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Amazing Race on Vancouver Island

written bySteven Eckert

Last ModifiedNovember 22, 2023

Amazing Race Vancouver Island Malahat SkyWalk

Victoria's 5 Must-See Stops Featured on the Amazing Race

Did you catch the episode featuring South Vancouver Island? During the Amazing Race Canada season 9 episode 4, contestants weaved through South Vancouver Island, making six spectacular stops, including the Malahat Skywalk, Craigdarroch Castle and several unique Sooke locations.

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This fun episode starts off in Whistler, where episode three left off. The contestants then make their way down to Horseshoe Bay, where they board a ferry that takes them to Nanaimo, then they make the 80km trip to the Malahat Skywalk.

Malahat Skywalk

Malahat Skywalk drone
Malahat Skywalk from the air

The following day begins with captivating aerial footage of the stunning scenery overlooking the Saanich Inlet. As the contestants arrive, they begin the challenge of finding ten driftwood sculptures hidden throughout the forest on their way to the skywalk structure. The sculptures are located along a half-kilometre raised tree walk that leads to the base of a beautiful, architecturally inspiring spiral.

Once all ten sculptures were located, the teams needed to climb to the top of the Malahat Skywalk to learn if they had earned their next clue. If they had missed even a single photo, they had to go back down and search for any missing sculptures again.

Walking on the Malahat Sky Walk Amazing Race Canada
Photo from the Amazing Race Facebook Page

Surprisingly, they didn’t incorporate some of the best features of the Malahat SkyWalk, including the net at the very top where you can walk around suspended in the air over 100ft above the trail below. They didn’t even show anyone taking the quick way down on the covered 20-meter spiral slide. Surely someone gave it a try!

Once completing the challenge, the contestants returned to their cars and headed 40km down the Trans Canada Hwy into Victoria BC, searching for Craigdarroch Castle.

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Craigdarroch Castle

Craigdarroch CastleCraigdarroch Castle was built as the stately home of a coal baron and one of the wealthiest people in Western Canada. Later the mansion was turned into a military hospital. The meticulously restored National Historic Site is now a popular stop for many visitors to Victoria.

Craigdarroch Castle Amazing Race
Photo from the Amazing Race Facebook Page

Since this large house resembles classic spooky old homes from scary movies, this challenge was tied to the release of the new Disney film Haunted Mansion and is another obviously sponsored portion of the show, of which there is one every couple of minutes.

Bug Zoo

Prior to visiting the Castle, one team faced an additional challenge known as a “speed bump,” because they finished the previous non-elimination day in last place. This terrifying stop was at the Bug Zoo and involved keeping it together with two tarantulas crawling up their arm while the contestants needed to finish 1 gallon of ice cream.

As the teams arrived at the ominous mansion, their objective was to locate ten replica items that appeared in the movie trailer. The participants had to scour the castle, searching for concealed props across its numerous floors and 39 rooms, hoping to identify them from the trailer they had just watched on their phone (which was, naturally, sponsored).

Face Off

Amazing Race Vancouver Island
Photo from the Amazing Race Facebook Page

Once they finished the task, they got back into their cars and drove to their next location for a “Face Off” challenge. They had to compete against each other to build standard 10-person bell military tents. In this competition, each pair of contestants competes against the next arriving couple. They are given control of a Canadian Scottish Regiment that only follows direct orders, posing a challenge for some. The team that is left standing at the end of the competition is penalized with a 10-minute delay before they can continue, putting them at the back of the pack.

With so much rich history on Vancouver Island, it was surprising that this challenge was completed at the Colville Park sports field instead of the historic fort at Fort Rodd Hill; maybe season 5?

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Sooke Boardwalk

Sooke Boardwalk Drone

Amazing Race Sooke Boardwalk
Photo from the Amazing Race Facebook Page

Next stop: Sooke. The competitors made their way down from Ed McGregor Park and discovered paddle boards waiting for them on the Sooke Boardwalk. Using the Rotary Pier as a starting point, they paddled out to white floating buoys along the boardwalk to locate three matching vacation location tags – flight, hotel, and activity. Sponsored by Expedia, of course.

Navigating the waters of Sooke Basin was challenging due to the strong wind and current during high tide. Despite the difficulties, the sun shone, and the scenery provided a gorgeous backdrop for the challenge. Each contestant found their unique way to fight through the difficult experience and headed onto the final stop of the episode.

 

Whiffin Spit

Whiffin Spit and Sooke Harbour
Whiffin Spit

After a brief drive, they arrived at the natural spit that was once used as a lookout point by the T’Sooke Nation. Whiffin Spit acts as a divider between the calm waters of Sooke Basin and the choppy waters of the Juan de Fuca Strait. From one side, you can catch a glimpse of the Sooke shoreline and look towards the south to see the majestic Olympic Mountains of Washington.

Sooke and the amazing race CanadaThe team that arrived first won this leg of the race and received a trip to Nassau in the Bahamas. Mayor Maja Tait and host John Montgomery were present to greet the contestants, welcoming them to Sooke. And unfortunately, the last team to reach Whiffin Spit was eliminated.
It was a whirlwind tour of South Vancouver Island, stopping at just a few of the amazing locations we have in the area. Making your way from The Malahat SkyWalk to Craigdarroch Castle, the Bug Zoo and visiting the Sooke Boardwalk and Whiffin Spit makes for one spectacular (and long) day.

I look forward to seeing where they head off next week.

 

You can watch the full episodes of The Amazing Race Canada on the CTV app.

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Thank you for visiting VIBL (Vancouver Island Bucket List) please continue to discover all of the places that makes Vancouver Island so great!

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Discover new places and find your way around Vancouver Island. Many areas do not have cell service so maps and guidebooks can be very helpful for the curious.

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