One might say that the guests aboard National Geographic Venture were rather Victoria-esque this day! We arrived at the beautiful Garden City on a sumptuous fall day with soft light illuminating the storied shores of British Columbia’s capital with the Olympic Range smiling proudly in the distance. Nestled at the southern tip of grand Vancouver Island, Victoria boasts one of the world’s greatest standards of living with comfortable climes, wonderful wilderness, and less-than-soggy streets, tucked away as it is in the rain shadow of Washington’s Mount Olympus. A day of exploration ensued with interpretive walks, traditional canoe lessons, bicycle outings, a private viewing of the Robert Bateman gallery, and even a ghost tour. We were booked solid with cultural delights that left bellies and minds filled and ready for our next destination: the orca-laden coastlines of the San Juan Islands.
National Geographic Venture
On our final day aboard National Geographic Venture , we visited Sucia Island and explored its incredible geology and fossils. Formed through thousands and thousands of years of sediment accumulation from glacial silt washing downstream, Sucia Island is home to stunning sandstone sculptures and fossils trapped in time. Located on the northern part of the San Juan Islands, Sucia Island is home to various marine mammals and seabirds alike, with harbor seal haul-outs, gulls, and great blue herons galore. The morning was spent kayaking and taking Zodiacs around the “dirty” waters that give the island its name. Despite the rain, spirits were high, and the feeling of adventure and excitement continued as it has all week. Too bad we will not be back soon to discover all the fungi and mycelium networks that flourished from today’s rainfall! Our afternoon and evening featured hiking to Fossil Beach to observe traces of the ancient life that once thrived in this region. With emotional and pun-filled recaps, a final delicious dinner, and one last trip down memory lane during our guest slideshow, we couldn’t have asked for a better voyage to complete our Pacific Northwest itinerary. What a treat!