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March 25, 2018

Vancouver Island

by swebackpacker


I Stayed overnight in Langley so my choice was the Tsawwassen to Swartzs Bay with BC Ferries. Tsawassen is located southwest of Vancouver and far easier to reach than the Horseshoe bay ferries north of Vancouver. The morning traffic jam on the high way one around Vancouver is considerable so it was best to avoid Horseshoe bay. I did also want to see Victoria the former Capital of British Columbia!



I didn´t make any reservation for the BC ferries since I didn´t know the travel time to Tsawwassen. I arrived about forty-five minutes before departure and it was space left on the ferry although I was travelling in July! However it was a lot of traffic from Swartzs Bay up to Victoria followed by severe traffic jam in Victoria.BC-Ferries to Vancouver Island


Vancouver Island is a very big Island so consider your travel time! It is almost 520 km from Swartz Bay to Port Hardy up in the north so expect at least sex hour travel time. I was camping for four nights in Aldler Bay Restort Camping not far from Telegraph Cove a famous area for killer whales in Canada. Alder Bay Resort Camping


I did go whale watching with Sea Smoke whale watching they picked up at the pier in Adler Bay Resort nine a clock in the morning. It was very convenient and much more preferable tour since they had fewer customers and a smaller bout than the whale watching boats from Telegraph cove.   Sea Smoke Whalewatching


We had a gray cold day on the sea so we were a bit unlucky with the weather. Sea Smoke Whale watching lends every customer wet suit so one can keep the body warm out on the sea. It is indeed very cold out on the sea do not underestimate that if you go whale watching!


The whale watching boat is not allowed to go closer than one hundred meters from the whale. But if you are lucky the whales might come to the boat! We did see sea lions, Killer Whales and Humpback Whales.


The best way to see the Killer Whales are probably from a sea Kayak or a rubber boat. If you are lucky you can come very close to the Killer Whales!


There is a famous cruiser ship going from Vancouver all the way up to Alaska the so called inside passage a very expensive journey. There is a poor man’s journey as beautiful as the cruiser ship journey it´s taking the BC ferry from Port Hardy on Vancouver Island to Prince Rupert on the northern British Columbian coast during the summer season. However one needs to book ticket maybe several weeks in advance. The ferry leaves Port Hardy at 07:30 every odd day you will need to be at the dock at 06:30.


An interesting journey from Alder Bay is a visit on Alert Bay. Drive up to Port Mc Neil and take the BC ferry to Alert Bay. Alert Bay is famous for the Totem Poles one of the best places in Canada to see them. The other famous island to see them is Haida Gawaii! Best places to see totem poles


The highest totem pole in the world is on Alert Bay Island it is 52.7 meter high. Totem poles are spiritually significant to the first nation’s people in Canada. This is actually a burial ground for the origin people of Canada and not a place to stroll around between the totem poles.


There is a museum for the totem poles as well in Alert Bay. The burying site is from the road to the left from the ferry. If instead taking the road to the left from the ferry and drive past the church and follow the shore one comes to the museum of totem poles.


I stayed at the shore and took some pictures of a man going out with a boat from Alert bay harbor. The view is toward Vancouver Island.


As can be seen from the pictures this is not an ordinary rowing boat!


The first picture in this blogpost is from Port Hardy city Centre. The second photo is taken on the road towards Port Hardy airport but instead of going to the airport I turned left and followed the shore to nice beach. Early morning fog is still present in the picture.


The third photo in this blogpost is taken outside Port Alice located on the west coast of Vancouver Island. Another possible journey is the gravel road to the North West from Port Hardy to Cape Scott Provincial Park and San Josef bay via Holberg. This is an animal rich area I did see black bear here there is possibilities for wolfs as well. However I didn´t see any, this road is very bad and expect to meet a lot of huge timber trucks on the way to Holberg.


Another possibility on Vancouver Island is the famous West Coast trail. However I didn´t manage to book a camping spot in the national park. If you are interested in going please book several weeks in advance.


The church are to the left from the ferry, if one goes from the church past the ferry to Vancouver Island one comes to the old Court house. This house is very interesting since it was a house for a Police officer and functioning as a court, jail and police station.



I spent most of my time above the 50th longitude on Vancouver Island. There is a change in climate when you go past Cambell River there the 50th Longitude is the weather becomes notably colder. Cambell River is also the last bigger place before Part Hardy in the far north of Vancouver Island.


Old Car and a house with a boat of flowers, photo from Alert Bay


© SWEBackpacker, 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material including pictures without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to SWEBackpacker with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.




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