Roadtrip destinations in the PNW
July 20, 2016 11:03 AM   Subscribe

Please recommend roadtrip destinations from Vancouver, BC?

My life, head, and future are a complete mess right now, it's been suggested to me to take some time off work - and to go do a roadtrip.

I have no idea where to go or what to do. If I took the time off for a staycation, I'd just end up hiding in my apartment.

I'm hoping that a recommendation could get me excited about a destination or event.

Would probably take a week/ten days off, thinking of spending a couple/three of nights on the road (and the rest hiding in my apartment... while I still have somewhere to stay - a variation on "renoviction").

Money is a consideration, I don't enjoy camping/glamping/hiking and have no gear. Timing is flexible - sometime in the upcoming month or so. Solo trip. Driving a Subaru Outback and I've slept in the back before but would prefer not to. Recently did a daytrip to Lillooet for work; it was pretty... but meh.
posted by porpoise to Travel & Transportation around British Columbia (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I am not familiar with Lillooet, but the pictures sure look amazing from a natural-beauty-of-the-outdoors perspective, but if that is not your thing, maybe identify more about what you are looking for on a road trip? Do you want to poke around in little tourist towns, sit by the ocean in a cafe, visit historic sites, read books in a hotel, socialize at a b&b...and what types of events do you like? Do you have a daily budget as you say money is a consideration? That would be helpful information to know.
posted by nanook at 11:11 AM on July 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

Is the U.S. a consideration? I've never been, but I've thought about going to the "Bavarian" village of Leavenworth, WA, in the summertime. Seems like it would be completely different from anything else in the Pacific NW. It's a nice 4-5 hour drive. You can take a long trip home with a few days in Seattle or one of the islands, or head down to Yakima for wineries.
posted by hydra77 at 11:13 AM on July 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

Goldendale Observatory is open to the public. Check the hours and make sure it isn't closed when you go. Stargazing FTW!

Hoh rainforest is not far from where there is a ferry to Vancouver, iirc. On the other side of the mountain, in the rain shadow of it, is the driest point north of San Francisco.
posted by Michele in California at 11:31 AM on July 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

It's possible you might find Leavenworth charming, evidently thousands do. Many more of us find it teeth-grindingly cute-cute-cute. Much like Disneyland, but without even a pretense of "fun" -- just "spend."

When my head has been in a complete mess in the past, I've found that spending time near the ocean is very healing. It's not so much that it's beautiful, which it often is, but something about the air and the distance over the sea ..... it helps. If that sounds like you might like it, you can stay in B.C. and go to Tofino. A bit of a drive, but lots of different places to stay, and beaches and ocean waves and sky and weather. If you want to come across the border -- a different country! -- I'd recommend driving around the Olympic Peninsula. If you'd like a town, I recommend Pacific Beach, an old time beach town, with cheap motels. (NOT Ocean Shores)

If you do this, please take the trip first, just in case you want to stay an extra day or two. So sad if you took the trip the last few days, and then wished you could stay longer.

Good luck!
posted by kestralwing at 11:33 AM on July 20, 2016 [3 favorites]

The Sunshine Coast is quite nice, a ferry trip, a stay in a quiet B and B. Watch the tide change at Skookumchuck Narrows. There's lots of hiking.

It's a close and easy vacation spot from Vancouver.
posted by jennstra at 11:34 AM on July 20, 2016

Try Whitehorse and points north, or go through the Rockies to Banff.
posted by monotreme at 11:51 AM on July 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

As local triage, consider going to the UBC museum of anthropology. The way their collection is presented wasn't what I was used to but I loved it. Although they have plenty of curated items on display, and some very cool permanent pieces, there's a ton of things tucked away in drawers that you can open up and discover at your leisure. This was so fun and enticing, like, what treasures will I find if I open up just. one. more. drawer?? You've probably already visited but if you haven't consider this a good enough reason.
posted by Mizu at 12:27 PM on July 20, 2016

If I were you, I'd drive south to Seattle>Olympia>Portland>Bend. I really love Bend; there's enough nature stuff to do that if you feel like floating the river or hiking you can, but there's also enough breweries, restaurants, etc. to get in some social time. There are lots of local hotels that were inexpensive the times I've been there, and there's always Airbnb or VRBO if you wanted to go that route (not sure what your budget is). Plus it's high desert which always feels rejuvenating to me (more than the ocean, although YMMV).

It's 9 hours from you, which in my opinion is the perfect solo 'got some thinkin' to do' roadtrip distance, although depending on your timeline that might be a bit far. I can see driving to Portland on I-5 the first day and staying overnight there, spending a day and night (or two) in Bend, and then driving back home via I-90, maybe staying overnight in Ellensberg depending on how many hours a day you want to drive. Good luck, whatever you decide!
posted by stellaluna at 1:48 PM on July 20, 2016 [2 favorites]

It might be too late to arrange tickets/accommodation but what about driving to Wells, BC for the ArtsWells music festival?
posted by rozee at 2:29 PM on July 20, 2016

I'd suggest Seattle, personally. Go check out a Sounders or Mariners game, or both! Also the Experience Music Project Museum, and whatever else. I find it's got more to do than Vancouver does so if you're only going for a day or 3, you could probably take a lot in.
posted by Hoopo at 2:53 PM on July 20, 2016

Get on the ferry to Nanaimo. Drive over to Tofino or Ucluelet; go up to Strathcona and drive all the way down Buttle lake and beyond. Clear air, big spaces Beach or Mountains or both. Its beautiful country and out of the city. Telegraph Cove, Port Hardy just wander around and enjoy.
posted by adamvasco at 3:47 PM on July 20, 2016 [1 favorite]

« Older Modern Software Development Best Practices   |   Scenar device for pain: true or false? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.