One of the best parts of traveling to a new place is the opportunity you have to immerse yourself in the culture. From eating delicious local food and drink to learning bits and pieces of the language and settling in to a landscape and climate that are novel and new, travel provides a wealth of experiences that are different from most travelers’ typical day-to-day life back home.
While booking a stay in Niagara isn’t going to require much by way of language preparation, there are ways to immerse yourself more fully in the local flavors of the region even before you ever set foot in Ontario.
One easy way to get a sense of a place after your plane touches down is through radio. Local radio stations can be a great way to get different types of information about a place as local businesses often advertise their services, ongoing events are heralded, and local DJs provide insight on customs and interests peculiar to the region from which they’re broadcasting, and because Internet streaming of radio stations is so common anymore, you can also listen in to what’s being played and discussed long before you arrive. Here are some radio stations in the Niagara area that you can check out before, after, and during your trip.
CHTZ 97.7 FM
CHTZ-FM is a St. Catharines-based Rock station whose slogan is “Southern Ontario’s Best Rock.” While it started out back in the late 1940s as a country station, these days find it with a focus on hard rock and heavy metal. For lovers of American and British rock bands like Metallica, Rob Zombie, and Soundgarden, CHTZ-FM is perfect. As a commercial radio station, you’ll get plenty of opportunities to hear ads related to the area, and while that can be somewhat annoying, it will give you some insight into local business happenings. You can try it out online here.
CFBU 103.7 FM
A radio station at Brock University in St. Catharines, CFBU is a student-staffed station that strives to run a community-centered radio station broadcasting entertaining, smart, and articulate music and spoken word programming representative of Brock University and under-served ethnic and marginalized groups. As a noted alternative to commercial radio, CFBU features surprising programming that is one-of-a-kind and distinctly local, and because it’s a not-for-profit station, the lack of commercials and advertisements makes listening in especially refreshing. Check it out here.
SportsNet 590 AM The Fan
If you’d like to get an authentic taste of how serious Canadians take their hockey, tune in to 590 AM for some no-holds-barred sports talk radio. Of course, SportsNet covers much more than hockey, which makes it a great listen for sports fans of every stripe. You can find erudite discussions about the NBA, Major League Baseball, curling, soccer, Canadian Football League, and much more. Listen in to the latest in sports here.
So, take to the airwaves before you ever leave home, and continue to listen once you arrive. Getting a sense of Niagara can be had through many different avenues, from our vineyards and waterfalls to our radio.
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