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What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

ATLANTA
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What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

I've read about this sightseeing tour from Victoria to Courtenay with numerous stops and /or get-offs along the way. I've googled and can't find anything about the current status or schedules. All I've found is more or less about its history.

If it still operates, I'd appreciate a link or comments.

Kent

Nanaimo, Canada
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1. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Yes the E & N Railway still operates daily service, except Sundays. Train leaves Victoria at the Johnstone Street Bridge in front of the Swans Hotel at 8 am, arrive in Nanaimo at 10:35 am and the terminates in Courtenay at 12:45 pm.

Information and schedules at:

viarail.ca/en/…victoria-courtenay

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

There is a single run up and a single run down per day. Some of the towns up Island are great for puttering around in and having lunch, then catching the train as it comes back down Island.

5 min video. Nanaimo to Victoria:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TaQfxP7ZHbI

8 min video. Just near the Nanaimo Airport to Courtenay

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kHr0jmyk9-0

ATLANTA
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3. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Thanks, Dave, fro the link. We're coming in August or more likely September and are planning to drive from Victoria to Nanaimo and on to Tofino. We would go on the train trip for sightseeing and photography. If you've been on the train ride, do you see much that you can't see from the road? We're going to be there for about 10 days and this would be one whole day of our vacation if we did it.

Thanks,

Kent

Edit- I just saw the link about the video, etc. and i'll look at it.

Edited: 21 February 2011, 17:38
Nanaimo, Canada
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4. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Hi KENTGA,

I was on the inaugural run for a new service from Nanaimo to Victoria, several years ago. There were some nice bits (around Shawnigan Lake, over the Malahat, for example) but none that I, personally, would say were so outstanding compared to driving that I would dedicate one day out of 10 to doing this.

Personally I think you would be better served driving from Victoria to the top of the Malahat Drive (Highway 1 northbound) and stop at the 2 pull outs. Then turn back towards Victoria and exit at the Outer Communities (Colwood, Metchosin exit) and drive towards Sooke and the Pacific Marine Circle route from Victoria to Port Renfrew (nice stops on the way and Botanical Beach park in Port Renfrew). Follow the Pacific Marine Circle route over the Harris Main logging road (fully paved) to Lake Cowichan then on Hwy 18 to Hwy 1.

At the intersection of Hwy 18 and Hwy 1 continue straight on (east), the road will now be called Herd Road. Continue onwards (you'll pass a Raptor Recovery Centre which is actually very good and worth stopping in at). Turn left at the signs pointing towards Crofton and Chemainus (Osbourne Bay Road or Highway 1A I believe). You will now be on the Old, Old Island Highway along the waterfront. Some nice little spots (like the Saltair Pub in Saltair). This road continues on through Chemainus and you'll eventually end up at Highway 1 just south of Ladysmith. Turn right towards Nanaimo.

In Ladysmith you should go into the town and have a look around, cute place. At the roundabout near the Tim Hortons coffee shop, head up Symonds Road, a very steep hill. You get a great vista of the Gulf Islands and Mt. Baker in the background; lovely. A a freaky drive down the hill, gear down a bit!

From there head north and spend the night in Nanaimo! You will definitely have earned a few choice beverages at the Dinghy Dock Floating Pub or fish and chips at the Fox and Hounds!

th.gov.bc.ca/circle_routes/pacific_marine.htm

courtenay
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5. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Hi,the train runs everyday of the week,sundays to,just leaves a little later from vic,We just used it,was okay,nothing great for views.

Vancouver, Canada
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6. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Thanks for clarifying that, sarh25. We were in Victoria a couple of weeks ago and picked up a schedule for the E&N from the Victoria tourism folks. (It's on our "to do list" at some point.) The schedule shows that there is daily departure from Victoria at 8:00 AM every day, except Sunday. On Sunday, it goes at 10:00 AM. When the comment was made that there was no Sunday departure, I looked at the schedule and saw it was from April 2009. I just assumed it was out of date and there had been cutbacks. From what you say, however, there is still Sunday service, which would suit those of us who are not "morning people" somewhat better.

Nanaimo, Canada
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7. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Oops sorry about the error. Didn't see that 10 am departure though in hindsight should have as the train goes by fairly near our house and the whistle blows frequently. Thanks for correcting my mistake.

ATLANTA
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8. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Thanks, Dave. I looked at the You Tube video or the train ride and about all I saw was a bunch of trees so i think I'll pass, especially since we'll have a car.

Also, thanks about the detailed suggestions. I'll read them in detail and I haven't finalized anything yet, but i think we'll stay 3 1/2 days in Victoria and then head up to Buchart Gardens and up Hwy 1 at least to the two pullouts and maybe to Sidney. Then go west to Sooke and then to Point Renfrew (my wife really want to see Botanical Beach at low tide) and then over to near Duncan on Hwy 18 and then to your neck of the woods and then to Tofino.

One more question. How about the boat ride from Port Alberri to Bamfield? It's another day long trip and we'll drive thru Ucluelet (the other choice for the boat trip). As mentioned before we are avid photographers and want to see as much great scenery as possible.

Finally, I have used Google earth the view photos of different areas, but rreally didn't think about You Tube until somebody gave me a link on this site about the train ride.

Thanks again,

Kent

Nanaimo, Canada
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for Nanaimo, Vancouver Island
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9. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

Hi KENTGA,

I have been on the Lady Rose (now decommissioned) from Port Alberni to the Broken Group of Islands several times, but it was long ago, so I think I will defer judgement to someone with more recent experience.

10. Re: What about E&N or SVI from Victoria to Courtenay?

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