Tom and I often find that we lack the “get up and go” for a full day of sightseeing that many other travelers have. More often than not we get sucked into work or our daily routines, and consider ourselves lucky if we manage to squeeze in a few “sights” a week.
My sister Sarah met us in Vancouver for a Canadian holiday, so we really made an effort to put our computer work and sloth-like ways aside to see more of the city with her. Sarah has a nature blog that only uses the camera on her iPhone, it’s pretty sweet and you can check it out here. This day we managed to get out of the house right after lunch (at about 1:00pm) and so fancied ourselves extremely accomplished.
Stanley Park was voted ‘top park in the entire world’ in 2014 by TripAdvisor. That is a bold statement, but one that I have to agree with after our visit there. It is a HUGE (even bigger than central park in NYC) and covered in forests of 1,000 year old trees, animals of all types and is almost completely surrounded by the waters of the Pacific Ocean.
We spent hours in the park exploring trails, finding tree stumps to climb, mushrooms to photograph and goslings to chase after. After completing a full loop of the park from one side to another we were ready to start walking towards dinner.
Gastown Steam Clock
On our way to dinner we walked by the corner of Cambie and Water Street to check out the Gastown steam clock, which was built in the 1970’s to cover a steam grate. The clock harnesses the steam to whistle out the time every quarter hour like a tea kettle.
After seeing the steam clock whistle, which it did admirably, we continued our walk to Wildebeest for drinks and dinner.
Wildebeest describes itself as having a “gastronomically daring menu that focuses on whole-animal cookery prepared with the utmost integrity.” The cocktails at Wildebeest were superb (probably the stand-out of the meal for me), and the food was wonderful as well. Everything we had from the “foraged & harvested greens & elderflower vinaigrette” to the “Wildebeest cheesecake crumble & strawberry sorbet” was absolutely delicious!
Sunset along The Canadian Trail
After our meat-centric dinner we were ready for a sunset stroll before taking the metro back to our neighborhood. The Canadian Trail is a promenade along the water at “Canada Place” the big port by the city center. Canada place is also where we disembarked from our two-week cruise across the Pacific.
The Canadian Trail is full of cute outdoor displays teaching about Canada’s past and present. More importantly, it is an absolutely gorgeous place to stroll during the sunset to watch the sky erupt into oranges, pinks and purples.
After the sun finished setting we took the metro back to “our” neighborhood to go to Trivia night at Falconetti’s, a bar just a block or two away from the house we rented. Trivia night is unfortunately not pictured, but it was a blast, and I would definitely check it out if you find yourself in the area on a Tuesday night. It was especially fun since my Sister is a trivia whiz. All Tom and I had to do was sit back and nurse some drinks while she carried our team almost all the way to victory. Especially impressive since so many of the current events and sports trivia was about British Columbia!
There are so many things to do in Vancouver and we loved our short time there exploring the vibrant neighborhood we stayed in at an airbnb rental, and the city at large. Our rental was off of Commercial drive and the neighborhood was packed to the gills with restaurants, bars, cafes and little shops. It was easy to take the metro to the city center to explore, and enough to do around the house to make us not want to leave!