British Colombia

Towering Trees of Love

I’m taking it back a few years…

This photo was taken in Cathedral Grove, MacMillan Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. You’ll find it on the way to Tofino, but in between Port Alberni and Parksville.

It didn’t matter how much we tried or how wide our hugs were, this tree was never going to feel a full-embraced hug. That’s okay though, because these Douglas Firs have been receiving some loving hugs for the last 800 or so years of their life. That’s right, at LEAST 800 years that these trees have been around. Some of them might have even been longer! There’s no way to explain the feeling of these trees and this forest… It’s magical, but at the same time, you feel like you’re such a small part of the world. Just another ant!

If you plan to stop in Tofino, make sure you don’t miss your stop to take a hike at Cathedral Grove!

462381_10150664933237879_1995557828_o

Brad and I showing this monstrous Douglas Fir some love.

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Queen Elizabeth Park, Vancouver

This is the breathtaking Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Endless gardens, sprouting tulips and floral scents coating the air; it truly is a wonderful place!

20160406_142023_HDRTulips sprouting up; their vivid colours bring so much life to the park.

20160406_141813_HDR20160406_141503_HDR
An indoor bio-dome;  housing humid weather and magical creatures.

20160406_134512_HDR

20160406_133804_HDR

20160406_133352_HDROne of the entrance’s to Queen Elizabeth Park. That dome you see is an indoor eco-system; seen in the photos above.

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Day out in Victoria, BC

My plane arrived at around midnight, so we took a taxi down to the “Royal Scot Hotel” where we stayed just for a night; straight to bed I went, I wanted to catch as much sleep as I could before venturing off into this beautiful city.
I woke up at about 0730hrs to enjoy a “West Coast Omelette” at “Jonathan’s Restaurant”; filled with shrimp, smoked salmon and topped off with Hollandaise sauce, I think I was in heaven! Man, do I ever miss the delicious seafood of British Colombia.

After my outstanding Breakfast, I took “Bus 6” down to the Naval Dockyard, which is where all the Canadian Navy ships rest, which includes my previous two ships: “HMCS Protecteur” and “HMCS Algonquin”. I walked onto the “HMCS Protecteur” and quietly made my way up to my old workplace where I surprised my buddies who are still working on the ship. When they looked at me, they glanced away and then quickly looked back. They must have thought they were hallucinating for a second, because they had no idea I was flying into the city. They were overjoyed to see me, just as I was to see them. These friends have helped me through the toughest of my times when I was living in Victoria, BC. They were true friends, always pushing their plans aside to help me out when I really needed it; these are the kind of friendships that you need to treasure and value for the rest of your lives, its not everyday you run into people like that. I stayed on the ship for just over an hour, wolfed down a bowl of “Cream of Chicken” soup for the Navy tradition of “Stand Easy”, which is at 1000hrs everyday, then made my way to the ship across from the “HMCS Protecteur”, which is the “HMCS Algonquin”. My awesome friend Jen, the one that we bumped into during my Vegas vacation was working “Quartermaster” duty. I paid her a surprise visit; it was really awesome to see that she is doing great overall and that she some awesome sails to look forward to!

Shortly after reminiscing with some amazing friends, I hopped onto a bus heading towards downtown to grab myself a delicious Lunch at one of the restaurants that serve the food that I miss most: “Azuma Sushi”. The sushi here in Trenton is overpriced and definitely not up to the standard of quality that you will find on the West Coast of Canada. I had a “Spicy Salmon Roll” and a “Yam Roll” with a bowl of brown rice topped with roasted sesame sauce on the side. The bill only ran up to 12.95$, now THAT’S a VERY fair price, especially for quality food!

I didn’t have a lot of time to spend in Victoria, so I slowly walked back to my hotel, grabbing a “Spanish Latte” at one of my favorite Cafes: “Dolce Vita”. What really impresses me about “Dolce Vita” is how they create coffee art in your drink. They actually construct some sort of complex pattern in your coffee; it looks so nice you almost don’t want to drink it! Don’t worry though, I don’t know how they do it, but somehow when you sip back your delicious drink, the pattern doesn’t disappear, it stays right to the bottom of the cup!

Well, I’m back home in Trenton now, but not for long! I’ll have another adventure shortly for you to read up on, just keep your eyes peeled!

Tomorrow, I start my first Piano lesson, I’m also hitting up the gym with Amy first thing tomorrow morning too. Nothing like a fresh start to your day!

Dolce Vita Coffee Art

Dolce Vita Coffee Art

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Feelin’ my roots

It was just under a year ago that I was living in this gorgeous city, spent three years here; I’m not going to lie, I miss the city but I sacrificed that for the best job I’ll ever have in my life and to be closer to my family and don’t regret it one bit!

I’m staying just a night in Victoria. When I wake up, I’m going to have a quick Breakfast, then pay my friends a surprise visit at my previous unit: “HMCS Protecteur”; I can’t wait to see them, I miss those guys! Friendships for a lifetime!

For those of you that don’t know, Victoria is located in the province of British Colombia and positioned on a mid-sized island called “Vancouver Island”. The city itself has a very inviting vibe to it and you easily find yourself at home very quickly. Victoria stays true to Canadian culture, but somehow, the city incorporates a wide-tasting range of cultures from all over the world which gives Victoria a unique flavour when compared to most other Canadian cities. Despite the influence, Victoria remains unchanged to it’s “Victorian”-age style.

If you visit BC, you must visit both Victoria and Vancouver.

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pack, pack, pack!

Spent another day at a beach in Penticton; this time, instead of “Sudbury Beach”, we went to try out “Skaha Beach”; they’re both great beaches, but I found “Skaha Beach” to be much more relaxing and enjoyable. There were adequate washroom facilities nearby, a stand to grab yourself a refreshing “Hawaiian Shaved Ice” cup and most importantly, dogs are allowed on the beach, as long as they’re on a leash.

After a winding four hours, driving around snow-capped mountains and drop-dead cliffs, we’re now finally back in Abbotsford, BC, where I have been staying for the past week. The weather here is nowhere near as hot as it was in the valley; there’s a big, big difference. Bring lots of sunscreen!

Also, for those that never have been to Penticton and would like to visit; I just wanted to point out that there is in fact, an airport that you can fly into there. So if driving along winding mountain-side roads isn’t your thing, you can skip it all and come straight to Canadian paradise. I would recommend taking an adventure and going by road, but in the end, it’s your vacation and it’s totally up to you! Just keep in mind, even in Penticton, you need to book your hotel in advance, it does get to be a busy place in the Summer and rooms get booked up fast!

This week has just flown by so fast, it’s already my last night here in British Colombia, so it’s been nothing but packing, packing, packing since we got back. Packing for what you ask? Las Vegas! We leave tomorrow morning from “Vancouver International Airport” for a full week stay in the “city that never sleeps”. We’re going to be staying in the “Flamingo” hotel, which is one of the original and oldest hotels on the strip. I’ll be sure to write a review about it at some point during my trip, so you’ll at least get an idea if it’s a good hotel to stay at or not.
Tomorrow night we’re also seeing a magic show @ 7pm. His name is “Gerry McCambridge” and he specializes in illusions. Should prove to be a fun and interesting show; I can’t help but say that I’m pretty damn excited too!

Here are a few snaps from Pentincton:

Sudbury Beach, gorgeous.

Sudbury Beach, gorgeous.

Me diving for a frisbee at Skaha Beach.

Me diving for a Frisbee at Skaha Beach.

Mango Juice and Beach Sandals @ Skaha Beach

Mango Juice and Beach Sandals @ Skaha Beach

The "Family-in-law" @ a rest stop on the way out from Penticton. We felt it was necessary to bring on the tiger / dinosaur face!

The “Family-in-law” @ a rest stop on the way out from Penticton. We felt it was necessary to bring on the tiger / dinosaur face!

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Okanagan Valley

Road trip!

Spent a good portion of the day cruising down the breathtaking Okanagan Valley; a whole new part of British Colombia that I’ve never seen before in my life.

The Okanagan Valley is known for it’s delectable champion-level wines and that’s due to the fact of the valley’s contribution to ideal weather and conditions for grape growing.

At the moment, I’m in Penticton, BC staying at a Motor Inn; high class, right?
They have some gorgeous beaches here! I spent Afternoon at a beach called Sudbury beach; scorching sand and refreshing water. The entire lake was enclosed in luscious green mountains.

Time to take a night walk and explore more of this inviting beach city!

Here are some photos from today, I’ll upload some high quality ones tomorrow from my actual camera and not my phone.

20130704-214856.jpg

20130704-214916.jpg

20130704-215045.jpg

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Beautiful British Colombia

Well, it’s no secret, it’s only on the back of every license plate in this province: “Beautiful British Colombia”.

British Colombia License Plate

British Colombia License Plate

Towering mountains to rolling and vibrant green hills; British Colombia is an excellent place if you love the outdoors, especially if you or your family love some of the following activities: camping, hiking, swimming, surfing, rock climbing, geocaching, running, biking, kayaking, canoeing, sailing, snowboarding, skiing… That’s just a small taste of the opportunities that await you in this charming Canadian province. Some of you might think: “Well, those are only seasonal activities in Canada, it gets cold with loads of snow in the Winter, so can’t possibly take part in every one of those activities!”. Believe it or not, the weather in the Southern portion of British Colombia is very temperate all year long; it’s a bit cooler with a bit more rain in the Winter, but nothing that you can’t handle. Getting back to my point, I surfed in Canada during the month of February in a small surfing village called “Tofino”. Tofino is what some like to call “Canada’s hidden paradise”, because really, not many know about it, even many Canadians don’t know about this hidden paradise! I believe the population is just under 2,000 and to get there, you have to have a car and some quick reflexes as the roads to this wonderland is winding and narrow, but the journey is breathtaking! You’ll see some of the biggest trees that you’ve ever set your eyes on, you actually have to pan your eyes left to right to see the size of some of these beasts! You won’t even be able to hug one, trust me, I’ve already tried…

Just one of the many trees you'll find in British Colombia.

Just one of the many trees you’ll find in British Colombia. (I’m on the right)

Tofino is just a few hours by car from the Victoria, the capital of British Colombia. You can surf in Tofino all year long and there are several alluring and enticing beaches, probably the most beautiful beaches in Canada. I’d also have to say that Tofino is probably the best place for you to learn how to surf, the reason behind that is because there are no sharp rocks or coral to wipe out on if you make a mistake, you just wipe out into the water and the ocean’s bottom is just soft sand, at least from the beaches I was surfing on. The best part is, you can get full surfing equipment rentals for about 25$/day and it gets cheaper the more days you rent the equipment for.
The only thing that is quite expensive is the accommodations and the food, but hey, most people come here for a vacation and usually on vacations, you’re expected to spend a little bit to really enjoy yourself.
In Tofino, there is also a very small island called “Hot Springs Cove”, where you can take a beautiful stroll through a British Colombian rainforest, only to end up at some natural sulphur hot springs, where you can just take the day to soak right into and melt off and bit of stress that may be on your body or mind.

That's me practicing my surfing skills in Tofino!

That’s me practicing my surfing skills in Tofino!

I’ll also show you a pointer on the map so you can get an idea of where Tofino is located in Canada, the red dot is the location:

Location of Tofino

Location of Tofino

I’m actually on a one week vacation with my girlfriend in British Colombia right now, but were in Abbotsford, which is one hour East of Vancouver. The mainland of British Colombia is absolutely stunning! View of the mountains from almost all angles of this city and most other cities nearby.
Shortly, I’ll be leaving for Bellingham, Washington, which is just North of Seattle. It’s going to be my first time there and my Brother-in-law will give me a tour of the “Cancer Centre” that he works at over there. We will also eat some mouthwatering Spanish food for Supper too!

On Thursday, we’re driving to Kelowna, which is a few hours East of Abbotsford. Apparently it’s scorching hot and dry over there, with plenty of outdoor activities, I should be able to grab a few awesome snaps with my handy camera. I don’t know too much about the place, but hey, that’s all part of the adventure that I will inform you all on!
On Saturday, Amy and I leave for a week in Las Vegas, but that’s another adventure for me to talk about down the road!

Take a look at the fireworks we saw in downtown Vancouver last night for Canada Day!

Vancouver Canada Day Fireworks

Vancouver Canada Day Fireworks

 

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ice Cream Overload!

218 flavours!

How do you choose from such a variety? I’ve never seen so many ice cream flavours in one parlour! Basic Vanilla ice cream to Garlic, Pear Gorgonzola & Blue Cheese, Creme Brûlée, Macadamia Nut, Onion… Some flavours you just can’t resist, others, well, make you a little sick just thinking about the taste; but the fact that they can host such a variety is just mind blowing! They can cater to all tastes of all cultures and backgrounds in the world!

Personally, I chose something a little more innocent and welcoming: one scoop Creme Brûlée and one scoop Coconut Pineapple Macadamia Nut.
Mouthwatering deliciousness, especially on a hot day like today.

The only thing about ice cream is, it does make you thirsty afterwards, but hey, that’s great news for the business, they make a few extra dollars selling a hiked-up price bottled water.

In the end, awesome experience, it always leaves you coming back each time to try something new! Great place to bring a date if you’re ever in Vancouver; “Le Casa Gelato” is the name, keep that written in the back of your book.

20130701-204526.jpg

20130701-204519.jpg

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happy Canada Day!

Happy Canada Day for all you wonderful Canadians out there, eh!?

Today marks the Canada’s 146th Birthday; I know, Canada is just a baby compared to a majority of the countries out in our world, but believe it or not, this so-called “baby” country has accomplished and invented quite a lot in a short period of time.

Here’s a list of just a few things that Canada has invented that we see or hear about in our day-to-day life:

  • Telephone
  • Hockey
  • Basketball
  • Peanut Butter
  • McIntosh Apple
  • Blackberry Cellphone
  • Pager
  • Walkie-Talkie
  • IMAX Movie Theatre System
  • Canadarm (Space Station)
  • Snowmobile
  • Electric Wheelchair
  • Snowblower
  • CADPAT
  • Lacrosse
  • Five-pin Bowling
  • Insulin
  • Electron Microscope
  • Plexiglass
  • Garbage Bag
  • Caesar Cocktail
  • Wonderbra
  • Cardiac Pacemaker
  • Egg Carton

Of course, Canada has created many, many more inventions, but I just wanted to name some of the most popular ones.

I remember celebrating Canada Day in Ottawa (capital of Canada) a few years back; the downtown area of the city is just pure insanity! Streets are just flooded with people that not a single car could even think of passing through, it just wouldn’t happen.
I remember lots of live bands and marvelous fireworks shows. I also remember how finding a washroom is an impossible task. So folks, stay hydrated and have an awesome Canada day! Just a few more years before we hit the big 150!

Categories: British Colombia, Canada, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: