Monday 29 July 2013

Canada's Pacific Gateway

Happy Monday! Everyone knows how much I love Canada and for the longest time, I wanted to showcase Canada on my blog. So, I've asked a bunch of Canadian bloggers to answer 5 questions about their province.

This week, Bonnie who bloggers over at The Koala Bear Writer, is answering questions about British Columbia.

1. Where are you from: 
I grew up in Alberta but currently live in Victoria, BC, where my husband and I are going to school.

2. Favourite thing about your province: It's beautiful!  This struck me just the other day as I was driving with my daughters to a beach near our home.  We played in the playground there, caught some grabs and saw some herons, and then could have crossed the road and hiked through arbutus and evergreen trees up Mount Douglas to an awesome viewpoint of the city.
Where else can you find beaches and mountains so close together?  We love getting outside and try to take advantage of all the great parks around here.  There's so much to do on the Island, but when we are driving through the rest of the province to visit family, I always wish we had more time to stop and explore.

3. What is your region (province and/or city) known for:
Tourism.  :)  Victoria is a hotspot for tourists and with good reason.  I think it's also known as a great place to retire.

4. Where to:
a) Stay:
The Fairmont Empress Hotel downtown is GORGEOUS and has so much history to it.  I'd love to stay there (or at any other Fairmont hotel, for that matter).  There are also lots of local little B&B's that would be a lot of fun to visit - a great way to meet some locals and possibly see some of the more out of the way places that you'd miss by staying in a chain hotel.
b) Eat:
The short list or the long list???  We love going to The Old Spaghetti Factory downtown when we visit the museum or the inner harbour. The Tudor House Pub in Esquimalt has great food and is worth the drive (plus a friend of ours manages it, so tell him I sent you over there).  Nautical Nellie's is a local restaurant that is pricey but has a great atmosphere and (unless they've changed their menu) the best lobster & pasta dish ever.  Oh, and the Fernwood Inn often has live music along with a unique, local menu.
c) Go/what to do:  
The Royal BC Museum is always worth a visit, as well as the Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre out in Sidney (we have annual passes to both).  Drive or hike to the top of Mount Tolmie and Mount Douglas for great views of the city.  If you really like hiking, visit East Sooke Park or go up Mount Finlayson (warning: good shoes and some experience required!).  And, of course, there are beaches all around the city - one of our favourites is probably Willows Beach.
5. A "must know" about your province: 
Take your time exploring.  BC is a big province and even Vancouver Island is bigger than it seems.  We've lived here for three years now and still haven't made it to all of the places we've heard about!  Ask people you meet where they'd recommend going and do some research online before arriving.

Thanks Bonnie for taking the time to answer these questions! 

For more information on British Columbia, visit Hello BC

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