Vancouver – Enjoy The City

If you are still in Vancouver in the aftermath of the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, or if you are waiting for the 2010 Paralympic Games to begin, or if you visit the City later, then use these suggestions for a free or nearly-free roster of activities. You can combine them with more suggestions from Vancouver – Free or Nearly-Free Activities and Vancouver Markets – picnic food

___ Take a carriage ride through Stanley Park which is one of the largest largely-natural, urban parks in the world. It certainly is one of the most beautiful, even when compared with Portland, Oregon’s amazing Forest Park and Rose Garden. Stanley Park is nothing short of magnificent because of its interface with the ocean and bays. You can sample it during a delightful 1-hour carriage ride which winds through the forest, along Burrard Inlet, past cricket fields, rose gardens, and by the park’s superlative collection of First Nations genealogical totem poles.

___ Wander in the West End: This downtown area encompasses the über-shopping strip known as Robson Street, as well as cafe-lined Denman and a forest of high-rise apartments. The West End is the urban heart of Vancouver. But, you can still eEnjoy the lush trees lining the streets, the range of architecture, the diversity of cultures, the latest fashions neat little surprises on every side street. Check out some of the nearby B&B’s as this is a good choice so you have a base to wander this area by living there, too.

___ Dining on local seafood amazes visitors because nearby cold and warm waters have almost unbelievable abundance of fresh-that-day seafood available to Vancouver’s restaurants. This is a city where just about anything is available at some point in the year, and everyone finds their favorites.

The number of truly outstanding restaurants in Vancouver is really astonishing. Over the decades, the City has finally gathered and borne its share of fine chefs. A meal at one of Vancouver’s top restaurants will share the glories of the food scene here, but many smaller restaurants can equal them; finding the best is part of the fun.

___ Visit the Vancouver Aquarium and see the baby beluga whales. It’s a Cousteau Society special, live, in front of you. Fittingly enough, the aquarium has an excellent display on the Pacific Northwest, plus be sure to see the sea otters, sea lions and a Pacific white-sided dolphin. Learn about the native species, many of whom you see depicted in NW Tribal Art.

___ Kayak on breathtakingly beautiful Indian Arm which is one of the places where Vancouver meets the edge of a great wilderness. If you know what you are doing then rent a kayak or if not, then go with a company — which may even serve you a gourmet meal of barbecued salmon.

___ Discover the paintings of Emily Carr at the Vancouver Art Gallery. She is Canada’s best known Native American First Nation artist. It’s always a thrill to discover such a great painter, and Emily Carr’s work hauntingly captures the primal appeal of B.C.’s rugged forests and shores.

___ Cross the swaying, enduring Capilano Suspension Bridge which stretches across a deep forested canyon, high above old trees and a rushing river. This famous pedestrian-only suspension bridge has been daring visitors to look down for more than 100 years. Now you can explore the giant forest trees, too, on a series of artfully constructed treewalks through the canopy.

___ Watch the Northwest sunset from a waterside patio, and glory in Vancouver’s stunning sea-to-mountain-to-forest views? Find many outdoor vantage points along False Creek, English Bay and Coal Harbour.

Enjoy!

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