British Columbia, Canada
But there is one!
An island with a history stretching back as far as the ice age, that perches on the western edge of a great continent and one that is growing very quickly as a “must see” destination.
Only about three hundred and fifty miles in length , Vancouver Island sits in the Straits of Georgia, north-west of Seattle and an hour and forty minutes by ferry from the mainland of British Columbia, on the west coast of Canada. Vancouver Island is home to the capital city of British Columbia, Victoria, and has been since 1850 at which time the interior gold rush brought prospectors and a supporting cast of many people to this pristine island.
Today, the temperate climate, stunning scenery and world class amenities make this island a travelers mecca, and for good reason: or to be precise, many good reasons. English speaking, well actually “Canadian” speaking, easy to drive and everything within fairly short distances helps make any vacation here very enjoyable and relatively stress free, especially as accommodations and food services are widespread, well located and of the highest standard: many rated the best on the continent and some, the best in the world.
But it’s the diversity that is the main attraction. Whale watching, body surfing, long cycling trails, wilderness camping, world class spa-resorts, museums, historical sites, famous gardens, ski-ing, sailing, salmon fishing, diving, real wild-life, or spa treatment with a Pacific ocean view. Home grown produce markets, fresh seafoods, local wineries, breweries and cideries, wilderness camping, bed and breakfast or famous five star hotels,
Vancouver Island supports it all and it’s there to be discovered. Jazz festivals, art festivals, opera, book fairs, antique fairs, garden tours, agricultural fairs, theaters and ghost walks. Marathons, cycling races, golf, lacrosse, soccer and ice hockey: and even the tall ships make an appearance!
Vancouver island is a celebration of agricultural, maritime and historical; of First Nations peoples and others from many nations. Of British and Spanish and Asian influences against a backdrop of stunning mountain scenery: a wilderness with all the amenities. Quality shopping, extensive tourist services, modern transportation and yet, the unusual. Float plane services, eagles on the lamp posts, art galleries on the walls, eight hundred year old trees, sea kayaking and afternoon tea with triangular sandwiches.
But more to the point, what shall we have for lunch!
How about some local oysters to start with, followed by a home grown emu burger on a home baked bun with garden grown tomatoes and locally grown herbs picked fresh for the table. Perhaps some locally made goat cheese and a pint of ale brewed on the premises. Actually I think I will have a small glass of the locally made blueberry port wine with my home grown strawberries, although the flambe’ pears look rather nice!
Hey, take some time to Discover Vancouver Island for yourself, you will be glad you did.