Friday, June 13, 2014

Victoria Adventure - Day 3


Warning - a long day with a lot of pictures.  Carry on......

I must admit, we slept in a little on Thursday, May 29th.  I don't think we got out of bed before 8 am.  Again, Troubadour headed to the lobby for coffee while I put the coffee maker on to brew.

We thought of what to do and decided while it wasn't as windy in the morning, to stroll around the Harbour Walkway in a counter clockwise direction and loop around by Fisherman's Wharf, Ogden Point and possibly to the Mile '0' marker of the Trans Canada Highway.  Then if we had enough time we'd go to the Royal Museum in the afternoon. (spoiler alert - we didn't have enough time)

After breakfast of toasted bagels with peanut butter and bananas we set off about 10:30 am.  It was slightly overcast with a little breeze.  It was nice to just take a stroll without being on a timeline at all.

We walked by the floating homes of Fisherman's Wharf.

(We couldn't resist taking a picture of this beautiful Moto Guzzi V7 Classic)
Before we knew it we'd walked to Ogden Point.  When we were on the ferry we passed it and I took a picture, but I didn't know that it was the cruise ship terminal at the time.  Not until we rounded the corner and saw the Royal Caribbean Rhapsody of the Seas in port.  I even found their cruise ship schedule online so I know the Rhapsody was heading to Seattle, Washington from Skagway, Alaska.  I later found out this was the same ship PolarBear and his wife took on their cruise to Alaska a few years ago.

(Royal Caribbean - Rhapsody of the Seas)

There were quite a few tugs and tankers in the straight.

Ogden Point Breakwater Walk.   We walked to the end and back.   Luckily they installed a railing last year.  You can see the skies were still overcast at this point, but the sun was trying to break through.

Further along Dallas Road there were odd combinations of old and new construction.

(My guess is the one in the middle is now a rental - not much privacy)

We walked around Holland Point Park and after a pit stop we found Mile 0 of the Trans Canada Highway at the southwest corner of Beacon Hill Park.

(Mile 0 of the Trans Canada Highway)

It was a bonus that there was also a Terry Fox statue there.  Being a child of the 80's in Canada, his run was a large part of what I remember of Elementary School. That and participating in local tribute runs every year thereafter.

(Terry Fox Statue)

(Inscription on the Terry Fox Statue)

From here we walked around the corner, through the grass, and up a trail to the flagpole and top of Beacon Hill.

The trees told me it is usually quite windy on the hill.

(Trees growing sideways from the wind - the city in the background)

(Stopping to smell the Wild Roses - a favorite of mine)
We entered the main park area beside the Children's Petting Farm.  Pet the animals, not the children.  We walked a bit and admired the views.  We were amazed at how many Canadian Geese and Mallards were wandering and flying about.

(One of the many ponds in Beacon Hill Park)

(Canadian Goose - they were really close - no zoom used)

(The goose whisperer - no we weren't feeding them)

We saw a lovely stone bridge and I could have looked at it for hours.  There is just something about really old bridges that I enjoy.  This bridge was built in 1889.

(Beautiful stone bridge in the park)

(View from the bridge)

You can't see it on the photos above, but the park is the home to a Great Blue Heron rookery.  The birds were quite loud in their nests in the trees 60 feet above the ground near the stone bridge.  We attempted to zoom in for a picture of the ones we could see, but the cameras were just not powerful enough to make out the images.

(Another stone bridge - this one built in the memory of Emily Carr by her sister Alice)

(Troubadour taking a picture of me)

(The photographer becomes the photographed)

(The largest rhododendrons I've ever seen outside of Oregon)

(They may have been losing their blooms, but they were painting a pretty landscape)

(A beautiful dogwood - photo by Troubadour)

(A large watering can - kids water feature - sadly no water for the big kid to play in)
We took quite a few more pictures in Beacon Hill Park, but I didn't want this post to be too long.  I do want to say that besides meeting Princess ScooterPie and MotoMan, this was our favorite part of the trip.  We enjoyed the park more than Butchart Gardens.  There were less people/tourists and it just seemed more natural and leisurely.  We would have loved to spend more time in the park but we were starving and started walking back into town for sustenance.

(Yard art from a random home on our walk)

(We walked by the Emily Carr House)

(Another view of the Emily Carr House)

(I had to take a picture.  Do you think they lost a bet or willingly chose these colors?)
As we were walking we were discussing what to do for lunch since it was after 2.  Troubadour had the brilliant idea of returning to ReBar for dessert and coffee/tea.  Brilliant I tell you.  So we continued our walk into downtown.  We arrived at ReBar and each ordered the vegan Chocolate Velvet Cake and a Soy Chai Tea Latte.  Troubadour snapped a pic of me trying to tidy my hair after walking in the wind all day.  I was looking into a mirror behind him at the time of the picture - you can actually see my eyes for once.

(ReBar - vegan Chocolate Velvet Cake and Soy Chai Tea Latte)
Technically we didn't have 'high tea' while in Victoria but we did have chai tea - does that count? After ReBar we made our way back to the hotel, checking out restaurant menus on display as we walked by - pondering where we might want to go for dinner later.  We arrived at the hotel and took a little break.  I believe we walked around 10 miles this day.  Oh look, housekeeping left us cookies once again.  

Princess Scooterpie suggested driving Dallas Road around the loop quite a bit further than we walked.  It is an enjoyable motorcycle ride for her and we wanted to see it too.  We got in the trusty Subaru and headed out.  It was a cute little two lane road that went around Ogden Point where we'd walked earlier and kept going.

There were great views of the strait and a few marinas along the way.

Because of the time, we thought we'd best make a quick drive by Craigdarroch Castle then find dinner.  The castle was built by Scottish Immigrant Robert Dunsmuir, who made his fortune on Vancouver Island coal.  The castle was built between 1887 and 1890.  More information can be found on the Castle by clicking this --->LINK.  The castle was closed when we drove by, so I just took a few pics from the outside.  I was surprised at how many limousines of tourists were still arriving.  I think it was almost 6 pm by this time.

(Craigdarroch Castle, Victoria, BC)

As we drove back into downtown we stopped for dinner at The Joint Pizza for some vegan pizza. This was particularly special to us because we have not been able to go out for pizza in the almost three years we have been vegan.  No pizza place in Corvallis actually uses vegan cheese, and cheeseless pizza is not that great.  The joint uses Daiya, our favorite vegan cheese to use when making homemade pizza.  It is made in Canada.  The Joint was very vegan friendly and even had gluten free crusts for those that cannot have gluten.

(A small place with a funky atmosphere that reminded us of American Dream Pizza in Corvallis)

(The Happy Hippy pizza with Daiya to make it vegan)

(Cool artwork on the wall)
Because our lunch was so small (just the cake and tea) we actually ate the whole pizza.  Good thing it was thin crust.  From here we drove back to the hotel and just chilled out for a few hours.

Friday morning we were up and out of the hotel by 8:30 am and heading to the ferry terminal. When heading back into the USA you need to be at the terminal 90 minutes early.  It was a fairly smooth drive home except for Friday afternoon rush hour traffic in Portland.  We stopped at Native Foods for dinner and finally arrived home about 8:30 pm.  A long day.

Basil was happy to see us.  He was hiding under the covers in our bed, per usual.  

I hope you enjoyed our recap of Victoria.  We enjoyed our trip.  I believe we have some random photos that were never posted too.  Over 800 were taken on our two little point and shoot cameras and I still have one camera to download, the big Canon, but I don't think it was used much.  I may do a follow up post with some randomness and I know Troubadour has thoughts for a post or two of things I didn't mention.  He is teaching Team Oregon classes 4 out of 5 weekends in June so he needs to find some blogging time in order to post anything.

- Au Revoir

" A passport, as I am sure you know, is a document that one shows to government officials whenever one reaches a border between counties, so the officials can learn who you are, where you were born, and how you look when photographed unflatteringly." - Lemony Snicket


  1. Trobairitz,

    Thank you for another great post. I had never seen floating houses before...those were really neat. I also enjoyed the photos taken near the stonebridge. What a beautiful area. I'm sure you guys enjoyed it immensely. I'm looking forward to your next trip and tour. :-)

    Until then Live Free. Ride Hard. Be Happy!


    1. I think floating homes are quite popular on the west coast. You see them in Seattle and other ports as well. I would think they'd be less expensive than regular homes especially when it comes to property taxes.

  2. Great photos!

    I have to admit, I would love to live in the blue Victorian house...

    1. It did make me wonder what the inside looked like. It was on a corner and around the corner was a garage or shed painted the same. It was quite sight. I just didn't think they were quite Victorian colors.

  3. Good finish....I liked the big watering can.....just for the funny factor. So, is there any money in Goose Whispering perhaps?

    1. Somehow I don' think there is much money in it, but if there was..........

  4. Bring on the Hippy Happy pizza (what's it with?)

    1. The happy hippy was spinach, red pepper, caramelized onions, broccoli, tomatoes and a sesame seed topped crust. Mmmm first time for having broccoli on a pizza but it was pretty good.

      No, no funny herbs were sprinkled on top either to make it happier.

    2. Daiya is a new one on me, thanks.

      Our semi-resident vegan is back from the Sollies next month and I imagine we'll be tracking down some Daiya for practice and familiarisation purposes next week.

    3. The shredded Daiya is definitely the best for pizza. It melts and stretches like cheese. Hopefully you can find some to try. With it being made in Canada exporting it to the UK shouldn't be too difficult for them.

      You can check out my food blog - link on the sidebar at the top right - for some vegan recipes you might like to try out for them too.

  5. Where the heck do I start? Not sure if I have a case of homesickness or wanderlust but whenever I look at pictures from the we(s)t coast, I feel the desire to move back. I love Victoria. If they only had jobs over there... I always wanted to live on a float home.

    Terry Fox was a very impressive figure especially given his young age. I was very moved when I read the plate the first time.

    I haven't had a cake in ages (or so it feels), I am drooling over the chocolate cake as I am writing this... and the pizza looks yummy too.

    Thanks so much for all those lovely (and delish) photos.

    1. With all the amazing roads and sights in your area, I don't know how you could be homesick for the west coast. Me thinks it is just wanderlust. YOur photos bring it out in me too.

      Terry Fox was a hero to all o fus young kids when we were little. To have the drive that he did. And so little seemed to have been known about cancer back then too.

      The chocolate cake was decadent. They had all kind of gluten free treats as well, but we had to do the cake. Closest place for us to get vegan baked goods around here is Sweet Life Patisserie in Eugene. Yumm.

  6. Trobairitz:

    You were very close to an interesting area, full of neat shops and little places to eat. The Cook Street Market is very trendy and you would have found something there to eat. Just a few blocks north/east of Beacon Hill Park

    Nice to see familiar sights with new eyes. Haven't been to Craigdarroch Castle in a while. We have several floating communities around Vancouver too. The goose are a menace over here, just watch where you step.

    Riding the Wet Coast

    1. Did I mention all this wandering was just from my memory since we forgot the map at the hotel? We had no idea what we were near, but it is good to know it was something cool.

      After living in Penticton we know all about geese, they were a menace in those city parks. Don't run or you'll slip in goose poop. Didn't seem to be an issue in Beacon Hill Park though.

  7. Great photo tour of the area. I really like the Beacon Hill Park pictures. It looks like a great area in the middle of a city. I'm with Lucky on the blue Victorian, pretty nice restoration.

    1. It was hard to believe that Beacon Hill was in the city. For the most part it felt isolated except for near the large stone bridge. Those shots were taken just right so you couldn't see the cars and high rises that were actually quite close.

      I liked the Victorian home, someone did put a lot of work into it. I just wasn't sure about the color, and I like blue.

  8. Fantastic trip around Victoria for me, never quite got out to the coast there, Vancouver or the island.

    I'm looking up Emily Carr right now.

    1. The visit was definitely worth it and we are happy we went. Didn't see as much as we wanted, but it is good to leave us wanting more.

      Emily Carr was probably one of the most famous residents of the Island. I remember learning about her in school.

  9. Totally jealous of your trip! Looks awesome!!!

    1. Pam!! How many more days to you see the doc and are hopefully cleared for take off?

  10. Bridges, a V7, and vegan pizza with chocolate cake.

    Just the job.

    1. Richard!! Somehow I knew you'd like those bridge pictures.

  11. Mmmmmm pizza, cake arggggggghhhhhhhh

    I'm frothing at the mouth here. Nice holiday, lucky there was some motorcycle content to redeem it though.

    1. We did see a lot of motorcycles riding about and were surprised at how many of them were classic bikes, too many to takes pictures of though.

  12. Hi Brandy,
    Thanks so much for this series of posts with the great narrative and wonderful photos. We only have 4 days on the island with Jennie's cousin before we head north to Alaska (no song pun intended!) so they've given a terrific insight on what to see and do whilst there. You're a gem!

    1. You are welcome Geoff. Connecting with Dar was a big help on ideas of what to do too. I think we messaged back and forth every day while there. Four days should be plenty before your trip to Alaska. Are you sailing to Alaska?

  13. What a great vacation, and a really nice photo tour. It brought back very fond memories of my trip to Victoria in 2008.

    I rode Dallas road on a rental scooter and that ride blossomed into life on two wheels.

    Before that trip the only place I had seen float homes was Sausalito. For some reason I found those homes in Victoria more interesting. I think it was because I stumbled in them unexpectedly and they are tucked away in a really nice spot, slightly off the beaten track.

    Reading your post was like a nice mini vacation.

    1. I am glad I could bring back some fond memories. I think living on a float home would have a lot of perks but also disadvantages. My neighbors aren't quite far enough away now, they'd be closer on a float home. But I like the idea of the compact houses and the waves lulling one to sleep.