Holiday Time in Canada

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Canada is truly a massive country.  I have visited it before but it was way way back in 2000 with my school on a rugby tour.  At the time i was in 5th year so i would of been 17.  Its surprising how much you can forget in such a short period of time.

My girlfriend and I were looking to take some time off during June this year and after looking at many locations around the world Canada was our number one choice.  I find it very hard to take photographs whilst i am am away on holiday, possibly because i do this job full time.  Its nice to have a break!  That being said theres no way that i was going to go as far as British Columbia and not bring the camera.

Vancouver is a pretty cool city.  It is a fairly young city with a large hong kong residence.  Quite a lot are 2nd or 3rd generation after their grand parents or great grand parents settled in the city years ago.

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(Image Above – Lions Gate Bridge)

The one thing both Jill and I noticed was that Canadians are very friendly to tourists and strangers.  After walking around Vancouver you are guaranteed to talk to many locals through out your time there.  Be it at one of the many Starbucks or countless pubs.

I took a few shots in Vancouver but probably not as many as i should of.  After working furiously for weeks leading up to the holiday then traveling for over 24 hours i decided to enjoy the city without having to take the camera out as well.

Outside of Vancouver we explored a large area close to the border with the USA whilst heading towards the provincial boarder of Alberta.

Our next goal was the capital of the Okanagan valley, Kelowna.  The drive to the area was nothing short of spectacular.  Massive four lane roads cut through mountains and enormous fields that would run on and on for what seemed like miles.  This to me was honestly the most impressive part of touring through Canada, the driving.  Getting to Kelowna was brilliant after such a long drive but nothing prepares you for the scenery.

(Image Above – The Okanagan Valley with Kaslo to the right)

We wanted to see how far we could get away from Vancouver but at the same time we didn’t want to spend all our time driving.  After spending three days in the Okanagan between Kelowna and Osoyoos we headed east again.

We really didn’t want to leave the Okanagan as the weather was amazing.  On average it was around 26 – 28c and for all the time we spent there we didn’t see one cloud.

But curiosity got the better of us and we loaded the car up and travelled on.  Highway 3 would take us along yet more spectacular scenery.  We the views are this good 500 or 600km just flies by.

From Osoyoos we drove through Grand Forks, Castlegar and Nelson before ending up at Kaslo in the Kootenay lake region.

The Kootenay lake area is just on the edge of the Rockies and yet again the views amazed us.  It seemed no matter where we went we were greeted with massive sights.

We arrived in the area at a strange time.  British Columbia up to then had been experience unsettled weather patterns.  So much so that the snow on many of the mountain tops was still present.  Because of the sharp increase in temperature over the last month before we arrived the snow started to melt very quickly.  Many of the rivers were raging with white water and most of the lakes had risen by several feet.

(Image Above – Slow exposure of a river outside Kaslo)

After staying in hotels and B&B’s we wanted something different.  We found a little cabin in the woods outside Kaslo beside the Kootenay Lake.  This would be our last stop before heading back to Vancouver.  The last night in Kaslo was amazing.  After touring around the area via ferry we stocked up on supplies for a BBQ.  After we cleared up we had about an hour before sun set.

I remember the owner of the cabin saying they had a 19ft canoe so i nabbed the life jackets and Jill and I spent a glorious 40 minutes out on Kootenay lake.  We were treated to a beautiful sunset which will honestly live in my memory for ever.

I am not a professional writer hence why this blog post may seem a little disjointed but its hard to sum up everything that happened.

TL:DR – Canada is massive, the people are friendly, the foods amazing, you can get sunburnt and the views are mind blowing!

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