DISCLAIMER: We received our travel in exchange for sharing our experience with the Coastal Naturalist Program! All opinions expressed are 100% my own!
You tell me that we’re going on BC Ferries for a trip and the little girl in me squeals with delight! So when I found out that I’d be taking the ferry with my best friend to visit my first winery ever, my inner child was overcome with delight! Hearing that our first sailing would have the Coastal Naturalist Program on board was even more exciting!
As a young girl, we’d come to Vancouver by VIA Rail and then make our way over to Vancouver Island via BC Ferries to visit my grandparents who lived in Duncan. This was always the highlight of my summer. With my face pasted to the windows, I was convinced that I would spot a whale or a mermaid, more realistically a whale but a mermaid would be nice too. The Coastal Naturalist Program brought me one step closer to achieving this goal as an adult.
This summer, the 2019 Coastal Naturalist Program is now in its 14th season. It offers BC Ferries customers the opportunity to discover the world beneath the waves, and more! Growing up in the prairies, there wasn’t a huge emphasis on ocean wildlife in school so this was a welcomed way to further my own education about BC’s unique wildlife and marine life, coastal, nautical and cultural history.
On our specific sailing, they were talking about the superheroes of the sea. Not knowing much about salmon aside from my husband sure loves the way they taste, myself and a very adorable little girl left knowing a heck of a lot more about salmon than ever before. I must admit I have a deeper appreciation for those fish and the journey they make!
The Coastal Naturalist Program runs from Friday, June 14th through to Monday, September 2nd, 2019 in terminals and on BC Ferries vessels traveling between Vancouver Island and Vancouver.
But what is the Coastal Naturalist Program?
BC Ferries, Parks Canada, and Ocean Wise work have come together to present this successful program to educate, and inspire travelers onboard BC Ferries vessels about the wonders of BC’s coast. Coastal Naturalists engage customers with a 20-minute program on select daytime sailings, offering a real-life coastal experience which is fun for the entire family!
The Coastal Naturalist Program helps to raise awareness of and increase appreciation for BC’s wildlife, marine life, geography, culture, and history.
The program is delivered seven days a week on select vessels travelling between Vancouver Island and Vancouver. Presentation schedules vary by route; please check the schedule to determine availability.
We were lucky to have Tyler as our Coastal Naturalist on our sailing who like me is from the prairies as well, so he understood my excitement for learning! We truly enjoyed his enthusiasm for education and his wonderful sense of humor. There are several different Naturalists apart of this program and you can read more about them over on the BC Ferries website!
But don’t worry if you miss it onboard your sailing, the program will also run in terminals on select days during the onboard season. Coastal Naturalists will be there to answer questions, tell stories and share experiences. Make sure to look for the Coastal Naturalist tents to learn more on what the BC coast has to offer!
Interested in learning more? Head over to the BC Ferries website to learn more about the Coastal Naturalist Program and which vessels and sailings you might find them on this summer! Trust me you don’t want to miss this!