Victoria was so charming in the middle of winter that knew we would love it even more if we visited in the summer. The highlight this time, as last time, was our trip to the Butchart Gardens, which I would classify as Disneyland for gardening enthusiasts. Even for people who don’t know the difference between an annual and a perennial (✋), it’s a surreal walk through one of the most impressive gardens in the world.
Rather than riding in a passenger ferry from Seattle, we drove across the Olympic Peninsula and crossed in to Canada on a ferry from Port Angeles. This allowed us to make detours to Lake Crescent and Hurricane Ridge on the way home, two lovely spots in Olympic National Park.
We knew we lived in a gorgeous place—but after this trip, I’m convinced the land around Puget Sound, from the Cascades to Vancouver Island, is the most beautiful place in North America to spend a summer.
Whistler Blackcomb has been on my skiing bucket list since I could remember the names of mountains. It got especially under my skin during Vancouver's 2010 Winter Olympics. No more than a few hours' drive north from Seattle, we finally made it up there this year for two of the sunniest, powderiest, most fabulous days of skiing I've enjoyed in ages.