Canada Travel Tips Vancouver

My Short But Sweet Holiday in Vancouver

August 10, 2017

Last June, before we headed to our month-long stay in New York, we took a brief stop to Vancouver. This was my first time in Canada so I was more than excited about it!

Now for me, the best part of any new place — is actually waking up on my first morning and having a good breakfast spread lay before me. I definitely need all the goodness of carbs and caffeine from coffee to help me last the long day ahead!

*Side story : This is especially true in my case since I always suffer from a bad case of jet lag. It takes me days to recover and adjust, which is why I avoid taking very short trips abroad. (As much as possible, I do not travel to far away places with a different time zone for only a few days!) This explains why all my trips to far cities are at least a week long!

Since we only had a few days in the city, we decided to concentrate all our efforts to kid-friendly places. Our first stop was Vancouver’s Stanley Park Seawall. 

What we didn’t realize was that Vancouver has the world’s longest uninterrupted waterfront path! They have a 28 km Seaside Greenway with an uninterrupted pathway, including this Stanley Park Seawall — that extends from the Vancouver Convention Centre to Spanish Banks Park.

This place is perfect for a walk, cycle, or jog. It is the most popular recreational spot in the city and what they say is also the  “most popular fresh air attraction” in Vancouver!

Stanley Park is Vancouver’s first park and one of the city’s most beloved tourist attractions. It is covered in 400 hectares of greenery and water — definitely a place of  tranquility in this city!

Our next stop was the Vancouver Aquarium, which is also located within the massive Stanley Park. This sanctuary is home to thousands of incredible ocean species and amazing aquatic life!

Not only do they have interactive exhibits here, but they do host a lot of educational and informative talks about our ocean. This is a place I highly recommend for both children and grown-ups alike!

Of course, during the day, it was all about walking and walking!

Here I actually didn’t complain about walking and staying outside — since the air is clean, crisp and fresh!

At night, Vancouver is also gorgeous. This is a shot I took with my own camera, as we were about to board the city’s Aquabus Locals and tourists alike take this water taxi service either to commute to another part of the city or to do some sightseeing from the waterfront. Either way, I love how they protect and promote their cityscape!

Our next stop was the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. This is definitely a must-visit when you are in Vancouver. There are so many things to do and explore in this park. It is surrounded by some of the tallest trees I’ve ever seen and the freshest cedar scent I’ve ever smelled!

But of course the main attraction here is the award-winning and one of Vancouver’s top sites, the Capilano Suspension Bridge. This is a bridge that was originally built in 1889! (Yes, it’s that old already!!!) It stretches 450 feet (137m) across and 230 feet (70m) above the Capilano River.

I have my fear of heights, but since my children were with me — and they were not even a bit scared at all, I had to show them a brave face as I tried my best and walked across this super high and wobbly bridge!

Once I was halfway across, fear disappeared and I started enjoying the sights around me. From up here, I was able to get a breathtaking view of the deep river underneath and the tall evergreen trees that surrounded me!

So yes, this is as daring as I can get! This bridge really brought out some courage from me, something I didn’t know I even had!

*Just remember that this bridge is very high and long… and so wobbly that with every step you make, it actually sways!

But will I do it again? In fact, we all did! We had to walk across it again because that’s the only way to exit the Park!

From the Capilano Suspension Bridge, we took a public bus (a quick 15 minute ride) to get to our next stop, the Grouse Mountain, a place known for its wildlife sanctuary and the famous grizzly bears!

*Side note : Thank you Smart Infinity for my reliable roaming service during this trip! If not for Smart Surf Abroad, I will not be able to stay connected and post frequently on my Instagram — just like what I was caught doing here in the bus while we were going up the mountain! 🙂

As soon as we got inside the park, we rode the Skyride to get to the mountain top! This alone was very exciting to the kids!

Now unfortunately, during the time that we were there, the grizzly bears didn’t come out. According to the Park Ranger, this sometimes happens and they really cannot predict the exact day and time these bears will come out!

Obviously, the kids were very disappointed that day… especially this little girl of mine. But later on, she happily settled with climbing up this grizzly bear statue! (Thank God, kids are so easy to please!)

So even if you fail to catch the famous grizzly bears, know that the Grouse Mountain is so big and is also loaded with lots of activities for both the young and old.

But if you find yourself with enough time here, you can catch the World Famous Lumberjack Show, watch from their Theater in the Sky, walk their guided Eco-walk Tours, listen to Ranger Talks, and hike to the mountain top! And if you find yourself still needing more adventure than that, then you can also do their ziplines or ride a helicopter for an amazing tour above it all!

Five days is really not enough time in a new city like Vancouver. There are so many things to do, sights to see, food to eat, but so little time! This city will surely be special to me — for it has given me and my family amazing and fun memories. Thank you for the warm welcome, Vancouver. I know we got lucky with the weather during this time! We will surely be back for more!

If you want to see the rest of my photos from this trip, go to my Instagram and search #TSMinVancouver or click this link here. 

And if you want to read about the next part of this summer trip, click this link and you will be led to my New York holiday! 

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