Horseshoe Bay to Departure Bay: The ferry bridge across the Strait of Georgia, British Columbia


People travel back and forth across the Georgia Strait as if they were crossing a bridge between the city of Vancouver and the island of Vancouver. However, the mode of transport is a ferry and it takes approximately an hour and a half to cross the entrance from Horseshoe Bay, West Vancouver to Departure Bay in Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. And if you have never been on a British Columbia ferry, you will find yourself with real pleasure. The ferry is a huge ship with four decks and closely resembles a horizontal building sliding across the ocean. But he effortlessly navigates so smoothly that it is only after looking out the window that he realizes that he has already begun to move.

Upon boarding Horseshoe Bay, the Queen of Cowichan begins loading from long waiting lines of 350 vehicles and 1,500 passengers. Just when an orchestra conductor conducts an orchestra, the ground crew begins to direct traffic flows on multiple levels of the ferry. It takes about 40 minutes to load and then, with a loud fog horn, the ferry departs from Horseshoe Bay. The coast of British Columbia appears quickly and suddenly you find yourself in the middle of a vast field of water surrounded by snow-covered mountain ranges on one side and a distant horizon on the other.

The crossing of the Strait goes fast. In addition to a newspaper stand, a gift shop and a large cafeteria, the best place to be is to look out the window or outside on one of the decks watching how the virgin coast of British Columbia changes as you move. Passing Bowen Island you go to an open sea. On deck with the wind and the sun and the silence of the sea, you marvel at how efficient man has become when crossing a large body of water. Smaller ships pass, people say hello. A fishing boat and a freighter heading to Vancouver can be seen in the distance.

The first land he sees when he approaches the Bay of Departure is Gabriola Island, which looks like a green brush upside down with trees while the bristles shoot throughout the Island. Shortly after he sees his destiny: a small city ​​with a large docking station at the end of a long bridge waiting for cars to leave the ferry deck. But the trip has been so short and pleasant that one is tempted to stay on board and wait for the next trip to Vancouver.