Extending four city blocks (about a mile and a half) north into Burrard Inlet, this complex mimics the style and size of a luxury ocean liner, complete with exterior esplanades and a landmark roofline that resembles five sails (it was made with NASA-invented material: a Teflon-coated fiberglass once used in astronaut space suits). Home to Vancouver's cruise-ship terminal, Canada Place can accommodate up to four liners at once. All together, the giant building is definitely worth a look and the very cool Flyover Canada (604/620–8455, www.flyovercanada.com, C$19.95, daily 10–9) attraction, a simulated flight that takes you on a soaring and swooping virtual voyage across the country, is an excellent reason to go inside. If this dramatic journey above Niagara Falls, the Rocky Mountains, and the vast Arctic sparks your curiosity about other parts of Canada, follow the Canadian Trail on the west side of the building, which has displays about the country's provinces and territories.
Use your smartphone or tablet to access multimedia content along the way: there's free Wi-Fi. Canada Place is also home to the posh Pan Pacific Hotel and the east wing of the Vancouver Convention Centre. On its western side stands the 2010 Olympic cauldron and the newer convention center. A waterfront promenade winds all the way to (and around) Stanley Park, with spectacular vantage points from which to view Burrard Inlet and the North Shore Mountains; plaques posted at intervals have historical information about the city and its waterfront. At the Port Metro Vancouver Discovery Centre (604/665–9000, free, weekdays 9–4), at the north end of the Canada Place complex, you can catch a video about the workings of the port, see some historic images of Vancouver's waterfront, or try your hand at a virtual container-loading game.