Much To See On A Road Trip On Vancouver Island In The Fall
We enjoyed a 2 week road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall. It was a great way to finish up our road trip to Western Canada before we started back home to Toronto.
Our travels started in Comox in the north and finished south in Victoria. We enjoyed great fun outdoor adventures along the way. And discovered beautiful art. Travelling in the Fall got us amazing sights as the trees changed colour.
We Started With A Return Visit To Comox
After we finished our stay on the Sunshine Coast we took the ferry to Vancouver Island in British Columbia (BC). On this visit we travelled north on the Sunshine Coast and got the ferry in Powell River to Comox on the island. We originally planned to take the ferry back from Nanaimo or Victoria but we failed to book the reservation in advance. So we ultimate drove back north on Vancouver Island and returned on the ferry path we came in on.
Our first stop on Vancouver Island was a stay at the Old House Hotel on the river in Courtenay. This was a lovely spot to relax over the Thanksgiving weekend.
From there we day tripped around the Comox Valley and found great outdoor fun and adventure. We were delighted when we explored the beautiful Browns River Falls and the Nymph Falls.
One of the great things about travelling in the Fall was seeing the salmon runs. But sadly we found no rivers teaming with spawning fish. But we still enjoyed many great outdoor sights as we looked for the salmon.
Our visit to the Comox Valley was a wonderful first stop on our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
A Relaxing Stay In Parksville At Tigh-Na-Mara Resort
From Courtney we headed south on Vancouver Island. We enjoyed a return visit to the Tigh-Na-Mara Resort for a few relaxing days. From the resort we looked out and watched the tides come and go.
One day we could not resist returning to an iconic local sight. The Old Country Market in Coombs was known for the “Goats on the Roof”. It was fun to check out the local fare at the market and see those goats again! The Coombs Emporium next door was maybe stranger with a wild array of statues on display.
It was fun to return to the Parksville area on our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
A Surprise Art Discovery In Chemainus
When we left Parksville we continued to head south. We travelled along the ocean road and took in the local sights along the water. As lunch time approached we saw the sign for the small town of Chemainus and took the road into town. When we saw the first sign for the “World Famous Murals” we knew we needed to stop in this town and explore the murals in Chamainus. We were intrigued when we saw murals decorating the town stores.
As we wandered around town we saw murals that depicted the history of the town and the region. Colourful art brightened the town. And scattered amongst the murals we saw interesting statues too.
We found the Waterwheel Park and explored the colourful area. There was a small area with several pieces of the art of Emily Carr on display. Carr was a Canadian artist inspired by the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast.
Our stop in Chemainus was a lovely artistic discovery on our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
Visiting Butchart Gardens From Our Stay At Bear Mountain
On this visit to the Victoria area, we chose to stay out of town again at the Westin Bear Mountain Resort. We loved to enjoy the treats that the city of Victoria offered. But on this trip, we wanted to explore the Saanich Inlet area of Vancouver Island and knew that Bear Mountain offered a great base. And the hotel provided a relaxing retreat when we returned at the end of a long day.
At the top of our list of things to do on trip to Vancouver Island in the Fall was a visit to Butchart Gardens for Fall colours. We visited Butchart Gardens at other times of the year when the flowers were in bloom and were not sure about a Fall visit. But we were amazed at the riot of colour we found. Flowers were still in bloom and we got colourful Fall harvest displays too.
When we headed down into the Sunken Garden we got an stunning display of autumn colour. The Ross Fountain put on a show as the water danced.
Entering the Japanese Garden through the bright orange Torii gate we were immersed in another display of Butchart Gardens dressed in Fall colours.
Final stops at the Star Pond, the Italian Garden and the greenhouse kept us intrigued and amazed with colour until we exited. The Butchart Gardens were a highlight of our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
Discovering Malahat Skywalk On Road Trip On Vancouver Island In The Fall.
When we drove south along the highway we saw the signs for the Malahat Skywalk. A little research told us this was a fun spot we wanted to visit. So we headed back on a day trip one day.
We started our exploration of the Malahat Skywalk with a view from the distance at a highway observation point. And then enjoyed the boardwalk in the trees as we walked to the Spiral Tower. We were captivated by several pieces of driftwood art created by Tanya Bub. The sculptures were amazingly true to life.
When we reached the Spiral Tower we walked slowly up and around the ramp to the top. The views from the top gave us an amazing panoramic perspective on the Saanich area. While we could have walked back down, the slide was a much more fun way to get down fast.
We had such a fun afternoon on our visit to the Malahat Skywalk. It was an unexpected treat on our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
So Many Great Outdoor Spots Around The Saanich Inlet
We found so many great outdoor spots when we travelled around the Saanich Inlet. At every stop on Vancouver Island, we kept hoping to see the salmon spawning. The top spot on David’s list was the Goldstream Provincial Park on the Malahat. This was known as a world class salmon-spawning area.
We wandered along the stream and stopped regularly. But it soon became evident that it was not yet salmon spawning time. Or we were not at the right place. But we still enjoyed the pretty walk along the river.
Another part of the Goldstream Provincial Park was on the other side of the highway. We parked and followed the path down the stairs and along a dry riverbed filled with rocks and leaves. We were looking for Niagara Falls. But with no water in the riverbed, we really did not expect to find waterfalls.
But when we turned a corner we heard water. And Niagara Falls fell about 150 feet to the base. Very surprised but delighted, we stood on either side of the riverbed and enjoyed the thundering waters.
We enjoyed our day trips as we explored the Saanich Inlet. Great outdoor fun on our road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall.
A Great Road Trip On Vancouver Island In The Fall
We had a great road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall. We stayed in some lovely pampering spots. From the north to the south we enjoyed so many great outdoor adventures all on display in beautiful Fall colours. We were delighted with the outdoor colourful art we found in Chemainus. And had fun when we explored the Malahat Skywalk.
The Fall was certainly an amazing time to visit Vancouver Island on a road trip to the west coast.
Have you done a road trip on Vancouver Island in the Fall? What gems should be on our list for a return visit?
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