I usually do long drawn out trip reports, but we were away for two weeks this time (Whistler the second week) so will spare Vancouver readers the tedious detail this time and just summarise where we went/stayed etc. :+’
We flew with Air Canada Rouge Edinburgh to Toronto then Air Canada from Toronto to Vancouver. Suffice to say the flight was delayed by five hours and not only did we miss our connecting flight but the first rescheduled connecting flight as well. Thankfully there are flights every two hours so we did get to Vancouver on the correct day! I have ignored Air Canada’s offer of compensation via credits towards another Air Canada flight and have filed for our 600 euros pp cash compensation instead!
We stayed at the Times Square Suites Hotel after seeing it so highly recommended on Trip Advisor. It was great and excellent value! We have two teen children and were in a one bedroom with den corner suite. No problem with noise as mentioned by some reviewers and the location is fantastic! We loved the short walk to English Bay and spent most evenings down there watching the sunset. Denholm Stret was great with all the restaurants and Coal Harbour was a short walk in the opposite direction. Stanley Park was about ten minutes away and it was on a bus route direct to downtown. It was absolutely perfect for us (and the staff were great too).
Stanley Park (multiple times!)
Gastown then Granville Island
The beaver at the Olympic Village
Steveston for a whale watch/general wander
My family isn’t keen on filling their days from down to dusk but I usually get my way and plan a mad schedule. This time I promised only one main activity per day. :+)
Steveston- We came to Canada because a year ago my (then) 12 year old daughter was obsessed with Once Upon a Time and I realised we could easily combine a Vancouver holiday with Whistler as our summer holiday this year. One year on and........... yeah, she’d grown out of the show and had NO interest in going to Steveston and had to be pretty much dragged down the Main Street while the rest of us shouted at all the buildings we recognised. Fortunately it is very easy to do a whale watch out of Steveston (booked with Seabreeze Adventures who offer a paid for shuttle to and from your hotel though we only used it for the return leg. The taxi there was $50 before tax)
It’s up in Boston so have done many a whale watch but there was no comparison. We saw two bald eagles at the very beginning, my first and after that I didn’t care if we saw whales or not! However, we saw two pods, the second one with 7 or 8 with lots of activity. Wasn’t impressed with the speedboat who despite our boat blowing their horn at them, went racing over pretty much exactly where one whale was. :+(
We also wandered along to the Britannia Shipyards which is free (donation boxes around) and we’ll worth a visit if you like open air museums. A great little day trip from Vancouver!
Capilano- My husband gave this a miss because he suffers from vertigo and we had all sorts of vertigo challenging activities planned for Whistler. He went to Stanley park and saw a raccoon (very exotic for a Brit!). I’d been warned off Capilano as a ruined mass tourist attraction but it’s the sort of thing my kids love so we got one of the first free shuttles at the Westin. I’d prepurchased tickets online which saved a significant chunk of time given the queue at the ticket office. We went straight to the bridge and it was fairly quiet and did the walks on the other side- practically to ourselves. Hiwowever, by the time we recrossed, the queue to the bridge was an hour long! At least the signs said so- possibly an exaggeration but it was very very busy!
We did the cliff walk and then spent far too much in the gift shop (Christmas tree decorations). I have to say, it was great fun! I wouldn’t do it any later in the day though because those queues were rather horrendous. Disneylike.
Off for dinner, TBC later...