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Day Trip: The Green Miles

Day Trip: The Green Miles

An eco-friendly journey from Vancouver to Whistler, Canada, is best seen from behind the wheel of the new electric BMW i3.

By: Anicka Quin

8 a.m.

Stanley Park Seawall

While one BMW is charging, hop on another – a BMW Cruise Bike, compliments of Fairmont Pacific Rim. Ask the hotel’s Bike Butler about his favorite routes along the oceanside Seawall. Take a selfie by the totem poles in Stanley Park, then loop back to the hotel to find your BMW i3 ready for the road and looking sharp with sustainably harvested eucalyptus-wood dashboard trim and leather seats tanned using environmentally friendly olive-leaf extract.

10 a.m.

Bloedel Conservatory

Check the BMW i3’s intelligent navigation system for the most efficient route to this tropical wonderland, located atop the highest point in the city. (Fear not the steep drive up: the electric engine’s full torque means going from 0 to 35 mph in under four seconds.) Given Vancouver’s glut of green spaces, it might seem strange to head indoors – but a stroll through the oh-so-’60s biodome, complete with more than 200 free-flying exotic birds, is a blissful addition to any day.

1 p.m.

The Eye of the Wind

You can spot the wind turbine on Grouse Mountain from downtown, but it’s worth the drive (and gondola ride up to the peak) to check out another form of responsible energy in action. The world’s first and only wind turbine with its own glass viewing platform – located just 10 feet from the rotating blades – offers 360-degree views of the city and beyond.

4 p.m.

River of Golden Dreams

The drive to Whistler is one of the most scenic routes in North America, but even more gorgeous points of view await on the water. Book a trip along the River of Golden Dreams, and Canadian Wilderness Adventures will drop you off at Alta Lake, where you and your guide can canoe or kayak down the often-challenging waterway to Dream River Park (where you’ll be picked up).

8 p.m.

The Wildflower at The Fairmont Chateau Whistler

Park the BMW i3 at one of 13 charging stations in the village, then end the day right with a meal built around the region’s bounty. Start with a salad of local Pemberton beets paired with apples and aged goat-cheese Gouda, followed by a sustainably fished cioppino stew of salmon, cod, scallops and clams. Then, finish with something extra sweet – a dessert that uses honey from the hotel’s very own beehives.



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