ys Getaways from Vancouver
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Boutique Elegance | Modern Comfort DOWNTOWN
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It’s On Us
full hot breakfast | WiFi global long-distance & local calls indoor pool & ﬁtness YMCA | Yoga Loft | business centre | daily bottled water special parking rate of $8/car/night
T 250-377-8075 TF 1-877-977-5292 www.theplazahotel.ca email@example.com
405 Victoria Street, Kamloops BC
1. Downtown Vancouver. . . . . . . 4-5 2. Surrey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 3. Fraser Valley & Harrison Hot Springs. . . . . . . . 8-9 4. Squamish . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10-11 5. Whistler . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12-13 6. Lower Sunshine Coast. . . . . . 13-14 7. Upper Sunshine Coast. . . . . . 15-16 8. Victoria. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18-19 9. Southern Vancouver Island. . . 19-20 10. Tofino & Ucluelet. . . . . . . . . 21-22 11. Southern Gulf Islands . . . . . . 22-23 12. Okanagan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24/25 13. Kamloops. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26/27 14. Sun Peaks. . . . . . . . . . . . . .28/29 15. Dawson Creek . . . . . . . . . . . 29/30 16. Bellingham . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32/33 17. Seattle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
Publisher: Dee Dhaliwal Director of Sales & Marketing: Tara Lalanne Manager, Special Projects: Keshav Sharma Editorial: Jane Mundy writers: Joanne Blain Jane Mundy Randall Shirley COPY EDITOR: Jennifer Poohachoff Creative: Jennifer Poohachoff COVER IMAGE: Boomer Jerritt, Tourism Vancouver Island
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For Vancouverites, great travel is only hours away. Whether you’re seeking outdoor recreation on the Sunshine Coast, wine tours in the Okanagan, high tea in Victoria or shopping in Seattle, an amazing variety of destinations is within easy reach. And there are a variety of fun ways to get there: by car, bus, ferry, plane and even train through some of the most beautiful and varied scenery in the world. That’s why we’ve put this travel guide together to help you find the best travel destinations in your own backyard. From Whistler to Salt Spring Island, and from Harrison Hot Springs to downtown Vancouver, our guide is here to help you plan your local adventure itinerary. We’ve tried to make it as useful as possible. We’re proud of what our part of the world has to offer. Here’s to brilliant days of exploration ahead. Dee Dhaliwal, Publisher, Vancouver Courier Weekend Getaways from Vancouver 2014 (Vol. 1) is being produced by, and is exclusive property of, the Vancouver Courier / Glacier Media Inc. Copyright : 2014 To advertise in future editions, call 604-738-1411 or email KSharma@vancourier.com
there’s a lot to
Download a cycling in Vancouver map from vancouver.ca
EAT >> There’s a world of food to explore, from
food carts and noodle joints to swanky hotel dining rooms serving multiple-course tasting menus. The If you’re thinking about a only problem is so many to choose from. Stroll over girlfriends’ getaway, a romantic to Chinatown for dim sum breakfast, a cocktail at romp or a foodie-filled few days, Keefer Hotel and on the same block dinner at Bao there’s no need to leave Vancouver! Bei Chinese Brasserie. May through October the night market offers authentic street food, as do Vancouverites know how hard many food trucks (look for Re-Up BBQ or Vij’s Railit is to grab a cab after events way Express) peppered throughout downtown.
such as Pride Week and Canada Day and especially the Fireworks. And Festival Vancouver that runs two weeks in August. Why not sleepover and get a little closer to your city centre? Pamper yourself with a spa day; book a walking tour or cooking class-- there’s a lot to discover. Go clubbing, dance until the wee hours—live it up!
Scene-makers and seafood lovers abound at Coast glowbalgroup.com. Order the fish & chip cone, a few dozen oysters and people-watch from an upstairs table. More serious diners reserve a table at Hawksworth and Blue Water Café. Arrive just before sunset at the Hotel Vancouver’s new pop-up restaurant, The Roof, for classic cocktails and a “Madmen” menu—think grilled meats. coast restaurant
After a haircut at man cave Killjoy Barbers, enjoy cocktails and charcuterie in the back room and party in the basement nightclub! A few doors away, Blo Blow Dry Bar is great fun before the big night out, and you can BYOB.
hair cut Vancouver Pride Parade
Tourism Vancouver/ Michael Song
Shopping counts as activity. Not everyone dresses in fleece and Gore-Tex, as is evident at high-end Holt Renfrew. Gastown is home to trendy clothing and décor boutiques, such as Secret Location where you can shop, sip and eat secretlocation.ca. When the crowds and clamour of downtown overwhelm, hop on a bike and circumnavigate Stanley Park spokesbicyclerentals.com. Pack your swimsuit and take a dip at Second Beach Pool
steps away from the city centre
Tourism Vancouver/ Clayton Perry
or English Bay. Explore the city with a photography class vancouverphotowalks.ca or with tourguys.ca where you can book a custom tour or join a public crawl. The ultimate culinary getaway has got to include a hands-on cooking class at The Dirty Apron dirtyapron.com. What better way to experience firsthand the foodie scene? Bonus, you take home new skills. Not to be missed is FlyOverCanada, a 30-minute flight simulation that takes you on a 4D trip across Canada--special effects let you feel the wind in your hair and smell landscapes flyovercanada.com.
enjoy the journey
ask t abou ident s e r our fares
604.662.7575 or 1.800.661.1725
The Listel Hotel on Robson doubles as an art gallery and is home to award-winning Forage restaurant. And reasonable rates thelistelhotel.com. The Shangri-La, Vancouver’s only 5-star hotel, has a lot to offer families. Parents can spa while kids go gaming. Regroup for tea in the lounge (order kid’s tea tower) and more fun in the Blue Moon Theatre shangri-la.com. The Fairmont Pacific Rim is all about spa: Willow Stream has a gorgeous terrace for spa guests where you can spend the whole day with girlfriends, order lunch, Jacuzzi, lounge in the meditation pods and watch the world go by fairmont.com/pacific-rim-vancouver.
modern bistro ingredient-driven healthy cuisine fresh juice bar lakeside 2131 Lake Placid Road, Whistler BC www.nitalakelodge.com 1-888-755-6482
EAT >> Crescent Beach is like a mini-resort with ocean-front cottages and ice cream shops. Stroll along the boardwalk with an ice cream, and have fish & chips on the beach from Hooked Fish Bar--or lounge on their patio. Walk a few blocks back from the boardwalk to Beast and Brine for charcuterie where meats are brined and cured on site. They’ll custom-make a picnic basket and how convenient, next door is Fieldstone Artisan Bread, where you must add to the basket a gorgeous French tart.
The City of Parks BC’s second-largest city is generally under the radar as a tourist destination but consider spending a day or two in “The City of Parks”. Aside from the many professional and spectator sports the city hosts, this diverse community has incredible ethnic dining options and multicultural festivals. And with 600 parks, the great outdoors is everywhere.
Old Surrey Restaurant is steeped in history. Dishes like filet mignon with Burgundy sauce, fresh local oysters and scallops and the charming atmosphere keeps locals coming back (this year marks their 40th anniversary). Central City Brewing and Distillery is renown for its Red Racer IPA. Check out the new tasting room centralcitybrewing.com.
PLAY >> The Fusion Festival (July 19-20) offers
About 30 minutes Skytrain about 40 minutes
ethnic dishes and entertainment from around the world. There’s a whole lot for kids to do under the “fun tents” foodwiththought.ca. Surrey holds the biggest Vaisakhi celebration outside of India, one of the most important festivals in the Sikh calendar (April) surreyvaisakhiparade.ca.
Surrey is blessed with some of the best golf courses in Metro Vancouver. Golf Surrey offers a wide range of choice regarding skill level and affordability. NorthView Golf and Country Club hosted the PGA tour for seven years and boasts two Arnold Palmer golf courses golfsurrey.ca.
Bring your binoculars: Places like Mud Bay Park and Blackie Spit recorded about 200 species in one year. Blackie Spit also has a dog-friendly area, sandy beach and a boat launch. You can rent canoes and kayaks from Natural WestCoast Adventures closeby kayak.bc.ca.
If you have too much fun at the pub or golf club, consider a sleepover. The Sheraton Guildford also has a spa sheratonguildford.com and The Hampton is kid-friendly, complete with indoor water slide hamptoninnlangley.com.
Wine with lunch EMBRACE IT.
Fraser Valley & Harrison Hot Springs what a difference
About 45 minutes to Langley 1 hour and 45 minutes to Harrison Hot Springs
EAT >> Abbotsford’s Restaurant 62 has a
two hours make Looking for a weekend escape from the Lower Mainland that you don’t have to take a ferry or a flight to get to? Jump in the car and you can be a world away in the Fraser Valley or Harrison Hot Springs in less than two hours. But what a difference those two hours make — you’ll find emerald lakes, sandy beaches, farms and wineries that will make you think you’re light years away from the big city.
well-earned following for chef Jeff Massey’s thoughtful menu, which draws heavily on food produced in the Fraser Valley. It’s a small room, so book ahead restaurant62.ca. The Hungry Chef is a casual spot in Harrison Hot Springs that offers excellent burgers, salads and pastas, as well as a decent kids’ menu. For a picnic lunch, pick up a loaf of bread and head to The Farm House in Kent, just outside Harrison, to find the makings of a rustic sandwich in their selection of splendid artisan cheeses. You can do the same at Vista d’Oro Farms and Winery in Langley and round out your repast with charcuterie, housemade preserves and a bottle of wine vistadoro.com.
Destination BC / Randy Lincks
At Harrison Hot Springs, it’s all about the water — either getting in it or on it. Natural, mineral-rich hot springs feed both a public pool in town and the private pools at the Harrison Hot Springs Resort harrisonhotsprings.ca. The beach and marina on Harrison Lake offer lots of other ways to get wet, from swimming to renting boats, sea-doos or motorized bumper boats. If it’s big game you’re after, hire a guide and try to hook (and release, since they’re threatened) a massive sturgeon.
Destination BC / Albert Normandin
Back on land, there’s lots to see on a self-guided Circle Farm Tour, from trout hatcheries and honey farms to garden centres and dairies. And don’t forget about wineries — the Fraser Valley has several, including Township 7 and Chaberton Estate Winery in Langley and Mt. Lehman Winery in Abbotsford.
Fraser valley & Harrison hot springs
For a bit of history, stop in at the Fort Langley National Historical Site, where you’ll learn how this former Hudson’s Bay trading post became a key site for the fur trade and the Fraser Canyon gold rush.
The Harrison Hot Springs Resort is a deservedly popular choice, both because of its well-appointed rooms (many with water views) and its indoor and outdoor pools fed by the local hot springs. Its poolside Depending whether your tastes run to the spa is also worth a visit harrisonresort.com. arts or agriculture, two summer events to In Chilliwack, the Royal Hotel opened its keep in mind are the Harrison Festival of doors in 1908 and now offers rooms with the Arts (July 12-20) and the Chilliwack clawfoot tubs and vintage furniture with upFall Fair and Rodeo (Aug. 8-10). dated amenities like flat-screen TVs and free wifi royalhotelchilliwack.com.
Squamish yep, it’s for
About 1 hour along the Sea-to-Sky Highway
The Howe Sound Brew Pub is well-known throughout the Lower Mainland for its handcrafted, micro-brewed ales and lagers. And the food –each item of course has a beer pairing–is pretty decent too. Go for pizza from the woodstove oven and if you’re a seafood lover, check out the fresh sheet. Bring your binoculars: If you time it right, grab a table on the patio and you might spy rock climbers on the Stawamus Chief. Turn west and you’ll view the Tantalus range and fish boats in the busy Marina.
Squamish is more than a stop on the highway to Whistler and home to the world-famous eagle population. Far enough away from the urban sprawl of Vancouver and the hectic hype of Whistler, there’s a lot to explore. Affectionately called “Squish” by residents and unofficially crowned the Outdoor Adventure capital of Canada by the town, Squamish and its surrounds is also steeped in pioneer history and First Nations culture. And freshly roasted coffee and craft beer.
Paul Bride Sea to Sky gondola
From field to food truck, the Locavore owners serve up pork items from animals raised on their own farm locavorefoodtruck.ca. Find Steve and Cory in their truck behind the Canadian Tire, five minutes from downtown. Fergies Café at Sunwolf for breakfast is a must, again with locally-sourced food and views of Mount Alpha. More upscale, the Watershed Grill has a patio and views of the Squamish River thewatershedgrill.com. Hey, killer views are everywhere!
The eight-minute journey on the new Sea to Sky gondola seatoskygondola.com is guaranteed to last long in your memory. Travel in fully-enclosed gondola cabins 2,800 feet above Howe Sound between Stawamus Chief Provincial Park and Shannon Falls—over ocean, forest and mountain landscape. There are viewing platforms at the top of the mountain along with a suspension bridge, hiking trails and the Summit Restaurant. You don’t need to be an adventure junkie to “do” the Chief: local operators will take beginners hiking and climbing. How about white water rafting? SunWolf rafting sunwolf.net and Canadian Outback Adventures canadianoutback.com guarantee to recharge your batteries with a trip along the Squamish and Elaho Rivers. For the more laid-back traveler, Britannia Mine Museum is super cool. Don a hard hat and board the train that takes you through dark tunnels into the mines where all you hear is the train and dripping
spirit viewing platform / Paul Bride
Squamish Music Festival Aug. 8 - 10, 2014
water, very eerie. For train buffs visit the West Coast Railway Heritage Park that houses Canada’s largest collection of heritage railway equipment an nearby, grab a coffee at Galileo Coffee Company, just south of Britannia Beach. Check out this year’s line-up at the multi-day Squamish Music Festival (Aug 8-10) and families flock to Squamish Days Loggers Sports Festival (July 31 – Aug 4).
Howe Sound Pub doubles as an Inn: just remember to bring earplugs if you aren’t in rooms 13 to 20. Situated at the confluence of the Cheakamus and
Cheekye rivers, Sunwolf Riverside Cabins are more tranquil and very pet-friendly, being surrounded by river and forest . Their Loggers Shack is an upscale loft cabin complete with fireplace and other amenities. Every condo-style room at the Executive Suites Hotel and Resorts has a kitchen, balcony and living room and offers in-room spa treatments executivesuitessquamish.com. Kids love the Sandman Hotel and Suites sandmanhotels.ca/hotels/squamish with its indoor pool and waterslide. Yep, Squamish is for everyone.
2 hours, depending on traffic, from downtown Vancouver to Whistler village. 4 hours, via Rocky Mountaineer from North Vancouver to Whistler.
Whistler is at its best in the summer
EAT >> You’ll never go hungry in Whistler; the village is packed with places to eat, from casual burger joints to high-end restaurants. At the top of the heap is Araxi, where chef James Walt has won a slew of awards for his inventive west coast cuisine with an emphasis on seafood (oyster lovers will be in heaven) araxi.com. Bearfoot Bistro, where chef Melissa Craig runs the kitchen, is equally worthy of accolades — it’s wise to book ahead for both bearfootbistro.com.
It’s most widely known as a ski and snowboard destination, but for some people, Whistler is at its best in the summer. Without the hordes of ski-boot-toting tourists crowding its pubs and restaurants, the little town in the mountains seems a lot more laid-back. And even when there’s no snow on the ground, there’s still lots to do.
Looking for something a little more casual? The BrewHouse offers pizzas, burgers and pasta paired with a good selection of craft beers. Just outside the village at Nita Lake Lodge, Aura restaurant serves up a contemporary farm-totable experience worth savouring with a glass or two of fine B.C. wine.
Even without the snow and skis, the trip to the top of the mountain is worth it. The Peak 2 Peak gondola connects Whistler and Blackcomb mountains via 4.4 kilometres of cable high above the ground, giving you a stunning view of Whistler and its surroundings. Once you’re up top, you can take advantage of more than 50 kilometres of trails, or just have a glass of wine and savour your surroundings at a mountaintop restaurant. Destination BC / Joseph S. King Araxi restaurant
If you’d like to see bears but don’t relish meeting one on a mountain hike, you can take a guided tour of bear country in the safety of a 4X4. Or if you want even more of a rush, hit the trails on a mountain bike — but make sure you’re well padded first.
Destination BC / Randy Lincks
Just north of Whistler, adrenaline junkies can get their fix at Superfly Ziplines and Treetop Adventures, which last summer opened two new lines that are more than a kilometre long — the longest in Canada. There’s also a treetop adventure course that your kids (or the kid inside you) will love.
Whistler & lower sunshine coast
Destination BC / Toshi Kawano
It’s hard to beat the grande dame of Whistler hotels, the Fairmont Chateau Whistler. From its spacious and comfortable rooms to its all-weather indooroutdoor pool to its decadent breakfast buffet in the Wildflower restaurant, you’ll never want to leave fairmont.com/whistler. On the other hand, Nita Lake Lodge is all on its own on a tranquil lake south of the village, and it has huge contemporary rooms and a stunning wrap-around patio where you can have a drink while watching canoers ply the waters nitalakelodge.com. Good news for dog lovers: both hotels are pet-friendly.
GO Fest – Whistler’s Great Outdoors Festival May 16 - 19, 2014
Sunshine Coast lower
hop on a ferry
40 minutes to Langdale from Horseshoe Bay 20 minutes via Harbour Air or Tofino Air to Sechelt from Vancouver
EAT >> It’s impossible to miss Molly’s Reach, 40 minutes later... the café where Bruno Gerussi used to hang out in
Hop on a ferry in West Vancouver and 40 minutes later, you’ll trade big-city bustle for the relaxed pace of the lower Sunshine Coast. The area, which stretches 85 kilometres from Langdale to Egmont, gained fame in the 1970s on the long-running CBC show The Beachcombers. But it’s better known now as an easy getaway from the Lower Mainland with lots on tap during the summer, from outdoor activities to cultural events.
The Beachcombers — its big yellow façade is the first thing you’ll see when entering the town of Gibsons. It’s a nice spot for a casual lunch or dinner with a great view of the marina below mollysreach.ca. Walk down the stairs from street to dock level beside Molly’s and you’ll find Smitty’s Oyster Bar occupying a smartly renovated marine equipment dealership. If you like oysters — raw, steamed, baked, fried or in chowder — this is the place to get them, along with other types of fresh seafood smittysoysterhouse.com. In Roberts Creek, the Gumboot is a local institution. There’s a tiny café with fresh-baked goods and a larger restaurant that serves everything from local seafood and burgers to a good selection of vegetarian and vegan dishes. On a warm summer’s night, it’s hard to beat a table on its wraparound deck.
Lower Sunshine Coast CONTINUED
Gibsons Sea Cavalcade
Family-friendly event, July 27-28, 2014 rockwater secret cove resort
PLAY >> Where to start? The lower
Sunshine Coast is an outdoor lover’s paradise. Hiking trails abound, from the 45-minute trail up to Soames Hill in Gibsons that offers a stunning view at its apex to the multiple trails past creeks and waterfalls in Roberts Creek’s Cliff Gilker Park.
At the top of the coast near Egmont, don’t miss Skookumchuck Narrows Provincial Park. A flat four-kilometre hike takes you to a grassy hill where you can drop a blanket and watch tidal rapids collide in an awesome display of nature’s power. Make sure to check the tide tables online before you go for the best viewing times. If you’d rather be on the water, you can rent a kayak or a canoe from several local outfitters, hire a fishing guide or throw out a line on your own (with a licence). Or book a guided tour of Princess Louisa Inlet and Chatterbox Falls with Sunshine Coast Tours.
As its name suggests, Painted Boat Resort Spa in Madeira Park offers just about everything you could ask for— 31 luxurious villas with decks overlooking a deep-water marina, a full-service spa and one of the best restaurants on the coast.
Near Halfmoon Bay, Rockwater Secret Cove Resort offers three kinds of accommodations: rooms in its main lodge, private cabins and unique “tenthouse suites,” which offer all the comforts of a hotel (including jetted tubs and propane fireplaces) in airy canvas tents rockwatersecretcoveresort.com.
It takes two ferries to get there but that’s why residents and visitors love the Upper Sunshine Coast —they say it keeps the Sunshine Coast Trail (SCT) pristine and unspoiled. With the exception of downhill skiing, “Powell Riviera” (as it’s fondly called by residents) seems to have it all, and the town is drenched in history—the Patricia Theatre opened its doors in 1913, there are nearly 400 heritage buildings near the mill and the Townsite is one of the few designated National Historic Districts in Canada.
Grab a Growler at Townsite Brewing, the Sunshine Coast’s first craft brewery in the Powell River Historic District. Costa del Sol is nothing short of vibrant, from Latino food (outstanding fish tacos with homemade flour tortillas) to funky décor in a converted 1900’s police station. And the patio has ocean views. Kids love Rocky Mountain Pizza and Bakery Co. offering terrific baked goods and the chance to catch up on your daily newspapers. Laughing Oyster Restaurant, as the name suggests, serves up some decent seafood, along with a view of Okeover Inlet.
Lower & upper sunshine coast
Sunshine Coast upper
PLAY >> Hike it, bike it or just amble
along— the SCT welcomes you at your own pace. One of the most popular family activities along the way is the Trinket Trail: essentially
Tenthouse or Tree House… unique luxury accommodations on the Sunshine Coast!
Oceanfront Tenthouse at Rockwater
Suite at Secret Cove Tree House
Upper Sunshine Coast CONTINUED
a free outdoor treasure hunt for kids of all ages. It’s mined with small toys left behind by hikers. Kayak Desolation Sound or canoe lakes surrounding Powell River. All you need to do is arrive with food at Mitchell’s shop and they provide the rest, including outdoor gear and light tents canoeingbc.com. Powell River is also mountain bikers’ best kept secret with challenging, quality trails— and they aren’t crowded. Take the Lund water taxi to Savary Island, which boasts the warmest swimming conditions north of Mexico. Get a fishing license online or at the Lund Store — you’ll soon be shucking oysters and digging for clams on Mermaid Beach while the kids build sandcastles amongst the sand dunes at Duck Bay. Walk along the enchanted forest trail through patches of old-growth forest or rent golf carts and tour the island.
Several cabins on the SCT provide year-round shelter— au gratis. There are also good camp sites around Powell River, and Sunland-by-the-sea campground in nearby Lund. Or rent a float cabin to experience off-the-grid life on Powell Lake. In Powell River, peaceful and pet-friendly Boxwood Cottages boxwoodcottage.com is surrounded by a large English garden. A room at Beyond Bliss is, well, blissful. And how convenient, the spa is downstairs powellriverhotel.com! For a wilderness experience combined with luxury, drive 20 minutes north of Powell River to Desolation Sound Resort and Okeover Inlet, a protected spot ideal for first-time kayakers and canoers desolationresort.com.
...along the way is the Trinket Trail: essentially a free outdoor treasure hunt for kids of all ages. It’s mined with small toys left behind by hikers. i
Ferry: 40 minutes to Langdale from Horseshoe Bay Car: 90 minutes to Earl’s Cove Ferry: 80 minutes to Saltery Bay Car: 25 minutes to Powell River Total time: 5 hours, 30 minutes 35 minutes via Pacific Coast Airlines from South Terminal of Vancouver International Airport to Powell River
Tourism Vancouver Island / chrischeadle.com
tourismvictoria.com 90 minutes Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay (Sidney) 40 minutes from Sidney to Victoria 35 minutes harbour to harbour via Harbour Air Seaplanes
more than the cliché
Take a three-hour Culinary Walking Tour with “Travel with Taste” and meet people behind the scenes, from baker and brewer to charcuterie maker. Stroll over to Fisherman’s Wharf in James Bay for the Fish Store’s fish & chips. For an extra fiver buy fresh herring and feed the sea lions from the dock—lotsa fun. Salmon tacones are worth lining up for at RedFish BlueFish, a take-out joint in a shipping container beside the inner harbour.
“the newly wed & nearly dead”. Victoria attracts more than the cliché of “the newly wed and nearly dead”. These days B.C.’s capital attracts a wide range of visitors, from bikers and scuba divers to people who just want a few days of R&R. With its gardens and high tea, a kilted bagpiper playing near the Inner Harbour and European influenced hotels and cuisine, Victoria is quite worldly.
More upscale, STAGE Wine Bar in Fernwood offers a sumptous array of small plates and it’s great for people watching. At North 48 start with duck confit wings and a tiki cocktail. Victoria’s Chinatown, the oldest in Canada, is home to cool coffee shops, artsy boutiques in Fan Tan Alley (just five feet wide) and restaurants such as Ulla, where local and organic products are expertly prepared and beautifully presented. Victoria is a hub for craft breweries. Enjoy ocean views with a pint at Spinnakers and Canoe gastropubs. Or sip and cycle with bike tour company The Pedaler. Their “Hoppy Hour” guides you to several microbreweries where you’ll meet brewmasters (samples included) and see more of biker-friendly Victoria.
PLAY >> The Pedaler also guides families along fan tan alley Tourism Victoria
low traffic corridors to fun activities on and off the bike. Fans of the TV show “Vikings” love the Royal B.C. Museum’s Vikings exhibit (until November 2014.) Visitors can build a Viking ship, excavate a boat burial or dress a Viking. The Robert Bateman Centre, which opened last year in the historic CPR Steamship Building in Victoria’s Inner Harbour, features about 130 of the artist’s masterpieces. This “City of Gardens” is famous for Butchart Gardens. Lesser known but spectacular is Finnerty Gardens,
The International Buskers Festival July 18-27
home to 10,000 varieties of plants and 19 demonstration gardens, just 15 minutes outside Victoria.
where a professional stylist will help you wardrobe shop and provide make-up tips.
Victoria Southern Vancouver Island
Jesse Moore Photograph
Step into the Magnolia Hotel lobby and you’re transported to old-world sophistication with a 20-foothigh ceiling, dramatic floral displays and a grand piano. Unwind at The Spa Magnolia, which offers two-, three- and four-hour treatments. All the Hotel Grand Pacific’s rooms have a private balcony and its fitness facilities include a 25-metre lap pool, sauna, steam room and hot tub hotelgrandpacific.com. Both hotels have rooms with inner harbour views.
The International Buskers Festival (July 18- 27) victoriabuskers.com features worldwide performers on many stages throughout downtown. The popular Dragon Boat Festival victoriadragonboat.com (August 15-17) is more than the race: taste the exotic at the Forbidden City Food Court and lots of family activities are scheduled. Music buffs converge at multiple venues for Rifflandia (September 11–14), hosting more than 800 performances.
Gal’s Getaway? Book a private party at Amelia Lee boutique amelialeeboutique.com
Southern less traveled Vancouver Island a route
If you’re the type of person who doesn’t like going back, the Pacific Marine Circle Route, from Sooke to Port Renfrew to the Cowichan Valley (also known as Canada’s Provence) is for you. Amazingly, it’s still a route less traveled. In the not-toodistant past much of the route was logging roads; now it’s a smooth ride. The coast to coast journey covers spectacular coastlines and pristine beaches, provincial parks and pastoral landscapes, wineries and restaurants and luxurious Inns.
For a square meal and square deal Mom’s café in Sooke will make you feel at home or Markus’ bistro on the wharf serves up – you guessed it—local seafood. More upscale is the world-famous Sooke Harbour House, where part of your dinner comes from their gorgeous edible gardens—the resident gardener offers tours. Go for the tasting menu, each course perfectly paired with B.C. wines. Heading toward Port Renfrew is Point No Point , where smoked oyster chowder spiked with house-cured bacon has been a staple for 20 years. Stone Soup Inn, tucked in the Cowichan Valley forest, is nothing short of exemplary. Not to be missed is the apple pie at Merridale Cidery near Cobble Hill.
From Sidney you can bypass Victoria: get on Highway 1 (the Trans Canada Highway) and take exit 14 to Sooke. To complete the circle, head north to Nanaimo and take the Horseshoe Bay ferry back to Vancouver. 90 minutes each way Tsawwassen to Swartz Bay & Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay 1 hour from Sidney to Sooke, Pacific Marine Circle Route about 5 hours non-stop
Tourism Vancouver Island / Boomer Jerritt
Southern Vancouver Island
Who would think of Nanaimo as a culinary destination? But in addition to the Nanaimo bar, it’s also the birthplace of other epicurean delights, such as the Nanaimo Bar martini at Modern Cafe. There’s a low-cal Nanaimo bar at Mon Petit Choux and the original version at McLean’s Specialty Foods.
PLAY >> Driving through Juan de Fuca Provincial
Park, surfers stop at Jordan River and China Beach. Botanical Beach, however, is the jewel: Poke around the tide pools at and plan to stay a few hours. This area is so diverse the first marine research station in the Pacific Northwest was installed here in 1901. Port Renfrew is central to many hiking trails, including Fairy Lake, which is stocked with rainbow trout and can be fished from April to June and October. For more serious fishing, several charters can almost guarantee a bite at Swiftsure Bank—anglers world-wide come here to chase salmon. Looking for a new challenge? Port Renfrew Fishing Adventures offers Stand-up Paddle Fishing! Now that’s a balancing act.
Campgrounds abound from forest sanctuaries to beach and river sites. Book ahead for one of Point No Point’s rustic cabins pointnopointresort.com. If you want to splurge make it the Sooke Harbour House sookeharbourhouse.com and they will pack a gourmet picnic lunch to go.
dont forget to pack
flip flops & rubber boots Once you reach the TofinoUcluelet junction you’ll likely hear the surf bashing the coastline before you see pristine Long Beach. More than 26 miles of shoreline separate the two towns. It’s a good idea to get your bearings first: drop by the Pacific Rim Visitor Centre for maps and a chat. No matter what time of year you’re heading to here, pack sunscreen and flip flops, rubber boots and raingear and above all, a sense of adventure.
EAT >> In Tofino, Shelter and Sobo both
Victoria Southern Tofino & Ucluelet
Tofino & Ucluelet
emphasize locally caught seafood and organic produce. The latter serves up terrific spicy fish tacos. Rub shoulders with locals at the Common Loaf bakery, the place for casual lunches and decadent baked goods. Just 15 minutes outside Ucluelet is the Kwisitis Feast House at Wickanninish Beach. Here you can watch surfers while enjoying authentic First Nations cuisine. No matter where you dine in Ucluelet, all the eateries are locally owned and operated; they all take pride in their food and where it comes from.
For more upscale dining, Restos at the Wickaninnish Inn, Long Beach Lodge Resort and Black Rock resort below are worth splurging.
In “Ukie” walk the Wild Pacific Trail, a 4-mile (6.5 km) path through old growth forest, skirting the rugged shoreline to viewing platforms where hikers might see kayakers heading to Barkley Sound and the annual gray whale migration. Book a whale-watching tour out of Tofino or Ucluelet. Boat or float plane to nearby Hot Springs Cove, where natural pools of steaming water abut the ocean. On a calm day, kayak Clayoquet Sound: Guided tours stop off on nearby Meares Island for a romp through the rainforest.
90 minutes, board the BC Ferry to Nanaimo 3 hours, mostly along the scenic but winding Pacific Rim Highway. 45 minutes, from South Terminal of Vancouver International Airport to the Tofino-Long Beach Airport via Orca Air or KD Air Tourism Vancouver Island / Boomer Jerritt
Feeling adventurous? Just about anyone can surf after taking a three-hour lesson from Relic Surf Shop instructors on Wikkininish Beach. Even if you get up on your knees it’s a thrill. More the challenge is getting your wetsuit on and off. If you’re more into terra firma, Tofino Botanical Gardens comprises 12 acres of unique gardens, ponds, art installations and a historic homestead. In the town of Tofino the Wickaninnish Interpretive Centre exhibits include a First Nations canoe while the Eagle Aerie Gallery displays works by Roy Henry Vickers. And when the tide is out you can beachcomb for sea treasures— but always be aware of rogue waves. Gaze seaward
Tourism Vancouver Island / ChrisCheadle.com
Tofino & Ucluelet
where 125 ships and countless sailors went to their watery graves. Ukee Days (July 26 to 28) attracts locals and tourists with 72 hours of logger sports, live entertainment, beer gardens and more. Folk music lovers flock to the music festival (Augut 22-23) otalithfestival.com and the Salmon Ladder Derby runs throughout summer. And Feast Tofino’s month-long culinary event in May features boat-to-table cuisine feasttofino.com.
The Black Rock Oceanfront Resort in Ucluelet boasts floor-to-ceiling views of ocean and forest. Many rooms include gigantic soaker tubs with ocean
views. Wya Point’s lavish lodges are ecofriendly, have open-concept kitchens, direct beach access and many perks… Tofino is home to several fabulous resorts. The world-famous Wickaninnish Inn oozes ambience and romance. After a memorable meal at The Pointe, guests meander to their rooms, light a fire and slide into the hot tub for two while gazing at killer views. Slip into the private hot tub on the deck of your cottage or snuggle in Long Beach Lodge Resort’s great room beside the oversized granite fireplace and you might book a few more days…
Southern Gulf Islands If you’re fond of pebble bays and sandy beaches, poking around tidal pools and hiking through farmland and pristine forest, the Southern Gulf Islands are for you. You’ll likely spot all kinds of wildlife and maybe even hug a tree – and you’ll slow down to “island time”.
Check schedules and make reservations with BC Ferries 25 minutes Seair Seaplanes and Salt Spring Air
Galiano’s eateries are plentiful. Spend at least a few hours at Atrevida Restaurant with views of the harbor and boats sailing through Active Pass. Adorable Hummingbird Pub is a favourite locals spot, as is the Sturdies Bay Bakery & Café. Just about everything on Mayne is DIY. Saturdays, the fish boat comes in and locals buy crab and the day’s catch on the dock and from two small markets in Miners Bay: most every rental property comes equipped with BBQ and kitchens. Or have Bennet Bay Bistro do it for you—go for the Oceanwise salmon or yellowfin tuna.
You’ll likely spot all kinds of
wildlife& maybe even hug a tree
The best known islands (besides Salt Spring) are Galiano, Mayne and Pender. It is possible to island hop the trio over a long weekend. Better yet, ditch the car and rent bikes on the islands—many inns and the resorts arrange pick up from the ferry.
Pender Island’s pulse is the Pender Island Bakery Café, a good place to start the day, for both coffee and island news.The Port Browning Marina Pub draws both locals and mariners—can’t go wrong with beer and a burger. Don’t miss The Cafe At Hope Bay. It has made a name for itself in the past few years, featuring locally sourced foods and wine (Sea Star Vineyards just opened). And more stunning views.
Tofino & Ucluelet Southern Gulf Islands
Southern Gulf Islands
Roe Lake and down to Shingle Bay, while the top of Mt. Norman offers jaw-dropping views. Get on the water: Pender Island Kayak Adventures offers kayak tours, lessons and rentals kayakpenderisland.com. Rent a bicycle or scooter from Otter Bay Marina and take your pick of three marinas offering fishing and boating. Disc golf is so big the BC Championships are held at Magic Lake on North Island.
PLAY >> People mainly come to these
A bicycle tour of Mayne takes about five islands to escape; to read a book and leave the hours, past the Georgina Point Lighthouse techie toys at home. But venture out you must! where you’ll likely spot sea lions to the Japanese Garden that commemorates Search Gulf Islands National Park Reserve Japanese families who settled here before online for interactive maps of hiking trails. World War II. Many artists call long and narrow Galiano Island home. Pick up an Art Tour guide on There are excellent campthe ferry and walk to several galleries located grounds, private rentals and B&Bs galore. Or in the village or visit artists in their homes. splurge on a gorgeous resort. Once ensconced And Galiano Books galianoislandbooks.com is at The Galiano Inn galianoinn.com, you’ll find rated as one of Canada’s best bookstores. it hard to leave. (Check out the “Girls GetOutdoor Visions gulf-islands-safari.blogspot.ca away” package) . On Pender, Poets Cove is a has a great reputation for marine safaris favourite family destination, offering many and Zodiac tours. The more active golf at activities and an outdoor pool poetscove.com. the Galiano Golf and Country Club, billed as The Mayne Island Resort’s big seller is the “The prettiest little golf course in Canada”. pet-friendly cottages with “doggie yards” and
On Pender, photographers favour the hike from Roesland on North Pender over to
spa bathrooms. And of course, ocean views mayneislandresort.com.
Okanagan “of plenty The Valley
Less than 1 hour via Air Canada, WestJet and Pacific Coastal Airlines from Vancouver to Kelowna
EAT >> The Okanagan also attracts food-
For most everyone the Okanagan spells wine, and tourism has grown along with the valley’s grapes. With its balmy climate, the “The Valley of Plenty” is also a popular family vacation destination, evidenced by motels and casual diners, RVs and campgrounds peppered throughout towns like hot-spot Osoyoos, party-town Penticton and laid-back Summerland. The valley also attracts cyclists and hikers and of course, golfers. And with a string of lakes stretching 155 miles (250 km) water sports abound– from windsurfing to kayaking to Ogopogo spotting (no one has yet claimed the $2 million reward to prove Ogie exists).
About 5 hours via the Coquihalla Highway
ies and agri-tourism is now one of the “Big Four Things To Do”, along with picking cherries, visiting the wineries and playing golf. Arlo’s Honey Farm and the Okanagan Lavender Herb Farm are a treat for the whole family and Carmelis cheese shop is always packed with locals and tourists snapping up handmade cheeses and pondering over too many choices of goat’s milk gelato. Joy Road caters farm-to-table alfresco vineyard dinners Thursdays at God’s Mountain Estate joyroadcatering.com and any night dine at RauDZ where chef Rod Butters’s cuisine is outstanding raudz.com. In Osoyoos, Campo Marina is a local fave. Great dining happens at the wineries. You’ll be served outstanding local and regional cuisine at Mission Hill Winery’s Terrace Restaurant, missionhillwinery.com, the Miradoro Restaurant at Tinhorn Creek and the Sonora Room at Burrowing Owl, all with jaw-dropping views. Staying in the condo? Buy organic products from Harkers’ Organics or one of many Farmers Markets buylocalbc.org and if you’re into canning, bring home a case of peaches.
Start at Kelowna for a wine tour, with most wineries within a 30-minute drive. You can’t miss the grape-bunch signs along Highway 97 and you can’t miss Mission Hill, the largest and grandest winery (and home to a stellar line up of musical talent at their Summer Concert Series). Quail’s Gate Winery offers a history of the Okanagan with its winery tour and don’t miss wineries on the Naramata Bench such as La Frenz and Poplar Grove, and in Osoyoos LaStella Winery, down the road at Hester Creek and Stoneboat Vineyards. Golfers are spoilt for choice with 39 courses between Vernon and Osoyoos, including Predator Ridge, one of Canada’s highest rated. Biking is big here. Take a bicycle tour with Monashee Adventure Tours or rent bikes in Osoyoos at Heatstroke
Bellstar Hotels & Resorts
Cycle and Double O Bikes. The 4th annual Granforno race (July 13) take place in Penticton as does Challenge Penticton triathalon (August 24). Okanagan is big on festivals, celebrating wine in both spring and fall and the famous 67th peach festival (August 6-10) and Osoyoos celebrates Canada Day with its 66th annual Cherry Fiesta, starting with pancake breakfast and ending with fireworks. For a family experience don’t miss the Nk’Mip Desert Cultural Centre in Osoyoos nkmipdesert.com and bring binoculars to the Osoyoos Desert Centre, where you can stroll observation boardwalks with knowledgeable guides desert.org. Because of this area’s diverse landscape, from marshes to desert, birders flock here. The Golden Mile Trail, just north of Osoyoos,
is part of the National Bluebird Trail. Venture a bit farther north to Vaseux Lake, the site of a bird sanctuary and summer banding station. In Penticton float the man-made Okanagan river channel—you can rent float devices from Coyote Cruises at the launch site.
The Cove Lakeside Resort covelakeside.com just outside Kelowna and the Watermark Beach Resort in Osoyoos are great for families and well-behaved canines. The latter offers fully-equipped beachfront villas watermarkbeachresort.com. Also in Osoyoos, Spirit Ridge Resort has it all —from golf course and private beach to terrific restaurant and its own winery—you may never want to leave the property spiritridge.ca.
Kamloops Where the
tourismkamloops.com 4 hours About 1 hour via Air Canada or WestJet
EAT >> Noble Pig Brewhouse is known
for its microbrews and deep-fried pickles and super-friendly service. More upscale Terra restaurant focuses on the local food and wine scene with a few “international” additions that make for an eclectic menu. Hoodoos at Sun Rivers is the summer hang-out and the patio offers views of the cityscape. Locals come back for more wine-finished Kamloops-raised beef at the Fireside Steakhouse & Bar in the Plaza Hotel. Also notable is The Commodore in downtown Kamloops, featuring live entertainment weekends.
Kamloops, in the language of the Shuswap people, means “where the rivers meet” --the North and South Thompson Rivers. Kamloops and its surrounds are steeped in history: European settlers began to arrive in 1812. The US train robber Bill Miner was here, on the run, and trains have been associated with Kamloops ever since. It’s a favourite spot for fishers angling for trout and fly-in fishing lodges dot the area’s 700 lakes. And if you’re fond of wide open spaces, Kamloops is the ticket.
Kamloops Heritage Railway / Hilda Zietsov
Agri-tourism is increasingly popular—in part due to the area’s diverse agriculture production. Tranquille Farm Fresh leads the charge with its own Farmers Market and offers heritage tours of the area (both above and below ground through tunnels) and hosts live music and theatre throughout the summer. Last year the city welcomed its first wineries and a cidery: these three and more can be visited with a guided tour by Tastefull Excursions tastefullexcursions.ca.
tourism kamloops / kelly funk
Kamloops is a natural for motorbike touring. Cruise landscape comprising desert and pasture, lakeside and riverside and rolling hills. Eagle Rider is a motorbike rental company affiliated with Harley Davidson. Kamloops even offers motorbike-friendly accommodation (see below). The biggest attraction hands down is the BC Wildlife Park. Clover, a spirit bear, is the latest resident (from a bear rescue centre) and the only Kermode bear in captivity in Canada. Another kind of park frequented by adrenaline
The Kamloopa Pow Wow
Aug 1-3, 2013
Tourism Kamloops / Peter Olsen
junkies is the The Kamloops Bike Ranch kamloopsbikeranch.com and home to Race the Ranch (June 1), which attracts mountain bikers worldwide. Get romantic at Heffley Lakie, where couples stand-up paddle (SUP) by moonlight. You can also learn to SUP in daylight with Paddle Surfit paddlesurfit.com. The lake, located halfway between Kamloops and SunPeaks resort, is also a tranquil setting for kayaking and canoeing. Not to be missed, The Kamloopa Pow Wow (Aug 1-3), billed as one of the largest celebrations of First Nations’ culture in Western Canada , is a vibrant display of First Nations Culture that includes drumming and dancing, arts and craft, food and music. It’s located next to the amazing 5-acre Secwepemc museum and Heritage
Park secwepemcmuseum.com. If that’s not enough, bring out the inner cowboy in you and horseback ride at Erin Valley Riding Stables. They will take you along some of the best riding terrain in the province
SLEEP >> The quaint Plaza Hotel,
built in 1928, kept its heritage charm and added modern amenities theplazahotel.ca The South Thompson Inn is a Kentucky style Inn (think low-slung, whitewashed coffee plantation mansion) surrounded by 55 acres on the Thompson River and a golf course next door souththompsonhotelkamloops.com. And no-frills Accent Inns is the place to stay for two-wheeled traveler, offering a “spa for your bike” accentinns.com/kamloops.
Sun Peaks the list of
Just over 4 hours About 1 hour via Air Canada and WestJet to Kamloops, airport shuttle to SunPeaks
EAT >> Jump start your day with coffee and
a croissant at Café Soleil. Or Bolacco Café and Sun Peaks Bakery is a local hangout. Most everyone gravitates to Masa’s Bar + Grill, both for casual dining and mingling over a beer or two. More high-end is Mantles in the Delta Sun Peaks Resort, offering a number of locally sourced items that showcase the ‘farm to fork’ philosophy (go for the Fraser Valley pork loin), and great service. Oya Japanese Restaurant is the new kid in town, featuring all-you-can-eat lunch and dinner without the buffet troughs oyasushi.com. Voyageur bistro focuses on French-Canadian cuisine, think poutine and tourtiere. And Sundays (June 29- September 7) the Farmers Market draws many vendors and entertainers.
Sun Peaks is world-renown as a ski resort, but it also has lots to offer in the summer. Take a ski lift and hike or horse-back ride high alpine meadows, while down below golfers hit the fairways. Canoe, kayak or paddle-board numerous local lakes. And the list of family activities is long. . .
Geocaching — like an electronic treasure hunt — appeals to all age groups. Created by volunteer enthusiasts, it has a dedicated following worldwide. All you need to do is get a GPS unit. go online to geocaching.com and search Sun Peaks Resort. Numerous trails wind horizontally and vertically from the resort. Whether you’re into a mellow pedal or adrenaline-fuelled epic, a few hours or an entire day, pick a trip from the country trail network. sunpeaksresort.com/summer/bike-park. Rent a mountain bike from Rocky Mountain If you’re not familiar with the trails, cross country tours guides also impart local knowledge and biking tips. Book at Elevation bike ski and board shop sunpeaksresort.com/elevation. Rent a kayak or canoe at McGillivary Lake. Too many options? A great deal is the “4 Fun Pack” that you can use over the weekend.
sun peaks / Adam Stein
The third annual summer concert series features impressive lineups such as Blue Rodeo and Dan Mangan + Blacksmith. These free outdoor performances take place over four weekends throughout the summer. concert series
Sun Peaks & Dawson Creek sun peaks / Adam Stein
SLEEP >> Pet-friendly Delta Sun Peaks Resort offers a decent sleepover. Kids
love the outdoor pool while parents soak in the hot tub deltahotels.com . Some suites at the Coast Sundance Lodge have full kitchens and balconies with mountain views. And you can sashay down to the Bolacco Café in your PJ’s (in the hotel) for take-out. For the more budget-conscious, Sun Peaks Lodge smack in the village of Sun Peaks offers a sweet “Stay & Golf” deal sunpeakslodge.com. For more information on packages, visit sunpeaksresort.com/summer.
EAT >> In a town associated with high-
ways and automobiles, a visit to popular Stuie’s Diner with décor circa 1950s is in order—they’re known for burgers and sizable portions. Popular Fixx Urban Grill is known for its locally-sourced fare, as is Baked Café, run by a local mother-daughter team. Homemade eats and local character can also be found at Rockwell’s Pub Grub.
PLAY >> If you’re a history buff, prepare for ultra-rich heritage experiences in Dawson Creek—starting with the Alaska Highway
Offers a magic
“Mile 0” marker and Alaska Highway House, where you can learn about this highway built by the Americans (with Canadian and Aboriginal help) right across Canadian land. Automobile transportation is also celebrated during the 20th Annual Show & Shine event (July 11-13), milezerocruisers.ca. Travel farther back in time at Walter Wright Pioneer Village, which celebrates the prehighway era. Railroad fans will also find a treasure trove in Dawson Creek, and should not miss the South Peace Historical Society Railway Station Museum.
As starting point for the Alaska Highway, Dawson Creek, BC, offers a magic combination of experiences celebrating its unique highway-related heritage and wide- open spaces, enhanced by bright Canola fields in the summer. The town is rich with history beyond the highway; an historic grain elevator, now an art gallery, reminds that this has long been agriculture country. With the famous highway still stretching some 1,170 miles (1,883 km) before reaching the Alaska border, Dawson City provides engaging and relaxing diversions of its own.
Keep your eyes open during a downtown stroll, and you’ll learn about the area’s heritage from many outdoor murals, a project of the Dawson Creek Art Gallery (another must-see), dcartgallery.ca. To make the most of your time, pick up a free brochure that will guide you on a walking tour, available at the Visitors’ Centre or Art Gallery; you can also use your smart phone to scan QR tags at the murals. For outdoor buffs, a couple of nearby lakes and Kiskatinaw River provide angling opportunities, while two golf courses—Dawson Creek Golf & Country Club dawsoncreekgolfclub.ca and Farmington Fairways farmingtonfairways.com offer a total of 27 holes under the big northern sky. And bring your hiking boots for a walk amidst the 34 wind turbines of scenic Bear Mountain Wind Park. Each tower is 78 metres tall, and this is BC’s first commercial wind facility altagas. ca/power/renewable/wind/bear_mountain_wind_park. Dawson Creek is cowboy country, and rodeo fans should plan to attend the Dawson Exhibition and Stampede (August 6-10), one of the largest western events in BC.
Tourism Dawson Creek Tourism Dawson Creek
Those who’d like to sleep frontierstyle should bring a tent—or perhaps go modernfrontier with an RV—and check in at Mile 0 RV Park, which boasts excellent amenities next door to the historic village and a lake, mile0park.ca. If you don’t travel with your own bed, consider Inn on the Creek’s motel-style accommodations just steps away from the city’s namesake waterway as it runs through Kin Park, innonthecreek.bc.ca. And if you’d like a dose of local hospitality in a spectacular natural setting, either the main house or cabins at Sunset Ranch B&B will put you in the middle of it, bbcanada.com/6072.html.
About 15 hours (1,163 kilometres) 2 hours via Central Mountain Air
Dawson Creek british columbia
start your alaska highway
South Peace Hi
s to r
Join Us! Facebook.com/alaskahighway Alaska Highway House 10201 – 10th Street • 250-782-4714
Visitor Centre 900 Alaska Avenue • 250-782-9595
Call the Visitor Centre to receive your Free Travel Guide or view online at: TourismDawsonCreek.com
EAT >> Bellingham has a vibrant food
You can stay close yet feel far away in Bellingham. Only 80 kilometres from Vancouver, visitors looking beyond the budget US shopping at Costco and Bellis Fair Mall discover that our nearest substantial US neighbour holds a small-town America allure. With two interesting and very walkable neighbourhoods to explore—downtown Bellingham and Fairhaven—even those who think they “know” Bellingham will find surprises and delights. bellingham.org fairhaven.com Jane Gershovich Mt. Baker Theatre
2 hours Bolt Bus goes to the Cordata neighbourhood where public transit connects to downtown 2 hours AMTRAK from Pacific Central Station
stay close yet feel
45 minutes to 1.5 hours depending on border wait times
scene. For breakfast or brunch, Mount Bakery in downtown is hard to beat—especially the crab Bennie. For a main meal, excellent Mexican food is at Taco Lobo, with homemade specialties including carnitas, corn tortillas and salsas (closed Sundays). On Saturdays, there’s no shortage of food choices at the Bellingham Farmer’s Market, with a huge variety of local, largely-organic food producers attending. It also showcases interesting buskers. For an upscale dinner, The Steak House at the Silver Reef Casino in Ferndale features a wonderfully intimate room and, you guessed it, beef—big portions. On the Bellingham waterfront, Giuseppe’s Al Porto Ristorante Italian serves good quality food with a view giuseppesitalian.com, and further south on the Fairhaven waterfront, Keenan’s at the Pier gets solid reviews and views of nearby islands, thechrysalisinn.com. For an insanely good anytime treat, the homemade ice cream at Mallard rivals the world’s best.
Fairhaven is an explorer’s delight, and its Village Books is a truly great bookstore. In downtown Bellingham, simply wander and enjoy historic architecture. Old City Hall (now part of the Whatcom Museum) is among the most photoworthy. Plan your own walking tour using the resources at cob.org/services/transportation. Curious kids and adults should find the Spark Museum of Electrical Invention’s exhibits interesting. Downtown Bellingham includes a number of unique shops. Wander along Railroad Avenue to find vintage clothing, vinyl records, and a marvellous collection of garden and pet supplies at 113-year-old Hohl Feed & Seed. Historic Mount Baker Theatre attracts a surprising number of well-known artists to its stunning, Moorish-inspired main hall. Upcoming headliners
Fairhaven / Peter James Photography Studio
include Pink Martini, Steve Martin, Arlo Guthrie and John Legend. Take a walk on the lovely South Bay Trail. Even a short round-trip stroll out of Fairhaven is a joy, but best to start in Boulevard Park where you can also enjoy a cup of The Woods Coffee.
Bellingham has numerous chain hotels, but for a truly special night away stay at the Silver Reef Casino Hotel on
the Lummi Reservation. As casino hotels go, it’s a gem with gorgeous rooms and spa, silverreefcasino.com. To stay in downtown Bellingham—walking distance to theatre, dining, and more, the waterfront Hotel Bellwether is a strong choice—including a unique lighthouse suite, hotelbellwether.com. The highly-rated Fairhaven Village Inn offers instant proximity to that neighbourhood’s many treasures, fairhavenvillageinn.com.
Hotel Bellwether, Your Luxury Bellingham Hideaway Ballroom | Romantic Luxury Exceptional Waterfront Dining | Wine Cellar
CANADIANS STAY AT PAR Hotel Bellwether is a luxurious waterfront getaway located on Bellingham Bay – only 20 minutes south of the Peace Arch crossing. Hotel Bellwether is oﬀering our Canadian visitors a 10% discount on all room types. It is a great time to visit Bellingham! The hotel features live music three times a week, a cozy bar and oceanfront dining.
Hotel Bellwether on Bellingham Bay | One Bellwether Way, Bellingham, WA 98225 360.392.3100 | 877.411.1200 | www.hotelbellwether.com
EAT >> The bready goodness of Piroshky-Piroshky
is always memorable.
Seattle is an urban escape with plenty of twists. It has a distinctly American vibe, from its retro-cool Space Needle to its status as the birthplace of grunge music. The 1962 World’s Fair put Seattle on the global map and the city has matured into a world-class location with the presence of Boeing, Microsoft, and Amazon.com. From shopping to museums to professional sports to people-watching, a weekend in Seattle is always memorable. 3-4 hours 4.5 hours from Pacific Central Station
provides ample choices for breakfast, lunch, or a snack. For a sit-down breakfast, Etta’s is an excellent option by legendary Seattle restaurateur Tom Douglas. Seattleites love fish chowders. At Pike Place Chowder, order a sampler and try a variety of styles. At dinnertime, Poppy, a see-and-be-seen restaurant in the Capitol Hill neighbourhood (reserve ahead) offers “thali” style meals, with several small dishes on a tray—basically like tapas for one poppyseattle.com. Two summer foodie events should be on your radar: The annual Bite of Seattle Festival (July 18-20) brings out many of the city’s top chefs and later in the summer Seattle’s burgeoning street-food scene has its own festival (Aug 8-9) seattlestfoodfest.com.
While there are obvious, worthy diversions like the Space Needle and Pike Place Market, Seattle has much more. The Experience Music Project Museum includes engaging info about grunge and other music related to Seattle, and includes exhibits on a variety of pop culture topics. If you’re up for an evening of truly dazzling entertainment, look to Teatro ZinZanni. Think Cirque du Solei meets slapstick meets dinner theatre in a Moulin Rouge setting, and you begin to understand this legendary Seattle experience zinzanni.com/seattle.
4 hours Both Quick Shuttle and BOLT Bus run from downtown Vancouver 50 minutes via Air Canada and Alaska Airlines, take advantage of rapid transit on both ends with Seattle’s light rail system running from the airport to downtown hotel vintage Teatro ZinZanni
For the sports fan, attending a home game of one of Seattle’s major league teams is a must-do. The upcoming months offer 81 home games for fans of the Seattle Mariners baseball team.
Hotel Monaco offers little touches that make their hotel quite special—like yoga mats in the rooms, and complimentary bikes to get you around, monaco-seattle.com. Also in the boutique genre, the Hotel Max is groovy with an emphasis on art and music, hotelmaxseattle.com. If you’re a wine lover the rooms at Hotel Vintage are named after Washington wineries and vineyards and evenings the hotel hosts complimentary wine tastings hotelvintage-seattle.com. Travellers wishing to stay closer to the sports stadiums should check out the Silver Cloud with its rooftop pool silvercloud.com/seattlestadium.
3r Bo SPE d o CIA ni k L O gh 2 F t i nig FER sF h RE ts, E! *
NATURE’S FLOWER GARDEN.
FREE OUTDOOR CONCERT JULY 4–5
DAN MANGAN + BLACKSMITH
It’s the most easily accessible natural display of alpine wildflowers in the region, via a quick chairlift ride to 16 hiking trails. In the pedestrian village you’ll find 9 hotels and lodges, condo and chalet rentals. Browse boutique shops, choose from many outdoor activities, and visit during one of several free concert weekends. Located just 45 minutes from Kamloops. Central Reservations: 1.844.422.1772 www.SunPeaksResort.com/Concerts *Blackouts may apply. While quantities last. Please call for details. Photos: Royce Sihlis, Peter Olsen.
GET AWAY TO
Kamloops is an easy 3½ hour drive from downtown Vancouver, yet a world away. The city is an authentic, friendly community with the personal feel of a small city and the openness of a vast, rugged landscape to experience energizing recreational opportunities like hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding. Come let loose and just play!
TOP WEEKEND GETAWAY IDEAS 1. FAMILY GETAWAY: affordable hands on fun at a science centre, art galleries, children’s museum and the BC Wildlife Park for the whole family! 2. COUPLES GETAWAY: stand up paddle, kayak or canoe on a pristine lake, indulge at North America’s only ginseng spa and take in live theatre and music. 3. AGRI ADVENTURES: connect with the land at the revitalized Tranquille Farm Fresh Market, try fresh milk at Blackwell Dairy, and get hands on at a local ranch.
Check out our itineraries to plan your getaway at tourismkamloops.com/top3
1800 662 1994 tourismkamloops.com
Published on Apr 21, 2014