Why visit Vancouver ?
Canada’s third largest city Vancouver is known for its rich cultural offerings and diverse landscapes. The city is an Outdoor Wonderland – you can find sandy beaches, forest trails, kayaking routes, seawall bike lane all with in city limits. A mere 30 mins drive can take you to the world of snow-dusted mountains, away from downtown’s glass towers. Localites can easily ski in the morning and hit the beach in the afternoon, then head to a chic restaurant to dine on sustainable seafood dishes paired with a top-notch local bottle of wine.
How to Reach
Vancouver is extremely accessible. If you are flying, you’ll land at the Vancouver International Airport, located a quick twenty-five minute drive from Vancouver’s downtown core. Take the Canadian Line Rail service for $8.75 right downtown, or any available cab service. When driving, enjoy the views along Highway 1, the Trans-Canada Highway which enters the city from the East; Ride along Highway 99 when traveling from the United States into Canada. If you’d prefer to relax, enjoy the Greyhound bus line which makes frequent visits from various cities in the States and Canada, or choose the Via Rail from Toronto which travels through Jasper and has stunning views.
When to Visit
Vancouver’s streets and mountains are breathtaking 365 days of the year; without a doubt, each season offers exciting views and amazing opportunities. One of the best times to experience a change in the seasons is the last few weeks of February and early-March, when the cherry blossoms are in bloom. The bright pink flowers are a cultural phenomenon, lighting up the streets and parks of Vancouver and even having their own ceremonies and festivals. The average temperature in March is between 9-11 degrees; perfect weather to stroll the cobblestone streets, catch a music festival or hit the slopes.
What to Do
Take your touring to new heights at the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park (3735 Capilano Road), the sight-seeing marvel of an experience in the heart of Vancouver’s natural beauty. Walk along the Suspension bridge, a 450ft. long stretch 230ft. above Capilano River, and don’t forget to try out the Cliffwalk and Treetop Adventure for more amazing sky-high views. One of Vancouver’s most popular attractions with shopping and dining, revel in the natural beauty that is Vancouver-but don’t look down.
Head to the highest peak of Vancouver at Grouse Mountain (6400 Nancy Greene Way), where outdoor activities, cozy chalets and breathtaking views await. A skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing paradise, visitors can glide down the mountain, enjoy the air tram Skyride or mountain ziplines. Stop by the mountain-top theatre, or delve into delicious food at a variety of restaurants on the mountain; a great getaway or day for adventure.
Dive into the diverse culture in Vancouver by visiting Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden (578 Carrall Street), a re-creation of old garden traditions in China in hopes of bridging the Chinese and Western cultures together. The space invites peace, serenity and good energy, with various displays of rocks, plants, water and bridges. The garden is a beautiful place to take in some history, find relaxation and calming views.
Where to Eat
If you’re willing to take a twenty minute drive, definitely dine at the Arms Reach Bistro (107c-439o Gallant Avenue). The casual dining restaurant is located in Deep Cove, with patios overlooking the ocean and a beautiful little town to explore once you’re finished. Exquisite west coast fare and average prices make the trip worth it.
Visit West Vancouver’s Dundarave Pier for heated patios, private terraces and a waterfront view at The Beach house. With something to meet everyone’s taste buds, this fine-dining experience offers the freshest seafood, colorful plates and an extensive wine list; burgers, fries and desserts will also intrigue the younger visitors.
For a more relaxed atmosphere and great live music and dance, take to the Blarney Stone for classic meals and Irish beverages. The bar stays open until 2-3am, so even when your meal is done feel free to linger with friends, catch a game or two and taste some new ales; fun and food for the whole family.
Where to Stay
The Fairmont Waterfront offers impeccable service, spacious rooms and beautiful views from its downtown location. If you’re looking for luxury, the Fairmont boasts free Wi-Fi, valet parking, spas, saunas and much more. Your luxurious stay is only steps away from the sky train, convention center, and amazing shopping and dining experiences.
For something affordable and central, The Kingston Hotel Bed & Breakfast has a classic European style, with twin and double bedrooms having private baths. The heritage landmark is within walking distance of Gastown, Yaletown, Stanley Park and much more.
Visitors flock to Sunset Inn & Suites, located downtown in a bright and inviting atmosphere. Fair prices and friendly service make this stay popular among visitors. So many small details, like iPod docking stations, tea & coffee makers, continental breakfast and free gated parking make this location perfect for staying in and relaxing or simply jetting in and out while you’re on the town.
Where to Shop
Visit Gastown for a day of fantastic shopping as well as delightful sightseeing. Known for its interior-design repertoire, check out independent fashion owners, small boutiques and tons of home furnishings and small gifts. For inspiring artists, this is the place to be inspired.
Looking for well-known brands? Check out Robson Street-Downtown Vancouver in the heart of the shopping district. Famous designers and numerous boutiques are situated on both sides, and a short walk away will get you to Pacific Center Mall if you couldn’t find what you were looking for.