Vancouver Island trip

Jun 2nd, 2002, 01:35 PM
David Dufurrena
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Vancouver Island trip

My wife and I vacationed in Vancouver Island from May 21st to May 31st. We flew into Vancouver (from Florida) and ferried to Nanaimo, returning to Vancouver by ferry from Victoria (Swartz Bay). The combination of congested car traffic out of and into Vancouver, plus the hours consumed in waiting for and travelling on the ferries, was daunting. Next time we will fly to the island from either Vancouver or Seattle, as there are a number of airport destinations on the island, including Victoria, Nanaimo and Port Campbell. We stayed in Parksville, a very convenient starting point for touring the island. Our accommodations at the TighNaMara resort on Rathtrevor Beach were fabulous for the money, with a beautiful ocean view from our condo-style unit. We visited and hiked (short hikes of 1 to 4 km) at many of the provincial parks (Strathcona is fabulous) and at Pacific Rim on rain forest paths, mountain paths and beaches. A four-hour boat tour of the Broken Islands Group out of Ucluelet (Subtidal Adventures) was rewarded with grey whale and sea lion sightings. We had two black bear sightings along a gravel road off Highway 4. Stayed at Pacific Rim Motel in Ucluelet for one night - plain, inexpensive and clean. Our final two days were based at the Admiral Inn in Victoria: disappointing for the rates charged. We will stay elsewhere next time. Butchart Gardens was by far the most beautiful garden park we've ever seen. We puposely scheduled our trip in May to avoid peak tourist crowds and were virtually alone in many of the parks. The weather was cool and comfortable, with only two "wet and dreary" days. Hope this helps someone out there plan a V.I. excursion!
Jun 2nd, 2002, 03:48 PM
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We are planning a trip to Vancouver Island in August. We are flying from Maryland to Seattle, and need to find the best way onto Victoria. We were considering the Victoria Clipper passenger ferry from downtown Seattle and renting a car in Victoria or the Washington State Ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria, renting a car in Seattle. Would you say that neither of these options is recommended?
Jun 2nd, 2002, 04:00 PM
g mitchell
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Take option #1 ( Victoria Clipper ) If you go to Port Angeles the ferry only runs 4 times a day and they don't take reservations -- often long line ups.

The BC ferries are not as bad as the previous poster stated. You can reserve space which cuts down on the possible wait time. See
Jun 2nd, 2002, 04:50 PM
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I too would vote for the clipper option. All major car rental outlets are available. Plan for one day of not needing the car and then picking it up for further excursions.
Ferry lineups at BC ferries are only a problem on long weekends. May 20th was a stat holiday.
Jun 2nd, 2002, 06:27 PM
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The Admiral Inn used to get favourable reviews here. Can you expand on what you didn't like about it?

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