If there’s a whale breaching on the protected waters of the San Juan Islands, there’s a good chance a passenger on Mystic Sea Charters’ 100-foot vessel will see the splashy spectacle. The company’s five- to six-hour tours have an impressive track record when it comes to spotting the gargantuan mammals, introducing tour-goers to different species of whale up to 99% of the time. Onboard the ship, a naturalist divulges facts about ocean life as passengers watch for whales from the heated cabin or from the deck, which has 4-foot railings so guests can hold on if whales start singing and dancing to the hit song “Rock the Boat.” The company promises that voyagers will see at least one gray, orca, humpback, or minke whale, depending on the season. If not, they’ll receive a follow-up whale-watching tour for free.
Sundance Balloons' vibrant hot-air balloons float adventurous passengers over scenic landscapes. Each one-hour journey commences as sojourners greet their flight crew at a pre-determined location, receive a briefing on what to expect during the excursion, and observe their balloon as it swells to more than 10 stories in height.
The woven gondolas glide 1,000 feet above the ground but can sometimes gently skim treetops or cornfields when wandering over the countryside. Since balloons drift with prevailing winds, there is no wind chill and travellers feel only a slight sensation of movement. As is tradition for ballooning, explorers of the appropriate age end their flight with a champagne toast to tranquility, beauty, and neighbourhoods that appear as giant smiley faces only visible from the air.
Apollo Athletic Club spans nearly 45,000 square feet of body-moulding fitness facilities enhanced by a stereophonic sound system, an abundance of natural light, and a layout designed to facilitate availability of equipment. The one-month membership requires no contract or crop-sharing arrangement, bestowing upon members a pass card that grants unlimited access to all of Apollo's fitness areas. Facilities include the weight room, outfitted with Hammer Strength and Cybex equipment, a 25-foot lap pool and three hot tubs, squash and racquetball courts, two steam rooms, a basketball court, and designated seniors- and ladies-only areas. Approximately 40 classes per week harness the power of group motivation and wind energy of simultaneous jump roping with strength training, Zumba, and six senior classes, such as Osteo-Fit, designed for those living with osteoporosis.
VRC Fitness hastens heart rates in a squeaky-clean and eco-friendly facility of more than 25,000 square feet. Members get access to four cardio areas, a pool and hot tub, seven courts for racquet sports, and a motivational butler. Pump iron in a weight room organized by targeted body zones, or work a round of reps in the circuit weight room. A one-on-one orientation session with a certified personal trainer, who will create a customized workout program suited to personal health ambitions, accessorizes all new memberships. A bountiful schedule of group fitness classes fosters collective vigour through cycling, boot camps, dance classes, and more, and a ladies-only area demolishes guts of diligent divas. Registered goal-smashers can take advantage of family and local benefits or sign up for tanning, towel service, registered yoga classes, and additional personal training sessions for additional costs, though entries in stationary-bike races are always free.
At Valley Wake Park, visitors to this evergreen-lined oasis can lounge on the shore or carve the calm waters on wakeboards. Tow cables attached to a series of towers give thrill-seekers the momentum they need to perform daring stunts, such as jumping off tall ramps and diving headlong into the water. Calmer floating can be found aboard stand up paddleboards or in the designated swim area.
Before reaching the Sloquet hot springs or the Skookumchuck hot springs, which are also called the T'sek hot springs, water travels for miles through Earth’s mantle, warming itself by means of geothermal heat and collecting minerals that help promote wellness. These natural hot tubs spur visits from travellers to this tranquil and remote area. The team at BC Hotspring Tours shepherds visitors there to take advantage of the water’s beneficial properties, offering scenic, round-trip transportation. The team also runs full-day sightseeing tours of Fraser Valley with many scenic stops that include Chilliwack’s Vedder River and White Rock’s beaches.