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Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

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Minnesota
posts: 53
reviews: 6
Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

We are planning a one day trip to Vancouver Island on July 4th. We are staying in West Vancouver about 15 minutes from Horseshoe Bay. We have a family of 11 meeting at 11:30 for lunch and a tour of Buchart Gardens 1 - 3. Each family will have their own car and can arrive to the island early and/or stay late. I was thinking of taking the Tsawwassen Ferry 7:00 am in the morning to Victoria. Do some sightseeing and meet up at the Gardens. I would then drive north to Nanaimo, touring wineries, seeing small towns, scenic views along the way. We would than leave on the 9:30 pm ferry from Departure Bay to Horseshoe Bay. I am wondering however, if we don't start the drive until after 3, how much is going to be open for tours? There is a 7:30 pm from DB to HB that we would take as well, but I wasn't sure if that would cause us to rush too much. We could do the reverse but I am not sure how many wineries & stops we can get in driving from Nanaimo to Victoria and be at the gardens by 11:30 am. Any advice would be appreciated!

Nanaimo, Canada
Destination Expert
for Nanaimo, Vancouver Island
posts: 4,536
reviews: 303
11. Re: Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

The Mill Bay Ferry does cut off any potential traffic congestion over the Malahat and any possible Colwood Crawl issues (of which I have spent a solid hour in before, for reasons beyond me).

Nanaimo, Canada
posts: 13,425
reviews: 32
12. Re: Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

If you opt to use the Mill Bay ferry, (the prettiest shortcut in the world, or so they advertise!!) you can buy your tickets for the ferry at Thrifty's, just off the highway. You get a bit of a discount there. Be aware that you need cash for this route... no credit card or debit accepted on the ferry!

Minnesota
posts: 53
reviews: 6
13. Re: Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

Thank you all! I love the idea of the Mill Bay Ferry & will look into booking that. Also, No_Plans_13 is my sister ;)! The entire family is going to Vancouver for parents 50th wedding anniversary & we are trying to find the balance between together time & apart time, hence the similar schedule but different stops.

Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
posts: 7,649
reviews: 94
14. Re: Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

let us know what you end up deciding to do..and have a great time with your family.

15. Re: Victoria/Nanaimo Drive

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