Much To Discover Around The Malahat On Saanich Inlet On Vancouver Island
We found so much to see and do when we explored around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island in British Columbia (BC).
Stops in small towns as we drove south on Vancouver Island were lovely as the Fall colours set in. A visit to Chemainus for beautiful murals was a real treat.
We returned to the Westin Bear Mountain Resort for our stay outside of Victoria. It was a great base to discover all there was to see and do around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet. We searched for salmon in Goldstream Provincial Park and found Niagara Falls. A day trip to Butchart Gardens showed us this great outdoor spot in Fall splendour. On another day, we enjoyed the Malahat Skywalk with great views and a fun slide down from the heights.
Every day was a fun discovery on our last stop on Vancouver Island.
Heading Towards Victoria On Vancouver Island
After our stay in Parksville on Vancouver Island, we headed south towards Victoria. The Fall colours were amazing. We took the coastal roads and looked at local real estate on or near the water. Vancouver Island was a place we might consider living one day.
We stopped in the small town of Ladysmith. Located high on the hill above the water, we found a charming town. We parked and wandered in town before we were back on the road.
A Colourful Stop in Chemainus
We pulled into the small town of Chemainus for lunch. When we saw the sign for “World Famous Murals” we knew we had to stop and look at the murals in Chemainus. We found so many interesting pieces of art. Each mural had its own story to tell.
We found more than just murals when we wandered in Chemainus. The bronzed statues caused us to stop and look.
Our final stop in Chemainus was at Waterwheel Park. This colourful spot had many treats for us to discover.
We were entranced by our visit to Chemainus for the murals. This small town deserved much more than a quick road trip stop. From Chemainus we continued south and enjoyed the drive down the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island.
A Return Visit To The Westin Bear Mountain Resort
On our first road trip on Vancouver Island, we enjoyed our stay at Westin Bear Mountain Resort. On this return to Vancouver Island we again debated staying right in Victoria or out of the city. We finally decided we wanted a resort stay and booked again at Westin Bear Mountain Resort. It was fun to return when the resort was all dressed in Fall colours.
We were delighted when our Marriott Bonvoy elite status got us an upgrade to a suite. And a lovely amenity on arrival. We had some day trips planned but we also knew we wanted to just relax for a few days.
Marriott Bonvoy Elite status got us breakfast every day. We knew from our previous visit that the breakfast view was great and the options for breakfast were numerous. Our suite had a full kitchen so we made a few meals when we did not want to venture out. We neared the end of a long road trip across Canada. And some days we just wanted a simple meal.
There was lots to do on the resort for days that we stayed close. We are not golfers but the vast golf course looked great. Even if the deer did enjoy it more as sunset approached. We found a complete spa and lots of indoor spots to relax.
The Westin Bear Mountain Resort was a good base as we explored around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island.
Butchart Gardens Dressed In Fall Colours
We drove down the mountain to the back roads route that headed towards the Malahat on Saanich Inlet. With the fall colours all around us, we loved the country drive to the Butchart Gardens. We were delighted when we explored Butchart Gardens dressed in Fall colours. The Sunken Gardens were a riot of colour. With a beautiful waterfall feature.
We enjoyed the flowers and colours as we wandered around the Butchart Gardens. The indoor greenhouse gave us another view of the variety of plants and flowers at the Butchart Gardens.
We strolled through the Japanese Garden filled with colour and reflections. Our final stop was the Italian Garden for a different kind of outdoor design.
We were so glad we planned a day trip to Butchart Gardens when the fall colours were everywhere. In any season, this was a great stop around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island.
Searching For Salmon At Goldstream Provincial Park
When we stayed in British Columbia for the Fall, David kept talking about the salmon run and all the great sights we would get. On our stay on the Sunshine Coast, we visited many parks and checked out salmon streams. But we never saw more than a single salmon lazily swimming. We even visited a salmon hatchery when we explored around Comox Valley when we got to Vancouver Island. We learned it was still early in the season. But we had high hopes for our travels around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet.
The top spot on David’s list was the Goldstream Provincial Park on the Malahat. The Goldstream Provincial Park was in an old-growth temperate rain forest. The park had a world class salmon-spawning stream. In the fall, thousands of Chum Salmon returned to spawn. We parked and headed right to the river.
Where we visited, the river was fairly calm. We saw no rapids or areas that looked like they were full of teaming salmon. We looked for large groups of eagles that usually signalled a river full of salmon. It soon became evident that it was still not salmon spawning time. Or that we were not at the right place. But the Fall colours sure made the river pretty.
So we set off for a gentle hike on the path beside the river. The giant trees we found in BC always amazed us. After a stop at the picnic area, we headed back to the car.
It was a lovely afternoon for a stroll in the woods at Goldstream Provincial Park. But we did not get a sight of the salmon spawning we continued to search for.
Finding Niagara Falls On The Malahat On Saanich Inlet On Vancouver Island
When we travelled south on the Malahat we found the small parking area for the Goldstream Provincial Park on the west side. From that parking lot, we explored in search of Niagara Falls. At home the iconic Niagara Falls are a short day trip from us in Toronto. So we could not pass on a chance to check out something also named Niagara Falls.
We followed the path down the stairs and along the side of the hill. Below us we saw a dry riverbed filled with rocks and leaves. With no water in the riverbed, we really did not expect to find waterfalls.
So when we finally made the last turn and scrambled down the steep bank, we were delighted when we in fact found Niagara Falls. The water stream was quite high as it fell about 150 feet to the base. We stood on either side of the riverbed and enjoyed the thundering waters. But it was late in the day so we did not stay long.
We picked our way carefully back along the path to the car. But we were delighted we found Niagara Falls in Goldstream Provincial Park as we travelled around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet.
Day Trip To The Malahat Skywalk
On another day trip, we headed back up the Malahat on Saanich Inlet to the Malahat Skywalk. We strolled slowly in the trees along the elevated boardwalk at the Malahat Skywalk. Along the way we were delighted when we found numerous pieces of driftwood art by local artist Tanya Bub.
When we reached the tower at the Malahat Skywalk, we made the leisurely stroll around the spiral ramp to the top. At the top we found great views out over the inlet.
To get down, we could have walked back down the ramp. But we did not pass on taking the slide down. It was a lot of fun. But we did not join the people who went back up several times just to ride the slide.
We took a relaxed walk back to the entrance on the path in the forest. Our adventures at the Malahat Skywalk were one of the fun ways to enjoy the the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island.
Great Adventures Around The Malahat On Saanich Inlet On Vancouver Island
We found so many great adventures on our stay outside of Victoria on this road trip on Vancouver Island. Our day trips around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet provided us with such a wonderful variety of things to see and do. We enjoyed the parks, the Fall colours at Butchart Gardens and the new Malahat Skywalk attraction.
When we left Westin Bear Mountain, we headed back to the Sunshine Coast. But one of our road trip tips was reinforced. We did not pre-book the ferry off Vancouver Island that we wanted. So we had to change our whole route back and took the ferry out of Comox instead of Nanaimo. We were happy it did not change our ferry travel dates after everything was firmly booked.
Have you explored around the Malahat on Saanich Inlet on Vancouver Island? Did you find other gems in this area?
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