We Explored British Columbia (BC) For 5 Weeks
On our road trip around BC (British Columbia) we travelled from the Okanagan Valley in the east to Vancouver Island on the west coast. We visited Vancouver several times. But on this trip we wanted to see more of the province.
Wine tasting and local art kept us entertained when we started in Kelowna in the Okanagan Valley in BC. A trip south to Osoyoos gave us another view of the Okanagan Valley. We headed inland and explored the Fraser Valley next.
From the mainland we travelled to Vancouver Island. There was such variety as we travelled from Victoria in the south to Ucluelet on the far west coast and north to Comox. Our road trip around BC finished up with a week in Vancouver.
Flying Into BC
It was always worth getting a window seat when we flew to BC. The view out over the Rocky Mountains was stunning. As we flow over the lakes, we were excited to know we would soon be in the Okanagan Valley.
The approach to Vancouver provided great views of the river delta and swirling waters. Vancouver sat with the mountains as a backdrop. This was the view that constantly drew us to the west coast.
We landed in Vancouver and picked up a rental SUV. And then we headed out of town for the first part of our road trip in BC.
Starting In Kelowna In The Okanagan Valley
Our road trip around BC started in the Okanagan Valley. We stayed in Kelowna and enjoyed a luxury stop at the Delta Hotels By Marriott Grand Okanagan Resort. We wandered the waterfront and found so much local street art. And when we went north to visit Vernon, we found so many more great murals.
On day trips we headed to the many wineries around Kelowna. There were wineries close to town, in Lake Country and all along the west side of Lake Okanagan. We enjoyed the wines and the ambiance.
Okanagan Lake and the Lake Region offered great spots for views and relaxing by the water.
It was our first visit to the Okanagan Valley. But will not be our last.
Head South To The Desert Area Around Osoyoos
From Kelowna we headed south the desert area around Osoyoos. While it was technically a desert, we found it hard to believe. The fields were green with grape vines and crops. Our hotel looked out over the vast Osoyoos Lake.
In this hotter area, we took the opportunity and explored the wineries of this region. In the heart of the region is Oliver, named as the “Wine Capital of Canada”. There were so many wineries that it would take many trips to see them all.
It was great to visit Osoyoos on our road trip around BC. The trip back to Vancouver took us through beautiful natural vistas. But it was sad when we saw the first forest fire of the season.
Drink Your Way Outside Of Vancouver
We spent a lot of time visiting wineries when we were in the Okanagan. But we did not pass up the chance to return to some of our favourite wineries in the Fraser Valley. And while we were there, we discovered some great cider shops. And delicious fruit wines too.
When we toured around Vancouver Island, we tried something different when we visited a meadery. Wine fermented with honey provided just the sweet touch that David liked.
And no road trip to BC was complete without trying a few craft breweries. While craft brew was available at many restaurants, it was always great to get it at the source. Flights of beer let us try so many different tastes.
On our road trip around BC, we tried a great variety of the liquid refreshments available from the Okanagan Valley through to Vancouver Island.
Wander Up The Sunshine Coast
We took the ferry from Horseshoe Bay and headed up the Sunshine Coast in BC on our road trip around BC. It was great to explore the small towns along the way.
And to stop for nature breaks as we travelled up the twisty mountain roads. There was so much natural beauty all around us on the Sunshine Coast.
When we went whale watching in Campbell River, we got an amazing view of the Sunshine coast from the water. The inner passage was an amazing thing to see. By land or when you head north on an Alaska cruise.
Ferries were used all along the coast of BC for travel. We could do a big circle route. The ferries from Horseshoe Bay got us to the Sunshine Coast. After a drive north to Powell River, the ferry went across to Campbell River on Vancouver Island. After we travelled around Vancouver Island, we took the ferry back to the mainland from Nanaimo. But there was also a ferry from Victoria. The ferries added so much reach to our road trip around BC.
Head To Vancouver Island For Natural Beauty
We went from sea to sea on Vancouver Island. As we travelled through the hills and valleys of Vancouver Island we were immersed in natural beauty.
We enjoyed the seas on all of the coasts of Vancouver Island. Great stretches of open waters looked out over the waters. In the south we saw the mountains on the coast of the U.S.A. In the north west, we saw the mainland.
We travelled through the rain forests of Vancouver Island. Beautiful waterfalls kept us entranced. We missed seeing bears. But we found the island deer in the towns and country. There was so much natural beauty everywhere we looked.
Plan to enjoy the outdoors when you travel on Vancouver Island on a road trip around BC.
Don’t Miss A Stop In Victoria
Much of our time on Vancouver Island was spent outdoors. But we could not miss a visit to Victoria. The harbour was an attraction for all.
But we could not pass on trying Afternoon Tea at the Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria. The tea service was beautiful and tasty.
There were some iconic things to see and do when we did a road trip around BC. Visiting Victoria and Afternoon Tea at the Empress Hotel was definitely one of those things.
Whale Watching On Vancouver Island
We did whale watching around the world. But our whale watching trip from Campbell River may have been the best experience we have ever had.
We got to enjoy the great scenery along the way and on the shores of both Vancouver Island and the mainland as we looked for whales.
We were excited when we found a pair of Orca whales. But then we found humpback whales as they played and put on an amazing show.
Our whale watching on Vancouver Island was a highlight of our road trip around BC.
We Finished Up In Vancouver
It was a long 5 week road trip around BC. So when we finally made it back to Vancouver at the end, we were ready for a pampering break. Five days at the Westin Bayshore Vancouver let us relax in a great resort-like environment. We were certainly spoiled with great food. And enjoyed a splurge for Afternoon Tea at the Westin Bayshore.
It was great to have a view out over the harbour. And to Stanley Park right beside us. Biking in Stanley Park was one way to wear off some of the treats we had on our stay.
We had easy access to public transit in Vancouver. The Skytrain was a great option to head out of town to Port Moody. We definitely did not need to keep our rental car when we hit Vancouver. Vancouver was a great final stop on our road trip around BC.
We Saw So Much On Our Road Trip Around BC
It was definitely great to travel around BC in the spring. We travelled from the Okanagan Valley on the east to the far side of Vancouver Island on the west. Our trip took us north along the Sunshine Coast on the mainland and to Campbell River on Vancouver Island. We were right on the U.S. border in Victoria and again in White Rock.
The weather was sunny and warm for most of our trip. Each new region was a bit different. The natural beauty was awesome. And we saw some great wildlife. Could we ask for anything more?
Have you done a road trip around BC? Did you have a favourite region to visit?
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