An intrepid traveller knows that in this world, there are still plenty of paths less travelled, destinations yet to be discovered by tourists.
How do we satiate our wanderlust and feed the need to travel and seek out the unknown? Of course, we’re not suggesting going to extremes. It’s more about easing into the undiscovered and using the experts to help us get there. Destinations in familiar places, such as the Pacific Northwest, still have plenty of places that demand a closer look. Travel rewards programs can help you do that. Take the RBC’s Visa Infinite‡ Avion® card, for example, as your guide to exploring the unknown: it brings the world in focus, and makes it even easier to just go.
When some of us think of the Pacific, we think south, we think islands: swaying palms, blue-on-blue waves and stretches of sand as far as the eye can see. But this is a different Pacific. A northern Pacific. Canada’s Pacific.
On Vancouver Island, we feed the need to travel for…
A reconnection with the land and the sea. Here, on Canada’s western edge, sits a different kind of island. It is here that Queen Victoria has her namesake city, the capital; it is here to where we retreat. It is also here, where a most spectacular place to which we retreat sits.
Perched at the water’s edge, like a queen sitting on her throne, facing ever westward, as if daring her most loyal yet rambunctious subject to lap at her feet yet entertain her with his every weathered move. The queen, in this case, is The Wickaninnish Inn, in Tofino, B.C.; her subject, the mighty Pacific. This award-winning member of the revered Relais & Chateaux network of, well, simply gorgeous places to hang your hat, has been a beacon of rest and relaxation and a front-row seat to some of nature’s most magnificent moods.
Stormwatchers gather at the Inn to take in the sea’s showy personality; the crashing waves, the surfers braving them, all while swirling pods of orca can be seen in the distance. But the ocean is not the Inn’s only muse. Chesterman Beach calls to the combers in all of us. The rainforest, ancient and resplendent with such giants as the Western Red Cedar, Douglas Fir and Sitka Spruce, begs for a mind-cleansing forest bathing walk. And the town of Tofino is about as laid back as a vacation spot should be.
Back at the Inn, emersion of the Pacific Northwest comes naturally: the cuisine is inspired by B.C.’s rich bounty, from straight-from-the-sea seafood to farm-fresh organic (and did we mention the wines?
The list is among the best in B.C.), to the Inn’s Ancient Cedars spa, with treatments that take their cues from the rustic elements that envelop the property, and our bodies. The sea air, the mesmerizing beat of the ocean surf, and the warm welcome from our hosts at The Wickaninnish will soon have us lulled into a peaceful slumber. No matter. Tomorrow we will be greeted by more. And the ocean will be waiting. wickinn.com