Planning trip to Canada to see torch relay

travel q&a 2010 olympics

March 22, 2009|By McClatchy-Tribune

I'm thinking of going to Victoria, British Columbia, for the Olympic torch run. Where will the route be? Are there any promotions?

The Olympic torch relay for the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver will be the longest such relay in a single country. After being lit in Athens on Oct. 22, the sacred flame will make the trans-Atlantic flight accompanied by a representative of host country Canada.

The official relay will begin in Victoria, the charming provincial capital, on Oct. 30. Accompanied by more than 12,000 torch-bearers, the flame will travel by land, air and water (ferries) through Canada for more than 106 days and 45,000 kilometers. Its journey will end in Vancouver on Feb. 12, 2010.

The grande dame of Victoria hotels, the stately Empress, is offering a "Light My Fire" promotion for visitors who want to see the flame embark on its journey. Rates start at about $118 for the Oct. 23-Nov. 6 time period, and you can book that package now (866-540-4429; fairmont.com).

Even if you choose to stay elsewhere, you'll want to take a peek inside the Empress. This Edwardian palace dates to 1908 and has hosted kings, queens and all manner of Hollywood royalty.

For details on the 2010 Winter Olympics and torch relay, go to vancouver2010.com. For more information on Victoria, go to tourismvictoria.com.

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