Prince Rupert is BC’s northernmost port town, located only 26 miles from the Alaska border and a long way from everywhere else!
Arriving in Prince Rupert by air is an interesting experience. The landscape around the town isn’t suitable for an airport, so it was built on nearby Digby Island which isn’t accessible by land. After landing at YPR all passengers are loaded onto buses and the luggage is loaded into a small cargo truck. All vehicles drive across the island to the ferry dock, where they board the ferry to the mainland. After disembarking the ferry, the buses and luggage truck make their way to the terminal building in downtown Prince Rupert where you are (hopefully) reunited with your luggage.
Prince Rupert boasts North America’s deepest natural harbour and is the closest North American port to Asia. For these reasons the port here is busy, so much so that they’re expanding it to accommodate demand. There were containers stacked everywhere and cargo ships waiting for their turn at the port.
While it is accessible by road and by rail, the lifeblood of this town is the water. There are a lot of marinas, and a lot of boats, both large and small.
Prince Rupert is one of the rainiest places in Canada (it is, after all, in a rainforest). But when the sun does come out, it’s absolutely beautiful.
Around town are several larger than life murals painted on the sides of buildings. Many were painted in 2011/2012 as part of a community beautification effort and several have been added since. Here are just a few of them…
The Rona store is literally wrapped in whales, very beautiful.
Located on the side of a garage, this was the first mural painted by artist Jeff King in 2011. Because of the poor condition of the building, it had to be retouched in 2018.
One more by Jeff King…
My wanderings took me behind the courthouse to the Sunken Gardens. Once the site of the original courthouse, it was moved forward in the 20’s, leaving a huge hole and the Sunken Gardens were born. By 2003, the gardens were overgrown. The Prince Rupert Garden Club stepped in and the result is the beautiful, peaceful spot that you see today.
So that’s it for Prince Rupert – not a lot to do, but a nice place to just wander. There are a lot more murals that I didn’t see, so next time I’ll have to make a point of finding them.
But for now, it’s time to pack up and head deep into the rainforest in search of spirit bears…