar memories of getting to your cabin in the Selkirks, cottage on a Great Lake, chalet in the Laurentians, bungalow on Cape Breton Island, camp in northwestern Ontario or lakehouse on one of the Finger Lakes. (Although the Toronto-centric press would have you believe it, we don’t call them all cottages!) There’s something about these journeys that helps us shrug off our hectic lives and prepares us for the sweet summer days ahead. As Renee Metrick says in our story about her new family getaway (page 64), “By the time we hit Barrie, the sense of calm just takes over.” It was a desire to find a secluded escape fromthe city that prompted designer Sam Sacks to take a chance on an 800-square-foot hunting shack (page 82). With an oversized mortgage on her Toronto home and “no job security to speak of,” it wasn’t the smart thing to do but, over the past decade and with a lot of elbow grease, she’s turned her shack into a delightful boho escape with gallons of white paint and an eye for vintage finds. It’s a story that may leave you, like it left me, wanting to buy a cottage and do the same.This summer, I’ll spend my time between acabin on Lake Windermere in B.C. and a couple of cottages on Lake Huron. Along the way, I’ll point out interesting landmarks to my kids in the back seat, in the hopes that they’ll start to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll keep my eye on real-estate listings along the way.