Vancouver, Whistler and Vancouver Island

As I mentioned in my last blog, Charlie and I took a break from RV’ing and flew back to Atlanta to visit friends and family.

Our time back East flew by. We celebrated this little one’s 6th birthday.

We celebrated this young man’s 15th birthday.

We took this little one (turning 2 in July) up for her first ride in Charlie’s plane. She loved it.

This was just after we took her to the Hot Air Balloon Jubilee in Decatur, Alabama. She fell in love with the balloons and anything else that flies in the sky. I’m sure she’ll be taking a ride in Charlie’s balloon before we know it.

We got to see our friends, Dave & Sarah, purchase their first motorhome. We inspired them into RVing.

And we took a quick overnight trip up to Mountain Falls Motorcoach Resort in Lake Toxaway, NC to see some friends and check on our coachhouse. We’ll miss being there this summer.

I just love this view, from our backyard at Mountain Falls

Lastly, I took a short trip up to Michigan to see my parents. My mom had not been well during the first 4 months of our trip. I was worried about her and wanted to check on her. I’m happy to say that she is doing a bit better these days.

The day we returned to Seattle from Atlanta we headed straight over to Vancouver, British Columbia. Getting across the border was a breeze. There was no line at all and we cruised right through customs.

US-Canada Peace Arch at the border

We stayed at a less than desirable campground in Tsawwassen, BC. We selected it as it was just down the street from the Ferry which we were going to be taking over to Vancouver Island. In the end, it wasn’t too bad, as we were rarely there.

We spent a day touring downtown Vancouver, which neither of us really cared for. We could not believe the significant number of homeless people in the city. There were a large number of blocks, between Chinatown and Gastown, with throngs of homeless people. I didn’t find it very safe. We did enjoy a drive around Stanley Park and a hike through Lynn Canyon.

In Lynn Canyon they have a great swinging bridge, which we discovered is quite common in the area.

Lynn Canyon:

We took a day trip to Whistler for Zip-lining. They have the longest and fastest zip-line in North America. It was a blast! It is over 1.2 miles long and it reaches speeds of nearly 62 mph.

The line ends just below the big flat brown patch area you see on the mountain top in the middle of the picture

I loved the village of Whistler. I had never been there before. I hope Charlie and I can make it back there sometime for ski season.

On our way to Whistler we stopped by Shannon Falls. It is a very pretty waterfall just off the road.

From Tsawwassen we took the BC ferry over to Nanaimo, BC on Vancouver Island. It was the first time we have taken the motorhome on a ferry. It went very well. No issues at all.

Once we got to Nanaimo we to Brown’s Bay Resort, just north of Campbell River. We had to drive a few miles down this dirt road to get to the resort. It was fairly well graded, and it had recently rained, so it wasn’t too bad.

We loved the views from the resort. We sat outside and watched a few cruise ships pass us by. The resort sits on the Inner Channel which many cruise ships take to/from Alaska.

In Campbell River we found a great little place to get fresh seafood, called Crabby Bob’s. We picked up some halibut. It was very good.

Our neighbors told us about a great little restaurant for breakfast, called The Ideal Cafe. It didn’t look like much from the outside, but the food and hospitality was excellent. It is a local’s kind of place. We enjoyed some very good Eggs Benedict there.

We took a short walk to Elk Falls. The falls was not very exciting in the middle of the day, with the sun’s reflection, but we enjoyed walking across yet another swinging bridge.

We took a short ferry ride, with the Jeep, over to Quadra Island. It was a very scenic ride.

We stopped by the visitor’s island and got some ideas of how to spend a few hours on the island. He suggested checking out the views from the Cape Midge Lighthouse, which we found very nice.

He suggested taking a walk around Rebecca Spit Marine Park, which we found exceptionally beautiful.

And lastly, he suggested having a bit to eat at the historic Heriot Bay Inn. We sat on the patio and enjoyed a nice meal.

After just a few nights at Brown’s we headed on up to the Cluxewe RV Park, just north of Telegraph Cove, where we were scheduled for a Grizzly Bear Tour the next day with Tide Rip Tours.

We arrived for our tour at 6:45 am. It was overcast, which was actually good weather for bear photography. The temperature was expected to reach maybe 61 degrees.

Bright and early in Telegragh Cove, BC

We absolutely loved the tour. You begin the day in a closed boat and travel for nearly 2 hours into Knights Inlet, up to Glendale Cove. In Glendale Cove you switch over to an open air boat so that you can get a good view of the bears. At times, we were as close as 50-60 feet away from the bears. They did not seem bothered by us at all. We also saw eagles up very close and from a distance spotted a humpback whale and a few orcas.

I hope you enjoy the pictures. Click on the first one to begin a slideshow.

The Cluxewe RV Park is on a beautiful piece of land. It has probably close to a mile of beach frontage and an estuary in the back part of the resort. They also have what the locals consider to be the best restaurant on the East side of Vancouver Island. We had dinner there and found it to be very good. It is not like your standard campground restaurant. It is more like a nice dining establishment with tablecloths and an ocean view. While eating dinner we saw an eagle fly by. We found the menu to be impressive, especially considering the restaurant’s location, and the food to be pretty good.

Cluxewe’s restaurant with a view

Our last stop on Vancouver Island was Victoria. We stayed at the Oceanside RV Park, as it was close to the Sydney ferry, which we were catching back to the US. One of my favorite things we did in Victoria was to tour the Parliament. They offer free tours on Saturday. During the tour we ran into Queen Victoria :-). The young lady played the part very well.

We visited Butchart Gardens. The gardens are just breathtaking. As a bonus we found an owl hanging out in a tree!

That about sums up our trip to the southern part of British Columbia and catches me up on the blog. I hope to not get so far behind in the future! I hope you have enjoyed the pictures and stories.

Oh, and I’d like to give a shout out to Charlie’s friends in Sydney, BC. We enjoyed a nice dinner with Dean and Leslie at the waterfront Rum Runner Pub. I enjoyed meeting them both, and loved the restaurant. We sat on the back porch and when it got chilly the waitress brought us blankets! Dean and Leslie live in Sydney, which was a good thing for me because they were able to recommend an excellent medical clinic for a Saturday morning visit. Since returning from Atlanta, I had persistent sinus drainage which finally turned into an infection. They recommended the Central Saanich Medical Clinic, just a few miles from our RV park. OMG! The office opened up 15 minutes early just because they were there, and why not. The check-in lady was exuberant and extremely kind and I absolutely loved the doctor, who reminded me of my grandma. Within 20 minutes I was in and out of their office with a prescription, and it cost me only $60 USD.

We are currently in Anacortes, WA. We’ll be here for a few more days and then we begin our journey to Alaska!

2 Comments

Filed under Travel Posts

2 Responses to Vancouver, Whistler and Vancouver Island

  1. Sarah Schimmel

    Such great stories and pictures! Thanks for sharing! I feel like I’m on this journey with you, which I wish I was!

  2. Cathy Kling

    Love Love Love the photos!
    Keep them coming.
    Makes me antsy to get traveling again.
    We have been in your foot steps and enjoyed Butchart Gardens as well.
    British Columbia and Whistler were very beautiful.
    Safe Travels.
    Cathy

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