Looks like the snowshoeing season is nearing its end. Let me share with you some photos from my favorite snowshoeing outing of the season (March 10th 2009; full moon night on Dam Mountain):
Butchart Gardens has got to be one of the most famous gardens in the world. It’s HUGE and, I must admit that the landscaping is quite impressive, even for a guy like me who’s not usually into flowers — except the fake ones, which require no maintenance whatsoever. :p
Since it is located on Vancouver Island and about three hours away from downtown Vancouver (more like four hours if you’re going by bus), I suggest you go to this beautiful garden as part of a more general two day outing to Victoria, the province’s capital. It can easily be done in one day, of course, but I personally don’t like to rush things and it’s not like it’s the only attraction around the area either.
As of this writing, tickets can cost as much as $26.50 per person, depending on the season. It’s not cheap, but I still think it’s worth it, especially during Spring time or early Summer. Another cost you’ll have to think about is the ferry too. It costs $13 per person (one way) to go from Vancouver to Victoria (well, officially, from the “Tsawwassen” ferry terminal to the “Swartz Bay” ferry terminal. Both are around 45 minutes from Vancouver and Victoria, respectively). Oh, and it costs 43$ extra to board the ferry with a car — but I don’t have to worry about that myself. ;) Click the following links to see the official, current rates for both Butchart Gardens and the ferry.
Going by bus (from Downtown Vancouver): Take the 98 B-Line South and get off at the Airport Station to switch over to the 620 bus that will take you to the Tsawwassen ferry. Once you arrive at Swartz Bay, grab the #75 bus line to get to Butchart Gardens.
Steveston lies at the Southern tip of Richmond, roughly 40 minutes from downtown Vancouver, by car. Watch kites flying at Garry Point Park, walk along the scenic dyke, or just plain relax while you savour some delicious home-made ice cream in the heart of the village.
After a group outing to the Agassiz Tulip Festival was over all too quickly and wondering what to do next on this beautiful sunny day, the guy I carpooled with suggested we go on a road trip. Although we had no specific destination in mind, our driver suggested we try driving along Harrison Lake on a service road he knew existed but had never tried. This was my first road trip experience and man, I had a blast!
Leaving Agassiz behind, we entered the city of Harrison close by. We skipped the famous “Hot Springs” altogether as our goal was to explore the unknown. Back country map in hand, our driver led us to the East side of the lake, on a rather well maintained road. Although a truck is more fit to handle that kind of terrain, sedan type cars such as the ones we saw along the way could still navigate through the light bumps, albeit at a slower pace.
35 minutes from downtown (by bus — take the 250 bus) is this little gem of a park which offers amazing views on the Greater Vancouver and Howe Sound regions. It contains all the ingredients of a hike, minus the pulse-pounding cardio bit. Its pièce de résistance is of course, the lighthouse from which the park got its name.