Leaving the big city

There are many ways to get to Vancouver Island. An island off of the coast of Canada, set in the Pacific Ocean, it is still part of British Columbia. When planning our trip here, we knew we'd need time to explore this charming island and I'm excited to be approaching the next few posts, focused on its beauty. We allowed for a week of our trip to explore here and I can tell you already, and it will be pretty clear as we go, we will definately be back!

Victoria can be reached by air, with an international airport. You can also reach parts of Vancouver Island by seaplane, but if I am totally honest, I recommend saving that excursion for an island day-trip. Travelling to the island by seaplane will only give you restrictions on baggage allowance and being tired from previous travel, you won't get to appreciate its magnificence. I'll be touching on seaplanes another day so stay tuned for that.

Absolutely biased by experience, I thoroughly recommend travelling there by ferry. There are many ports and it's worth researching and knowing your island route first to make the most of your travel. All cruise across the Strait of Georgia at a leisurely pace and the views are unbelievable. So much so, this experience gets it's very own post. It isn't just a means of travel, this journey in itself is the adventure (not an ad, just passionate about the experience).

Starting the day, still consumed by a little jetlag, I watched the sun rise from our bed in downtown Vancouver, admiring the reflection of the sun on the skyrises as it woke.

We opted for an early ferry to make the most of our day, but they run all day dependant on port. Leaving the city once again, we waved a final goodbye to Vancouver. A great experience and strong start to our trip.

We departed from Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay and waiting in the queue to drive on board, I found myself very excited. I've been on a lot of ferries but believe it or not, at the grand old age of 29, this was my first experience actually driving onto one!

Another reason to opt for the ferry... we lived out of our hire car for the entire roadtrip with the backseat and boot becoming our wardrobe, glamourous I know. By getting the ferry, we could drive our little squat around without packing up each time we relocated, which was often.

Equipped with caffeine and cake, we headed on board.

Hilariously, just like every 30 metres in Vancouver, they serve Starbucks onboard their ferries. You cannot escape that little green mermaid thingymabob.

As soon as we parked, we headed straight for the deck! The weather was glorious, but be warned, the Strait of Georgia comes with a chill regardless of how sunny it is.

The decks are huge and you can wander about freely for the whole of the trip. Water view for me please.

As soon as we left the port, I knew this was going to be spectacular. Just look at the water.

As we crossed the Strait, Vancouver disappeared and ahead of us the promise of what was to come began to unfold.

The mist, the layers, the mountains... continuous views and silhouettes draped the horizon. Mentally, I had only prepared for a short ferry ride that would be fairly textbook in scenery. I wasn't prepared for the views that met me.

Genuinely blown away and of course a little windswept too, I'm pretty sure I was fairly quiet the entire trip, absorbing every ounce of its majesty.

The moon gave us a little wave too.

As you travel closer to Vancouver Island, you journey through small island clusters and past beautiful shorelines.

There is so much to look at on shore, and even the occasional bit of traffic below.

And sometimes the traffic will blow your mind! Absolutely unexpectedly, we were met and accompanied by two resident orca for a small part of our trip. A marine biologist travelling aboard confirmed the luck to see these creatures from the ferry.

Whilst only for about 5 minutes, one of my top 5 bucket list items was met and I hadn't a chance to even mentally prepare. I just knew that if our scheduled whale watching trip did not provide, somehow with great fortune, I'd managed to achieve that bucket list win and my day was made.

We waved them off as we turned into a cove and they headed into the vast blue.

I directed my gaze back to the neverending coastline, my mind still a little tangled in whale-mazement.

Peering off the edge of the ferry, I wondered how often these homemakers see what I've only ever dreamed of and I think to myself, one day I'll bring my babies back to see this.

As I planned future trips in my mind on the approach to Swartz Bay, we were accompanied by another visitor, ready to welcome us on to the island I'll never forget.

- MTWP xxx

comments powered by Disqus