changing landscapes vancouver island

"Vancouver Island is as exotic as it gets. But it's a different kind of exotic.

It's not palm trees and margaritas.

It's giant cedars and single malt. It's a pristine and wild exotic."

'Changing Landscapes Vancouver Island' is a 13 part television series set on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Voted by Conde Nast traveler readers as the best island in Canada, Vancouver Island would appear to have some serious tourism credentials buried in its forests and shorelines. Yet when we bandy words like 'exotic' and 'laid back' about all we think of is the Caribbean, the 'Med' or S.E. Asia. Well, what's wrong with home? That's a question we've been asking ourselves, so Dominik and I will be heading out to see what all the fuss is about. We'll be scouring the island from north to south, and east to west in search of changing landscapes and a hearty adventure or two. Join us as we visit old growth forests, kayak with seals and maybe have a pint or two at a local brew pub!


To kick off the Vancouver Island series we're heading out to sea for a visit to Friendly Cove, the spot where Captain James Cook first landed in 1778. No we're not sailing in on a tall ship, but we have the next best thing, the last wooden hulled coastal freighter in Canada, a converted second world war minesweeper, known the Uchuck III.

This time on Changing Landscapes we're heading to Alert Bay on Cormorant Island. It's a magical place and home to the Namgis First Nations. We'll be visiting Alert Bay Culture Shock, the Umista Cultural Centre, home to a beautiful collection of Potlach masks, and we'll finish off our visit witnessing an incredible traditional Potlatch.

This time on Changing Landscapes we're visiting Port Hardy at the north end of the island, home of the giant carrot. Then we'll head to the north eastern tip to rugged Cape Scott Provincial Park before sliding down to Coal Harbour, home of the last whaling station on the West Coast of Canada, an old Royal Canadian Air Force base and of course Joey's museum.

Grizzlie bears are a scratchin, a classic salmon fishing boat is captured on the back of a 5$ note, and single malt Canadian whisky is distilled in a purpose built barn! Turns out there's some diversity in these parts. Welcome to Campbell River and area.

This week we visit antler carver Shane Wilson and his pet tortoise, Rocket. From there it's off to the Bastion and the Nanaimo Museum where we check out Nanaimo's past, thirsty work I'd say, so we finish off with a visit to the Longwood Brewery. Welcome to Nanaimo, a Nuclear Weapons Free Zone.

This week we head over to Port Alberni where we'll stay on a 100' tugboat, visit Stamp River Provincial Park where the salmon are running, then we'll take a run on a speeder up to McClean's Steam saw mill where we'll see the national historic site in action.

This week we're back on the water, well kind of. We'll be loading the bikes onto the Francis Barkley and sailing down the Barkley Sound to the small coastal community of Bamfield. It's a quirky little place with a cool boardwalk, a state of the art Marine Biological centre and some incredible west coast scenery, oh yeah, and more whales!

This week on Changing Landscapes we leave Port Alberni and head over the spine of Vancouver Island to the small coastal town of Ucluelet. We'll visit the Ucluelet Aquarium which has a 'catch and release' program in place and we'll also visit the historical William J.

This time on Changing Landscapes we head to Tofino, famous for its beaches, its surf, and its artists. We'll meet 'Feather George' at the Carving Shed and take a closer look at some of his work, then we'll meet some local bikers for their weekly meet, before kayaking over to Meares Island to walk amongst some giants, cedars that is.

This week on Changing Landscapes we explore Gabriola Island for the Thanksgiving Studio Tour. We'll visit Carol at the Twin Beaches Gallery where lots of local artists are represented. We'll also visit Elsa in her home studio, one of the artists featured in the tour booklet.

This week on Changing Landscapes we explore another Gulf Island, this time Salt Spring. For a change we'll camp out in our tents before hitting Salt Spring Cheese Company for some local goat cheese. We'll also hit the market and the Mistaken Identity Vineyard before a very special interview with iconic Canadian artist, Mr. Robert Bateman.

This week on Changing Landscapes it's all about trees. We'll head down a logging road and camp at Carmanah/Walbran Provincial Park and check out some magnificent giant Sitka Spruce trees. From there we'll head over to Avatar Grove, which is home to Canada's gnarliest tree.

This week on Changing Landscapes we finish off in our capital city of Victoria. Home to Canada's Pacific fleet, Victoria is an amazing city with a lot to offer so we had some choices to make. Our first choice was a visit to the Maritime Museum at the Canadian Forces Base in Esquimalt. From there it was off whale watching before heading back to the Swans Hotel to finish off the day sampling some of their craft beer.

changing landscapes vancouver island

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