Vancouver Magazine - - Travel Summer Getaways -

This is the great out­doors, peo­ple. Not only is your cabin a pinecone’s throw from the beach, you are close to some of the best coastal hik­ing in Canada. Drive 15 min­utes to the Mys­tic Beach trail­head, part of the 47-kilo­me­tre Juan de Fuca Trail. The hike to the surf takes less than an hour via the for­est trail, cross­ing a sus­pen­sion bridge along the way. If the tide is out, you can treat your­self to a walk through the rock arch, a ride on the rope swing and (if it’s warm enough or you’re feel­ing just that happy) a skinny- dip in the wa­ter­fall. Those that pre­fer to roll can bike the Gal­lop­ing Goose Trail for as long as your quads can stand it—but be aware that if you head north out of Sooke seek­ing the “ghost town” of Leech­town, there’s not re­ally much to see (but that’s ghosts for you), and that the sword ferns and cedars there look pretty much the same as they do out­side your cabin.

Cul­ture (if you must!) can be had at the 11- day Sooke Fine Arts Show, which runs from late July to early Au­gust and fea­tures hun­dreds of works by Vancouver Is­land sculp­tors, painters, pho­tog­ra­phers and jew­ellers. Last year’s juried prize winners in­clude Vin­cent Fe’s steam­punk teapot, Jonathan Kacki’s bike­wheel pho­tog­ra­phy and Ni­cole Sleeth’s ar­rest­ing, cig­a­rette-smok­ing nude. You can also ab­sorb your fill of lo­cal his­tory at the Sooke Re­gion Mu­seum, fea­tur­ing pho­tog­ra­phy, cloth­ing and ar­ti­facts dat­ing back as far as the 18th cen­tury.

For din­ner, head to Sooke Har­bour House, which dishes farm-to-table food in your choice of top-shelf style (the main din­ing room) or with a more ca­sual at­ti­tude (the Cop­per Room). The din­ing room menu changes daily, but if you’re go­ing for Cop­per ca­sual, do like the lo­cals do and have ei­ther the B.c.-raised beef brisket and bi­son burger or the fish and chips, made from o›-the-boat ling cod or hal­ibut.

Pack­ing List swim­suit towel wa­ter­proof sun­screen wa­ter shoes munchies

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