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Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

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Westminster, CA
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Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

Hi

not sure where to post my question.

but im gonna need advice on where to stay along the route.

i would like to visit Victoria Island...is that on the way? or is it a huge detour?

I can do the Butchart Gardens and see a little of the island in one day right?

Would love to do the ferry over to the island...sorry i haven't researched much yet....just getting started...

any other suggestions, comments, are appreciated. any other must sees along the way ?

thanks,

mary

SE Ontario
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1. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

Victoria Island is in the Arctic. I think you mean Vancouver Island. It is on the way. Suggest you look at a map, think about how long you want to take to make this trip, do up at the very least a possible itinerary and come back for suggestions for the Canadian parts of your trip.

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

Your question would suit the Road Trips Forum, link is here:

tripadvisor.com/ShowForum-g1-i12567-Road_Tri…

And Mary, the Alaskans drive down to the Lower 48 regularly, so post also on the Alaska Forum for anything North. In fact, IIRC, some of the Alaska Forum regulars also follow the above RTF.

For your specific question, you can get to VI from Seattle (see Top Questions Seattle Forum). You will need at least 1 night on VI. It takes 5 hours by ferry from the Seattle area to Victoria, then 4 hours to get off the Island to the Vancouver area. VI is large enough. 6 hours to drive N-S and 3 hours to drive E-W at mid Island. Vancouver is good for 4 nights.

You're on the right track about where to post your question. Ask about specific attractions and activities that interest you on the local forums. Those a and a's will drive how much time you will need to spend in a given location and therefore the route you will take. The RTF will be a great resource for routes and tips for what to see on the way. They are amazing with how much driving around they have done. At some point you will be ready to figure out where to stay and eat.

Please do include some important info if you post elsewhere (and here, actually). When you are doing this, how many nights/weeks you are allowing altogether, round trip or not, by RV or car, the make up of your party, your interests, what kinds of things you want to see/ do on your trip. Then people will know how to reply to your questions.

Edited: 4:15 pm, March 12, 2014
seattle
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3. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

if you look on the Seattle forum on top right you can read 'trips to Vancouver and Victoria'. It will give you your options and suggested routing.

Westminster, CA
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4. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

wow that was fast!

My head is spinning.

Leaving 5/3.

they have 2 weeks. (its actually my husband and daughter, she is working in Talkeetna this summer)

cool, gonna check that rtf, who knew?!

(may need to skip vancouver if its too much....)

THANKS, sure appreciated.

feeling better.

Vancouver, Canada
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5. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

You are driving from California to Alaska - ok, well, my first question to you is: How much time do you have for this drive? Are you trying to go return?

Next question: Do you want to go by road the entire way, or do you want to take the ferry part way?

If you want to go by road the entire way (which would be quite a bit cheaper, especially if you are in an RV), then Vancouver Island would be a small detour, but not unreasonable. (Victoria Island on the other hand, would be an enormous detour!)

If you want to include some travel by water, then it makes sense to include Vancouver Island as part of your trip.

How many days do you want to spend on the Vancouver Island part of your journey? You could take two weeks, but 3-4 days to drive up island to Port Hardy with a couple of scenic stops would give you a quick overview of the island.

You could arrive at Port Angeles, WA, take the MV Coho ferry across to Victoria, make your way up to Port Hardy, and then get on the BC Ferry to Prince Rupert. From there, you can connect with the Alaska Marine Highway to get ferries up to various ports in Alaska.

Additionally, you can catch the Alaska Marine Highway in Bellingham, just south of the Canadian border and go the entire way by ferry.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

I think I should clarify one statement above - it is not possible to drive to Vancouver Island without taking a ferry. When I suggest going all the way to Alaska by road, then you would still have to take a ferry if you wanted to detour from your route to take some time to visit Vancouver Island. If you were just thinking Victoria and Butchart Gardens, then allow two additional days for this detour.

Westminster, CA
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7. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

thanks so much.

yea, 2 additional days...probably not wanting to do that. they are taking a toyota prius car the whole way.

he is going to fly home.

thanks for the road info.

and would luv to do some travel by ferry...but if its gonna add alot more travel time...i think they should skip it.

nothing else yet i the "must see" list, unless anyone wants to suggest something....

im just starting to put my feelers out on this site so trying to get educated.

thanks so much.

appreciated.

Vancouver, Canada
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8. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

It all depends on time, budget and interests. You have given us no information on any of these three points, so its difficult to advise further.

Vancouver, Canada
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9. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

Perhaps a good place to start your research is here:

http://www.dot.state.ak.us/amhs/

Determine if the time/cost makes sense or not, and then from there you can plan your route.

Vancouver, Canada
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10. Re: Driving from Calif. to Alaska, wanting to visit Vancouver...

Okay you have 2 weeks from May 3rd. And your daughter is going to keep the car because she is working in AK for the summer. Your husband is flying back. Then your daughter and someone (maybe you!) will drive back down at the end of the summer?

Also look at how many hours behind the wheel they want to spend each day. That will help determine your choices as well.

Looking forward to helping as I am able with your plans.