Travel to Vancouver by way of Seattle

Mar 5th, 2006, 05:50 AM
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Travel to Vancouver by way of Seattle

I'm planning a trip from Seattle to Vancouver BC with my family early April. leaving on Thursday afternoon and coming back on Monday morning. I have two children, 9 and 6. My questions are:

a - how many hours should i plan driving from either direction, including border crossing?
b - What would be some good places to visit in Vancouver with children?

highdude is offline  
Mar 5th, 2006, 06:53 AM
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the kids will enjoy the Granville Island market, especially if you go at lunch time and buy food from various vendors and combine it into a picnic.

And they'll enjoy a seabus ride from downtown Vancouver over to North Vancouver and back again. Get off on the other side and explore a bit, too.

BAK is offline  
Mar 5th, 2006, 09:04 AM
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I think BAK meant Aquabus, not SeaBus. There is a SeaBus, but it is not as much fun as the little Aquabuses. Having said that, if you buy day passes for the transit system they are good on the SeaBus (and SkyTrain, buses, etc) but not the Aquabus.

Anyway...take the kids to Stanley Park's zoo and aquarium. Pricey, but great.

Allow three hours for the drive. No way to anticipate the delay at the border. We "cheat" by jumping off of I-5 at Bellingham and taking SR-539 to the border crossing at Lynden, then intercepting Canada 1 into the city. Far less chance of congestion and delay.
Bobmrg is offline  
Mar 5th, 2006, 12:21 PM
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First, some clarity... the route suggested above entails "Exit #256" off of I-5 just north of mid-town Bellingham. It is "Meridian" street you want to follow due north, for about 20 miles, to the border. No turns, mostly straight and narrow.

I can't overemphasize taking the kids to the Vancouver Aquarium. I went to the Seattle Aquarium and the Vanc. aquarium one day apart a few years back, and Vancouver's is miles better.

If you're leaving on "Thursday afternoon"... I STRONGLY suggest having the whole gang out of the central Seattle area by 2:00pm. If you wait until 3:30 or so it can take 2 hours for the first 35 miles.

An early April Thursday won't see noteworthy delays going northbound through the border. (though a great move to save time is exit #275 through "truck customs" once you're nearly to the border... then if you want, go left at the first light past the border to get back to the main highway)

Back to Seattle on "Monday morning" ?? What time do you expect to get to the actual border line?

It could be perhaps 45 minutes in line coming back then... but not necessarily. Again, "Truck Customs" is a better alternative than the main border for time.

(and yes, they have lots of room for cars, who travel through in separate lines)

Be sure to have certified birth certificates for each of your children... and if their mother is not with you, then have a signed-by-her permission slip stating that she knows you're taking the kids to Canada. (**if, that is, you're not the sole custodial parent)

(sorry, just covering all the bases, you're probably traveling with your wife, who doubles as their mom, but how could I know that in advance?)

Hope this helps.

NorthwestMale is offline  
Mar 9th, 2006, 05:23 AM
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Thank you for your message, y'all. one more question. what would the weather be like during that timeframe?
highdude is offline  
Mar 9th, 2006, 08:12 AM
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Even professional meteorologists are hesitant to hang their hats on forecasts more than three days out, so guessing what will happen in April is just that...guessing. Looking at weather base..

it would seem that you can hope for daytime temps in the 50s, and the odds of blue skies are better than 50 percent.
Bobmrg is offline  
Mar 12th, 2006, 08:07 AM
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Thank you Bobmrg. I'll make sure we pack few jackets . . .
highdude is offline  
Mar 13th, 2006, 06:23 AM
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It took us 3 hours to go from Seattle to Vancouver (and 3 hours back) last week. My kids, 8 and 10, enjoyed the Stanley Park area.
padams421 is offline  
Mar 13th, 2006, 11:53 AM
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Highdude, we find fleece to meet just about all of our needs...warm in the winter, but not too heavy for spring and fall. As northwesterners, of course, we do not have umbrellas. Nylon shells is about as far as we go for "rain" gear.
Bobmrg is offline  
Mar 13th, 2006, 01:44 PM
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Highdude - Do you live in Seattle or are you just going to be visiting there when you take this trip? I am asking because whatever you have for weather is what we have. Bobmrg the Aquabus is just in False Creek BAK is talking about the Seabus to North Vancouver.
traveller69 is offline  
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