When it comes to travel, it's rare that the journey is as enjoyable as the destination. Such is the case with our trip on BC Ferries. We embarked on a journey with BC Ferries from Vancouver, to Victoria, the capital of British Columbia. The voyage makes for a perfect day trip or weekend getaway, as it the island is only an hour and a half from Vancouver. Along the way, we enjoyed a prime view of the Pacific Northwest landscapes, including the islands and wildlife.
Behind the scenes video of the BC Ferries trip:
Victoria has a unique blend of nature and European charm, all found on the Pacific Northwest. There are numerous gardens, wineries, and historic buildings on the island. The downtown area is easily stroll-able, where you can visit the Empress Hotel, the harbor, and the Parliament within a few blocks of each other. We took our car on the ferry, which enabled us to explore many regions of the island.
Here are the TOP 6 reasons to cruise from Vancouver to Victoria:
1. Nature and wildlife
From BC Ferries, you can enjoy the spectacular nature. We spend the majority of the ferry ride on the sun deck, where we could view the wildlife, such as otters, eagles, and sometimes even orcas. Be sure to bring your binoculars and telephoto lens to capture these views.
2. Craigdarroch Castle:
The largest residence in the province, with a wooden interior and stunning views from the top. The castle reminded me of Hearst Castle and was a great way to experience the history of Victoria.
3. Parliament Building of Victoria:
Historic landmark building that serves as the parliament of British Columbia. Take a guided tour of the interior or enjoy the extensive gardens.
4. Nearby islands such as Salt Spring, spotted from BC Ferries.
5. Empress Hotel:
An iconic landmark in Victoria where you can dine at the restaurant or enjoy high tea.
Did you know that Victoria is home to numerous wineries? We visited Church & State, a beautiful winery and tasting room that makes for perfect place to relax with friends and sip the regional wine.
Have you been to Victoria? What was your favorite part about the journey and the island? Comment below!
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Wondering which island to visit on a day trip from Athens? With an estimated 6,000 islands in Greece, each with their own charm, it can be hard to choose. But if you are short on time, some of the islands such as Corfu, Santorini, and Crete may be too far. Luckily, Athens is only an hour away from some of the most beautiful and quaint islands. Look no further than the beautiful island of Hydra.
From the Athens port of Piraeus, we take the ferry on an hour and a half journey across the Aegean Sea to Hydra, an island filled with history, beautiful ocean, narrow cobblestone alleyways, hilltop views, cats, al-fresco Greek dining, water sports, relaxation, and old movie charm. Best of all, the island is traffic-free and does not have any cars.
Behind the scenes video:
Hydra is rich in history. At one point, it was part of Venice and later the Ottoman Empire. We visit the island's historic Greek Orthodox churches, then venture to the top of the hills to capture the views.
We visited during Spring in March, and the weather was in the low 70's with crystal clear waters. While we didn't see any swimming beaches near the port, there were many ocean activities such as kayaking, water taxis, and even a diving area to take a dip in the water.
In Greece, there are "community" cats and dogs, which roam all over Hydra. As you can see, they are well taken care of by the local community.
On our way back, the ferry stopped at another port called Poros, which had a similar vibe as Hydra, only with cars. The ferry had many convenient times throughout the day, some running every hour, making it easy to island hop.
If you are looking for a quick island getaway from Athens, check out Hydra. What is your favorite island in Greece?
This weekend, we visited the Palm Spring's Modernism Week, which celebrates the city's artistic and architectural treasures. Each February, the city of Palm Springs showcase the modernist movement with over 350 events, including bike tours, bus tours, and museum exhibits. With so many events to choose from, we count down the top 5 sights to see while you are in town.
Palm Springs Modernism Week Travel vlog:
Here are the highlights from Modernism Week:
1. Modernist Architecture - Door Tour
When I heard that there was a " Door Tour " I wasn't sure what to expect. We started at the Saguaro Hotel, a colorful hotel that organized a self-guided bike tour of the city's most colorful modernist houses. They gave us a map of the houses with the most colorful doors. It was like being on a treasure hunt to find each one. The colors were painted with vibrant Dunn Edwards paint, from bright yellow, magenta, to lime green, which made for instagrammable photo opportunities.
2. Saguaro Hotel -
After the bike tour, we checked into the Saguaro Hotel where we were treated to a complementary margarita at the Jefe Bar for completing the Door Tour. The hotel is one of the most instagrammable locations in Palm Springs, known for it's brightly colored exterior, fun pool, boutique style, and modern architecture.
3. Wexler Glass House -
We also toured Donald Wexler's (modernist architect) first custom house called the Glass House. The house was done in stunning modernist style which took advantage of the beautiful view of the hills and pool.
4. Downtown Palm Springs -
This past year, the downtown Palm Springs area underwent a revitalization effort and many new shops, restaurants and hotels were added along the boulevard.
5. Palm Springs Art Museum -
Palm Springs Art Museum is one of the best was to learn about the modernist movement and view the exhibits from this time period.
We hope you get a chance to visit Palm Springs Modernism Week. It is a fun and unique way to experience the city and celebrate modernism.
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