It’s been a week now that I am back from my trip to Canada and the USA and my lightweight jet lag has been worked off properly so I thought I’ll start with my series of travel related posts covering my 3-weeks road trip experience to North America. Last week I had a soft launch with this post about a community garden in Vancouver. The Canadian West Coast metropolis was my first stop so here we go with a little Vancouver recap.
Vancouver is a great travel destination: You like city life. Check. You like nature. Check. You like mountains, you like beaches? Double check. Vancouver has managed to acquire an enviable image. It is the city where urban life & nature collide, where people are very, I mean very outdoorsy and where a sporty attitude is a prerequisite for future inhabitants. The possibilities for a healthy outdoor life are paramount: bike trails everywhere, an abundance of parks, water sport activities, hiking and climbing spaces just to mention a few. And that outdoorsy attitude is omnipresent on the city’s streets.
For a first time visitor like myself the most important to-see destinations were quickly determined: the busy waterfront, bustling Gastown with its cool shops, bars and restaurants, a stroll through Chinatown (did you know Vancouver has the largest Asian community in North America), walk’n’shop in the liberal West End, discovering the famous Granville Market, a cruise on the Burrard Inlet. And I herewith confirm – yes, do all of this if you end up in Vancouver one day.
But the best food experience will lead you on a boat at first: Take the water taxi to Granville island and discover the abundance of food at Granville market – you can’t resist the all the juicy, fresh fruits, the luscious delicatessen and fresh bread and pastries. You can easily spend the entire day there eating and drinking, walking around, visiting art galleries, the famous Emily Carr University of Art and Design, and one of the many breweries with local microbrews.
For a serene, almost zen-like experience head to the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Chinese Garden – you can either join a guided tour or do it my way: Stroll around by yourself, discover hidden corners, sit down and contemplate, behold the beauty of the jade tigers, sip on a cup of Chinese green tea, and challenge yourself in Chinese calligraphy – at least you’ll know if your talented or not. I know now. I’m not.