Le Chic En Rose

Diaries of an independent traveller

Braving the elements we set off to explore Alaska’sย Ketchikan (see here for Part 1)! Billing itself as Alaska’s First City (since it’s the first port of call once you cross the border from Canada), tourism is the lifeblood of this region. We found the locals friendly and welcoming even on a cold damp August day. …

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After a couple of nights and a full day’s sailing on board the Noordam (see here), it was rather surreal to open our curtains the next morning and realise we had docked in port. Below us on the quay we got our first glimpse of the USA and South East Alaska’s first port of call, …

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We had booked a seven day cruise up from Vancouver to Seward, Alaska. Check-in was relatively quick and efficient but you do have to be patient lining up for US Border Control procedures, which for convenience are carried out in Vancouver (the Alaskan US/Canada border is a few hours sail time north from here). So …

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  I did a quick preview of our Alaskan travels just after we got back homeย here. I’m now starting to collate and write up the stories of our travels there last August. By way of a superb photographic introduction I’m sharing a gallery of photos taken by an Italian girl named Cecilia who we met …

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Having viewed the Kicking Horse Pass from the Spiral Tunnels Lookout point (see here), we stopped a little later to get a closer look at the river as it thunders through the Natural Bridge another tourist attraction in the Yoho National Park. It’s only a short distance off the Emerald Lake Road, west of Field …

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Heading back along the Trans-Canada Highway towards Vancouver we stopped off for a break at the Spiral Tunnels look-out point west of Lake Louise. Now back across the border in British Colombia (clocks go back an hour to Pacific Time) we were retracing some of the journey we had made on the Rocky Mountaineer (see …

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Having taken the Rocky Mountaineer from Vancouver to Banff (see here), we took the road option for the return journey via the Trans-Canada Highway. The road hugs the side of the rail tracks for quite a bit of the route and winds through some spectacular scenery along the way. Unlike the train journey we were …

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Lake Johnson a few kilometres out of Banff was, according to guide books, well worth a visit. A short drive out of town, it has a good walking trail round the lake. As it is at a reasonably low elevation it is usually snow free from April onwards though that wasn’t a consideration for us …

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One of the tourist highlights in Banff is to take the Banff Gondola up to the top of Sulphur Mountain to enjoy the spectacular views of Banff, the Bow Valley and the surrounding Rockie mountains afforded from the summit. However any thoughts of stunning vistas and breathtaking scenery were put to one side as Banff …

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  We arrived in Banff on an extremely hot August day. The heat and prevailing winds had unfortunately fanned the spread of wildfires in a national park to the north west of Lake Louise and the Rockies were blanketed in thick smoke for most of our visit (clearer in the mornings but drawing in more …

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