Vancouver is a huge city filled with diverse culture. There are strong links to and from Seattle, areas to see theatre and music, popular public parks and famous food markets.
If you are road tripping or city hopping, Vancouver connects to a range of destinations. Seaplanes are a preferred form of transport for connections to Vancouver Island and even Seattle. An evening by the waterfront can be enjoyed in many restaurants and bars, watching the planes land and take off on water.
Stanley Park Cycle Route
Since Vancouver is so huge, one of the best ways to enjoy it is by bike. Multiple places around the famous Stanley Park offer bike rentals and you can follow a circular route through the park and out towards Granville Island, a thriving island filled with food markets and culture. The route then continues round and returns past the TELUS Science World.
Vancouver Public Library
If you are passing, the Vancouver Public Library is definitely worth seeing. It makes for some great photographs and is structurally interesting. However I did find it a bit pastiche and ‘colosseum.’ I couldn’t quite persuade my brother to go inside the library and the atrium itself is nothing more than a shop front.
Culture and History
Vancouver is full of culture and heritage. Within the city, Gas Town and China Town sit adjacent to each other in Downtown Vancouver. Ideally you want to experience Gas Town in the evenings. The area is filled with Victorian buildings, a steam-clock and restaurant bars – perfect for a Friday Night. China Town is home to a beautiful Japanese Garden.
Further from the centre in North Vancouver, is the Capillano Suspension Bridge. You can visit the attraction and learn about the history of the bridge building. On the other side of the river, there is a treetop park to enjoy however I soon discovered that the attraction is overpriced. You’ll be paying to queue across a bridge and then walk about a kilometre. Again, the pictures are pretty but in terms of experience, it wasn’t really worth it.
Museum of Anthropology
I initially had the Museum of Anthropology on my bucket list for the architecture. It turns out that the exhibitions themselves are just as impressive and extensive. In fact, it’s probably the best thing you can do in Vancouver if you want to learn about Canadian heritage. Unfortunately, my trip was cut short when someone broke into our rental car but despite this is was a really great trip – just park close to the front door!
Finally, you can’t go to Vancouver and miss out on the whales! We booked on an organised whale watching trip and spent 3 hours watching killer whales fishing and diving around. We also saw seals, sea lions, eagles and herons on the way. It’s not every day you get to see a whale! One tip I do have though – book an afternoon slot because the morning slots spend time trying to find the whales in the first place. Go in the afternoon, and the boat will head straight out to the whales meaning you get more time to watch them play. We did this and it was worth it!
Vancouver is a very diverse city break and there is a huge range of things to do and see. My favourite though had to be the whales! It’s not everyday you get to spend hours photographing such incredible animals!
Want more of Canada? Check out my mountain photography and road trip through The Rockies here.