> The Beesley Buzz: Canada and California: My two-stop holiday to visit my two Aunts

Canada and California: My two-stop holiday to visit my two Aunts

I had never travelled particularly far during my life and holidays as a child were few and far between, but when I lost my mum 11 years ago, I realised that I really wanted to travel to visit my two aunts who she had been incredibly close to when growing up but who I hadn't seen for many many years.

One lived in Canada and the other in California so we had to have a two-stop holiday in order to visit both of them. Of course, the biggest highlight was to meet them again after so many years, but what came as a wonderful surprise was just how much I enjoyed seeing some of the special sights in each of the countries.

As I look back through holiday photos, there are so many moments that deserve a mention, but I have had to pick out just a few of my favourites:

First Stop - Canada
I actually spent most of my visit to Canada in bed with pneumonia which wasn't a good start to the holiday - so then I knew I had to make the most of it for the last couple of days:

Top spots for me were...

The Capilano suspension bridge.
There is a reason why I look so terrified, that bridge REALLY wobbles a lot! (and is really high up over looking a valley).

And Whistler.
I thought it was so cool (pun-intended) to be able to get to somewhere covered in snow which was just a short drive away from Vancouver.

My handsome husband ready to hit the slopes...
Where he discovered that he really can't ski!
I stuck to enjoying the views by cable car and what stunning views they were. Beautiful snow covered peaks with tiny little kids as young as toddlers on the black rated ski runs - we were seriously impressed!

Second Stop - California
The sunshine of California certainly helped my recovery from the Pneumonia. I found an instant appeal to San Francisco's Pier 39 which reminded me a lot of my hometown where I grew up (Brighton). Ok so Brighton lacks being blessed by quite so much sunshine and doesn't have the stinky sea-lions that had become such a popular attraction in San Francisco but I loved being near the sea, and the hustle and bustle of everything going on.
Pier 39, with Alcatraz in the background.
I dreaded the trip to Alcatraz though. I just thought this is going to be boring boring boring! My husband really wanted to see it though so of course I went along to - and I am SO glad I did. If I had to pick the BIGGEST highlight of the two-stop holiday, Alcatraz would be it!
There is something that fascinates the mind about a stand alone island that is visible from the mainland whether it be one closer to home like the Bigbury-on-sea tidal island where the single hotel on the island gets separated from the rest of the mainland once the tide comes in, or the mystery of Spinalonga, the island used as a Leper colony off of the coast of Crete.

And Alcatraz is just as magical and interesting and fascinating.

It is as though the walls just breathe history and tell a story. You are left wondering about the characters that lived there, the prison guards that worked there and what the day to day goings on would have been like in those cells.

Of course San Fransico boasts all the other famous sites like the Golden Gate bridge which I fell in love with as a child when I watched my first bond movie: A view to a kill. We found ourselves mesmerised day after day as we awoke to foggy skies only to see the sun shine through and reveal the beauty of the bridge.
We also visited Lombard street famous for its steep hairpin bends.
as well as finding some other hidden gems along the way - I don't recall where this was but it was a quieter walkway cutting through somewhere in the city.
We finished our trip with by driving across the bridge out of San Francisco and into the Napa Valley where we enjoyed a relaxing mud bath heated by the natural underground springs. Strange but wonderful at the same time!

I would thoroughly recommend every aspect of our two-stop holiday (well apart from catching pneumonia - that bit I would advise giving a miss!)

This is our entry into Travelsupermarket.com's Holiday Postcards Blogging competition featuring our two stop holiday to Vancouver in Canada and San Francisco in California, USA.  #HolidayPostcards


  1. Dead jealous you got to see the Golden Gate Bridge! When we went it was foggy - I thought it might have just been a myth that the bridge existed :p

    1. thanks Rachael. Your holiday looked amazing too. We really hope to go back one day - I think the kids would love it! x

  2. I spent the summer of 1978 in Vancouver; I well remember the Capilano bridge...they've changed the wooden deck since I was there, in 1978 it was aged grey bits of very uncertain timber...added to the pucker factor!!

    1. thanks for your comment John. I suppose it is reassuring that it is checked and refurbished at least. Don't think I would have liked it at all in 1978!

  3. My great aunt lives just down the road from the Capilano bridge and I have a photo just like that one! Love Canada xx


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