Pre- and post-cruise plans

Old Feb 7th, 2017, 09:16 AM
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Pre- and post-cruise plans

We're going to be on a cruise from/to Vancouver at the end of July/beginning of August. The cruise leaves/returns on a Wednesday, and our prelim plans are to fly in the Saturday prior, and fly home the Saturday or so after.

Pre-cruise, I'm thinking of taking the ferry to either Nanaimo or Swartz Bay, and renting a car there, and staying two or three nights, returning the rental before taking the ferry back. We'd then spend the remaining time in Vancouver, walking and using public transportation. For the post-cruise, perhaps renting a car again for a day or so and going to Whistler and maybe somewhere else?

We've been to Vancouver and Victoria before, over 28 years ago on our honeymoon, so it's a bit of a nostalgia trip, without a need to cram everything possible in. We also are slightly less mobile this time around, as I have some back problems that mean we can't just walk for hours around the city all day as we did before.

Does this sound like a reasonable plan?
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Old Feb 9th, 2017, 02:58 PM
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It sounds like a nice way to spend some time relaxing and exploring before and after your cruise.

Vancouver Island is beautiful and best enjoyed on a car trip. There are lots of places to stop for hikes and sight seeing. Take the older Island Highway for a more scenic drive from Nanaimo to Qualicum beach. From there you could head west towards Tofino area, or carry on north towards Campbell River.

Why don't you look at flying into Victoria or Nanaimo instead of the ferry? the ferry would take around 4 hours (not the ferry, but the whole trip from the airport to Nanaimo). This would give you a bit more time on the island.

After your cruise, Vancouver itself has lots to offer, and Whistler is beautiful in the summertime. We spent a week there and did not use our car once arrived. You can walk, bike and chair-lift everywhere! You may think about taking transit there.

A good website is for lots of info.
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Old Feb 10th, 2017, 05:07 PM
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I agree, a great plan.

It is very easy to get around Vancouver without a car, and so much to see and do. I always stay in the west end near Stanley park. Times Square Suites is my favourite accommodation.There are lots and lots of restaurants within a short walk. There is a hop-on-hop-off bus that goes around the park.

In a different part of town the Anthropology Museum on the UBC campus has a magnificent display of aboriginal artifacts and a modern sculpture by an artist (whose name I have shamefully forgotten) that is worth the price of admission.

On my last visit to the city I saw the Chinese Garden for the first time--such a serene place in an otherwise unattractive neighbourhood.

I wouldn’t consider a visit to Vancouver complete without a water taxi ride to Granville Island. Great for people watching as well as food.

Makes me want to go, just thinking of it.
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Old Feb 14th, 2017, 01:13 PM
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Thank you both. mdinbc, we'll have quite enough of flying just getting there from the DC area, so will welcome the change to relax on the ferry to Victoria. eliztravels2, I'll check out the Times Square Suites. I keep tamping down my cheap gene when looking at hotels in Vancouver!
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Old Feb 18th, 2017, 08:02 AM
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Hotels in Vancouver are outrageous in the summer

The ferry ride to Swartz Bay is very scenic and a nice part of the trip, and you have enough time to do that without having to hurry around.

Enjoy BC!
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Old Feb 28th, 2017, 10:17 AM
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Thanks for the replies. Alas, it looks like plans are changing! We're likely going to forego the cruise and instead doing NS and PEI. I'll post separately when I have more of an idea of an itinerary, to hopefully get some input.
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