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Victoria 2003

May 31, 2003

It was Memorial Day weekend, and Sandra's mom, sister, and grandmother were visiting from Sweden.  Her mom and sister Enjoying the Sun at Milestone'shad recently been to London, and were anxious to experience the British flair once again in Victoria.  We had driven up from Washington State two days earlier, and spent some time in Vancouver.  Now we were racing to catch the 3:00 ferry to Victoria, as we sped along with about ten other cars toward the ferry terminal in Tsawassen, south of Vancouver.  We arrived at 3:01 and the ferry pulled away.  This happened on our other trip to Victoria as well!  We need to figure this one out! 

After browsing the shops in the ferry terminal and getting some gross foodWorldmark at Victoria to eat, we boarded the ferry for our 90 minute trip to Schwartz Bay and Victoria.  We arrived in Victoria early that evening, and found our condominium.  We had scored a two-bedroom penthouse unit for our two nights, with a jacuzzi on the deck, overlooking the inner harbor, with the Olympic Mountains lining the Strait of Juan De Fuca to our left.  We overlooked the Empress Hotel and the rest of the harbor, sipping wine and watching the sun set over the water.  It doesn't get much better than this, we thought...

We tried dinner that night at Spinnakers Brew Pub, the first in-house Brew Pub in Canada, and it was excellent as billed.  Our table overlooked the harbor and the food was outstanding (for a brew pub).  After dinner, we hit the jacuzzi for a while, had some drinks and hit the sheets. 

The next day, we took a carriage ride through lovely Beacon Hill Park, around the Parliament Parliament Buildingarea, and through several Victorian-style neighborhoods.  We had lunch at Milestones on the harbor, which had good fish and chips, and good drinks - important on an 80 degree, beautiful summer afternoon!  We strolled through the streets of Victoria, stopping in many shops, and Sandra's family honed in on the Christmas stores!  After way too much shopping, we took a drive around the coast, gawking and the beautiful scenery and incredible mansions.  For dinner that evening, we opted for the Wharfside eatery, which was quite overpriced and touristy, but good.  We swung by the Craigdarroch Castle for a photo, and it was back home now to the jacuzzi for one last night on the balcony. 

The next morning, we packed up and hit the ferry backA Yacht rests in Victoria's Inner Harbour to Port Angeles.  While we waited for the ferry, we enjoyed a wonderful breakfast at the Gatsby Mansion and enjoyed the sunshine.  The weather was magnificent, and we rode at the bow of the ferry most of the way to Port Angeles, gazing at the fabulous, snow-covered Olympic peaks filling the horizon.

We didn't get to visit the Buchart Gardens, which was unfortunate, but we did relax and enjoy our stay wholeheartedly.  Victoria isn't really a place to stay for long, but it sure is a lovely place to spend a long weekend...especially in the penthouse!

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