Some days it’s fun to play tourist in your own town. On a recent trip to Victoria from the mainland, I had the pleasure of taking a trip on one of the new ferries – the Coastal Celebration. The trip started in Tsawwassen with a breakfast at the Tsawwassen Quay. We enjoyed crepes – yes really! One of us had a ham & egg crepe and the others had fruit crepes – very yummy. We then grabbed our Starbucks addictions and headed back to the car to wait for the loading call.
Once on board with a lovely window seat reserved with my coat I took a tour around the ship. The immense size of this ferry is best observed from Deck #7 – the Sundeck. You truly know you are on a new ferry when you look over the rail from deck #7 towards the ocean far below. Wow – it is a very, very long way down. As luck would have it on this Friday morning, it was a stunning “Sunny Tsawwassen” day. The sun bounced off the white wash deck and glistened off the water. There were several seating areas on Deck #7 that allowed you to comfortably enjoy the breathtaking views. Some areas were glass enclosed to keep the weather out but others were in the open where you could feel the wind and sun on your face. It is so easy to forget how beautiful the Strait of Georgia is when you are preoccupied with life’s daily routine. I found the inside seating on the lower decks comfortable as well. The seats are large and spacious. The other amenities included: a cafeteria, private lounge, store, large TVs in various locations, and self-contained child play areas. Okay, I ask you where were these play areas 16 years ago when I had three small children on the ferry.
As we approached Active Pass, we saw a pod of killer whales. They were off in the distance, closer to shore. But we could see them surfacing for breaths. Spectacular! As we moved through Active Pass, we had Galiano Island on our right and Mayne Island on the left. We had a bird’s eye view of the many residences perched on rock bluffs and beaches. I wonder what it would be like to live in the Gulf Islands. On a day like today – not a better place on earth – I would suspect.
Before we knew it we were docking at the Swartz Bay terminal (about 1.5 hours later), ready to embark on our next adventure – to move our eldest back home from the University of Victoria.