Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Celebrating Vancouver's 125 th Anniversary- May 7-16, 2011

By Keith and Heather Nicol 
      Vancouver is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year.Hard to believe that it was 25 years ago that we attended Expo' 86-which celebrated Vancouver's 100th anniversary. One great deal for this summer is that when you book 2 nights at a participating hotel you get a $125 voucher good for dozens of attractions and activities around the city. We had just a few days in Vancouver and so what follows is a list of some activities that we fully recommend.  The Museum of Anthropology at UBC gives a real insight into the native people of B.C. and its displays are exceptionally well done. Be sure to see Bill Reid’s classic sculpture of the Raven and the First Men. We also enjoyed the Maritime Museum in Vanier Park and getting there was half the fun. We had been enjoying Granville Market (another must see location) and decided to take the False Creek ferries to the Maritime Museum. These oval shaped water craft crisscross False Creek and they make a fine way to go exploring. The Maritime Museum is known for housing the arctic ship St. Roch (which was the first ship to navigate the North west passage from west to east) and but has also has other displays on the history of the port of Vancouver and some fascinating photos of what Vancouver’s shoreline looked like not that long ago. It was also at one of the nearby ponds at the Planetarium that I took my favourite photo of the trip. A heron had landed on the pond and cooperated long enough for me to take some photos with the backdrop of parkland, highrises and the North Shore Mountains in the background. To me it was classic Vancouver – spectacular nature in the midst of Canada’s 3rd largest city.
        We also really enjoyed Vancouver Lookout (170 meters high) which gave us exquisite views of the city as dusk was approaching. I suggest bringing a tripod (which I forgot) but in a pinch you can rest your camera against the window framing to get good time lapse photos at night.  And don’t worry about rain since the windows are slanted such that weather is not much of a problem. Another bonus is that you can go up and down the elevators as many times as you like in the day so you can see the views in the morning and then come back at night to see Vancouver all lit up. We also enjoyed our tandem bike ride around Stanley Park on the seawall. We had a perfectly sunny day and it seemed that most of Vancouver must have been out running, cycling or roller blading along this stunning 10 km loop. In fact Vancouver has many kilometers of cycling and walking trails so the seawall is just one option. Another recommended stop is the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Treetop Adventure in North Vancouver. This is a great way to experience Vancouver’s rain forest vegetation and the “swinging” suspension bridge that is 70 meters above the fast flowing Capilano River.
      On our next visit we want to get to the top of Grouse Mountain via the famous Grouse Grind and take in many other attractions that we didn’t have time to see. In early May ,2011 there was too much snow so the “Grind” was closed and we have a long list of other places we didn’t get a chance to visit. Hopefully next time…..                       For More Information contact:

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