Here’s a new charter idea from MarineMax Vacations that you can put on your wish list for when the pandemic is over, the borders are open, and we can go cruising anywhere we want to again. It’s a week-long cruise along the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia, starting in Vancouver and crossing the Strait of Georgia to the islands and harbors on the western side, ending up in the BC capital of Victoria.
This cruise would take you through some of the most beautiful and interesting cruising grounds in the Pacific Northwest, along jagged coastlines with pine trees growing down to the waterline, mountains with stunning beauty, and, depending on the time of year, migratory birds and whales. (I’ve cruised to most of the spots on this itinerary, and I’d go back in a second.)
For this charter, MarineMax works with Cooper Boating in Vancouver; they have Aquila 44 power cats with three staterooms, a flybridge, 6’ 6” standing headroom, and two Volvo diesels. Here’s the day-by-day cruise:
Day 1. Pick up the boat at Cooper Boating and cruise up the coast of the mainland to Gibsons, a small, artistic community accessible only by boat or plane.
Day 2. Cruise west across the Strait of Georgia to Gabriola Island, with restaurants and a lively art scene.
Day 3. Head south to Montague Harbor on Galiano Island. Enjoy some salmon and shellfish. Head to the Gray Peninsula to see the awe-inspiring rock ledges with patterns of ripples caused by retreating glaciers.
Day 4. Cruise north to the larger town of Nanaimo, with shops, restaurants, museums and festivals on shore. Stretch your legs off the boat with hikes through the wilderness peaks and valleys.
Day 5. Head back south again to Ganges Harbour on Salt Spring Island. Explore the local markets and artists’ galleries, or hike through the forests and meadows.
Day 6. Cruise down to Victoria at the tip of Vancouver Island. It’s a beautiful town with the Capitol buildings, English gardens, and lots of shops and restaurants. The inner harbor is bustling, with float planes, cruise ships, and other recreational boats. Read more: