Part-time traveller, Full-Time Brummie

4 reasons why Vancouver and the Rocky Mountains are on my 2017 wishlist

4 reasons why Vancouver and the Rocky Mountains are on my 2017 wishlist
Well, first of all, both Canada and I have a big birthday this year.  Whilst I will be dragged kicking and screaming into my fifth decade in September, Canada is celebrating its sesquicentennial…that’s 150 years since Confederation.  So Canada will be having something of a year-long party, and I’m going to gatecrash.
But here are three other reasons why Canada – and in particular Vancouver and the Rocky Mountains – is on my 2017 travel wishlist.

The beautiful scenery

British Columbia has it all. Stunning waterfalls. Sparkling ocean. Rolling vineyards. Majestic mountains. Suspension bridges. Steamy hot springs. Lush forests.  Those famous turquoise lakes. Winding mountain roads, hugging the coast. There’s also the opportunity to spot a bit of wildlife…although if our previous trips are anything to go by the wild animals will keep themselves well hidden (we spotted the rear end of an elk once near the Grand Canyon…)
And yes, now I’m a bit of a hiking fan there may be a tiny bit of walking involved…
And of course, BC shares a mountain range with neighbouring province Alberta. And just over the province border are Banff and Jasper National Parks. We’ve already procured our permit which gives us free access to the National Parks in 2017!

Emerald Lake Lodge on the shores of Emerald Lake, Yoho National Park ( Earth Photography)

Emerald Lake Lodge on the shores of Emerald Lake, Yoho National Park ( Earth Photography)

Train journeys

There’s nothing like a relaxing train ride through stunning scenery to make you appreciate the vast landscapes of a country. There are two main rail journeys which link Vancouver with the Rocky Mountains. The first is The Canadian, the flagship of ViaRail Canada, which traverses cross-country all the way east to west and back again. There are private cabins, or couchettes if you don’t mind sharing. Or you can choose the more budget-friendly option of a comfortable reclining seat. Or there’s the iconic Rocky Mountaineer, a luxurious, once-in-a-lifetime experience, taking the original 1885 Canadian Pacific route through the spectacular Rocky Mountains in daylight, with an included overnight hotel stay in the town of Kamloops.
Which one to choose? The train journey is a bucket list item of mine, but at the same time I’m not keen on spending out the same cost for one (albeit spectacular) train journey as I could for another whole holiday! Leaning towards a sleeper berth on The Canadian…but after seeing Inside No 9’s ‘La Couchette’ I’m not so sure…


I’m so excited to be visiting this city – after all, who doesn’t love a city where you can spend the morning in the mountains, picnic in the park in the afternoon, and watch sunset on the beach? And the seawall – the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path – is the perfect route for strolling around the city, taking in sea, forest and Vancouver’s skyscraper-filled skyline, all in one go. There’s a huge street food scene emerging here too – and you know how much I love street food… Apparently I have to try a Japadog? And there are enough microbreweries to keep Mr Fletche happy too.
And my cousin Faye moved over to start a new life in Vancouver in 2008, so I’m excited to catch up with her! I follow her Instagram Stories avidly and love how her accent has transformed in 9 years! So if anyone needs a fantastic hair stylist and makeup artist in the Vancouver area, look up Faye Smith...she’s fab 🙂

Vancouver - one of my 4 reasons to visit Canada in 2017

Vancouver (

Since starting this blog post (it’s been sitting in my drafts for ages!) we’ve now gone and booked our trip! Two weeks, start of October, starting and ending in Vancouver! We’ve (loosely) booked some cancellable accommodation thanks to but hopefully we’ll firm up our plans and itinerary very soon…all recommendations welcome!

Canada 2017 Pinterest



30 responses to “4 reasons why Vancouver and the Rocky Mountains are on my 2017 wishlist”

  1. Exciting isn’t it planning future travel. Canada is so much like New Zealand, though on a bigger and grander scale. My other half has a significant birthday next year, larger number than yours 🙂 Em, look forward to the blog posts about your Canada trip 🙂

  2. As a Winnipeger, it always makes me sad that people skip us over for the coast 🙁 (The rest of us are beautiful too!!) However, if it’s your first trip to Canada, the Rockies are certainly a great place to start!
    Jasper is much quieter than Banff, and it won’t be as crowded- the views are just as gorgeous! Maligne Lake is as beautiful as Lake Louise without the ridiculous number of people traipsing around. Will you be renting a car for AB? Looking forward to hearing more!!

    • emfletche says:

      Thanks for commenting…and hopefully we’ll love Canada so much that we’ll be planning our next trip back soon! We plan to pick up the car once we get to Jasper and we’ll take four or five days to drive back down to Vancouver after spending just under a week in Jasper and Banff. Any itinerary suggestions are recommended though as nothing’s set in stone apart from our flights!

  3. josypheen says:

    Squeeeee! I’ll give you recommendations as soon as I can!

  4. Vancouver was so stunning! A city surrounded by nature! I have all the other surrounding cities on my bucket list too 🙂

  5. I’m so jealous!! Canada is firmly on my wish list. Hope you have the most amazing time. Can’t wait to read about it!

  6. thebeasley says:

    Yes, yes & YES! I would absolutely love to go. Just so stunning x

  7. The Bloke has been many times to Vancouver and it’s his favourite place in the world!

  8. Ritu says:

    I have been to Vancouver briefly, as an 11 year old! We stayed on Vancouver Island, or Victoria, which was beautiful Too!

  9. My Sister was in Canada and may have visited that lake in the last picture, or one very similar to it.
    They then went on a cruise round um cold places that I can’t remember the name of at the minute!
    I’d love to go, but I think as I advance in years I have become more scared of flying lol

  10. Phil Taylor says:

    I live close to Canada, but not to the side of it where Vancouver is. That city is on my list too! I’ve heard it’s beautiful.

  11. Ruth Daly says:

    I used to live in Vancouver and LOVE it (except when it’s raining)! Some things to see: North Shore (Grouse mountain, etc) Capilano, also downtown and Stanley Park; and Jasper is so much nicer than Banff although if you can do both, it’s well worth it! Enjoy 🙂

  12. I’ve just pinned this post so I can come back to it in a few months. I’ve gotta go to Vancouver!

  13. I am from Vancouver but currently living in London. Heading home in about a month and I am so excited to be back to all the beauty and adventures that Vancouver and Canada has to offer!

  14. dreaming says:

    I live in Vancouver. Any tips you need, just let me know. I don’t know what type of person you are but i imagine all the touristy spots will be covered in everything you read. Fairmont Pacific Rim just opened up a restaurant/bar called The Botanist. It is amazing! But not cheap. If it’s not within your budget, then just go there for a drink. Well worth seeing the hotel and your drink and service will be wonderful. Make sure to walk through Gastown – a good spot to stop for a drink and/or dinner is Pourhouse Vancouver. Opens at 5, live music on Sundays and a New Orleans feel. You can rent bikes to go around Stanley Park but walking it is nice too. It takes approx 2 hours. Granville Island is great. There is a great Distillery there called Liberty. And of course the Public Market. Then you can take a water taxi to Olympic Village and that’s the area where there are quite a few breweries.
    And of course the Grouse Mountain view, maybe even Whistler if you have the time .. it is an approx 2 hour drive.
    I truly hope you enjoy our city, I know how lucky I am to live here 🙂

    • emfletche says:

      That’s some great information there! All of that’s going on my list -and we plan to spend a couple of days in Whistler too when we drive back down from the Alberta parks. What area would you recommend we look at staying in?

      • If you’re doing an Airbnb or something I’d probably recommend gastown as close to the pan pacific as possible. If you stray too Far East from that area, it can get quite shady. Coal Harbour is also a nice area (close to Stanley Park) and so is Yaletown which is more downtown situated and central to everything. Yaletown would probably be your best bet.

  15. phoenixraay says:

    Canada is beautiful, I love living right by the rocky mountains!

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