Los Angeles stopover in winter

AFTER A SNOW HOLIDAY IN REVELSTOKE, CANADA, IN MID-JANUARY MY HUSBAND AND I HAVE SIX NIGHTS IN VANCOUVER BEFORE OUR FLIGHT TO AUSTRALIA VIA LA. HOW LONG DO YOU SUGGEST WE STAY IN VANCOUVER? IS VANCOUVER ISLAND AN OPTION? WOULD YOU SUGGEST OTHER PLACES?

A. O'SULLIVAN, WELLINGTON POINT

Sounds like you're committed to stay in Vancouver until your flight departs for Australia but if not, LA would offer more variety in mid-winter, and certainly more warmth. You can expect temperatures of around 2C-6C and frost and ocean fog in Vancouver. Rain falls about every second day in January on average, and rain will usually come with grey skies that last all day. Vancouver Island has a very similar climate, including the city of Victoria which is where Canada takes its shirt off. Vancouver Island is really a summer destination. It has wonderful gardens around Victoria and hiking trails, mountain biking, kayaking and fishing but in winter there aren't too many visitors and much of the tourist industry closes down. In Vancouver you're probably going to be spending most of your time indoors and for all its charms, Vancouver does not have a huge repertoire of things to do in the indoor department.

In all honesty, I think anything more than a couple of nights in Vancouver would be overkill in mid-winter. I'd be heading for LA for those last few days. You can get a cheap flight from Vancouver to LA for under $200 and there's plenty to like about the city in January. You can expect temperatures ranging between 8C-18C, outdoor activities are not out of the question and you've got world-class galleries, dining, entertainment and shopping right at your fingertips.

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