Top 5 Bucket List
As 2021 comes to a close, Michelle and I have been working out our Bucket List for 2022. Here are some of our choices of places to visit for our 2022 Bucket List. Michelle’s daughters will be joining us from the Philippines very soon, so there will be so many really cool spots to visit right here in North America that they will not have seen.
So let’s kick-off our list with spot number 5
5. Vancouver Island
If there was a place that I could call home it’s Victoria, a must-see location. I spent 13 years in Victoria while in the Navy, and this city always feels like home to me. There are beautiful walks along the Inner Harbor Boardwalk. There are beautiful little shops and restaurants to see and visit. For me, being a Navy Man, I loved looking at the pleasure craft moored at the various marines along the walk.
One must visit place is Spinnakers Pub. I remember back to Friday’s Make and Mends, a Naval term for taking the afternoon off, we would head down to the Pub for lunch with the people from your Department, the menu was fantastic, and we would have a bite to eat and a beer or two (Sailors after all) and then we would head off to our weekend plans.
I had no choice but to make sure Campbell River was on the Bucket List for 2022, I have raved to Michelle about how beautiful and rugged Campbell River is. I had the honor of living in this charming city for only a few short months, but it left a lasting impression on me. The people were so friendly and helpful, and the scenery was breathtaking!
One place that is a must-see while you are in Campbell River is Elk Falls. These majestic 25 metre (89 foot) waterfalls should not be missed. There is an easy hiking trail that covers approximately 4 km complete with a viewing platform and suspension bridge. I use to visit this site three or four times a week. The area was so peaceful.
If you have a craving for Fish & Chips, you need to visit Dick’s Fish and Chips down on Fisherman’s Wharf, just south of the BC Ferry terminal. The food is fantastic and the owners so friendly. Once again being down on the Wharf with all the Pleasurecraft and salt air. The only way to enjoy Fish and Chips!
4. Seattle – Pikes Market
Pike’s Market is one of Michelle’s Bucket List places to go. Her first job after coming to Canada was at Starbucks, and she said early on, this was a Bucket List place for her, so she could visit the origins of Starbucks. I personally love Pikes Market, as we use to come to Seattle while I was in the Navy, and I would always go to the Market, as there was so much to see and experience.
Back in the day, I was into magic, and I found this cool little store called Market Magic Shop in the Market, they would do little demonstrations and magic tricks for you. I bought more than one fake thumb from here. This shop has been part of the Pike’s Market since 1973, and it is the longest-running shop in the Pacific Northwest.
Obviously, there are so many cool and wonderful places to experience at the market, but I have always been fond of the Magic Shop. Photography opportunities abound at the Market as well, from bright lively colours of the shops to the cool and interesting people you see on the streets. The Ulanzi GoPro Cage would be the ideal add-on for a trip here. It’s small and with the ability to add an external mic to your rig, there would be excellent opportunities to get some killer B roll.
3. Sunshine Coast
Next on our Bucket List is the Sunshine Coast. What!! That’s just up the street from where I live. I know, I know, however, the Sunshine Coast is an amazing place to visit in the summer months. There are so many options for you, ranging from Scuba Diving, Kayaking, Hiking, Fishing, and enjoying the various small restaurants and little B&B’s along the Coastal Hwy. The other thing that makes the Sunshine Coast so appealing is how easy it is to get there, though don’t leave it to the last minute to book a ferry or a place to stay as everything books up so fast!
If you are looking for a centralized place to stay, I would highly recommend Bella Beach Inn in Davis Bay. We stayed there in the summer for a couple of days. We were lucky enough to stay in one of the renovated rooms and they were beautiful and the $$ was spot on! Being centrally located you can be in Gibson’s in 20 minutes, Tuwanek is 30 minutes away, which offers a couple of excellent places to launch your Kayaks from.
Restaurant and Pub recommendations in the area. If you are into Sushi, like we are, you can not miss 5517 Sushi Bar in Sechelt. We were one of the very first customers when they first opened back in 2005. There Menu is fabulous. This is a must-be place to eat! In Gibson’s, there is Molly’s Reach, the famous restaurant from the Beachcombers Canadian TV series from back in the 70’s. The owners have changed over the years, but the quality of food is excellent.
2. Jasper Alberta
Jasper has always and will always remain high on our Bucket List. This are is breathtaking! The majestic Canadian Rockies are all around, with vistas in every direction. I have always loved Jasper more than Banff as it seems slightly less developed and a little better on your pocketbook if you choose to stay in a hotel there. My first trip to Jasper was back in the mid 80’s while on leave from the Navy, I was lucky enough to spend 4 weeks in the area. I will never forget driving into town, a two-lane road divided by a grassy median, and everywhere you looked there was wildlife.
Michelle and I had the opportunity to go to Jasper in 2017 when we drove across Canada, and we stayed there in our Van. Though it was more developed from the last time I was there, it still had the air of ruggedness which is what I think is so attractive to the area.
There is more than 1000 kilometres of trails and routes to choose from, backcountry camping is a great way to experience the rugged, natural untamed wilderness of Jasper National Park. There is something for everyone at the park rated from easy to difficult and 1 to 10-day adventures!
My vice is water sports, my plan is to head up with our Kayaks and see about doing a multi-day kayak trip across some of the emerald blue lakes in the area. Some of the lakes you can visit in the area for kayaking are Lake Annette, Lake Edith which are rated as easy, then there are Patricia Lake, Pyramid Lake, Medicine Lake all rated as Intermediate. Be sure to plan your trips and error on the side of safety. Also, when in the backcountry, or pretty much anywhere, be sure to carry a good First Aid kit as you never know when you will need one!
Croatia has been on the top of our Bucket List for a long time! Why Croatia of all places, since I have fallen in love with Kayaking, I have wanted to train with Dimitri Vandepoele. I found Dimitri on YouTube of all places, and I watched some of his training video’s and he is simply amazing! After doing lots of research, I discovered that he runs a course on Lumbarda Island Korcula, Croatia. Dimitri’s training is easily the best out there. I have visited a number of the various Kayak centre’s here in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, and nothing comes close.
If you combine Dimitre’s training course and the beautiful seaside villages found here, you can not go wrong! The training is completed over 5 days 7 hour days, some classroom lessons and the rest out on the water, here is the course breakdown
Camp Schedule – Day 1
Ho can this be a bucket list, when I was in the Navy, I spent time in the Adriatic, but never really had an opportunity to visit the area, and anyone that knows me, knows I am deeply in love with the water. However, there are tons of other cool things to do and see on Lumbarda, such as;
That pretty much sums up our Bucket List for 2022. I know we will easily complete 2 – 5 on our Bucket List. I am hoping we can make it to number 1 this year. Let me know what your Bucket List ideas are for 2022! Leave a comment down below.