Tuesday the 29th of May saw us joining "Moose Tours" for an overnight trip to Whistler. The group was small, with 8 tourists (including a Japanese family of 3) and our tour guide Alana. The tour commenced with a drive through Stanley Park including a stop at the totem poles. We then headed along the sea to sky highway stopping at Shannon Falls, Squamish, Alice Lake (for lunch), and Brandywine Falls. Highlight of the drive up there ... seeing a black bear on the side of the highway!!!
We arrived in Whistler that afternoon, and after spending a short time in Whistler village Alana took us to our accommodation for that night, the HI-Whistler (around 7km outside the village). The hostel was rather new, having been built for the athletes of the 2010 winter olympic games. It certainly was a nice hostel. After dinner, Jemma, myself, Alana, and Ed (another tour mate) went back to the village for some drinks at the bar. We started the night off with a bang ... tequila shots all around, followed by jager bombs and pornstars (the drink that is!). The four of us then played a few games of darts ... I decided to make the game a little more "interesting" by suggesting the loser by everyone a shot. Unfortunately that meant Jemma and I were buying shots for the night!! After the bar we wandered the village and came across a place called the Amsterdam Cafe. It was small, cramped with people, and loud ... seemed like a great place to go!! They were still serving food so we grabbed some poutine (cheese and gravy covered fries - very Canadian) and even more drinks. We stayed for about an hour and by 2AM we decided to call it a night.
We spent most of the following day in Whistler doing whatever we wanted to do. Jemma and I decided to save some money by doing something free - walking trails. We walked around for a few hours and then headed back to the village. We walked past the Crystal Lodge where I had stayed on my first visit to Whistler in 2007 ... Jemma and I went inside and decided to rest on the couches in the reception area. We ended up falling asleep for a couple of hours!! Soon enough we met up with the rest of the tour group and headed back to Vancouver. On the way back we had the opportunity to go bungee jumping. Now, this has always been on the cards for me, but the thought of going that day (slightly hungover) left me rather nauseous - I declined.
By the time we got back to Vancouver it was 6PM and Jemma and I had dinner plans with a friend (Abby) who had been on our NT Contiki trip 5 years ago. The 3 of us had dinner at Steelworks in Gastown, and Abby suggested we must try a very Canadian cocktail called a Caesar. She didn't tell us what was in it and when I tasted it it was horrible ... I told her I thought it "wasn't bad" (Jemma felt the same). Turns out it contains vodka, Clamato (a blend of tomato juice and clam broth), hot sauce and Worcestershire sauce. Abby said we'd have to go back to Oz and tell all our friends about it ... I think I'd tell them NOT to order it if they ever visited Canada haha. The night seemed to fly by and before I knew it it was time to say goodbye. It was great catching up with Abby and I hope to see her again someday!