Updated: Mar 6, 2020
Two weeks ago was our twelfth wedding anniversary. It’s wild to say that knowing that I never really imagined myself as a wife, let alone married, but alas, it’s 2019 and we have made it twelve years. These years haven’t come without many fights. Marriage is really likely one of the hardest journey’s in life one will take, besides parenthood. Nonetheless, here we are and to mark this particular landmark in our life we decided to take a family road trip. Originally, we had planned to visit with some family down on the Oregon Coast, but when the plans changed we decided to hit up our 2019 family bucket list and check one of those goals off of our list.
Ike has lived in Washington for just over 12 years and I am homegrown, born and raised in this region, but in all of the years that we have been together, we have never really traveled the British Columbia province of Canada, so we thought it would be fun to venture over the border and explore Vancouver Island and give the girls another passport stamp. We are so blessed to live so close to another country and really had the most fun connecting as a family and getting to know that area. The trip was unique because even though we were going on a road trip, it still required as much effort as it does when we travel internationally, so we had to plan this trip with two different mindsets - what we would need for a successful road trip that involved ferry travel and what we would need to effectively and efficiently cross the border. There were lots of moving parts to think about and consider with a child and an infant in tow. At the end of this blog, I will list a few things that helped us to make this international trip effortless.
Family-Friendly Victoria B.C.
When the ferry docked and we landed in Victoria, B.C we got off the ferry and headed to our hotel. Hotel Zed was our choice for lodging for the weekend and we absolutely LOVED it. It checked off all of our hopes for a hotel, bright, quirky and inspiring for the photographer in us, but fun, exciting and full of opportunity for the kids. Hotel Zed is a motel refurbished into a really fun colorful, throwback to my 80’s childhood with “comics books in every room, retro-chic amenities like vinyl listening stations, typewriter stations, board games and rotary dial phones, a Zedinator waterslide, Ping Pong lounge, bikes, vinyl listening station, board games and it was conveniently located right next door to The Ruby Restaurant, which is known for its incredible chicken WHICH WAS SO good.
Eating in Victoria, B.C.
We spent a lot of time enjoying the hotel and checking out all of the cool places Victoria had to offer.
Below find a list of all of the cool places we ate and visited; our recommendations for your own trip to Victoria.
Places to Eat:
Canadian Must Tries:
Ketchup Potato Chips
Places to See in Victoria, B.C.
FAMILY ROAD TRIP TO VICTORIA, B.C. TIPS AND TRICKS
If you are going to visit Victoria by car here are some thing we did to keep costs low and some things to remember:
Always, always, always, when traveling with your children to international destinations protect your travel plans with travel insurance. We get our insurance from Yonder (I'll be writing a post about what to look for and consider and why we insure, in the near future).
Book your ferry reservation ahead of time - you cannot drive onto Vancouver Island and it is only accessible by ferry. You can take the Coho Ferry or the Victoria Clipper and plan to be at the ferry port 90 minutes before departure.
Consider the season that you are visiting and be mindful of tourism. Plan ample time for your visits to all of the destinations.
Whenever traveling internationally, even if by car, keep your passport on you at all times. A fanny pack is a great way to do this. If you don't feel comfortable keeping your passport on your body, make a paper copy to keep on your body and lock your passport in the hotel safe.
Pack breakfast foods like oatmeal and bars, and lunch items and snacks so that you only have to eat out 1x per day and can save on the expenses.
Book an amazing hotel/ motel like Hotel Zed that has really cool amenities so that part of your vacation experience can be had at your destination.
We had such a blast in Victoria and we are so thankful for the opportunity to celebrate our anniversary and what makes us all a family, together.
Have you visited Victoria? What do you love about it? Tell me your faves in the comments below. Also a very special thank you to Yonder for supporting and sponsoring this trip.
Check out our recap video below
With strength, courage and wisdom,