British Columbia | Moon Travel Guides https://moon.com Trip Ideas, Itineraries, Maps & Area Experts Sat, 18 Nov 2017 00:01:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9 https://deathstar-650a.kxcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/cropped-moon_logo_M-32x32.jpg British Columbia | Moon Travel Guides https://moon.com 32 32 125073523 5 Best Urban Walks in Vancouver https://moon.com/2017/11/best-urban-walks-in-vancouver/ https://moon.com/2017/11/best-urban-walks-in-vancouver/#respond Fri, 17 Nov 2017 21:50:27 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=61528 Vancouver is a walkable city, with a compact downtown, easy-to-navigate neighborhoods, and plenty of natural attractions close to its urban core. Whether it’s a bright sunny day, or a misty afternoon, you can find a walk that’s right for the weather and your mood.

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Vancouver is a walkable city, with a compact downtown, easy-to-navigate neighborhoods, and plenty of natural attractions close to its urban core. Whether it’s a bright sunny day, or a misty afternoon, you can find a walk that’s right for the weather and your mood.

Put on your walking shoes, and start with these suggestions for Vancouver’s best five urban walks.

man running on the path along Stanley Park Seawall

Take a walk, or a jog, along the Stanley Park Seawall. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Stanley Park Seawall Walk

Vancouver’s most scenic walking route is the 5.5-mile (9-kilometer) Seawall path the circles the perimeter of Stanley Park. Enter the park near Georgia and Denman Streets, and keep the water on your right as you walk, taking in the views across Burrard Inlet to the city skyline and North Shore Mountains.

Stop to see the collection of totem poles at Brockton Point. At one point, you’ll pass under the Lions Gate Bridge—a dramatic setting for photos. As you come around to the park’s west side, you’ll see the landmark Siwash Rock jutting out of the water. Take a rest at Third Beach (it’s a good spot for a picnic), then continue walking past Second Beach and English Bay. You’ll exit the park near the corner of Denman and Davie Streets, where you’ll find lots of spots to refuel over drinks or a meal.

“Talking Trees” Walk

While most visitors stick to the Stanley Park Seawall, plenty of walking paths crisscross the park’s quiet interior, too, taking you deep into the old-growth forest. The Rawlings Trail parallels Park Drive on the west side of the park and leads you past the Hollow Tree, the 42-foot-tall (13-meter) remains of a massive cedar. Another wooded trail is the Tatlow Walk, which cuts across the southwest corner of the park, between Third Beach and Lost Lagoon. Check the City of Vancouver’s online trail map (PDF) before you set out.

If you prefer to explore with a guide, book a 90-minute “Talking Trees Walk” with native-owned eco-tourism company, Talaysay Tours. As you stroll the secluded trails and around a beaver pond, your guide will identify local plants and explain their uses for food, teas, and medicine. You’ll learn about the park’s long heritage as the traditional territory of local First Nations, too.

a kayak sits in False Creek with Science World in the background, Vancouver

Take in views of the waterfront while strolling along False Creek. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

False Creek Waterfront Walk

The Seawall isn’t just in Stanley Park. This path extends along the False Creek Waterfront connecting English Bay Beach, Yaletown, the Olympic Village district, and Granville Island, and continues west to Kitsilano Beach. Wander along the water for as long as you like, and if you get tired, catch the Aquabus or False Creek Ferries, the cute little boats that shuttle across False Creek.

On the south side of False Creek, near the Olympic Village, snap photos of the downtown skyline and of landmarks like Science World’s geodesic dome. At Granville Island, head for the Public Market, where there are plenty of food and drink options. If you’re not tired yet, keep walking through Vanier Park all the way to Kitsilano Beach, where you can sit on a giant log and watch the sunset.

Eastside Craft Beer Walk

Vancouver’s craft beer scene has taken off, with more than two dozen microbreweries in the city and even more in the surrounding suburbs. The partly industrial, partly residential East Vancouver neighborhood, loosely bounded by Clark Drive, East 1st Avenue, Victoria Drive, and Powell Street, is perfect for a brewery crawl.

Start at Parallel 49 Brewing Company, one of the more established East Side breweries and a popular neighborhood gathering spot; it’s on Triumph Street, just east of Victoria Drive. Then walk two blocks north to Powell Street and turn left (west) to find tiny, family-run Doan’s Craft Brewing Company as well as Powell Brewery.

Circle back to Franklin Street where Callister Brewing, Canada’s first “collaborative brewery,” not only sells and serves their own beer but also teams up with additional brewers who use the facilities to make their own beers. Hungry? Continue east, then turn right (south) onto Commercial Drive, which is lined with cafés and eateries, between Venables Street and Broadway.

Vancouver Special storefront

Head to Main Street for a bit of shopping, stopping in at the cool design store Vancouver Special. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Main Street Shopping Walk

Looking for indie boutiques stocking one-of-a-kind clothing, jewelry, and gifts? Then plan to explore Vancouver’s Main Street.

Start at the corner of Broadway and Main; there’s a cluster of shops just south of this busy intersection. Continue south on Main, stopping for coffee at Forty Ninth Parallel Coffee Roasters.

More serious shopping starts along Main Street between 20th and 30th Avenues. Vancouver Special is an emporium of cool designs, from Scandinavian textiles to Japanese ceramics to Vancouver-made objects. Front & Company lures the style conscious with its large stock of vintage, designer consignment, and smart new clothing, while across the street, Barefoot Contessa carries “all things lovely,” including frilly, flouncy fashions and vintage-inspired jewelry.

Nostalgic for the days of handwritten letters? Stop into the Regional Assembly of Text, which stocks cards, journals, and anything to do with correspondence. Pick up a postcard, where you can jot down some notes from your urban wanderings, a perfect souvenir of walkable Vancouver.


Put on your walking shoes, and head out for a day of sightseeing on any of Vancouver’s best five urban walks. Whether you're looking to explore Stanley Park or do a bit of shopping, we've got you covered!

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Vancouver with Kids 5-Day Travel Itinerary https://moon.com/2017/11/vancouver-with-kids-5-day-travel-itinerary/ https://moon.com/2017/11/vancouver-with-kids-5-day-travel-itinerary/#respond Thu, 16 Nov 2017 23:16:47 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=60275 With so many outdoor attractions, cool ways to get around the city, and kid-friendly restaurants, Vancouver is a fantastic destination for families. Whether you’re exploring a rainforest park, riding a ferry, or following the Dumpling Trail, this 5-day itinerary for visiting Vancouver with kids serves up plenty of family-focused fun.

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With so many outdoor attractions, cool ways to get around the city, and kid-friendly restaurants, Vancouver is a fantastic destination for families. Whether you’re exploring a rainforest park, riding a ferry, or following the Dumpling Trail, this 5-day itinerary for visiting Vancouver with kids serves up plenty of family-focused fun. Tip: Always ask about special family rates or discounts when you’re buying tickets to any sights or attractions.

man running in Vancouver's Stanley Park in autumn

Take the kids for a picnic in Stanley Park. Photo © Vismax/iStock.

Day 1: Stanley Park

Pack a picnic lunch and spend the day in Stanley Park, Vancouver’s rainforest green space at the end of the downtown peninsula. Visit the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre first (it’s less crowded in the mornings), then enjoy your picnic near Lost Lagoon.

After lunch, rent bikes to explore more of the park; there are several rental shops just outside the park’s West Georgia Street entrance. Follow the Seawall to see the majestic totem poles at Brockton Point, stop to cool off in the splash park near Lumberman’s Arch, and let the kids play in the sand or go for a swim at Second Beach, where there’s a large pool, restrooms, and snack bar.

For dinner, try one of the Asian restaurants downtown. Most kids enjoy watching the dumpling makers at work at Dinesty Dumpling House, or you can dig into Japanese-style hot dogs at Japadog.

Day 2: Granville Island and False Creek

Buy a day pass for the Aquabus ferry, so you can hop on and off these cute little boats as you travel around Granville Island and False Creek. Take the Aquabus to Science World and spend the morning exploring the hands-on exhibits. When it’s time for lunch, cruise over to Granville Island, where there are plenty of family-friendly food options in the Granville Island Public Market.

Don’t miss the Kids Market, with its kid-approved shops and indoor playground. Check out Sea Village, too, to let the kids imagine what it would be like to live on a houseboat. When you’re done exploring the island, rent kayaks for an excursion along False Creek.

Have an early dinner at Go Fish (it’s a short stroll along the waterfront from Granville Island), then catch the Aquabus to Yaletown for dessert at Bella Gelateria Yaletown.

a ferry boat in false creek with Science World in the background, Vancouver

Hop on a ferry to Science World, where kids can get a hands-on experience! Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 3: Canada Place and the North Shore

Start your day at Canada Place with a virtual flight across the country at FlyOver Canada. You even feel the spray as you soar (virtually) over Niagara Falls.

In front of Canada Place, catch the free shuttle to Grouse Mountain. Ride the Skyride tram to the top, where you can visit the grizzly bears at the Grouse Mountain Refuge for Endangered Wildlife, watch the falcons soar at the Birds in Motion demonstration, and get some chuckles at the Lumberjack Show. Go for a hike, and have lunch overlooking the city and water below.

Your next stop is the Capilano Suspension Bridge (from the Grouse Mountain entrance, take bus 236 down Capilano Road). Give the kids a thrill as they look from the bridge to the canyon way below. Explore the Treetops Adventure, too, where you follow a network of gently swaying wooden bridges to eight treehouse platforms in the forest. When you’re ready to go back downtown, catch the free shuttle.

For supper, let the kids play with the jukeboxes at retro diner The Templeton or slurp up a bowl of ramen at Hokkaido Ramen Santouka. The Korean shaved ice dessert called bingsoo, served at Snowy Village Dessert Café, makes a fun after-dinner treat.

Capilano suspension bridge feeding through forest

Get an adrenaline rush on the Capilano Bridge. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 4: UBC and Point Grey

Today, you’ll tour the museums on the University of British Columbia campus, check out another rainforest park, and then have time to relax at Jericho Beach.

From downtown, catch any UBC-bound bus to the campus bus loop. Walk over to the Museum of Anthropology, where there’s a fantastic collection of First Nations totem poles and other artifacts.

Another short walk takes you to the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, which has more than two million specimens of bugs, fish, plants, and fossils that the kids can explore, as well as a massive blue whale skeleton. One more campus attraction, located at the UBC Botanical Garden, is the Greenheart TreeWalk, a network of aerial bridges that takes you high into the rainforest canopy.

Catch bus 99 to Point Grey Village (get off at W. 10th Ave. at Sasamat St.), where you can have a sandwich and a sweet at Mix the Bakery. After you’ve refueled, walk south to West 16th Avenue, where you can go for a stroll in the rainforest at Pacific Spirit Regional Park, which has more than 40 miles (70 kilometers) of hiking trails. The trails are fairly well marked, but the park is large, so you’ll need to pay attention to your route.

If the kids aren’t too tired, you can walk down to the Jericho Sailing Centre (it’s 1.25 miles, or two kilometers, straight down Trimble Street); if you’d rather go by bus, it’s fastest to take bus 25 or 33 on 16th Avenue back to the UBC Bus Loop, then change to bus 84, which will drop you on West 4th Avenue just above the beach. Have dinner overlooking the sand at The Galley Patio and Grill, go for a sunset kayak paddle, or simply sit on the beach and watch the sunset. When you’re ready to go back downtown, take bus 4 from West 4th Avenue.

a face and two animals carved into a totem pole at the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver

Tour the collection of First Nations totem polls at the Museum of Anthropology. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 5: Richmond

Plan a whale-watching cruise today. Several operators run trips from Steveston Village in the suburb of Richmond, and most will include transportation from downtown. Spend the morning on the water looking for orcas, sea lions, and other aquatic life. Back on land, check out the fishing boats and vendors along the wharf, and stop for a fish-and-chips lunch at Pajo’s.

Richmond is the center of Vancouver’s Asian community, so instead of heading straight back downtown, catch bus 402, 407, or 410 from Steveston to Richmond’s Golden Village, where you can choose from countless Chinese restaurants for dinner. The kids might enjoy mapping out their route along Richmond’s Dumpling Trail (get a map at www.visitrichmondbc.com) or choosing from the long list of bubble teas at Pearl Castle Café. If you’re in town on a weekend between mid-May and mid-October, wrap up your day at the Richmond Night Market, where there’s plenty of Asian food to sample, before catching the Canada Line back downtown.

With so many outdoor attractions, cool ways to get around the city, and kid-friendly restaurants, Vancouver is a fantastic destination for families. Whether you’re exploring a rainforest park, riding a ferry, or following the Dumpling Trail, this 5 day itinerary for visiting Vancouver with kids serves up plenty of family-focused fun. Tip: Always ask about special family rates or discounts when you’re buying tickets to any sights or attractions.


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver.

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Walking Vancouver’s Downtown and West End https://moon.com/2017/09/walking-vancouvers-downtown-and-west-end/ https://moon.com/2017/09/walking-vancouvers-downtown-and-west-end/#respond Mon, 25 Sep 2017 23:28:32 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=60263 This self-guided walking tour lets you explore Vancouver starting from Canada Place on the Burrard Inlet side of downtown, through the city to English Bay, passing numerous landmarks, artworks, and places to eat.

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This self-guided walking tour lets you explore Vancouver starting from Canada Place on the Burrard Inlet side of downtown, through the city to English Bay, passing numerous landmarks, artworks, and places to eat. You can do this walk anytime, but if you start in the early afternoon, you can wrap up your stroll at west-facing English Bay Beach as the sun is shining over the sea.

white sails of Canada Place line the waterfront in Vancouver

Canada Place, one of Vancouver’s iconic locations. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Total Distance: 2.5 miles (4 kilometers)
Total Walking Time: 1 hour

Begin your walk at Canada Place, the waterfront landmark with its billowing white sails. Follow the Seawall path one block toward the Vancouver Convention Centre’s west building, and note the building’s living roof. Keeping the water on your right side, continue along the Seawall behind the convention center, passing The Drop, a 20-meter (65-foot) bright blue raindrop sculpture that a Berlin-based art collective created in 2009.

At the back of the convention center, after watching the floatplanes taking off and landing on the harbor, turn left up the stairs to Jack Poole Plaza. Look for Digital Orca (2009), by Vancouver artist Douglas Coupland, a sculpture of a whale that appears to be breaching toward the sky. Also on the plaza is the Olympic Cauldron, which was lit when Vancouver hosted the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

Turn left (east) onto Canada Place, then in one block, turn right (south) onto Burrard Street. Walk one more block to the corner of Burrard and Cordova, and look up. Wrapping around the exterior of the Fairmont Pacific Rim are the words, “Lying on top of a building the clouds looked no nearer than when I was lying on the street.” It’s an art installation by New York artist Liam Gillick.

outside of the Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel

Talk a walk to the Fairmont Pacific Rim and don’t forget to look up! Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Ready for refreshments? In front of the Fairmont, stop for gelato or sorbetto at Bella Gelateria.

When you’ve finished your treats, continue walking south on busy Burrard Street, away from the water. After three blocks, turn left (east) onto Dunsmuir Street and take your first right (south) onto Hornby Street. In the middle of the block is the Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art, one of the best places downtown to explore aboriginal art. Allow about an hour to walk through the gallery.

Exit the gallery and turn right (south) on Hornby. In one block, at the corner of Hornby and Georgia Streets, cross the street and go into the HSBC Building (885 W. Georgia St.). Why stop at a bank office? In the lobby is a massive, swinging stainless steel pendulum, an art piece called Broken Column (1987) by Alan Storey. The building’s air circulation system powers its movement. Also in the lobby, the free Pendulum Gallery mounts small changing art exhibitions.

Diagonally across Hornby and Georgia Streets is the landmark Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, built in 1939. Duck into the lobby for a quick look, and then exit the building, turning left (south) onto Burrard Street.

In one block, cross Burrard and turn right (west) onto Robson Street. Robson is one of downtown’s main shopping streets, and while many of the stores are international chains, it’s still a lively district. This retail route gradually gives way to restaurants, primarily noodle shops, Korean eateries, and other Asian spots. If you’d like to pause for lunch, line up for a bowl of tokusen toroniku ramen at Hokkaido Ramen Santouka, on Robson six blocks from Burrard.

After your meal, continue on Robson for one more block, and turn left (south) onto Denman Street. You’re now in the heart of the West End, with more small food spots and neighborhood shops along Denman. Stay on Denman for six blocks to Morton Park, where you’ll spot 14 grinning bronze figures. That’s A-maze-ing Laughter, the popular public art piece by Chinese artist Yue Minjun.

Cross Beach Avenue to English Bay Beach, where you can sit in the sand and do some people-watching, resting up from your downtown explorations.

looking out over English Bay Beach from the sidwalk

End your walking tour at English Bay Beach. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver. Looking for more walks? Pick up the book!

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Travel Itinerary for 3-5 Days in Vancouver https://moon.com/2017/09/travel-itinerary-3-5-days-in-vancouver/ https://moon.com/2017/09/travel-itinerary-3-5-days-in-vancouver/#respond Wed, 20 Sep 2017 15:25:23 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=60036 In just a few days, you can experience the best of Vancouver, combining outdoor activities, cultural explorations, and time for strolling, snacking, and sipping. Vancouver’s public transit system makes it easy to get around without a car; this 3-day Vancouver itinerary includes tips for the most convenient transit options.

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In just a few days, you can experience the best of Vancouver, combining outdoor activities, cultural explorations, and time for strolling, snacking, and sipping. Vancouver’s public transit system makes it easy to get around without a car; this 3- to 5-day Vancouver itinerary includes tips for the most convenient transit options.

view from Vancouver Lookout of the downtown skyscrapers and the waterfront

Orient yourself to the city with the 360 view from Vancouver Lookout. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

3 Days in Vancouver

Day 1: Downtown and Granville Island

Get your first glance of the city and orient yourself with the 360-degree view from the observation platform at the Vancouver Lookout downtown. Save your ticket to return later for the nighttime views.

Catch bus 50 on Granville Street to Granville Island. Browse the stalls and stop for a morning snack in the Granville Island Public Market, before checking out the galleries and shops in the Net Loft, on Railspur Alley, and throughout the island. Don’t miss the museum-quality aboriginal art at the Eagle Spirit Gallery.

For lunch, return to the Public Market or sit down for a more leisurely meal, highlighting Canadian products, at Edible Canada Bistro.

To start your afternoon on an active note, rent a kayak or a stand-up paddleboard at Ecomarine Paddlesports Centre and spend an hour paddling around the island. Back on land, refresh yourself with a sake sampling at the Artisan Sake Maker or a craft cocktail made from the small-batch spirits at Liberty Distilling before catching the bus back downtown.

Your next stop is the Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art, which shows works by a noted First Nations artist. Nearby, you can wander the exhibits at the Vancouver Art Gallery, making sure to see paintings by B.C.’s renowned Emily Carr.

In the late afternoon, rent a bike and take a leisurely ride along the Seawall in Stanley Park, stopping to see the totem poles at Brockton Point, then pedal past landmark Siwash Rock. Pause to rest at English Bay Beach, which is also one of Vancouver’s best spots to watch the sun set over the ocean. Across the street from the beach, smile at >A-maze-ing Laughter, a public art piece comprising 14 grinning bronze figures.

Have dinner downtown, perhaps the imaginative contemporary fare at Royal Dinette or a creative pizza at Nightingale, then return to the Vancouver Lookout to gaze over the city’s twinkling lights.

a pond in front of a traditional Chinese building

Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden was the first authentic Ming Dynasty garden built outside of China. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 2: UBC, Gastown, and Chinatown

Enjoy breakfast at Forage or Medina Café before exploring more of the city’s cultural highlights.

From Granville Street, catch bus 4 or 14 west to the University of British Columbia and the Museum of Anthropology. This first-rate museum has a particularly strong collection of First Nations art, including an awe-inspiring gallery of totem poles. After exploring the museum, take a walk through the serene Nitobe Japanese Garden nearby.

When you’re finished on campus, take bus 4 back toward Kitsilano for lunch on West 4th Avenue: Thai food at Maenam or French bistro fare at Au Comptoir. Check out the 4th Avenue shops before stopping for dessert at Beaucoup Bakery & Café or a shot of rich hot chocolate from Chocolate Arts.

Bus 4 or 7 will take you from Kits to Gastown. Walk along Water Street, watch the Gastown Steam Clock toot its steam whistle, and stop into several of the First Nations art galleries, like Hill’s Native Art.

Continue into Chinatown for a late-afternoon tour of the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden, the only authentic Ming Dynasty garden outside China.

Stay in Chinatown for dinner. Try the unusual combination of Italian and Japanese elements at speakeasy-style Kissa Tanto or share modern Canadian plates at Juniper Kitchen & Bar. After your meal, have a drink at the Keefer Bar, or take a cab back downtown for a nightcap at Uva Wine & Cocktail Bar or elegant Prohibition Lounge.

a woman stands atop Grouse Mountain looking out at Vancouver

Head up to Grouse Mountain on a clear day for incredible views. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 3: The North Shore

Today, you’re exploring the mountains and rainforests on Vancouver’s North Shore. Catch the free shuttle from Canada Place to Grouse Mountain. If you’re up for a challenge, walk up the Grouse Grind, a trail nicknamed “Mother Nature’s Stairmaster.” But there’s no shame in taking the Skyride; it’s North America’s largest tram system. At the top, laugh at the lumberjack show, explore the wildlife refuge, and go for a short hike. The views are spectacular on a clear day.

Come down the mountain, and at the Grouse entrance, catch bus 236 to the Capilano Suspension Bridge. This 450-foot (137-meter) span swings over a canyon high above the Capilano River. If you’re feeling brave, follow the Cliffwalk, a series of boardwalks cantilevered over the rushing river. Do you dare stand on the glass platform and look down (way down!)?

Get back on bus 236 to Lonsdale Quay. Stop for a drink, with views of the city skyline, at Pier 7 Restaurant & Bar, a short walk from the quay. Then take the SeaBus across the Burrard Inlet to Waterfront Station downtown.

Have dinner in Gastown, where L’Abbatoir serves French-accented west coast fare on the site of Vancouver’s first jail or stylish Chambar combines flavors of North Africa and Belgium with local ingredients.

With More Time

front view of the International Buddhist Temple in Vancouver's Richmond neighborhood

Richmond’s International Buddhist Temple. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 4: Richmond

Ride the Canada Line to spend a day in Vancouver’s “new Chinatown” in the city of Richmond. First up: dim sum in the Golden Village along No. 3 Road. At Golden Paramount Seafood Restaurant, choose from a mix of traditional and modern Hong Kong-style plates, or at Su Hang Restaurant, try Shanghai-style dim sum.

After you’ve eaten, catch bus 403 southbound along No. 3 Road to the International Buddhist Temple, one of the largest Chinese Buddhist temples in North America. Visitors are welcome to tour the gardens and the peaceful temple complex.

From the temple, head to the village of Steveston, an active fishing port where the Asian communities have historic roots. Visiting the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site or the Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site will introduce you to the area’s multicultural history. Walk along the wharf, where fishing boats sell their fresh catch. Pajo’s on the pier makes first-rate fish–and-chips.

Bus 402, 407, or 410 will take you back to the Golden Village, where you can browse the Asian shops at Aberdeen Centre.

If you’re in town on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday between mid-May and mid-October, take the Canada Line to Bridgeport Station for the Richmond Night Market. Graze your way through this Asian-style festival of street foods from China, Taiwan, Japan, and more. Return downtown on the Canada Line.

a fountain flows in the center of a pond

Take a morning stroll through the VanDusen Botanical Garden. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Day 5: Cambie Corridor and East Vancouver

From downtown, take bus 17 to VanDusen Botanical Garden and spend your morning strolling among the blossoms. When you’re ready to eat, hop on a northbound bus 17 for lunch at Salmon n’ Bannock, a modern aboriginal bistro.

Continue east on Broadway to the Cambie Corridor to browse the neighborhood’s boutiques. There’s a cluster of shops near Main and Broadway, and more clothing and accessories purveyors on Main between 20th and 30th Avenues (if you don’t want to walk, bus 3 can take you along Main Street).

When you’re done shopping, it’s time for a beer crawl to try the city’s craft breweries. Both 33 Acres Brewing and Brassneck Brewery are a short walk from the intersection of Broadway and Main.

For a more serious exploration of Vancouver’s microbrewery scene, head for the Commercial Drive and East Village neighborhoods. Parallel 49 Brewing Company has a large tasting room that’s a popular neighborhood gathering spot. To sample some spirits, visit Odd Society Spirits, a small-batch distillery in a former motorcycle garage. To get here from Broadway and Main, take bus 99 eastbound on Broadway to Commercial Drive, then change to bus 20 going north and get off on Hastings Street.

When you’ve tasted your fill, bus 4 or 7 (on Powell St.) or bus 14 or 16 (on Hastings St.) will bring you back downtown for dinner at lively Guu Garden (a Japanese izakaya) or at Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar for local seafood in a stylish setting.


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver.

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Things to Do in Vancouver’s Stanley Park https://moon.com/2017/09/things-to-do-in-vancouvers-stanley-park/ https://moon.com/2017/09/things-to-do-in-vancouvers-stanley-park/#respond Mon, 18 Sep 2017 17:50:20 +0000 http://moon.com/?p=12834 A dense rainforest at the end of the downtown peninsula, Stanley Park is a green refuge, incorporating First Nations culture and heritage, woodland and waterfront trails, the city’s aquarium, and spectacular urban and harbor views.

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A dense rainforest at the end of the downtown peninsula, Stanley Park is a green refuge, incorporating First Nations culture and heritage, woodland and waterfront trails, the city’s aquarium, and spectacular urban and harbor views.

sunset on the water by the Stanley Park Seawall promenade in Vancouver

The Seawall Promenade at sunset. Photo © jamesvancouver/iStock.

Sights in Stanley Park

The Seawall, a 5.5-mile (9-kilometer) walking and cycling path, circles the perimeter of Stanley Park and passes many of the park’s attractions. You can also follow the park’s outer edge by car along Stanley Park Drive. It’s also worth exploring the park’s interior trails, many of which pass through old-growth rainforest.

Among Stanley Park’s highlights are the totem poles at Brockton Point and Siwash Rock, an offshore rock formation that figures in First Nations legends. A family-friendly stop is the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre (845 Avison Way, 604/659-3474; 9:30am-6pm daily July-early Sept., 10am-5pm daily early Sept.-June; adults $36, seniors and students $27, ages 4-12 $21), which is Canada’s largest aquarium.

On a finger of land jutting into the harbor on Stanley Park’s east side, the red and white Brockton Point Lighthouse was built in 1914. The Seawall travels under the lighthouse, through archways that support the lighthouse tower.

From Prospect Point, the highest spot in Stanley Park, you have great views of the Burrard Inlet, the North Shore mountains, and the Lions Gate Bridge, one of the world’s longest suspension bridges.

A giant western red cedar, roughly 800 years old, is one of Stanley Park’s best-known landmarks and the source of much controversy. Known as the Hollow Tree, the massive cedar on the park’s west side stopped growing in the 1800s and was essentially a 42-foot-tall (13-meter) tree stump. A 2006 windstorm damaged the tree, causing it to lean precipitously. The historic tree was eventually stabilized with a steel core and a foundation of underground steel “roots.” The tree is along Stanley Park Drive, north of Third Beach.

view of the Vancouver skyline and Lions Gate Bridge

Head to Prospect Point for panoramic views of Vancouver. Photo © Ronnie Chua/iStock.

Tours in Stanley Park

The park has a long and rich First Nations heritage. Several First Nations, including the Burrard, Musqueam, and Squamish people, made their home in the park for several thousand years. To learn more about the park’s aboriginal connections, take the 90-minute guided Talking Trees Walk with First Nations’ owned Talaysay Tours (604/628-8555 or 800/605-4643; 10am and 12:30pm daily May-Sept.; adults $35, ages 4-18 $28).

One option for getting around Stanley Park is on a trolley tour. The Vancouver Trolley Company (604/801-5515 or 888/451-5581) runs a year-round hop-on hop-off tour (one-day pass adults $45, seniors and ages 13-18 $42, ages 4-12 $28) that takes visitors to eight stops within the park and to 27 other locations throughout the city. From late June through early September, the company also operates the Stanley Park Shuttle (11am-6pm daily late June-early Sept.; adults, seniors, and ages 13-18 $10, ages 4-12 $5), a narrated ride that makes 15 stops within the park.

Stanley Park Beaches

Along the Seawall on the west side of Stanley Park, you can swim or sun at busy Second Beach. This sandy cove is also a pretty spot to watch the sunset. There’s a seasonal snack bar and a children’s playground near the beach. Third Beach at Ferguson Point on the west side of Stanley Park is a quiet stretch of sand with views toward the North Shore.

Water Sports on Stanley Park

A unique way to explore Stanley Park is from the water. Rent a kayak from Ecomarine Paddlesports Centre (1700 Beach Ave., 604/689-7575 or 888/425-2925; 10am-dusk Mon.-Fri., 9am-dusk Sat.-Sun. late May-early Sept.) on the beach at English Bay, paddle past Second and Third Beaches, and see Siwash Rock from the water. If you don’t want to navigate the route on your own, take their 2.5-hour guided kayaking tour (9:30am Thurs. and Sat., June-early Sept., $69 pp).

Hiking in Stanley Park

Some of the park’s interior trails include Tatlow Walk, which cuts across the southwest corner of the park, between Third Beach and the north side of Lost Lagoon; Rawlings Trail, open to cyclists and pedestrians, which parallels Park Drive on the west side of the park and takes you past the Hollow Tree; and the Beaver Lake Trail, which circles the lake of the same name near the center of the park.

The City of Vancouver publishes a Stanley Park trail map on its website (http://vancouver.ca). Don’t hike alone on these interior trails, as they can be surprisingly secluded even when the Seawall and beaches are busy.

Cycling in Stanley Park

Vancouver’s most popular cycling route runs along the Seawall, and the most scenic section of the Seawall is the 5.5-mile (9-kilometer) loop around Stanley Park. The paved path passes many landmarks, including the totem poles at Brockton Point, Prospect Point, and Siwash Rock.

The Mobi bike share program (778/655-1800) has a number of locations that are convenient to Stanley Park. You can also rent bikes from several West End shops, just outside the park’s boundaries:

Map of Stanley Park in Vancouver, BC

Stanley Park

Practicalities

All of the parking lots are fee-based ($3.25/hour Apr.-Sept., $2.25/per hour Oct.-Mar.). If you purchase a daily pass, you can use it at any parking lot within the park. You can enter Stanley Park on two sides: from West Georgia Street, near Coal Harbour, or from English Bay, near the intersection of Denman and Davie Streets.
Just above Third Beach, the Teahouse in Stanley Park (Ferguson Point, Stanley Park, 604/669-3281) serves a crowd-pleasing menu of west coast favorites, from smoked salmon and Pacific sablefish to burgers and steaks. The patio is particularly lovely on a sunny day or at sunset.

A dense rainforest at the end of Vancouver's downtown peninsula, Stanley Park is a green refuge, incorporating First Nations culture and heritage, woodland and waterfront trails, the city’s aquarium, and spectacular urban and harbor views. Plan your perfect day in the park with this visitor's guide to the sights and activities in Stanley Park.


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver.

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Weekend Road Trip to the Sunshine Coast, BC https://moon.com/2017/08/weekend-road-trip-sunshine-coast-bc/ https://moon.com/2017/08/weekend-road-trip-sunshine-coast-bc/#respond Wed, 02 Aug 2017 23:04:31 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=58469 Named for its surprisingly abundant summer sun, British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast sits on a striking section of coastal rainforest. Start this easy weekend getaway from Vancouver with a 40-minute ferry ride, meandering between offshore islands. Once on shore, you can drive through a string of funky seaside towns to gallery-hop, hike, or savor the solitude of the rocky beaches.

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Named for its surprisingly abundant summer sun, the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia sits on a striking section of coastal rainforest. Start this easy weekend getaway from Vancouver with a 40-minute ferry ride, meandering between offshore islands. Once on shore, you can drive through a string of funky seaside towns to gallery-hop, hike, or savor the solitude of the rocky beaches.

But this region offers unexpected stops, too: you can a tour a one-of-a-kind archeological exhibit in a small First Nations-run gallery, or hike to the Skookumchuck Narrows, where twice-a-day tides churn up unusually large rapids.

Here’s our itinerary for a road trip to the Canadian sun.

dock on Ruby Lake

Seek serenity at Ruby Lake Resort. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Markets, Microbrews, and a Mandala

Reserve a spot for your car on BC Ferries Horseshoe Bay-to-Langdale route, which departs 13 miles northwest of downtown Vancouver. When the ferry docks, follow Marine Drive to Gibsons, a seaside town featured in the long-running Canadian TV series, The Beachcombers, which aired from 1972 to 1990.

At Gibsons Public Market, lunch on salads, burgers, or Buddha bowls at Emelle’s Market Bistro; the Thai curry with fresh seafood from the fish market downstairs is excellent. Opposite the bistro, the Nicholas Sonntag Marine Education Centre, a catch-and-release aquarium housing local marine life, is opening later this summer. Have a post-lunch latte at Bowen Island Roasting Company or a fair-trade organic bonbon at Art Meets Chocolate.

A short stroll from the market, check out Sa Boothroyd’s gallery of humorous artworks on Government Wharf. As her sign helpfully notes, it’s “the last building before you fall into the water.”

Drive up to farm and microbrewery Persephone Brewing to sample a tasting flight on the shady patio where the tables are crafted from tree trunks. Try the multigrain saison or the unusual smoked porter.

Check into Bonniebrook Lodge opposite beautiful Ocean Beach. Choose a room with a view of the water in the main lodge or a modern suite with whirlpool tub near the gurgling creek. For dinner, it’s a short drive north to Roberts Creek and Gumboot Restaurant, where popular dishes include local fish tacos, wild salmon burgers, and oversized salads. After your meal, walk to the pier to watch the sunset and check out the colorful mandala that residents paint every year.

beer tasting flight on a wooden plank

Enjoy a tasting flight on the patio at Persephone Brewing in Gibsons. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Centuries of History

In the morning, continue north on Highway 101 toward the town of Sechelt and Gourmet Girl Café, where you can dig into the hearty breakfast poutine or sip a fresh fruit smoothie.

Operated by the shíshálh First Nation, Sechelt’s tiny Tems Swiya Museum recently opened a groundbreaking exhibit. On shíshálh land, archeologists discovered the body of a man determined to be a chief, buried in a garment made of more than 350,000 minute stone beads. Nearby were several more bodies, including that of a woman also interred with thousands of handmade beads. Using facial reconstruction technology, scientists determined what these people and their relatives, estimated to have lived more than 3,700 years ago, may have looked like; you can examine their “faces” in an eerily like-life video. The unearthed beads, which would have taken years of work to craft, are also on view.

Refresh at newcomer Bricker Cider Company with a taste of their original apple cider or their almost beer-like hopped version. If you’re ready for brunch or a coffee break, the French toast with berry compote or eggs Benedict served on homemade banana pepper scones at Mad Park Bistro are good choices. Then continue toward Garden Bay to settle into a colorful cottage at John Henry’s Resort, Marina, and Café. On the busy marina, the four cute cabins aren’t super private, but all have sitting areas, kitchens, and lovely water-view decks.

After relaxing by the bay, head north for dinner on the terrace at Ruby Lake Resort, where you might spot a beaver swimming in the adjacent lagoon. Chef-owner Aldo Cogrossi, a Milan native, uses regional ingredients in trattoria-style dishes like smoked tuna with caper mayonnaise or savory wild boar with local mushrooms.

digital representation of indigenous people at a museum

Learn about indigenous culture at the Tems Swiya Museum. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Hike to the “Skook”

From Highway 101 north, turn east onto the winding road toward Egmont, where a 2.5-mile hike through the forest leads to a unique tidal phenomenon. As tidewater squeezes through the Skookumchuck Narrows connecting two inlets, large waves form, sometimes exceeding nine feet in height. Bear right at the sign toward Roland Point to get closest to the waves on a “flood tide”; during an “ebb tide,” you’ll see whirlpools by bearing left to North Point. Check the tide tables online, and time your visit for a large or extra-large tide.

Near the start of the trail, stop at Skookumchuck Bakery for a giant cinnamon bun; they’re soft, doughy, and perfectly cinnamon-sweet.

waves backed by green hills

Watch the tides at Skookumchuck Narrows. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Cruise to the Falls

On your Sunshine Coast road trip, you also have to leave the road, so pack a picnic and explore the region’s waters and inlets. Departing from Egmont, Sunshine Coast Tours runs scenic guided boat tours through the fjords toward Princess Louisa Inlet and Chatterbox Falls, which plunge 120 feet into the sea, next to granite cliffs that soar to more than 7,000 feet.

Back on land, reserve a table on the deck at West Coast Wilderness Lodge, where dishes like oysters Rockefeller or grilled halibut come with expansive views across the inlets. Then toast your road trip to the sun on BC’s Sunshine Coast.

waterfall flowing over a hill with forest in the background

Chatterbox Falls plunges 120 feet into the sea. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Take a weekend road trip to the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia for funky seaside towns, indigenous history, and a bit of seaside solitude.


Get ready to hit the road and explore more of Canada with Moon Vancouver & the Canadian Rockies Road Trip.

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A Road Trip through British Columbia’s Fraser Canyon https://moon.com/2017/07/road-trip-british-columbias-fraser-canyon/ https://moon.com/2017/07/road-trip-british-columbias-fraser-canyon/#respond Mon, 24 Jul 2017 11:22:58 +0000 https://moon.com/?p=58281 In the 1980s, the faster Coquihalla Highway (Hwy 5) opened, replacing the scenic Fraser Canyon section of the Trans-Canada as the most popular route between Vancouver and the Canadian Rockies. But for road trippers who have time for a more leisurely drive, there’s a lot to do along the Fraser Canyon.

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The Trans-Canada Highway is perfect for road-trippers, spanning the country from British Columbia to Newfoundland. Two hours’ drive east of Vancouver, the Trans-Canada (Hwy 1) turns north, where the Fraser River has carved a deep canyon, creating a rocky gorge between the Cascades and Coast Mountains.

looking through an old bridge at forested mountains

Alexandra Bridge over the Fraser River. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Surprisingly, this scenic Fraser Canyon section of Highway 1 is no longer the main east-west route. In the 1980s, the faster Coquihalla Highway (Hwy 5) opened, replacing this section of the Trans-Canada as the most popular route between Vancouver and the Canadian Rockies. But for road trippers who have time for a more leisurely drive, there’s a lot to do along the Fraser Canyon.

Here’s our road trip plan.

Chainsaw Sculptures in Hope

From Vancouver, follow Highway 1 east toward Hope, where Highways 1, 3, and 5 intersect. Stroll around this riverside town to see why it’s known as “The Chainsaw Carving Capital.” Master carvers have crafted more than 60 wooden carvings, from a life-size bear to a fanciful wizard, all sculpted with chainsaws.

wizard carved in wood sitting on grass

One of the statuesque chainsaw carvings in Hope. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Have dinner at 293 Wallace, a modern bistro that highlights ingredients from local farms in dishes like crispy pork belly with a rainbow of fresh and pickled vegetables. Save room for the creamy chocolate pot de crème dusted with chocolate “soil.”

Stay the night at three-room Evergreen B&B, which new owner Christian Paauwe and his family have spiffed up with stylish furnishings, colorful pillows, and convenient road-trip amenities, like in-room fridges and coffeemakers.

Back in Time in Yale

In the morning, head into the Fraser Canyon, following Highway 1 north to tiny Yale. This hamlet had two boom times in the late 1800s—when prospectors came north during BC’s brief gold rush, then during the construction of Canada’s transcontinental railroad.

At the Yale Historic Site, peek into tents that served as the general store, doctor’s office, and saloon as the town grew into the largest community west of Chicago and north of San Francisco. Visit St. John the Divine Church, where parishioners worshipped from 1863 until 1976. Have lunch or a cup of tea in the Ward Tea Room, where staff in period dress serve chicken pies, Cornish pasties, and apple turnovers.

Across the Bridge

Continue north and stretch your legs in Alexandra Bridge Provincial Park, following a short trail to the Fraser River. The first bridge on the site was built in 1861. From the current span, which dates to 1926, you have beautiful views up and down the river.

airtram over the Fraser River

Enjoy panoramic views from the Hell’s Gate Air Tram. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Swing Through Hell’s Gate

For another perspective on the Fraser Canyon, ride the Hell’s Gate Airtram, which plunges (gently) into the gorge. From the suspension bridge at the base, you can take in more river and canyon vistas. There’s also an exhibit about the salmon that spawn in the river and the man-made fishways that help their journey.

Rest Stop for Rafting

The Fraser Canyon is one of Western Canada’s hot spots for whitewater rafting. The secluded REO Rafting Resort outside Boston Bar runs half- and full-day rafting excursions, catering to different levels, on the Nahatlatch, Thompson, and Fraser Rivers. Settle into one of their river-view “glamping” tents for a stopover combining rafting, yoga, and relaxing by the river.

tent on a deck overlooking a river

Stay a night in the Riverside Tent at the REO Rafting Resort. Photo © Carolyn B. Heller.

Explore Native Culture

Curious about the region’s indigenous history? Near Lytton, Paula Cranmer-Underhill welcomes visitors to Spapium “Little Prairie” Farm, where she’s replanting the riverview land that belonged to her great-grandparents.

After sharing her First Nations heritage and family stories, she might teach you to weave a cedar bracelet, explain the medicinal properties of local plants, or offer a snack of homemade bannock (a native bread). Book online, so Paula knows you’re coming.

Back on the Road

From Lytton, you can continue north on Highway 1 toward Kamloops and east to the Canadian Rockies. Another option is to return to the coast via Whistler, following Highway 12 toward Lilloet, where you’ll meet Highway 99. Or simply retrace your path south along Highway 1 back to Vancouver. Either way, you’ve discovered a lesser-known road trip route through a scenic and historic section of British Columbia.

For road trippers who have time for a leisurely drive in Western Canada, there’s a lot to do along British Columbia's scenic Fraser Canyon.


For more Canada road trip ideas, check out Moon Vancouver & Canadian Rockies Road Trip.

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Vancouver Road Trip: Driving to Whistler, BC https://moon.com/2016/11/driving-to-whistler-bc/ https://moon.com/2016/11/driving-to-whistler-bc/#respond Sat, 12 Nov 2016 11:53:42 +0000 http://moon.com/?p=44971 The Sea-to-Sky Highway, one of western Canada’s most stunning roadways, connects Vancouver to the year-round outdoor mecca of Whistler. Just a two-hour drive, it’s perfect for a day trip or as part of a longer exploration. Local author, Carolyn B. Heller, shares directions and tips for driving to Whistler.

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The Sea-to-Sky Highway, one of western Canada’s most stunning roadways, connects Vancouver to the year-round outdoor mecca of Whistler.

Whistler offers not just North America’s largest snow sports resort but also plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking, paddling the glacier-fed lakes, and exploring the region’s First Nations heritage.Just a two-hour drive, it’s perfect for a day trip or as part of a longer exploration. Whistler offers not just North America’s largest snow sports resort but also plenty of opportunities for hiking, biking, paddling the glacier-fed lakes, and exploring the region’s First Nations heritage.

Between Whistler and Vancouver, the town of Squamish is a hot spot for outdoor activities, including excellent hiking and the region’s best white-water rafting. For those looking for gentler adventures, Squamish’s Sea-to-Sky Gondola delivers stellar mountain views and access to mountaintop hiking trails.

Along the Sea-to-Sky-Highway near Whistler, BC.

Along the Sea-to-Sky-Highway near Whistler, BC. Photo © Ontario Ltd. Spirer/123rf.

Driving to Whistler from Vancouver

Allow about two hours to make the 75-mile (120-kilometer) drive between Vancouver and Whistler along the spectacular Sea-to-Sky Highway.

From downtown Vancouver, take West Georgia Street to the Lions Gate Bridge. Watch the signs carefully as you approach Stanley Park en route to the bridge to stay in the proper lane. The center lane on the three-lane bridge reverses its travel direction at different times of day, typically creating two travel lanes into the city in the morning and two travel lanes toward the North Shore during the afternoon rush hour.

After you cross the Lions Gate Bridge, bear left toward Marine Drive west/Highway 1/Highway 99. Enter Marine Drive and stay in the far right lane to take the first right onto Taylor Way (the sign says “Whistler”). Follow Taylor Way up the hill, and exit left onto Highway 1 west. Continue on Highway 1 until it merges with Highway 99 (Sea-to-Sky Hwy.). Stay on Highway 99 through Squamish and into Whistler.

Driving to Whistler from Kamloops

If you’re driving to Whistler from Kamloops or from points farther east in the Canadian Rockies, follow Highway 1 west. At Kamloops, continue west on Highway 1 to Cache Creek, where you make a sharp right turn onto Highway 97 north, following the signs for “BC-99/Prince George/Lillooet.” When Highways 97 and 99 meet, take Highway 99 west, which will take you through Lillooet, Pemberton, and on into Whistler. Kamloops to Whistler is 185 miles (295 kilometers), a four-hour drive.

Driving to Whistler from Vancouver Island (via Ferry)

If you’re traveling between Vancouver Island and Whistler, you don’t have to go through the city of Vancouver. Take the B.C. Ferries (888/223-3779) service from Nanaimo’s Departure Bay Terminal to Horseshoe Bay, which is on the mainland northwest of Vancouver. The Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay Ferry (one-way adults $16.90, ages 5-11 $8.45, cars $55.40, bikes $2) takes one hour and 40 minutes.

The Departure Bay Terminal (680 Trans-Canada Hwy., Nanaimo) is two miles (3 kilometers) north of downtown Nanaimo.

From Horseshoe Bay, drive north on Highway 99 (Sea-to-Sky Hwy.). It’s 60 miles (100 kilometers) from Horseshoe Bay to Whistler; allow about 75-90 minutes for the drive.

From late June through early September, ferries between Horseshoe Bay and Departure Bay generally make eight or nine trips daily, with six or seven daily runs the rest of the year; check the B.C. Ferries website for the seasonal schedule.

Vancouver & Canadian Rockies Road Trip: Driving to Whistler


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver and Canadian Rockies Road Trip.

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Tips for Visiting Whistler on a Budget https://moon.com/2016/10/tips-visiting-whistler-on-a-budget/ https://moon.com/2016/10/tips-visiting-whistler-on-a-budget/#respond Sat, 01 Oct 2016 12:32:05 +0000 http://moon.com/?p=44947 If you’re watching your loonies but still want to enjoy the best of what Whistler has to offer, follow these tips for organizing your Whistler stay.

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Whistler is one of those destinations where there are more things to do than you could pack into a summer-long stay, but many of those activities can be budget-blowing adventures. If you’re watching your loonies but still want to enjoy the best of what Whistler has to offer, follow these tips for organizing your Whistler stay.

  • Come off-season. If you can schedule your Whistler visit for the spring (May-early June) or fall (Sept.-Oct.), you’ll often find lower rates for accommodations and occasional deals for tours and activities.
  • Look for free or low-cost activities. You can hike or cycle many trails around Whistler without purchasing a lift ticket to go up on the mountain. Go for a swim in area lakes or visit the Whistler Museum (by donation). Window-shopping in the village and walking the Valley Trail are both free, too.
Visit Whistler in Spring or Fall to avoid crowds and find better deals. Photo © Christopher Howery/123rf.

Visit Whistler in Spring or Fall to avoid crowds and find better deals. Photo © Christopher Howery/123rf.

  • Maximize your spending. If you do buy a lift ticket for sightseeing or hiking, get an early start and spend as much time as you’d like up on the mountain. You can stay on the mountain all day on your single ticket.
  • Pack a lunch. Look for accommodations with kitchen facilities, so you can prepare some of your own meals, even if it’s just fruit and yogurt for breakfast or a sandwich for the trail. Another option is to have your big meal out at lunch when restaurant prices are a little lower than in the evenings.
  • Go easy on the booze. Many of Whistler’s bars and après-ski hangouts have free live music for the price of a drink. But you don’t have to spend the money for several drinks to enjoy the tunes.
Map of Whistler, BC

Whistler


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver and Canadian Rockies Road Trip.

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Richmond, BC: The Best Chinese Food Outside China https://moon.com/2016/09/richmond-bc-best-chinese-food-outside-china/ https://moon.com/2016/09/richmond-bc-best-chinese-food-outside-china/#respond Wed, 21 Sep 2016 18:29:54 +0000 http://moon.com/?p=44720 Whether you’re looking for spicy Sichuan or Hunan fare, handmade noodles and dumplings like you’d see in Shanghai, delicately seasoned Cantonese seafood, or the hearty lamb dishes of China’s western provinces, you’ll find it in Richmond, BC.

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Closely linked to the Pacific Rim, Vancouver has more direct flights to China than any other North American city, and more than 40 percent of the population in metropolitan Vancouver is of Asian descent. These strong Asian influences permeate the city, from business culture to food. In particular, the Vancouver region has hundreds of Chinese restaurants, many serving high-end cuisine that rivals the fare in Hong Kong, Taipei, and Beijing.

The Richmond Night Market. Photo © Carolyn Heller.

The Richmond Night Market. Photo © Carolyn Heller.

The Vancouver region has hundreds of Chinese restaurants, many serving high-end cuisine that rivals the fare in Hong Kong, Taipei, and Beijing.Chinatown, near the city center, was once a vibrant immigrant community. While it still has Chinese markets, bakeries, and restaurants, new hip shops and eateries have moved in, making the neighborhood fun to explore but not necessarily the best place for traditional Asian meals.

For that, hop on the Canada Line to Richmond, the region’s new Chinatown, where dozens of restaurants serve cuisines from across China. It’s a 25-minute ride from downtown.

Whether you’re looking for spicy Sichuan or Hunan fare, handmade noodles and dumplings like you’d see in Shanghai, delicately seasoned Cantonese seafood, or the hearty lamb dishes of China’s western provinces, you’ll find it in Richmond. Cafés serving bubble tea and Taiwanese shaved ice desserts draw a young crowd, while families pack the round tables of countless dim sum houses. Richmond’s Alexandra Road, which runs for several blocks east from No. 3 Road, has so many restaurants that it’s known locally as “Food Street.”

The center of Richmond’s Asian food scene is the Golden Village, along No. 3 Road from Cambie Road south toward Granville Avenue. From the Canada Line, get off at Aberdeen (note that the mall here, Aberdeen Centre, has one of the best Asian food courts for delicious budget eats), Lansdowne, or Richmond/Brighouse stations, and you’ll find plenty to eat.

Color map of Downtown Vancouver, BC

Downtown Vancouver


Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Vancouver and Canadian Rockies Road Trip.

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