It often takes 12 minutes just to leave the house, remember you forgot your keys, and go back for them. In the same amount of time, Island Express Air’s signature snappy flights can shuffle passengers all the way from Abbotsford to Vancouver. The airline also services Victoria and Nanaimo with their fleet of professional aircraft, outfitted with cutting edge XM Satellite GPS technology that keeps pilots apprised of weather and terrain clearance.
The airline complements its regularly scheduled local flights with airborne sightseeing tours. From the windows of intimate planes equipped with a maximum of 10 seats, tourists drink in views of the Gulf Islands, Mount Baker, and other landmarks, dipping low enough to glimpse whales as they power-wash the plane’s underside with their blowholes. Alternatively, the airline’s private charter flights can whisk passengers to a destination of their choice.
The Sequim Lavender Farm festival transforms scenic Carrie Blake Park into a fragrant oasis celebrating the bounty of Sequim-Dungeness Valley's lavender harvests. After arriving at the festival via bus and ferry, herb aficionados can peruse more than 150 booths bursting with lavender-laden goods produced by members of the Sequim Lavender Farmers Association, as well artisanal crafts, international foodstuffs, and wine gardens. Carrie Blake Park also serves as a launch pad for bus tours that wind their way through seven regional lavender farms, encompassing 50 acres and 100,000 soil-bound lavender plants. Fair-goers can frolic through each farm's visually unique fields, picking their own lavender to fill vases or grace boutonnières for lonely scarecrows. Workshops, demonstrations, crafts, and live music also pepper plots, rendering each farm a festival unto itself.
During the warmer months, Victoria's streets teem with Big Bus Victoria's fleet, making their daily stops around the city's sites. Customers hop aboard for 90-minute hop-on-hop-off tours that trek down a route that wends past Victoria's most compelling attractions, enabling guests to create flexible sightseeing outings that proceed at a convenient pace. Tour captains take passengers past city landmarks such as Empress Hotel, Legislative Building, and Craigdarroch Castle, letting passengers spring out of their seats before picking up ticket-holders and tumbleweeds eager to make their way across the city.
Owned and operated by a Class 1 professional driver, Just Drive Driving School provides one-on-one lessons customized to suit all driving needs. Conveniently open seven days a week, Just Drive gets patrons on their way to the freedom of the open road with a series of one-hour lessons in a dual-equipped vehicle, which allows instructors to take control of the car when students need extra guidance. Manual-transmission classes are also available for those who think an H pattern is something you iron on to a shirt. In addition to lessons, Just Drive also provides vehicle rentals for road tests.
For more than a century, Gray Line of Seattle has been helping visitors and natives alike peel back the nation's corner—the Pacific Northwest—with luxurious tours and charters. Each environmentally conscious service enables explorers to survey the region by land, by sea, or by a combination of both via double-decker bus routes and scenic cruises. Rub elbows with waterfalls, alpine meadows, and glacier-carved façades on an eight-hour adventure past Mount Rainier, or jet into Boeing’s hangars and investigate the future of aviation without having to endure the itchy wool socks required for time travel. In addition to its landmark-packed tours, Gray Line of Seattle totes travelers aboard its fleet of luxury motor coaches and charters.
In 1992, restaurant owner Carlos Kainz and chef Julie Guerrero first joined forces to open a tiny West Seattle bakery and café, a spot that quickly gained traction and outgrow its modest trappings. The duo packed up the winning operation and moved on to a larger space and a larger vision, renaming their venture Dulces Bistro & Wine and crafting an ambitious menu focusing entirely on Latin-fusion cuisine for dinner. Although Guerrero traces her family heritage back to Mexico, many of her dishes, including paella valenciana and boeuf bourguignon, show strong European influences. Unadulterated Latin staples pepper the menu, such as the green chicken enchiladas that serve as a staple in Mexico City and at Sam I Am’s Cinco de Mayo parties.