Victoria to Vancouver

2023 Vancouver-Hawai’i Cruise

I like to arrive in a cruise departure city the day before a cruise leaves, in order to not be rushed and to reduce the inevitable anxiety of being ready to board the ship at the appointed day and time. I have a leisurely breakfast at home and take care of some last minute packing before going to the airport in the late morning. I check my bag at the check-in desk, go through security and have lots of time left to spot aircraft from the domestic gates waiting area. I only spot the usual suspects today: Westjet, Air Canada and Flair, and of course Pacific Coastal, which is my airline today.

Air Canada Rouge, Westjet, Porter, Flair & Pacific Coastal spotted at Victoria airport
Air Canada Rouge, Westjet, Porter, Flair & Pacific Coastal spotted at Victoria airport

My Pacific Coastal Airlines, Flight 106 on a Beech 1900D leaves Victoria Airport at 1:40PM, arriving at Vancouver airport’s South Terminal at 2:15PM. Skies are clear as we cross Georgia Strait, giving me some good views of the Gulf Islands. As we approach Vancouver Airport from the east, it’s fascinating to fly low over the Fraser River delta farms and urban development in Surrey, Richmond and Delta. I even catch some glimpses of Mount Baker to the south of us through the orange-coloured haze in the sky this afternoon. I take the shuttle to the Main Terminal and board the Canada Line Skytrain, arriving at the City Centre Station a half hour later. I’m staying at the Metropolitan Hotel, which is a 5-minute walk away.

I use the MarineTraffic app on my iPhone to check on Koningsdam’s current position. As of 4:30PM, the ship is just entering Johnston Strait near Port Hardy on northern Vancouver Island, heading south to dock in Vancouver tomorrow morning. After having a shower and catching up with my online social media, I go downstairs to the hotel’s Diva bar and restaurant for some dinner. I have Grilled salmon over a roasted beet salad with a glass of Granville Island Pale Ale.

After dinner, I go on a walkabout downtown at sunset, taking photos of the buildings with my Canon R5. The art deco Marine Building is always a good subject, especially since it is surrounded with modern glass towers which reflect its image. The Apple Store is across the street from my hotel, but I’m not tempted to shop, despite being an Apple fan!

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