Vancouver Island is once again being recognized internationally for its natural beauty, with a new poll ranking it as one of the most breathtaking destinations in the world.
CNN Travel’s “25 of the world’s most beautiful places” list was revealed on March 8, and according to the U.S.-based news network, those ranked round up the “best of the best” when it comes to the great outdoors.
Other destinations on the list include Samburu in Kenya, Mount Toubkal in Morocco and Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. The Island is the only location in Canada mentioned, and CNN dubs it the perfect spot for outdoor enthusiasts.
“Vancouver Island is like Canada in miniature,” CNN’s travel editors said, noting its coastline is more than 3,200 kilometres, with the Island itself featuring nearly 10,000 lakes plus acres of soaring mountains.
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“Its surfing is world-class, while visitors can join a summer boat tour for possible orca sightings,” CNN added. “Land lovers have plenty to appreciate about the backtrails crisscrossing the island, encouraging exploration by bike or on foot.”
Orca-watching in particular is a popular pastime on the Island. Last September, tour boat passengers off Metchosin were left stunned when a sea lion almost capsized a nearby motorboat while attempting to escape a group of killer whales.
“It was a wow factor. I was explaining what was going on, it was pretty crazy,” Mark Malleson, a whale-watching guide with Victoria-based Prince of Whales Adventures, told CHEK News at the time.
It’s just one of many memorable sea-life encounters for Islanders, like in December when a photographer’s video of a northern giant Pacific octopus went viral on social media.
The latest honour from CNN comes about a month after Condé Nast Traveller, a luxury travel magazine, called the Island one of the best vacation destinations in the world.
The latest ranking from CNN can be found on the organization’s website.