Sooke is great. Sooke is exactly how you would imagine a Canadian small town to be. It packs a lot of character into its charming oceanside homes, the quaint town shops (excluding the Cannabis dispensaries as they’re a bit more in your face) and the stunning coastal road with views of The States on the horizon.

Our first stop was of course Timmy’s! Everyone grabbed breakfast bagels and some Tim Bits, then on we went. The car journeys here are great as everything is still so new to me, which means that everywhere we go I’m seeing something for the first time; I live for that.

As we started to near French beach, Sandra and Ali relayed old ghost stories about a haunted pub and a world famous graveyard. It was so interesting to hear these local tales and I’ll certainly be doing some recommended reading on the matter soon! ‘Michelle Remembers’ is the book in case anyone is interested! πŸ“–

We arrived at French beach around lunchtime and the views were quite something. Wandering along the rocky beach and through the forest trails had me thinking about Twilight long and hard πŸ˜‚. A number of scenes from the film were shot on Vancouver Island and it SHOWS. I’ll be taking Gemma to some of the main filming spots around Ucluelet and Tofino when she comes out to join me on the 21st.

But back to French Beach… I was particularly taken with the lovely ‘rock on driftwood’ arrangements scattered around. Below are a few photos from a mini set I shot called ‘Rock Series’ (creative, I know).

Rock Series

The next attraction was Esquimalt Lagoon. We parked up on the side of the promenade-like road and WOW. Insanely stunning views of the ocean and mountains on one side, the other a clear green lagoon inhabited by a paddling of ducks, and fringed by tall evergreens.

I spent a fair amount of time shooting the mountains. It’s impossible to capture the detail, light and beauty with my camera (or at least, I can’t do it!), but below gives you an idea of the scene’s magic.

Our last stop was the oldest lighthouse on the Island’s West Coast. Situated right by the Navy Base, there was a tonne of history to tuck in to.

When we arrived the clerk stressed that the park would be closing within the hour so we should head straight to the lighthouse if that was the main draw for us. There was a bit of a dispute about how to get to the lighthouse, but Spencer figured it out and we got there in the end! The Sun was now out in full force and my gosh it was a sight to behold.

We finished our tour of Rodd Hill by reading letters written by visitors to the park. Their letters told stories of WWII and paid homage to those loved and lost. It was a touching moment for us all and a humbling way to end our day.

On the road again, but home was the destination this time… although not before a quick stop to Bin 4 for a burger πŸ”.

Yesterday was really great and we all had a lot of fun. I’m loving exploring Van Island with the Dutchaks and learning a little about the rich culture, wildlife and history of the island.

Lots of love,

Courts xo

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