Situated at the end of the Canadian train line and at the foot of the BC border with Alaska Prince Rupert feels incredibly isolated. It might also be because regardless of how you arrive, or where you’re coming from, it takes an incredibly long time to get there.
On our first morning we took a walk around the town to get our bearings and stumbled across a carver working in an open workshop. He invited us in to have a nosy around which was fascinating. We met two women who were painting traditional style pieces in the room at the back of the shop and got to fill our noses with the smell of freshly sawn wood. The carver also took the time to tell us about the piece he was working on, and some of the history behind carving totem poles and about marketing them to the current art collector market.
Before we left Vancouver I asked everyone I came across for suggestions of things to do and places to visit in all of our destinations. For Prince Rupert we received one suggestion, to try the chowder at the Crest hotel and enjoy the view across the bay from the window. We plumped for the fisherman’s chowder (we had three options to choose from) and it was properly amazing. Creamy, delicious, warming and filling. And the view was pretty spectacular too.
We also visited the museum of Northern British Columbia. It was an interesting museum, with lots of wonderful First Nations and Pioneer artefacts, but an overwhelming amount of written information crammed on to several interpretation boards, which at times used some really small text. The boards were slightly disconnected from the artefacts, which was kind of disappointing as I would have liked to have known more about the individual objects.
Other highlights from our couple of days are centred around the Hallowe’en festivities. I saw a giraffe and a pumpkin have a lively conversation in a hotel lobby, two witches on a cigarette break and the Tin Man and Garfield wandering around town. We also managed to track down the firework display which was really pretty spectacular.