After hearing so many stories of how much Canadians love BC, I finally took a vacation to visit our beautiful west coast province this summer. Quite frankly, I'm not exactly sure why I've been kept away from such majestic sceneries. While I had once visited Vancouver on a rainy April month 7 years ago, I wasn't quite sure what to expect about Victoria.
With the help of my significant other's parents, who were more than happy to give me the grand tour of their amazing place they call home, I have been charmed off my pants, as they say.
After visiting Santa Barbara while I was working in LA, I simply adored the calm and quiet coastal life of Santa Barbara. It was a retiree's dream: the coast, the mountains, the wine, the sunshine and the friendly people. It was all so perfect. Who knew I would find myself in the same situation again but just over the border?
I went around quite a few places during my vacation: Tofino, Cowichan Lake, Sooke, Victoria, and, my favorite, the West Shore. Sure, Victoria is mainly made up of two demographics: the newlyweds and the nearly deads (picked that up from the bf). Indeed, the city is chock full of young families and retirees. They are bulldozing their way through beautiful trees to make room for all the new homes and subdivisions they're building. My guess is to accommodate the overflow of Vancouverites who are looking for more affordable homes in the area.
Anyway, while Victoria and Vancouver Island are seriously lacking in public transit, we had to make do in going around in a car. This is not to say that the quality of life diminishes greatly without them. From my observations and my future father-in-law's enthusiastic touring the West Shore, life in the suburbs was abundant and picture perfect. From the recreational activities you could do like lake swimming and golfing, they were also blessed with amazing trails where you can observe wild life like bald eagles and seals, and on many occasions, local deer on the roads. The views over water were also something pretty exciting to behold, to watching cruise ships go buy, to seeing a bird sanctuary, to touring the grounds of Hatley's Castle.
On Vancouver Island, I made my second official camping trip with a stop at Cowichan Lake and Cathedral Grove to look at some really tall and really old trees. Our destination on the island was Tofino, a surfer town chock full of young, international millennials there to surf and camp. I captured amazing shots of the fog rolling into the beach where the tide went out so far that it left the sand gleaming and reflecting like a mirror.
Back near Victoria, we also went to the beautiful beach town of Sidney, where you can spot Mount Baker on the horizon on a clear day. We went as far South East as Sooke to see another coastal community with perhaps the most charming and idyllic B&B called the Sooke Harbour House.
Of course, the trip wasn't complete without a drive down south to Portland, OR where we ventured into so many breweries, dispensaries and final stop at Bridal Veil to snap the beautiful Multnomah Falls.
All in all, I can definitely see myself settling in BC. There was no convincing needed for me to move back out West again. Who knew that BC had so many similarities of beach front communities, but also a fair weather to match during those summer days. Clear blue skies, not too hot, not too cold, friendly, clean, proud to be Canadian, what more could you ask?