April 30, 2023 – Sunday – Arrival in Vancouver and onward to home in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
2023 Panama Canal Cruise
I’m up at 6am to experience the beautiful light as we sail past English Bay, under Lion’s Gate Bridge and Stanley Park, down Burrard Inlet to the harbour. I grab a cappuccino and a chocolate croissant from the Explorations Cafe to take back to my stateroom. The ship docks in Vancouver a bit ahead of time, despite having two cruise ships docked at Canada Place ahead of us: the huge Discovery Princess and the much smaller Brillance of the Seas. This is the end of the cruise for me, and a return to reality!
Since I’m rolling my own bag off the ship, I’m one of the first off the ship, leaving at 8AM. Canada Customs and Immigration don’t want to talk to the departing passengers, so I make my way to the nearby Skytrain Waterfront Station and board the Canada Line which goes to the airport. It takes 35 minutes, so I’m at the airport station by 8:45am, catch the shuttle to the South Terminal, and check my bag with Pacific Coastal Airlines for my flight home to Victoria.
My flight doesn’t leave until 12:45pm, so I try going to the observing platform outside the terminal to spot planes, but the breeze is cold and there are very few aircraft moving at this time of day. Retreating back to the terminal building, I grab a muffin from the Galiano Cafe and settle in to wait by editing some of my photos on my notebook.
The flight goes without a hitch, however the dull grey weather means I take few photos out the aircraft window. We land on runway 13, which is unusual, but brings us very close to the apron in front of the terminal. My family are waiting for me, and my bag is the first on the belt. We pay the $2 parking fee and drive home, where the rest of the family are waiting to greet me.