Saturday, January 29, 2011

Vancouver: By The Numbers

Here is a look at the routes we took on our trip using Google Maps.
Click on "view larger map" at the bottom of the map for a full size view with all our routes marked in blue.
Total distance covered from start to finish: 1003 Kms in 5 days
Trip starts at point A and finishes at point G.

View Larger Map

Note of Interest: our iPhones were the only source for directions that we used.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Our Trip To Vancouver

I flew into Vancouver on Saturday morning.My old friend from high school, Dave Shacket picked me up at the airport and whisked me away for a sight seeing tour. The view of Vancouver from the Cypress mountain. Dave was kind enough to let me stay at his place for the night and we went downtown to watch the Canucks game and drink some beer at a local sports bar. If you think Leaf fans are crazy, then you haven't met a Canucks fan. On Sunday morning Dave dropped me off at the ferry terminal and I caught the ferry to Vancouver island to meet up with my wife who was working in Victoria for the CBC doing the Canadian Figure Skating Finals. This event was to see who would represent Canada at the World Figure Skating Championships in Tokyo later this year. It was my first figure skating event I have ever seen and I have to say it was pretty impressive. A lot faster than it looks on TV. And as an added bonus, it was also my wife, Pilar's directorial debut. On Monday morning we meet up with a guy that I work with that I had never actually met before. When I am at work, I talk to him maybe two or three times a day, and over the last few years we have kind of gotten to know each other. His name is Kevin and he does the closed captioning for the TV station that I work for. Kevin also lives in Victoria. So I thought I would take the opportunity to say hi.
After that we hit the highway and headed to the other side of Vancouver island. The drive from Victoria to Tofino, the furthest point west in Canada, is supposed to be one of the top 10 best drives in the world. And it did not disappoint. The drive was breath taking and of course we stopped to admire the view along the way. When we got to Tofino it was too dark to see anything, so we got a room, grabbed some dinner and had an early night.
On Tuesday morning we got up and took a look around town. Tofino is a surf town on the very western most edge of Canada. If I was to head straight out into the Pacific ocean, I'm told my next stop would be Japan. We had breakfast at this exclusive little hotel called the Winkinnish Inn, where a room goes for $320 a night in the off season. Breakfast was amazing, but the view was to die for. Maybe next time we are down that way we will stay there.
Some shots of the view along the drive back to Nanamio.
Then it was time to head back to the mainland.
We caught a ferry in Nanaimo to Horseshoe Bay, which is just above Vancouver. From there we got onto the Sea to Sky highway which takes you to Whislter. On the way there we passed through Squamish and stopped to have dinner with my wife's cousin, Christopher and his girldfriend Allie.
After dinner it was onto to Whistler, where we got a swanky little room in Whistler village for the night,overlooking all the bars and shops. Interesteing fact about Whistler, 90 percent of the people that work in Whistler are Australian and the next day happened to be Australia Day. Needless to say sleeping turned out to be a bit of problem as Austrailians REALLY like to party. Oh well, all part of the experience right?.
On Wednesday morning we went up Whistler Blackcomb to look around. Unfortunaltely due to limitted time we were not able to go skiing, which really sucked, but as an added bonus, we saw the sun for the first time in days which was really nice.
Then it was back to Vancouver for our last night in town. On the way down we stopped in Brackendale to see the world famous bald eagles, and we were not disapointted. My buddy Dave, who happens to work at a hotel, got us a room at his hotel for our last night in town. If anyone is looking for a great place to stay while in Vancouver, check out The Sunset Suites on Burnaby street. The rooms are large and spacious and the service is outstanding, all right in the heart of downtown Vancouver. Thanks Dave!
The wife and I took a tour around town and the harbourfront, before meeting up with my nieces friend Claire and Dave and Leah for dinner. Nothing like the company of good friends and good food to end our trip with a bang. A big thanks to all our friends out on the west coast! We had a blast and will remember this trip for the rest of our lives. You guys rock!