On Wednesday we did a bunch of sightseeing in Victoria. Our hotel was close to the harbour and downtown as we walked all around. We went into the Empress which is gorgeous!
We went to Chinatown, the oldest one in Canada, for lunch and walked through Fan Tan Alley which is the narrowest street in Canada.
|Fan Tan Alley|
That evening I met up with my good friend Jenn who moved to Victoria about a year ago. I hadn't seen her since she moved so this was definitely one of the highlights of my trip!! She took me to this amazing restaurant called Il Terrazzo and between the food and the atmosphere it is probably one of my favourite restaurants ever! We sat in the covered courtyard beside a wood fireplace and talked for hours. The service was amazing and the place was packed! If you are ever in Victoria you must go to the restaurant, but you need a reservation as they are busy!
|Jenn and I- miss you!!|
On Thursday, my mother-in-law, grandma-in-law and I went to Craigdarroch Castle which is a historic house museum built by a wealthy family in the 19th Century. It was gorgeous and huge but pretty disturbing to read about the family and their feud around their wealth.
|Craigdarroch Castle- one side|
Afterwards we went to Butchart Gardens. Absolutely gorgeous!! So many pretty flowers! We wandered around for about 3 hours. I got lots of great ideas for our garden next year! I just hope they can survive our climate.
|I saw a snake on a hedge and I didn't scream!|
That night we did a bunch of grocery shopping and stocked up at the liquor store as the hikers gave us strict orders to have scotch and beer for them at the end of the trail!
On Friday, we checked out of our hotel, bid farewell to my grandma-in-law and drove to Port Renfrew to pick up our hikers. This road was much better than the road to Bamfield as it was paved. It was still very windy and had a few single-lane blind corners but at least we didn't have to worry about logging trucks! We didn't know exactly when the hikers would be done so we ended up waiting about an hour for them. They had to take a short 5 minute ferry from the trail end to the main land.
|Ferry pick up spot|
|On the ferry!|
|Our muddy, stinky hikers!!|
After everyone had a beer, some snacks and changed their clothes, we loaded all the stinky packs and boots into the trucks and headed back to Victoria. The hikers told us all about their 5 day adventure and we stopped part way back at a roadside beach so they could stretch their legs.
|Stinky hubby and I|
|View of downtown Victoria and the harbour from our room|
|Harbour view from our room|
|Statue along the harbour|
|Hubby & I in front of a boat for sale|
|Hubby & I on the boat ride|
|Blurry picture of seaplane about to land|
We walked past the Parliament buildings all lit up on our way back to the hotel. So pretty!
Sunday we packed up and headed to the harbour for one last stop for fish and chips. This time we went to Red Fish Blue Fish which came highly recommended. We were there before they even opened up and there was a line up already! I had the halibut and it was so good! It's a good thing I don't live in Victoria or else I would weigh 300 pounds from all the amazing fish and chips!
|Red Fish Blue Fish shack!|
Monday we drove all.day.long. We left Merritt at 7am and didn't get to our house until 7pm (includes an hour time change forward and 2 stops for meals).
It was a great family trip and a wonderful visit to Vancouver Island!