We recently stumbled on the new and growing trend of “homemade tourism” (think everything from handmade jewelry to baked goods to pottery to microbreweries and all points in between!). The trend is generally most visible in events like community craft fairs, school fair fundraisers, and local artisan studio tours.
Our recent trip to Malcolm Island was just a tad early for the official kick off of the First Annual Sointula Craft Tour but Robin at The Oceanfront Hotel was awesome and able to connect us with many of the artists participating in the tour. They opened their studios early for us to preview their collections for when the upcoming tour starts in December 2018.
Forty two years ago a few tree planters got together in the fall to sell their crafts for some extra dough before Christmas. That first event led to the creation of an annual event that has evolved to highlight much of the talent within the community and beautifully showcase local musicians and artists.
Fast forward to 2018 and Sointula’s Winterfestival is a highlight of the fall season! The wholeMalcolm Island community and people from near and far gather for the festival consisting of workshops, a craft fair, and entertainment. Now, this isn’t just a few tables selling knitted dish cloths and wooden bowls… This is a huge event for the island and the whole community is involved!
Film festivals are something near and dear to my heart. I love seeing new and interesting ideas and perspectives come to life and supporting independent film makers. Independent films, both short and feature-length, tend to focus more on storytelling than fancy visual and special effects of film making. This creates a different kind of movie-going experience that is more unique and often more memorable.
In addition, the festival atmosphere frequently puts you in a position to talk with the film makers directly and you can leave with even more understanding of the story and intention behind the film. Many festivals are scheduled through the fall and winter so they align pretty perfectly with days you’d probably prefer to stay indoors with a big bucket of popcorn and a good story anyway. Continue reading “Try This: Seek Out a Local Film Fest”
I’ve wanted to do this hike for years and just never made it there… Either it was too rainy when I got to Tofino or I was in Tofino to go to the beach or another event. If I’m being honest, I also thought this hike was in Ucluelet (not Tofino like it actually is!) so it was probably best I waited for a friend to suggest we go and tag along with them so I actually got where I planned to go!
Recently, we packed up the Jeep and ventured north, paddleboards and all! Since we started the blog, we’ve heard from a lot of people that we should go check out the Mount Waddington area of the island, in and around Port McNeill and Port Hardy. Turns out we know quite a few people who grew up in the area and they all gave us a bucket list of places to check out!
As a kid, I used to venture through Port Hardy in the summer as I caught the ferry to Prince Rupert with my family. Other than passing through in those times, I can’t remember spending much time in the North Island area otherwise.
Since we had limited experience with what to see and do in the North Island area, all the recommendations we got from our friends helped us discover that the area is FULL of stuff to do and things to see.
This year, I seem to have inadvertently taken on a mission to find and stay in the most unique places we have on the island. Earlier this year, I made a long-time dream come true and finally stayed at Free Spirit Spheres in Qualicum. The whole experience there was relaxing but exciting at the same time and incredibly unique. During my stay here, I couldn’t stop smiling and, since then, I think I’ve told just about everyone I know to go stay here! (For more about that experience, click here)
Staying at Free Spirit Spheres got me wondering about other unique accommodations in and around the island, hence the inadvertent mission. Our little piece of paradise never ceases to surprise me with the amazing and incredible things we can do and see right here in our own backyard. I’ve since discovered there are plenty of fun and unique places to go check out, like the yurts at Wya Point in Ucluelet and a cob cottage on Mayne Island but what caught my eye immediately were the newly opened glamping tents at Fossil Beach Farms on Hornby Island. I saw this awesome little clip in my newsfeed one day and immediately emailed to book a stay!