Why Visit British Columbia
British Columbia, My adopted home province.
I moved here for school years ago without seeing the province first. I fell in love with the province immediately and I can’t imagine making my home anywhere else. I wanted to share three of my favourite places to visit within British Columbia. Why visit British Columbia? See below.
Pacific Rim National Park
The drive from Vancouver to Pacific Rim National Park is one of the top scenic drives that I’ve experienced. The drive takes you into the rainforest with stops along the way. You can explore an old growth forest, see goats on a roof and view unlimited scenes of nature. Pacific Rim National Park is located on the west coast of Vancouver Island and is between Tofino and Ucluelet. You don’t stumble upon this place by accident. Stunning sunsets, surfing, seafood, Tofino Beer, rainforest and beach walks can fill your day. You can head over to Hot Spring Cove, go whale or bear watching, kayaking or storm watching. One of my favourite ways to spend a day is to go on one of the numerous walks in the park and then head to the beach to watch the sunset.
I camp at Green Point Campground, which is the only campground in the park. However, if you choose accommodations other than camping, still ensure that you participate in the Pacific Rim National Park Interpretive Program during the peak camping season. The park has education walks and talks that are interactive and interesting.
If I ever win the lottery, I would be buying a home close to the park. It’s a destination that leaves an impression on you and draws you back for return visits. I haven’t visited the park in the winter time yet but storm watching is a big attraction. I do plan on visiting in the winter months and look forward to renting a place; putting on my gear and watching the storms come in. Whatever time of year you go, I hope you enjoy one of my favourite places.
Salt Spring Island
Salt Spring Island is one of the Gulf Islands, located between the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island. When visiting, I felt like the rest of the world was on pause Stress and pressing ‘to do’ lists simply melted away.
If you are visiting from April to October, make sure to check out the Saturday Salt Spring market to sample products that the island has to offer. Only ”make it, bake it, or grow it” products can be sold by vendors in the market. Pick up some produce and have a picnic in the park.
You can spend your days walking the shoreline, touring studios and farms, hiking or simply relaxing. It’s a great escape from Vancouver without travelling too far. Salt Spring Island is accessible by BC Ferry or you can fly in a float plane from Vancouver. The people are friendly and there are a wide variety of accommodations, depending on your budget. It’s the largest of the Gulf Islands but you can still find places of solitude.
My city is constantly changing! Since moving to British Columbia, I’ve always lived in the city of Vancouver. I’ll be one of the first people to admit that it rains a lot here, but most of the rain falls in the winter. Once spring arrives, you forget about all the rain and enjoy the sunshine. Within the city, there are numerous green spaces including Stanley Park. Walking along the seawall, grabbing dinner on Denman Street and then heading to English Bay for the sunset makes for a great day and is one of the first things I do with visitors. Outside of Stanley Park, you can visit Pacific Spirit Regional Park, Jericho Beach or walk the streets in the different neighbourhoods to get a flavour of city. There is also the Aquarium, Science World or the museums in town. However, nothing beats scenic views of the ocean, mountains and forests that are in the city and surrounding it.
The food truck scene has exploded in the past couple of years, and you can find everything from grilled cheese, cold-pressed juices, spiced jackfruit, fire cooked pizza, Culver City Salads (the best salads I’ve had) and that’s only scratching the surface. The food trucks make great meals to enjoy while you are between adventures. If you want to sit down for a meal, you can find a restaurant for whatever food you crave. If you love sushi, this is the city for you!
Even with the high cost of living here, it’s my home. I’m able to walk to work, and the skytrain (like a subway) provides easy and convenient access to numerous stores and restaurants that surround me. When I feel like an escape, I can head to North Vancouver and be surrounded by forest. I can also easily visit Bowen Island, Stevenston or the Fraser Valley. If I want to stay in the city, I head down to the shore with a friend and kayak around English Bay and False Creek.
I feel like I could write post after post on places to explore in British Columbia. The above three sites are only a small selection of what British Columbia has to offer. You can spot bears in Sechelt, travel around the Great Bear rainforest, the rugged Haida Gwaii, the capital of Victoria, Fort Langley and still have months’ worth of adventures to be had.
I would love to hear, what are your favourite places in British Columbia? If you haven’t been here yet, where would you go?
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