Have you ever dreamed of having a Nanaimo bar in front of a bar in Nanaimo? Because that’s a pun I could not pass up. Nanaimo is a small city on Vancouver Island in British Columbia known for its lovely dessert.
There’s something wild about the ocean. On a bright day in the Caribbean, it seems calm and happy, but in the rough coastline of Vancouver Island, that ocean has this raw power that is allowed to roam free. Everything about the ocean in Tofino, British Columbia is mighty. Tofino is the land of surf, seas, and rugged landscape.
With limited vacation days a year, you get used to exploring a place on a whirlwind schedule. You can still get to know a place, even when zooming through, but Victoria, British Columbia needed more time then I could give it. Victoria is a gorgeous city, aptly named the Garden City, and is a great getaway or stop for a Vancouver Island road trip.
There’s a feeling you get when you are sitting on a beach that stretches on forever feeling the wind whip your hair across your face and listening to the ocean beat ferociously against the shore. Bliss. The smell of the salty air and watching as a bald eagle flies overhead is nothing short of a blissful experience at the western edge of British Columbia. At Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, you feel like you’re at the edge of the world.
Silence. The motor of the boat has been cut, and you drift, bobbing with the waves in the Pacific Ocean. You’re surrounded by blue, and you can see mountains in the distance. But that’s not what you are here for. You are waiting, silently, scanning the water for a sign from the top predator of the ocean: the orca. Whale watching is a huge draw for visitors in British Columbia, and there are no questions as to why: seeing these beautiful marine mammals in the wild is an incredible experience.
Winter may be a time where you want to hole up next to a warm fire and drink hot chocolate, but it’s also the perfect time to go on a weekend getaway. Not only is it cheaper, but there are fewer people and who doesn’t love snow city scenes. So bundle up and pack your bags. Next stop is Kingston, Ontario.