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Old 04-27-2013, 01:15 PM   #1
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What to see in BC?

Spending two weeks in September in and around Vancouver, Victoria, Whistler, Tofino and the Okanagen Valley. Any tips on must see areas and great campgrounds? Any help is appreciated.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:22 PM   #2
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Loads! Where to begin? Can you tell us what your interests are to narrow it down?

I grew up in the Okanagan and there is everything from great fly fishing to wine tasting. Here in Vancouver there are great restaurants, art galleries, theatre, sailing, world-class mountain biking, clubs, pubs, shopping... Whistler is great for outdoor pursuits. Don't miss the Museum of Anthropology. Tofino is very busy and touristy, so I always recommend that you stay in Ucluelet, which is 20 minutes South. When there, there's hiking, beach-combing and surfing. If you're there after Labour Day, things will be a little less busy. Victoria has lots to see as well.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:28 PM   #3
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It might be a push, but Banff and Jasper National parks should not be missed. Incredible country! Happy trails, perfect time of the year to be up there.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:43 PM   #4
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We like to sight see and sample fresh local cuisine. We've been to Tofino, Victoria an Vancouver. This time we will be RVing. Campground recommendations ( we like waterside/lakeside) would be helpful. Don't know anything about the Okanagan so what to see and do suggestions are needed. My wife's father told me the Okanagan valley was his dream retirement spot. Thanks
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Old 04-27-2013, 02:21 PM   #5
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We will be arriving in Victoria on May 2, 2013 for 3 days. After that we will drive north to the middle of the island for some hiking, biking, and photography. Any specific recommendation would be greatly appreciated. We will spend a week on the island, before heading to Prince Ruppert.

We would also welcome any other Airstreamers along the way.
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:57 PM   #6
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campgrounds on van isle

Not too much camping in Victoria, you will have to head up island to find the gems...

You might go to the Cowichan Valley from Nanaimo and do day trips to Victoria and Sooke, one hour away. You will pass Goldstream park at the base of the Malahat highway, a tricky way up and over road not the greatest for trailers, be sure to stop.

B.C. provincial campgrounds are pretty sweet, bigger, more space between campsites, and well maintained.

Long Beach/Tofino, is well worth the trip, so try the provincial campground:Greenpoint or private campgrounds on Mackenzie Beach. Both the drive and the beaches are spectacular. You do have to pay for parking in All the beach lots so be prepared for that. If it is raining wait ten minutes and it will be sunny, well sort of.

A wee bit further up island one and a half hours past Nanaimo in Black Creek is Miracle Beach, the biggest in the province, and the beach is fine there too.

Consider travelling through Nanaimo as it puts you closer to the good camping. If you go to Victoria/Sidney, you have to drive down the peninsula around and over the Malahat highway to get to the rest of the island.

You get twenty feet in the cost of the ferry, $75ish now for car and driver, plus $10 bucks an extra person, plus more by the foot for your trailer! It costs around $100 dollars extra for me to get my 75 thirty footer and my truck over, hard to say because they change the fares often.

Alice Lake on the way to Whistler is a beauty, and totally on the way.

You will be traveling when it is not too busy, good. Have Fun!
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Old 04-27-2013, 06:48 PM   #7
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Ooo! Tofino is so beautiful! One of the best place i camped there was a stones throw away from Mackenzie beach. Don't remember the name but every place is beautiful there. Also in the interior of b.c is salmon arm. Quant town with an amazing dairy farm... D&D Dutchman dairies .. Amazing ice cream and a cute zoo as well. Hidden valley campground close to salmon arm is wonderful! Enjoy the trip!!
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:07 PM   #8
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We stayed at Westbay Marine Village in Esquimalt (Victoria) for a week in June 2011. It was a very convenient location to explore Victoria from. We often took the city bus to avoid having to deal with parking. After a fun day of celebrating Canada day (July 1) in Victoria, we were able to see all the fireworks from the rv park. The girls at the front desk were super helpful with telling us what busses to take, making change for us to do laundry, etc. The Victoria KOA is not very close to Victoria.

http://www.westbay.bc.ca/Home.aspx

The costliest parts of that trip were the ferry fees and the last minute passport renewals. I also had to purchase a replacement deep cycle house battery in Victoria, which costs significantly more than in the US.

We also did a Vancouver, Nanaimo, Victoria trip in 2000 tent camping, hotels and b&bs. We had a blast then as well... although I can't remember all the specifics now. The provincial campgrounds were first rate though, with well-disciplined and friendly campers.
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Old 04-27-2013, 08:09 PM   #9
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Our schedule

We will take the Blackball ferry to Victory on May 2 with reservations at Pedder Bay RV Resort & Marina
925 Pedder Bay Drive
Victoria, BC V9C 4H1 Canada
250-478-1771 / 1-877-478-1771
Web: Pedder Bay RV Resort & Marina - Victoria, Vancouver Island, BC

On May 6 we will travel to Bella Pacifica Campground in Tofino until May 9.

Thanks for your advice. Sound like we should not have a problem finding something to do.
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Old 04-28-2013, 10:52 AM   #10
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You WILL have a great vacation on VI.

A word of caution. You will have to turn off your propane on the ferry. Prepare your fridge and try to leave the fridge closed for that period if you don't have a 2 or 3 way fridge.

Make Coombs a stop for a coffee or lunch and enjoy some local hospitality.
The Bluegrass Festival is Aug 1 weekend.
https://sites.google.com/site/coombs...tival/schedule

http://goo.gl/maps/iVVLx

Port Alberni be sure to ride the steam train from downtown to the McLean Mill National Historic Site for the very informative and entertaining tour.
Alberni Pacific Railway Schedule & Fares | Alberni Heritage

Alberni Heritage Railway - YouTube

Nana BMX May 5th.
NANAIMO Gates – 6pm « Nanaimo BMX

Bungy Zone
Things to do in Nanaimo | WildPlay Element Parks | WildPlay Element Parks
Monkido - 10 seconds on Vimeo

Museum downtown Nanaimo
Nanaimo Museum

Roberts Lake Resort. Beautiful area for a stop. Lorna will give you the local history while you have your meal or ice cream cone.
http://robertslakeresort.ca/

When you get to Sayward, check this place out for the best food away from home. Building is made from discarded boom cable.
http://www.cablecookhouse.com/

There used to be a museum next door. Not sure if it is still there.

I have lived on the 'ISLAND' since 1964 and have only scratched the surface of things to discover.

Dave
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Old 07-28-2013, 08:47 AM   #12
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We will be in the Okanagen Valley for a couple of days in mid september. Would Todd's RV park be a go base to see the surrounding area? If not any suggestions would be appreciated.
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Old 07-28-2013, 10:20 AM   #13
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When I was a kid, it was called Todd's Tent Town, or something like that. I think it's a decent spot. There is a Provincial Park just South of there that is quite good (Okanagan Lake Provincial Park).
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Old 07-28-2013, 11:16 AM   #14
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We have family in west Vancouver near UBC, and generally just leave the Bambi at home; in part because they will put us up, but also because (a) the streets in the older part of the city are very narrow, and (b) we couldn't find any RV parks anywhere close to where we wanted to go. There are RV parks on the outskirts, however; and some places have decent mass transit to the downtown and UBC areas (where the anthropology museum and a beautiful Japanese garden are located.) Of course, you can drop your trailer at an RV park and drive your vehicle into town, but you may buck a lot of backed-up commuter traffic en route. Also, just be patient about finding parking.

I believe HY 1 (the Trans-Canada) actually routes you up Hastings Street in Vancouver, which would be one to avoid. The city's drug scene is probably not Airstream-friendly. We often get around when coming up through the US (I-90 to I-5 via Bellingham, WA) on Marine Drive.

If you are a gardener or just like beautiful gardens, the Van Dusen gardens in Vancouver and Butchart gardens in Victoria are just spectacular. Check out Granville Island in Vancouver, with its restaurants, farmers' market, and shops. One thing we love about Vancouver is its extensive public waterfront. Not all of it is public, but there are miles of beaches and parks extending from the downtown for quite a ways west. Great for walking or cycling. The views are super!

If you like Japanese food or fresh seafood generally, the BC coast is a great place to visit. We've enjoyed the Sandbar restaurant on Granville Island, or many hole-in-the-wall sushi places that are as common as coffee houses in Vancouver. Vancouver has several mini-downtowns with a lot of mom & pop shops and restaurants, which are a lot more interesting than typical US big-box malls.

There is a big info centre in Osoyoos on HY 3, which is many people's first stop in the Okanagon. They should have info on winery tours, and you can hardly miss just by touring around the lakes. We've stayed at the Desert Gem RV park in Oliver, BC. It is not woodsy enough for our tastes, but elegant facilities.

BC truly is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Have a wonderful visit!
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