Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Road Trip # 4 Forks to Victoria BC

So it's now Friday morning in our adventure....we awake to the news of the Earthquake in Japan and the tsunami warnings. We were scheduled to take the 8:20 ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria BC. We called the Ferry line but there was no on there. We decided to make the hour or so drive from Forks, to Port Angeles and decided if it was canceled we do a day and night in Seattle instead. So we packed up and headed out. We left the key in the room since we were all checked out already. I then realized I left my phone charger in the room. No big deal I am sure they can let us back in. But the office is empty with a sign on the door to call if we need them. So I called and she said it would take her at least 20 min to get there. But if we waited we would miss the ferry. BUMMER considering I didn't have my car charger with me. And we wouldn't be coming back through Forks. They were going to have to mail it to me (I am still waiting for it) so this is #3.

Off to Port Angeles we go. We stopped to get a quick breakfast at Jack in the Box and proceeded to park the car and head to the terminal. We thought we had plenty of time since on the phone they said to be there 20 min early. So we get there and the lady is telling us frantically to hurry up and run to the ferry. So we are literally running down the ramp like crazy women, dumping our beverages we got at Jack in the Box because we were running so fast we'd spill them all over ourselves. We board the ferry and just sit there....waiting for it to leave. We asked ourselves "why did we just sprint all that way just to sit here" And I really needed that cup of coffee.#4 So although we were in no danger of missing our ferry, ticket agents elevated sense of urgency made us panic and we burned needless calories.

The ferry to Victoria is about an hour and half. It's a nice little ride. Coming into Victoria is like entering another country (Ok I know it's Canada but come crossing the border isn't usually a culture shock) Victoria is very "British" looking. It really does remind you of going to England (not that either one of us have been there but from pictures)

The streets were packed with restaurants, shopping, local businesses and even for March is was a bustle with people.

Here is our hotel...and that's all I will say about that for now.

We ate lunch at this fabulous little place. We were just walking by and it looked funky and fun. It was an all organic, health conscious driven place.

The walls were a bright lime green and all the tables had bright table clothes.

The walls were covered with all sorts of eclectic art. It was really fun to take it all in. And this place was hopping. Not an empty table in the place.

We took a taxi to the Craigdorroch Castle. It was built between 1897-1890 for Robert Dunsmuir who made is fortune from Vancouver Island coal.

It was pretty amazing. Very hard to take pictures inside because they asked us not to use the flash and it was very dark inside.

The stain glass stunning. It was so intricate.

Even the ceilings were done with attention to detail.

The view from the top...can you imagine living in a castle??

The above picture is from our hotel window. We were so excited to stay and the Magnolia Hotel and Spa. We thought we found a great deal on what was listed as a "girlfriends weekend package". I personally called to make the reservation. I was quoted on the phone $189 for a night at the hotel, two spa treatments, wine and cheese, and valet parking.After all it is the beginning of March, off season rates surely applied here. However when we got the bill in morning it was over $323 CAD. I went down the the front desk and explained that what I was quoted on the phone. She promptly told me that rooms alone are $189 and the package was $289. I was not happy. Felicia even tried to get her AAA discount which the front desk lady all but laughed in our face and said she could not apply any discount to the price. So when all was said and done we figured that we actually ended up paying MORE than if we just did the room and the spa separate from each other. I was unimpressed with the desire to make their customers happy. I wasn't expected a free room, but I was quoted the wrong price on the phone. #4

The room was very nice and as you can see the view was spectacular. So rewind just a bit from the bill debacle. We had spa treatments to go to before our dinner plans. The spa was small and nice.

This was the lounge area where we waited for our treatments. So I made reservations for a facial and Fle got a pedicure. We each had a $75 voucher for the spa from the package. Each treatment we booked was $75. Perfect! My facial was amazing. The girl who did it was so nice and friendly and it was really relaxing. Fle said her pedi was awesome and her toes looked adorable. So we go to pay. Now she "rings" me up and the total is way more than the $75. I questioned it and she said I was booked for the hour long facial and I said no I had booked the 1/2 hour facial. She said "well you received the hour long so it's an additional $65. WHAT??? I didn't argue, partly because the girl who actually did the facial was so sweet and I didn't want to short her with the time she had given me. I don't think I was in there for an hour, because I was done about 10 min before Felicia was done with her pedicure. So what are we at ? 4?
Back to the the room to get ready for dinner and to cool down from paying an extra $65. Good the view from our room looked like THIS...this is Parliament all lit up. Our room service guy said "It's like Christmas every night"

We had dinner at this fabulous French restaurant. Felicia got a steak, served with fries and onions, and a salad, and I got Salmon over lentils and spinach. It was amazing. The restaurant was really cool, we wanted to take a picture but it would have been super uncool.
We came back to the room for "Eclipse" and an all night girl gab session. I won't tell you all that was said that night because we decided "what happens in Victoria stays in Victoria"

We woke up the next morning (we are now on Saturday) and we had pre-bought tickets to the BC Royal Museum through the hotel. We get to the museum and our tickets were expired. They still let us in but the greeter lady wasn't too sure it would be possible. We looked at the price of admission on the sign and it said adults 14.23...we paid the hotel 15.00 each. I know I know it's just pennies but at this point I was fed up with them overcharging me! #5 So the picture above is actual me inside the Museum. They had sort of an ocean display and it really took us by surprise because it was so realistic. We didn't take many photos inside because they also said no flash photography and this place was kept even darker than the Castle.

Outside the BC Royal Museum.

Ok I DID not want to post this picture because I look pregnant, and I am not! But the story is cute so I am rising above my insecurities to share it with you. This is Parliament. It's beautiful and impressive. We wanted to take a picture of us on the steps and we were going to take turns. There was a female "guard" and she asked if we would like her to take our picture. We said "sure". She the proceeded to say "I am going to teach you how to pose for a picture. Put you leg out like this, turn, put your hand on your hip and pose" So we did. She was a hoot because she didn't look like the type of person who would be into posing...but maybe it was just the unflattering guard uniform and hat.

The steps of Parliament.

Look kids Parliament!

Statue of the Queen....and look kids behind her is?....say it with me "we know Parliament"

So we said good-bye to Victoria, and got back on the Ferry to Port Angeles. Despite spending way more than I thought, it was a total blast and I'd love to go back. I just won't stay at the Magnolia!

1 comment:

It'sSteph said...

The whole trip sounds and looks like a blast! What fun! Minus all the overcharging etc. Memories you'll never forget though!