Traveling British Columbia – Horseshoe Bay

June 2014, we are off on the next installment in our quest to become sailors..  But…first we have to get where we are going, meaning ROAD TRIP.  What a beautiful way to get where you need to be, a drive from Calgary to Vancouver.  Outstanding scenery, enthralling drive. I won’t bore you with a whack of mountain shots and head right to the point of entry to our sailing, Horseshoe Bay ferry terminal in West Vancouver.  After a lengthy drive, involving an overnight in Revelstoke, BC.  We spent the night at  the Day’s Inn.  The hotel was okay, pretty much normal for this brand.  We headed out for a quick bite and tried a place we had never been to on our past trips, Zalas Pizza and Steak House.  Food was pub fare and good, we would definitely try it again n the future.  Spent a quiet night, then up and at em for the next part of our journey

We arrived at the terminal, only to find that the ferry was full and we would have a two-hour wait until the next one departed.  Tough place to spend a few hours with views like this.

That's Where We Are Going
That’s Where We Are Going

We have to take the ferry as we are heading to the Sunshine Coast.  It is on the mainland, just like Vancouver, just inaccessible by road.  The sailing school is located over there, Gibsons, BC.  Still, we have a few hours to kill.  Off to lunch.  The terminal area is a trendy place, with multiple shops, a marina and many restaurants.  We chose Bay Moorings, a good choice.  The food was good, reasonably priced and served by efficient and friendly staff.  A great lunch, much enjoyed.

Then we hit the ferry.  They definitely cram them in on these boats.

Sardine Can
Sardine Can

Next up, the expected shot from the ship out to the ocean.

Looking out into Howe Sound
Looking out into Howe Sound

And then we were there.  a quick drive into Gibsons, parked the vehicle and there, right in front of us, a piece of Canadian TV history, Molly’s Reach.

Molly's Reach

Next post, we introduce you to Gibsons, BC, where to go, where to stay, what to see.  At least, where we ate, where we stayed and what we saw, then some sailing.

Hello from Vancouver

Made it into beautiful Vancouver. That’s the good. The bad, gale force winds and our sail was cancelled. Here is a couple of shots. First the mountains as we landed. The second is a view of downtown from Granville Island.



Places We’ve Been – Vancouver, BC, Canada

Lori and I have begun, what we believe is, a good habit.  We tend to go somewhere for our anniversary.  This works well as we married on Thanksgiving (Canadian) weekend, which allows us the luxury of a long weekend, with decent weather and out of “high” season for travelling.  This was one of those trips in 2009.  We chose Vancouver for this one due to its proximity to Calgary, and neither of us had been there in years.  We caught our flight and we were off.  I love flying over the mountains, but this trip was especially spectacular.  The snow on the tops, poking through the clouds made a great site to see.  This picture doesn’t do it justice.

The Majesty of the Rockies From Above

Arriving in Vancouver, we collected our luggage and headed to the Skytrain.  Our hotel was in downtown Vancouver.  The Skytrain is amazing.  The train is driverless and you can sit right up front and enjoy the ride.  It is like being on a roller coaster to some extent.  I didn’t get the prime seat, so couldn’t film it like I wanted to, but did find this video on YouTube to share.

We walked from the station to our hotel.  The place we stayed was the St. Regis Hotel.  It was recently renovated and may be the best hotel in the city.  Last time I looked, it is rated at number 2 for Vancouver on TripAdvisor.  I highly recommend this place.  Easily one of the nicest, friendliest establishments we have ever stayed in.

Prior to the sights, a quick note on food.  We ate at two especially good restaurants.  The first was an Italian place called La Terrazza.  The atmosphere was kind of stuffy, but the food was very good.  The second was The Gotham Steakhouse.  The food here was excellent as well.  Again, we highly recommend both of these establishments.

We began our touring with a quick trip to Sun-Yat-Sen Garden.  This is a spectacular garden, right in the heart of Vancouver.  It is listed in the 1000 Places To See Before You Die and it must be a wonderful place to visit during the summer.  We were there in October and it was still a very nice place to see.

Sun Yat Sen
The Gardens

The next day, we decided to go to Granville Island, a popular shopping area, with a large public market.  We walked to the island and enjoyed the vistas and the shops.

Vancouver Skyline

It has been a while coming, but it is time to discuss the best part of Granville Island.  Yes, the shops are great, the people watching superb, but..the major point is the Granville Island Brewery.  Jackpot, a whole brewery.


We spent our last day in Vancouver doing the Stanley Park thing, which included a stop at the Vancouver Aquarium.  The aquarium is a great place to spend a day.  The exhibits are extensive and they have an extensive collection of animals.  Our favourite was the Narwhal, a beautiful member of the whale family.

Narwhal at Vancouver Aquarium

To conclude the post, I have but one thing to say about the city of Vancouver.  It is one of the best cities I have ever been to.  The scenery is magnificent, the people (when not rioting) are uber-friendly.  The hotel and restaurant scene is world-class.  In fact, there is only one thing I can hold against the place, and that would be the Vancouver Canucks hockey team is based here.  If they could move them to Vladivostok or somewhere, the city would be a perfect place to live.


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