Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Vacation That Was, Part 1: Victoria!

Today, I give you the first of my two-part, overly summarized review of the vacation that was, for me. This installment details the first leg of the trip, to Victoria, British Columbia.

The trip started at 4am, getting up for a 7:30 flight out of Newark, NJ, which we almost missed. Six hours later, we were on Canadian soil, and a three hour bus/ferry combo brought us to the beautiful city of Victoria.

Victoria, you see, is a tourist town. That is, everything looks nice... but prices are also notoriously higher than you'll likely find at your local shops. Small wonder that we still managed to buy quite a lot of stuff, including a stylish T-shirt and fuzzy fleece for myself.

We stayed at the Fairmont Empress hotel, essentially the swankiest, most historic hotel in all of Victoria. This year marked its 100th year in business, and it had played host to many a celebrity over the years, including the Queen herself.

Highlights... The Royal Wax Museum (and praying with wax-Ghandi), downtown Victoria (very nice waterfront, and a lot of great stores), Oh Gelato! (a gelato place with 66 flavors. Blueberry cheesecake=Heaven), the Victoria Parliament Building, and buskers. There were many of these talented musicians lining the streets, ranging from Celtic violinists to acoustic duets to some crazy reggae band that used six marimbas. Wild stuff.

Pictures, from top to bottom... Victoria Waterfront, the Victoria Parliament building at night, me praying with Mahatma, the Fairmont Empress, and a mime. Next entry: The real highlight: Cruising through Alaska!

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