We made it to our last area in British Columbia, Canada for this trip. The campground we wanted to stay at ($25 CAD) was a first come park and was all booked up, some one got the last spot just before we got there (if only we hadn’t stopped for gas), and we wound up at Fort Camping In Brae Island Regional Park in Fort Langley for twice the price.
We were too early to check in so we had to find some where to hang for a couple of hours. We found a college with plenty of parking and as a bonus it was Farmers Market Day
With some light entertainment to go along with it
We drove into Vancouver for the day and passed some pretty spectacular bridges, this one was Golden Ears Bridge. We tried to book a city tour but were only wait listed. So while we waited for confirmation we headed out on our own tour
Just as we began our own tour, we were advised of confirmation of the city tour so we continued on and stopped at Granville Island, an outdoor shopping and market area. This is located just across from the city with access to Stanley Park.
We then headed to the tour pick-up point at Canada Place, the cruise and harbor tours area and watched some sea-planes arrive and depart
We met our driver Carlos at the designated spot and boarded our bus which was half empty. Don’t understand the wait list unless 20 people suddenly cancelled.
We spent half of our 4 hour tour in Stanley Park, a very active park with an Aquarium, skating rink, mini golf course and a few beaches.
Hmm more totem poles..
“Girl in a Wet suit” is a life size bronze sculpture located on a rock on the north side of the park.
The Lions Gate bridge was commissioned after the Guinness family purchased 4,700 acres of West Vancouver mountainside. Once it was completed there was a boom in population and the area is now one of the most exclusive to live in the Vancouver area
West Vancouver, where everyone has a view of the city skyline
We stopped at a Chinese garden in the center of Chinatown. This pretty enclave is in stark contrast o the Chinatown area which is run-down, shuttered and overrun with the seedy characters. Apparently the wealthy Chinese investors did not like the area and invested elsewhere, leaving this area to run-down
The next neighborhood was Gastown, a trendy area of town full of restaurants, art galleries and cocktail lounges. Also known for it’s antique clock which is powered by steam and whistled to tell the time
Next day, off to Vancouver Island, where so many people said we should go for a visit.
We decided to take the Jeep which was rather an expensive option at $150 round trip. This ferry holds 300+ vehicles and is a 90 minute ride
We disembarked and headed to the nearest town, Sydney for some lunch
A veterans memorial
Although we had 6 hours on the island other than Victoria on the south end, the other major towns are 3+ hours away. Victoria is one of the oldest cities in the Pacific Northwest with British settlement beginning in 1843 a large number of it’s historic buildings still remain like the Parliamentary Building below
Named after Queen Victoria it is the capital of British Columbia
The Empress Hotel on the right was opened in 1908
Driving back from the ferry we noticed the river appeared to be above us, then we looked at the GPS
Steve was still uneasy about the coach’s ride and a couple of other minor issues were present, so we stopped at a Freightliner center in Abbotsford for a check up, and they allowed us stay overnight as they were going to start work at 630am
8 hours later , they finally finished the work and they only hit us up for $670, 90% of course labor charges. But Steve feels better and that’s what’s important
While we were waiting for the coach we drove around and found a chicken, also a fish hatchery and great meat and fish market. Unfortunately we were 3 miles from the border and that was our next stop
We also got the Jeep and coach cleaned while we were in Abbotsford, so now we were much more presentable then the last time we left Canada and head back to the US (Chicken AK).
We really enjoyed our time in Alberta, British Columbia and Yukon. Alaska would have been better had it not been for the smoke. The scenery has been spectacular and the wildlife, even though it was scarcer than we hoped, was thoroughly enjoyable.